Last login: Tuesday, December 14, 2010
This story is very misleading. A simple statement that a patient had been vaccinated does not tell even part of the story. Had that patient received all of the recommended immunizations for his or her age? By the time a child enters school, there should have been 5 pertussis vaccinations. Another should be done around age 11 or 12. Any deviation from this schedule would certainly suggest a much lower immunity to the illness.
Immunization histories are unknown in a majority of the California cases. Reliance on those statistics is bogus science.
The Bryce child was too young to be immunized. He could have been exposed in the hospital, while out, or, as is most likely, by a loving relative who visited. The illness does not always produce symptoms.
California is one of 20 states that allow parents to refuse to immunize their children based upon some sort of strong personnel belief. In California, there is a correlation between the wealth of a county and its pertussis rate. There is also a reasonable correlation between high rates of the personal belief exemption a high pertussis rate. At least 10,000 children entered kindergarten in Fall 2009 without all of the suggested shots.
Ohio, Texas and Michigan also follow a similar pattern. Both are in the exemption group. Both have the major portion of their outbreaks in counties that are wealthy and host major academic communities. Tell me why the campuses of Ohio State, the University of Texas and the University of Michigan sit in counties with extraordinarily high rates of infection from whooping cough?
New York's outbreak, now fifth in size in the nation, is primarily in infants who have, at most, received three immunizations. The state required a pertussis immunization for admission to 6th grade in 2010 and that age group is barely represented in the patient count. New York does not allow a personal belief exemption.
December 14, 2010 at 7:02 p.m.
( permalink | suggest removal )
© 2015 KPBS Public Broadcasting