An overwhelming majority of health professionals, medical
researchers, and professional medical organizations (such as the American
Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Family Practice Physicians)
immunizing children. Immunizations protect both the
individual and the community.
Vaccinations prevent your child from getting
diseases for which there are often no medical treatments. These illnesses can
result in serious complications and even death.
A small number of
people may be susceptible to diseases, such as those with
impaired immune systems. These people may not be able
to get vaccinations or may not develop immunity even after having been
vaccinated. Their only protection against certain diseases is for others to get
vaccinated so the illnesses are less common.
very little-much less than treating the illnesses they prevent.
exposure to a disease occurs in a community, there is little to no risk of an
epidemic if people have been immunized.
Also, immunizations are often required by law. In many areas,
children must be immunized before they can start day care or school, although
most states have provisions to waive this requirement if it conflicts with a
family's religious beliefs.
In California, 2010 started out much like many others for the public health detectives who keep an eye on infectious diseases.
But by the end of the year, 10 California babies were dead from whooping cough, aka pertussis, a highly contagious disease that’s preventable by a vaccine.
Kathleen Harriman, PhD, MPH, RN, chief of the California Department of Public Health's vaccine preventable disease epidemiology section, says 9,477 confirmed, probable, and suspected cases of pertussis were reported...
Reactions to immunizations are usually mild and don't last long.
Serious reactions to immunizations are extremely rare. Health risks are much
higher if you are not immunized and you become infected with a disease. Talk to
your health professional if you have any concerns about having your child
immunized. On very rare occasions, your health professional may recommend
waiting to have your child immunized, such as when he or she has: