Vaccines are safe.
Vaccines undergo rigorous safety testing prior to being approved by the Food and Drug Administraton (FDA) and are continually monitored for safety. Vaccines are also studied to be administered together to protect children.
In January 2013, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) published the most comprehensive examination of the immunization schedule to date, and the report uncovered no evidence of major safety concerns associated with adherence to the CDC-recommended childhood immunization schedule.
What does the Institute of Medicine (IOM) Say about Vaccine Safety?
- “The current recommended U.S. childhood immunization schedule is timed to protect children from 14 pathogens by inoculating them at the time in their lives when they are most vulnerable to disease.”
- “Before the ACIP recommends adding a new vaccine to the immunization schedule, it reviews comprehensive data about that vaccine’s safety and efficacy in clinical trials, injuries and deaths caused by the disease the vaccine is designed to combat, and the feasibility of adding the new vaccine into the existing schedule, among other factors.”
- “Delaying or declining vaccination has led to outbreaks of such vaccine-preventable diseases as measles and whooping cough that may jeopardize public health, particularly for people who are under-immunized or who were never immunized.”
- “States with policies that make it easy to exempt children from immunization were associated with a 90 percent higher incidence of whooping cough in 2011.”
- “…the IOM committee finds no evidence that the schedule is unsafe. The committee’s review did not reveal an evidence base suggesting that the U.S. childhood immunization schedule is linked to autoimmune diseases, asthma, hypersensitivity, seizures, child developmental disorders, learning or developmental disorders, or attention deficit or disruptive disorders.”
Vaccines are cost effective
Not only do vaccines save lives, they save money too. It is always cheaper to prevent a disease than to treat it. The routine childhood immunization program in one birth cohort saves $13.6 billion in direct costs. Every dollar spent on childhood immunizations saves $18.40. In Colorado, the cost of treating 538 children hospitalized for vaccine-preventable diseases in one year totaled $29.2 million.
The risks of natural infection outweigh the risks of immunization for every recommended vaccine.
Parents who choose not to vaccinate often do so to avoid risk, but choosing not to vaccinate is the riskier choice.