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Immunization, part 1 of 2

Another conversation we had, hanging out with my extended family Saturday night, was about immunization. Five of my six brothers’ wives immunize. My mother is fervently against all vaccines, across the board, and my only sister chose not to vaccinate her four kids. (I just texted her to confirm that.) My youngest brother’s wife has no babies yet but is vocal about her plans not to vaccinate.

I don’t talk about this on the site very often, though one of my original posts in Fall ’07 was about my decision not to give my kids any shots. That very old post gets tons of hits, and you may be interested in the comments of parents on that post.

“Outing” myself on this subject, on the internet, is ironic since I was very, very quiet (secretive, even) with friends and family as I had my babies and chose not to immunize them.

Parents everywhere agonize over the decision to immunize or not. Utah has 22-24% non-immunized children, and if you want your child to attend school here, without proof of the entire schedule of shots being completed and signed by a doctor, you have to sign a waiver at the health department. (When you do this, you sometimes get a stern lecture by a nurse.)

I was informed by my children’s pediatric practice, when my 3rd child was a year old, that we were no longer welcome there, because I wasn’t vaccinating according to the APA schedule. My children were “a threat to the other children in our practice,” they said. I was handed my children’s records and shown the door.

I cried all the way home and then wrote Dr. David Johnson (American Fork) an indignant letter. Among other things, it pointed out the logical fallacy of my non-immunized kids being a threat to immunized kids. (Do you believe your vaccines work, or not? If so, there’s no threat.) I also said, “If that’s really your reason to deny my children medical care, you better not take your immunized kids to church, or to school, or to Walmart either. Since a quarter of the kids there aren’t vaccinated.”

I was asked to speak to a large pediatric practice recently, and then they found my views about vaccines and required me to change some language on the site before they agreed to continue with our plans.

I don’t counsel anyone not to give their kids shots. The decision is personal, and it is difficult. What I do is beg you to become informed. Read the “other” side of the issue, and know that your medical doctor likely has been educated exclusively by the vaccine industry (and its dubious research arm).

Please do not consider your medical doctor’s advice the same thing as educating yourself. At the end of the day, your doctor is just one person. A person who got a very specific education. And a very biased education, at that.

Medical practice is now contained and restrained in a huge book of codes allowable by insurance companies. Insurance companies will pay almost exclusively for drugs, surgeries, technology. Not prevention, nutrition, naturopathy, herbal treatments, or anything else outside the standard medical education.

More on this tomorrow.

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