Argument essay

Submitted By sncaldera
Words: 1245
Pages: 5

Should Children Be Vaccinated? All children should be vaccinated. Medicine has come a long way in making sure that the children of today have the ability to be protected against diseases that killed many people from past times. Deadly and debilitating diseases such as polio, measles, and mumps are now rare if not extinct thanks to vaccinations. The key factor is that all children must receive these vaccines in order to be protected. Vaccines are not the same as what they used to be. They no longer contain mercury and other harmful ingredients. The risk that a child could possibly have an extremely rare reaction to a vaccine is better than the alternative of dying or being permanently disabled from a preventable disease. The first area of debate questions if vaccines can save a child’s life. Surprisingly, opponents of vaccines state that the MMR vaccine (measles, mumps, and rubella) actually caused children to become autistic. As quoted by Brian Shilhavy, Dr. Wakefield claims, “There can be very little doubt that vaccines can and do cause autism. In these children, the evidence for an adverse reaction involving brain injury following the MMR that progresses to an autism diagnosis is compelling. It’s now a question of the body count. The parents’ story was right all along. Governments must stop playing with words while children continue to be damaged. My hope is that recognition of the intestinal disease in these children will lead to the relief of their suffering. This is long, long overdue.” I disagree with this. Just because a child is diagnosed with autism after receiving a specific vaccine, doesn’t necessarily mean that the vaccine caused them to become autistic. Conversely, proponents of vaccines state that vaccinating your children as early as possible can save them from contracting live threatening diseases. They argue that the components of vaccines do not harm people, and that the small risk associated with receiving vaccines far outweighs contracting the actual disease. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, “Because the MMR vaccine is first given at age 12-15 months, and the first signs of autism often appear at 15-18 months of age, concerns have been raised about a possible link between the vaccine and the development of autism. Studies conducted in the US and Europe have found no association between the MMR vaccine and autism. Over the years, the Institute of Medicine and the AAP have organized several panels of independent scientists – all concluded no association between MMR and autism.” I work in a hospital, specifically a pediatric intensive care unit, and I see first-hand what happens when children come in critically ill from a disease that could have been prevented, and that child’s life could have been saved by a simple vaccine.
The next area of debate centers on the questions do vaccines protect children too young for vaccines? Opponents say spacing out or delaying vaccines is a healthy balance between vaccinating and not vaccinating. By spacing out the vaccines, parents are not forced to watch their children receive as many as four shots at once. According to Guggie Daly, “Although individual vaccines, or individual ingredients, and even some combination shots have been epidemiologically studied, the CDC’s vaccination schedule has not been scientifically studied for safety or efficacy.” There is no valid reason to delay vaccines, other than if recommended by a physician for health reasons. By doing this, parents are risking their child contracting deadly diseases. However, there are many who believe that vaccines need to be given on the set schedule. By doing this, it ensures that the child maintains the proper immunity to the diseases. If a child who was two months old, which is too young for the measles vaccine, comes into contact with a child who is infected with the disease due to parents delaying the vaccine, the two month old is at risk. This is commonly seen at