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We must strongly denounce the anti-vaccination hysteria

PV2 Andrew W. McGalliard [Public domain]

Some believe that there is no need to vaccinate their children. In light of this, the health authorities must be very vigilant in face of people making individual decisions that are potentially dangerous for the collectivity as a whole. The truth is that vaccinations save millions of lives across the world. In particular, immunization is a major factor in lowering child-mortality. Despite this, the number of conspiracy seekers who cast doubt on the importance of vaccination in prevention, continues to grow. These people question the integrity of International Organizations such as the WHO and the UNICEF. Let us focus on two diseases: polio and measles. Polio is a highly infectious and sometime fatal disease. Millions of people died from polio before Jonas Salk introduced the vaccine in 1955. Wild poliovirus cases have decreased over 99% since 1988 (Fig.WHO). Measles is also a highly contagious disease. The WHO estimates that measles vaccination prevented more than 21 million deaths worldwide since 2000. Alas, health experts around the globe sounded the alarm over a resurgence of measles in particular in communities where people reject vaccination. Endemic countries in 2019 include all European countries and South-East Asia. The truth is that modern vaccines are highly effective and safe, and very rarely cause serious side effects. Unfortunately, it is not possible to inoculate people against the campaigns of disinformations on the Internet and in social networks.

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