Should vaccines be mandated for children? This is an issue that has generated a lot of heated debate recently. On one side of the issue are much of the traditional medical world as well as the mainstream media, they promote vaccination as the means to prevent and control large outbreaks of disease. They also state that individuals must recognize their decisions affect others; therefore the individual should not be allowed his personal choice over public benefit. On the other hand, however, there is a rising number of parents, and health professionals who state that individual freedom is at stake and parents must be allowed to make their own decisions regarding vaccinating their children.
A second issue that must also be addressed is the efficacy of vaccinations versus the safety risks involved. The debate surrounding these issues has become increasingly intense; tempers flare with both sides trying to discredit the other with research indicating opposite results. In the midst of this hostile debate, is it possible to come to a compromise that is both peaceful and respectful of those who hold alternate views?
At stake are the questions of health risks versus benefits, and of personal liberty versus the good of society.
The pro-vaccine viewpoint looks at each individual’s health as a factor of the general public’s health. If one family is doing all they can to stop the spread and threat of disease, namely to get all the recommended vaccinations and booster shots, then the next family should also be obligated to do the same thing thus protecting the first family from unnecessary exposure to diseases which can be dangerous.
The thought continues, if vaccines are recommended by the government and are of course for the child’s good, then it’s not logical that someone would refuse.
On the non-vaccine side of this discussion, there are many parents who attest that their child has a disorder which was caused from childhood Hochstetler 3vaccinations. Not all non-vaccinators hold the same beliefs or conclusions but are referred to as such because they do not blindly follow the government recommendations. Some non-vaccinators strongly believe vaccinations to cause more harm than good and will not vaccinate their children under any circumstance. Other non-vaccinators do vaccinate their children but consider each vaccination andthe age of the child.
Are vaccinations totally safe or are there significant risk that must be considered? According to the National Vaccine Information Center by the year 2018 there has been nearly 4 billion dollars (US) in compensation payouts from the US Court of Claims for vaccine related injuries, and this is only a minority of the cases that have been put forth because the majority of the claims were denied. In his article The Truth about Vaccinations Dr. Julian Whitaker makes a correlation betweenthe massive amount of vaccines that children in the US receive, before age 6, and the skyrocketing rate of Autism diagnosis.
It is his opinion that the major contributorto this increase in Autism, as well as other childhood diseases, is the huge increase in “federally mandated vaccinations” within the last 40 years. Furthermore he says that “there is not a shred of evidence to support the safety of giving children so many vaccines”.In an article in the U.S. National Library of Medicine a correlation is shown between a country’s infant mortality rate and the amount of childhood vaccination before age two. In general the countries with a lower amount of required vaccinations had less children die before age two.
For example the USA has the highest vaccination rate in the world at 26 vaccinations before age two but is only inthe 33rd place ranking of infant mortality, while three of the top four ranked countries, Japan, Iceland and Sweden, require only 12 vaccinations in the same time