Our View | After biggest measles outbreak in decades, Citizens need to take vaccinations seriously

In 1954 when the polio vaccine came out, students lined up outside of schools to receive the vaccine. Parents were so happy that their kids would be saved from the devastating polio disease. 

Fast forward to 2019. Anti-vaxers are protesting against immunizations, inaccurately saying vaccines have led to various side effects like autism. 

Anti-vaxers are avoiding the major health benefits of vaccinations and posing a threat to the society considering the hundreds of measles outbreaks already this year. 

The CDC offers multiple health reasons on the necessity to vaccinate oneself, including it can prevent long term illness, reduce the chance of spreading diseases and can protect health when traveling. 

Not receiving vaccines can leave one vulnerable to diseases that hospitalize one for life. These diseases include influenza, pneumococcal disease, human papillomavirus and hepatitis A and B, according to the CDC. 

Anti-vaxers don’t only pose a health risk to themselves by not getting vaccinated, but to all those who cannot get vaccinated for reasons such as age and mental and physical health. Because of this, vaccinations are not only a health matter, but an ethical matter. By not vaccinating oneself or one’s children, one poses a threat to others around while also sacrificing one’s personal health. 

Some inaccurately argue the exact opposite and say vaccines can cause one to get the disease that vaccines are preventing, but the National Foundation of Infectious Diseases says that some vaccines contain “weakened” or “killed” viruses that aren’t able to give someone the disease.

The recent hundreds of measles infections also shows our society that vaccine-preventable diseases have not gone away. This means that now is an important time, more than ever with the highest population in history, to vaccinate oneself and all children to protect the health of the world’s 7.5 billion people.

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