The Institute of Medicine has come out with a report that confirms what we already know about the current schedule of childhood vaccines:
This report is the most comprehensive examination of the immunization schedule to date. The IOM committee uncovered no evidence of major safety concerns associated with adherence to the childhood immunization schedule.
Liz Szabo at USA Today has more:
“There is ample evidence that it’s not safe not to follow the schedule,” Thomas says. “It’s well known that in places where vaccines are delayed or missed, that’s where we are beginning to see vaccine-preventable disease outbreaks.”
Although the majority of doctors stand firmly behind vaccination, the issue is hotly debated among parents, particularly those too young to remember scourges like measles, polio and whooping cough. To address parents’ concerns, the Institute of Medicine has conducted more than 60 studies of vaccine safety since the 1970s.
The pneumococcal bacterium doesn’t care whether parents “hotly” debate vaccines. The polio, or measles, and chickenpox viruses probably do: their only reasons to exist are to multiply and spread, unleashing human havoc. (They don’t need a special invitation, either.) The haemophilus type B or pertussis bacteria won’t shed a tear if you don’t immunize your child (although you might if your infant gets bacterial meningitis or whooping cough).
Pediatricians do care, however. And the vast, vast majority of parents who trust their child’s medical well-being to us agree. With all the objective science supporting current immunization protocols, not immunizing in twenty-first century America is… well, bizarre.
“The concept that you are going to overload a child’s immune system by giving too many vaccines at once makes no sense,” says Hotez, dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine.
Of course it doesn’t make sense to Dr. Hotez! He’s a medical doctor. And a scientist. He’s the one with credibility.
Remember that during the next hot debate.
Read IOM report here.