Thursday, March 3, 2011

On the Importance of Herd Immunity

The decision to not vaccinate our children and ourselves is more than a personal choice...

The excellent Dr. Ginger Campbell, MD, released another fine Books and Ideas podcast on 28 February 2011.  Episode #40 features an interview with Dr. Paul Offitt, MD, most recently the author of Deadly Choices: How the Anti-Vaccine Movement Threatens Us All.

The takeaways from this interview, Offitt's book, and the war with the anti-vaccination lobby are simple...

"Children are actually at a greater risk if they are fully vaccinated and live in a relatively unvaccinated community (that would include going to a school that’s relatively unvaccinated) than if they’re unvaccinated and live in a highly-vaccinated community."

"Herd immunity is important for three reasons: 1) It stops the spread of disease. 2) It protects those who can’t be immunized. And, 3) It protects those who don’t respond to vaccines."

As always you can sign up for Dr. Campbell's engaging podcasts on iTunes or at her website.  More about Dr. Offitt, his work on this important issue, and his many books can be found here.