Why you should approve these new vaccines and lay to rest the vaccination debate

You asked. You are safe now.

Parents have been given the final say on whether to vaccinate their children against polio, measles, mumps, rubella, hepatitis B, chicken pox, pneumonia, meningitis, and rotavirus, in accordance with a new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention protocol. The final rule comes from the Vaccine Incentive Pilot Program, launched in 2016, which provides up to $30 million over three years to states, tribes, and health departments to cover vaccination programs for eligible children.

The program’s goal is to keep everyone, healthy, from birth to five, safe and healthy. In 2018, around 36,000 children were free of most childhood infectious diseases— a decline of about 800 compared to the 2016 number of 34,255. It’s still not back to pre-continent childhood diseases like measles, polio, diphtheria, or pertussis, but it’s been a huge improvement.

Yet, the program has also allowed a lot of people to feel like their voice was being heard. Following September, 2018’s vaccine exemption period for kindergartners, many parents publicly voiced their frustrations over the heightened scrutiny by teachers, school nurses, health officials, and pediatricians, before and after. This public discussion and growing consumer fears has raised questions about whether this testing of the nation’s vaccination system is a necessary cost.

And yet, despite the harsh criticism, there is no question that the program is right. For families who do not want their children vaccinated, the program essentially allows parents to make an informed decision. Parents were asked their feelings about vaccination with a survey that involved an assessment of data like measles vaccination rates and CDC-recommended doses of vaccine. The data they received went to a random sample, and was collected in both English and Spanish, and the scientists behind the study’s report have extensive experience in researching the impacts of vaccination. After carefully observing the questionnaire, the scientists determined that the VIPP offered legitimate choices to parents and can help to stabilize vaccination rates. They wrote:

The meaningful-based responses, in our opinion, have the characteristics of appropriate evidence-based knowledge for making informed vaccination decisions. Furthermore, all respondents completed the vaccine screening question with the benefit of both written and verbal confirmation as to the recommended kindergarten vaccines.

For parents who have made it clear that they wish to put their child’s health on the front burner when making decisions, however, the new CDC immunization rules are also the right move. The federal government’s role is to ensure that no child is left without protection for any vaccine, and the new VIPP rules to distribute most vaccines was designed to do just that. It guarantees that the latest vaccines and should parents want further reassurance of the effectiveness of vaccines, they are able to receive information online.

In short, vaccinations are a life-saving and imperative part of American life, and it’s long past time to settle the vaccination question once and for all.

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