The importance of immunizations (Editorial)


Alexa Seras

Getting a vaccine goes a long way towards eliminating deadly diseases.

Vaccines are designed to fight against diseases, making the person immunized from getting those diseases in the future. Many 21st-century parents, however, have decided not to give their children vaccines because they don’t like the idea of putting chemicals their children’s bodies, or they believe they cause autism.

I strongly disagree with this opinion. Immunizations are extremely helpful and all children that can get them should.

“Vaccines reduce the risk of infection by working with the body’s natural defenses to help it safely develop immunity to disease,” according to the Center of Disease Control and Prevention.
If people chose not to vaccinate their kids, they aren’t only hurting them, but as well as those around them.

Also, those that believe that vaccines can cause autism should be aware that there is strong evidence against this suspicion.

According to the Institute of Medicine, “This eighth and final report of the Immunization Safety Review Committee examines the hypothesis that vaccines, specifically the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine and thimerosal-containing vaccines, are causally associated with autism.”

They conclude that “the body of epidemiological evidence favors rejection of a causal relationship between the MMR vaccine and autism.” In other words, the idea that vaccines cause autism is false.

Recently, one mother, Jennifer Hibben-White, brought her 15 day old son to the doctors for a weigh-in appointment. A few days later she received a phone call from the hospital, informing her that her son may have been exposed to the measles virus. How could this have been possible? He was not even a month old.

Apparently, someone in the Toronto-area waiting room had not been vaccinated against this virus, exposing her son to it.

Hibben-White turned to Facebook to share her frustrations.

“If you have chosen not to vaccinate yourself or your child, I blame you,” said Hibben-White.
I agree with her. That women’s son was 15 days old, obviously too young to receive a vaccination and he was exposed to a disease that we have an ability to prevent.

We all rely on each other to keep healthy, and vaccines help protect us from diseases.

Hibben-White, who previously lost her 5-year old daughter due to a incurable illness, ended her argument by saying, “You would be the first to line up if you had an inkling of what the death of a child feels like. You would be crawling through the streets on your hands and knees, begging, BEGGING to get that vaccine into your precious babies because that is what I would have done, if I could, to save my daughter. The fact is, there was no vaccine for her. Not for her illness. And she died. She died at age five and a half, and she is gone.”

I strongly believe that people should be vaccinated if they are able to. We need vaccinations for one simple reason. They keep us healthy and are proven to protect us from harmful diseases. A child who can’t be vaccinated due to other illnesses depends on you to get vaccinated for them. If they get sick, the chances of them living through it are slim.

If you are not up to date on your immunizations, get them! You aren’t just helping yourself. You are helping those around you too.

Disclaimer: Articles designated as “Editorial” represent the views and opinions of the author, not the 2014-2015 Periscope staff, CHS Administration, or the CHS student body.