In recent years increasing numbers of parents in economically affluent countries, and especially the United States, have chosen to avoid vaccinations for their children. Even though disease rates have remained relatively low, strident debates in the public sphere have erupted which aren't helpful to parents trying to interpret lots of conflicting information about vaccine safety. The flames of this conflict have been further fanned as states, spurred by recent measles outbreaks, are changing laws to remove clauses which previously provided a way for parents to opt-out from vaccine schedules and still send their kids to schools. So what's a thoughtful parent to do?
The diseases against which vaccinations are designed to protect are very real. As you'll hear, I've seen them with my own eyes. The questions that parents have about vaccine safety are also real, and when there is a lack of transparency about vaccine risks – and when there is legal and financial protection against adverse reactions for the vaccine manufacturers as well – there can be no informed consent.
In this episode of Natural MD Radio I share both my own story as I weighed whether to vaccinate my own four children in the late 1980s and early 1990s, as well as my experience as a healthcare provider, first as a homebirth midwife and then as a medical doctor. I also share links where you can find information about catch-up schedules, and some guidance on what to do – and avoid – if you are now choosing to implement vaccinations for any reason, including being able to send your kids to school in the absence of vaccine exemptions.
- My story – my kids, myself, midwifery practice, medical school and practice
- The history of vaccinations
- Citizen activism and improvements to vaccines
- Impact on children of other environmental exposures
- Changing US laws regarding vaccinations
- Questions from parents who have written to me
- Catch up vaccination schedules
- Medical waivers
- The potential risk of using Tylenol for vaccination reactions
- Is homeopathic immunization effective?
- Do nothing that alters the immune systems
- Titers: pros and cons
- Don't infuse fear in children
- American Academy of Family Physicians Catch-up Schedule
- American Academy of Pediatrics
- Centers for Disease Control Catch-up Schedule
- Vaccinations: A Thoughtful Parent's Guide
- Beyond the Vaccinations Debate: What to Do If Your Child Gets the Measles