Thursday, June 2, 2011

Oh the Irony - Vaccine Exemption and Disease: Rubella

The CDC published the Vaccination Coverage Among Children in Kindergarten United States, 2009/10 School Year in the June 3 issue of its MMRW today. Some media outlets picked up the news that Washington has highest vaccine opt-out rate in country. Over 6% of Kindergartners have an exemption for one or more vaccines. While that doesn't seem much at first glance, it does push vaccination coverage at an age where kids are very likely to spread disease under the level that is assumed to be needed for herd immunity. Ironically, in the same issue of the MMWR, the CDC reports two cases of rubella in Washington, one imported, one indigenous.


Honestly? I wonder what sort of false eco-nostalgic ideals Washingtonians are striving for, but is it really those times when hundreds (thousands in epidemic years) of babies per year contracted rubella in the womb and died in utero, or were born with horrendous malformations, deaf, blind, with heart defects?!

Vaccine exemptions lead to disease outbreaks - this is a small example. I wonder how many larger and much more catastrophic examples it will need for some parents to clue in?


  1. Don't forget that congenital rubella syndrome is one known cause of autism.

  2. I *did* say ironic... very true, Todd.

  3. I did write my legislators to support the law to make sure that the philosophical exemption is signed by a real doctor. I did have one write back and say he supported it.

    So don't blame me!

  4. Ah hah! The law passed, as noted in this article:State legislators passed a bill last session that will require parents to provide a signed note from a doctor in order to enroll a kindergarten student who has not been fully immunized. That law takes effect July 22 and will address the state's current, more lax requirements. All it takes now to opt out of immunizations is a parent's signature.

    Oh, and one of my favorite lines in that article: Barbara Loe Fisher, who heads the National Vaccine Information Center, an anti-immunization group based in Virginia,

    At least they spell out her real view point.

  5. Be a home health pediatric occupational therapist specializing in autism &/or sensory disorders...mothers always show me the pre MMR vaccine photos of their child (ie. smiling, laughing, being in crowded places with no problems, normal range of vocabulary, normal gait) and the post MMR vaccine photos of their child (no vocabulary only repetitive distinctive sounds, eyes look like that of an Alzheimer's pt (blank stare), toe walk gait with hand flapping, no smiling, screaming in grocery stores, hair salons, amusement parks and restaurants from the noise)...."walk a mile in their shoes" & see for yourselves before you pass such judgments on parents refusing MMR...I suggest going to a local Autism Society meeting and inquiring about the subject!

  6. Anonymous, please do tell how photos would show all that you describe. You are a victim or wilful believer of recall biases and don't seem to have a firm grasp of how some autisms exhibit and/or develop. I have worked with autistic adults and interact with autism parents on a daily basis so your suggestion is pointless and merely intended to lend legitimacy to testimonials. No thanks.