According to a poll conducted last month by the Associated Press (AP), it seems that more than a third of all parents in the United States oppose getting their children vaccinated against the H1N1 virus, originally known as the Swine Flu.
Officials at the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention said getting children vaccinated against the H1N1 virus is important. Unlike with the regular flu, the CDC said that its studies have shown that children have no natural antibodies effective against the virus. This can cause the disease to last longer with the symptoms being more severe, according to CDC’s website. This same website also states that immunizations can help stop the spread of the disease.
So far, CDC officials have said there have been no serious side effects reported as a result of the vaccine. This still doesn’t help soothe the nerves of some parents. One of them is Jackie Shea, the mother of a 5-year-old son in Newtown, Conn. “We’re talking about putting an unknown into him,” she told the AP. “I can’t do that.”
Because of people’s fears, however, the federal government has set up a monitoring service to look for negative side effects.
This AP poll was conducted from the 1st of October through the 5th of October. Some of those parents who were polled stated that they remembered getting immunizations against the swine flu in 1976 which resulted in a torrent of complaints from people who said the vaccine gave them a paralyzing condition known as Guillain-Barre syndrome.
Health officials never found a link between the vaccine and the disease, claiming that the disease “was bound to show up in such a large population anyway”.
Jennifer Barnes of Decatur, Georgia, enrolled herself and her two children in an early government study of the new vaccine. She said parents are polarized on the vaccine issue. “There’s the ‘crunchy granola group‘ against the vaccines”, she told the AP. “Then there’s the ‘very staunch, follow-everything group’.”
She said she wanted the vaccine, not only for her own children, but to do her part to help control the extent and severity of a pandemic that has caused 9,000 hospitalizations and 600 deaths nationwide, 60 of those being children.
“My kids hang around kids who might have lowered immune systems,” she told the Associated Press. “I would hate for them to get something and pass it on.”
Now it’s your turn to weigh-in on this heated debate…..
So what do you think?
Is it all hype or should the warnings be heeded?
Should parents ignore the swine flu vaccine?
Leave your comments below…..