The Great Vaccination Debate – Vaccination Argumentative Essay Example
With the growing, alarming number of children who are not vaccinated, it endangers everyone, not just the children. It should be a requirement for all children to be vaccinated. After all, vaccinations have been being given for hundreds of years. As stated by the Immunisation Advisory Centre, Edward Jenner is credited with being the founder of vaccinology, when he gave a boy cowpox, then showed the boy’s immunity to smallpox. Then, over the 18th and 19th centuries, by implementing the newfound smallpox vaccine, smallpox was globally erased in 1979. There has always been people opposed to vaccines, such as The Anti Vaccination Society of America, which was founded in 1879. Even now, there are anti-vaccination campaigns, such as the “Green Our Vaccines” campaign which campaigns against “toxins” in vaccines. (A Brief History of Vaccination). Vaccinations have caused many debates from the start, with the unknown sparking fear in “anti-vaxxers”. It is important that children be vaccinated for their own health and for the health and safety of those around them.
One reason parents should vaccinate their children is that the doctors and nurses recommend it. Many people in a medical profession have stated that vaccinations do not harm the child in any way, and that it will ultimately protect them. Doctors and nurses are telling parents to vaccinate their children – they follow HIPPA laws, they cannot hurt a human being. Therefore, if they want the child vaccinated, it would not hurt the child. Vaccinations would be useful in a hospital setting because a hospital contains many people with weakened immune systems who are susceptible to the harsh diseases that a child could be vaccinated for. Even if a doctor does not recommend vaccinations for any reason, Elinor Levy and Mark Fischetti’s book, The New Killer Diseases: How the Alarming Evolution of Germs Threatens Us All, says it perfectly, “In all of this, an educated public is a crucial component— whether it’s knowing when to take two aspirins and rest, when to see a doctor fast, how to protect oneself against mosquitoes, or understanding the importance of vaccinating children. We can empower ourselves greatly by becoming better informed about the threat” (N.P.). Doctors’ first recommendation surrounding vaccines is to be informed, and to then make a decision based off of that information.
Vaccinations prevent deadly diseases from the past, which had killed thousands of people at a time. With generations of children being vaccinated, however, these diseases slowly went away. Because of the vaccinations, the diseases that had once killed thousands or even millions, now only killed tens or a few hundred people, radically deducting the death count. However – because parents are no longer vaccinating their children, these diseases are returning. Measles were once a thing of the past, but here it comes, ready to ravage the world once more. It is a preventable disease, but it is returning due to people not vaccinating their children, despite being medically eligible. Steven Reinberg, a HealthDay Reporter reveals, “A look at recent measles outbreaks in the United States finds more than half of the cases involved unvaccinated children… Measles and whooping cough are highly contagious, and when fewer people are vaccinated, widespread protecting known as herd immunity breaks down, giving the viruses free reign to spread” (1).
Reinberg also shows statistics that support his previous statements, proving that most people are not vaccinated due to philosophical or religious reasons, not because they medically cannot. His article shows how, without vaccinations, these infectious diseases will spread and could eventually overcome the vaccines. This would cause the vaccinations to need to be stronger, further strengthening the diseases. Even influenza, more commonly known as the flu, had once killed thousands of people, but had been restrained because of vaccines. Now, however, because of children not receiving even a simple flu shot, influenza has started come back worse than before. The flu, and many more life-threatening diseases, will return if non-vaccinated children contract it without knowing.
The cost of most vaccinations is covered by medical insurance. According to trustedchoice.com, the cost of a hospital stay, for five days is around $10,000 (How Much Does a Night in the Hospital Cost?). A parent would be paying more money to care for their child in a hospital, risking other’s lives as well as their own child’s, instead of simply going once a year to be vaccinated against various diseases. Tara Haelle explains the reasoning behind vaccinations with her statement, “The disease might overwhelm the immune system, leading to the child’s death. Or the immune system might prevail, ridding the body of the disease. If it does, the immune system retains “memory cells” that know how to defeat the germ in the future. The child then has immunity to the disease” (20-21). When a child receives a vaccine, they are receiving a weaker version of the disease, allowing for the child to become immune to the disease without having to feel the full symptoms.
