The Pros and Cons of Vaccinations Essay Example
According to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, millions of deaths have been prevented after the widespread use of vaccines (“CDC Newsroom”). Vaccines have eradicated most harmful viruses, but now, diseases such as measles are starting to come back. This is because thousands of people around the world are choosing to keep themselves unvaccinated since they claim that the risks associated with vaccines are underestimated. The evidence that these anti-vaccinators rely on has been proven to be fraudulent and misleading, but most still believe that vaccinations expose people to more danger than the illnesses that they prevent. People opting out from getting themselves vaccinated is an important issue because their decisions expose themselves to a greater risk of contracting diseases which are easily preventable.
Most anti-vaccinators claim that vaccines are harmful to the body since they carry a risk of a life-threatening allergic reaction. These people ignore the fact that “Anaphylactic reactions are extremely rare (less than 1 in a million). Vaccination staff are trained to deal with this, and these reactions are completely reversible if treated promptly” (“Benefits and Risks”). This shows that anti-vaccinators’ claims about the high-risk involved in getting vaccinated are inaccurate since the chances of getting a reaction are minute. It is also important to note that even if there is a reaction, vaccination staff can treat the patient immediately. Low chances of a reaction and easy treatment of risks make their claims about the dangers of vaccines invalid.
One of the most disturbing pieces of evidence against anti-vaccinators is that there is not much research supporting their claims. There is only one scientific experiment which concludes that vaccinations can cause side effects. After thoroughly examining the experiment, many scientists have concluded that the study was deceptive.
The controversial 1998 study that suggested a possible link between gastrointestinal disease and the onset of behavioral disorders, including autism, in children following receipt of the measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine was an elaborate fraud (“Research Sparking Anti-Vaccination”).
Research by these scientists shows that the sources of information which anti-vaccinators rely on is not scientifically accurate. Relying on inaccurate information is extremely dangerous since misinformation about risks can cause people to change their views on vaccines.
Most people who avoid getting themselves vaccinated do it to prevent any chance of themselves developing behavioral problems. However, as stated above, the research which their actions are based on has been found to be fraudulent. While these people are worried about the risks of vaccinations, they completely ignore the following.
Immunization is one of the most cost-effective public health interventions to date, averting an estimated 2 to 3 million deaths every year. As a direct result of immunization, the world is closer than ever to eradicating polio...Children under 5 deaths from measles, a major child killer, declined by 85 per cent worldwide and by 89 per cent in sub-Saharan Africa between 2000 and 2016 (“Vaccination and Immunization”).
People who don’t vaccinate themselves completely ignore these benefits of vaccinations. Also due to their lack of vaccinations, they have a risk of contracting diseases and spreading them to other anti-vaccinators.
Anti-vaccinators also pose a threat to those who are unable to be vaccinated. Some people cannot be immunized since they are allergic to vaccinations. These people rely on the immunity of others to stop the disease from reaching them.
By being vaccinated an individual is not only protected from being infected themselves but they then also cannot pass this infection onto other people, where it may cause severe disease. However, for herd immunity to work, a large proportion of the population needs to be vaccinated (Sadarangani).
Remaining unvaccinated can cause huge problems for herd immunity. By giving a home to dangerous bacteria, people can pass the disease on to others who are not able to be vaccinated. Those choosing to not vaccinate are not only affecting themselves, but are also affecting the immunity of those who need their help.
To summarize, anti-vaccinators’ arguments on the risks of vaccinations are not supported by any evidence. Most scientists agree that experiments in favor of anti-vaccinators are fraudulent and inaccurate. They also agree that the risks of vaccinations, which are easily treatable, are severely exaggerated by anti-vaccinators. It is clear that anti-vaccinators overestimate the risks of vaccinations, while also underestimating the benefits of them. Scientists and doctors recognize that vaccines can stop people from contracting deadly diseases which is why anti-vaccinators should immunize themselves.