Others believe that vaccinations cause medical issues, or mental issues, in their child. They believe that natural oils and natural cures are enough to stop the diseases that earlier ravaged the planet. They are against vaccinations because they believe it does more harm than good to their child. In Beverly Ballarlo and Nancy Sprague’s Debate on Vaccines and Health Hazards, they address an issue that many “anti-vaxx” parents are concerned about. “Because mercury is a neurotoxin harmful to the developing central nervous system of fetuses and infants, some groups believed in the possibility of a causal link between thimerosal exposure from childhood vaccines and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, speech or language delays, and, in particular, autism” (N.P.). Similarly, parents’ main argument is that there is something in the vaccines that will cause a disorder in their child, making their child’s life harder.
According to medical professionals, vaccinations do not harm the child, they merely give the child a weaker dose of the disease, allowing the body to learn how to fight it, effectively saving the child’s life, not ruining it. Natural oils are not enough to stop a disease, especially not one that killed thousands of people, even when they had the same oils. The diseases stopped killing because of the vaccines, not because people got stronger and they went away. If people stopped getting vaccinated, the diseases would come back stronger, and would be harder to subdue.
There is no proof that vaccines cause autism or any other disorder, however there is proof that vaccines do not cause autism or other disorders. Debate on Vaccines and Health Hazards wrote about a study that proved vaccines had no correlation with autism. “In 2004, the Institute of Medicine’s Immunization Safety Review Committee examined epidemiological data from the U.S., Denmark, Sweden, and the United Kingdom before concluding that evidence does not support a causal relationship between thimerosal-containing vaccines and autism” (Ballarlo and Sprague N.P.). This case study shows that there is now actual proof that vaccines do not cause autism. This proves to the parents that the vaccines they are giving their child will not harm them, taking away the concern of receiving a vaccine.
Children need to be vaccinated – not just for their sake, but also for the sake of everyone around them. When medical professionals give their professional opinion on medicine, the world listens. When medical professionals give their advice on disorders, the world listens. When medical professionals give their advice on the human body and everything that goes on inside, the world listens. But, when medical professionals give their professional opinion on vaccines, parents fight back and argue about things they do not even know about. When parents are arguing that vaccines cause cancer or they cause autism, doctors are presenting proof of the opposite; that vaccines are helpful and valuable to society. Parents need to get their children vaccinated, for everyone’s sake. Children should not need to secretly get themselves vaccinated or live their life in fear until they can get vaccinated.
“A Brief History of Vaccination.” Immunisation Advisory Centre, 4 Apr. 2017, www.immune.org.nz/vaccines/vaccine-development/brief-history-vaccination.
Ballarlo, Beverly, and Nancy Sprague. Debate on Vaccines and Health Hazards. Salem Press Encyclopedia, 2018.
Haelle, Tara. Vaccination Investigation: the History and Science of Vaccines. Twenty-First Century Books, 2018.
“History of Anti-Vaccination Movements.” History of Vaccines, www.historyofvaccines.org/index.php/content/articles/history-anti-vaccination-movements.
“How Much Does a Night in the Hospital Cost?” TrustedChoice.com, www.trustedchoice.com/insurance-articles/life-health/cost-night-hospital/.
Levy, Elinor, and Mark Fischetti. The New Killer Diseases: How the Alarming Evolution of Germs Threatens Us All. Three Rivers Press, 2004.
"Vaccine Refusal a Driving Force Behind Measles Outbreaks, Study Finds; As trend continues, researcher fears more outbreaks of whooping cough, too." Consumer Health News, 15 Mar. 2016. Student Resources In Context, http://link.galegroup.com/apps/doc/A446396342/SUIC?u=read34863&sid=SUIC&xid=a233103f. Accessed 19 Mar. 2019.