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To Vaccinate or Not?

October 9, 2009

My whole family gets a flu shot every year.  I’ve never really been overly concerned about it until this year when the controversy over the swine flu vaccine began to swirl around the blogosphere.

First I heard that the vaccine is something totally new and untested.  Then I heard that it’s basically the same type of vaccine they use on an annual basis to combat the seasonal flu and therefore doesn’t need years of testing to prove it’s safe.  Next I heard that the vaccine is a dangerous and unnecessary poison being foisted upon a gullible and unsuspecting public by a vast – and I guess pro-disease – conspiracy.

Normally I wouldn’t think twice about getting a vaccine, but all of the conflicting information gave me pause and put me in quite a quandary, as my son has asthma and is therefore among the groups of people for whom the swine flu can be deadly.  Should I not have him vaccinated and take the risk of him contracting H1N1?  Or should I risk potentially serious side effects and have him vaccinated so we don’t have to worry about him getting the flu?

Until this morning I really didn’t know what to do.  But between ABC’s  Good Morning America visit to the CDC on this morning’s program and Dr. Oz’s appearance on another morning show a few days back to tout the safety and necessity of the vaccine,  I’ve decided to go ahead and have at least my son vaccinated.

I know there are plenty of people out there who are still leery of the swine flu vaccine.  But for me, listening to a pediatrician who works at the CDC say she will vaccinate both of her young children carries a lot of weight.  So does hearing her state, several times, “there is a lot of misinformation out there” while explaining that the H1N1 vaccine is the same type they use every year for the seasonal flu, except it incorporates a different strain (H1N1).  She also noted that thimerosal-free vaccines are available at most locations upon request.

After seeing this and reading about HHS Secretary Sebelius’ recent statement about the necessity of Americans getting the swine flu vaccination I asked myself, “Do I really believe a pediatrician who works at the Center for Disease Control’s headquarters doesn’t know what she’s talking about?  Do I really think Dr. Oz is a shill for the companies producing the vaccine and would risk damaging his credibility by endorsing something potentially dangerous just to make money (as if he needs another revenue stream)?  And do I really believe that all of the government health experts – local and federal – who are recommending the vaccine are either too stupid to truly understand it or are all part of a conspiracy to harm the American public?”  The answer I came up with for every one of those questions was, “No.”

And so my son and I will be a couple of those people standing in line – and I don’t doubt there will be one – where H1N1 vaccines are offered, just as soon as they come in.  I know there will be just as many people scoffing at those of us in line.  That’s okay.  I don’t mind.  I made a thoughtful decision that I believe is in the best interest of my child.  You have the right to do the same for yours.  Isn’t that what parenting is all about?

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. October 9, 2009 4:49 pm

    The CDC, and big media are saying that H1N1 vaccines are safe. Yet the vaccine manufacturers are definitely not making this claim themselves! Smells like rotten eggs to me. Proof of this omission comes from vaccine manufacturer’s own product literature (see link below). Why is nobody noting this undeniable yet glaring inconsistency?

    H1N1 Vaccines and Our Children: The details are in the fine print! http://wp.me/pC1DX-34

    WARNING: Safety and effectiveness of Influenza A (H1N1) 2009 Monovalent Vaccine have not been established in pregnant women or nursing mothers or children <6 months of age. References from the CDC included in the above link. Seeing is believing so take a look not only for yourself, but for your family as well.

  2. rhythmhawk permalink
    October 10, 2009 8:27 am

    I keep on hearing about how “safe” the vaccine is, but, a research of the ingrediants of the H1N1 vaccine tells a whole different story.

    I never knew that Thimerasol and Squalene were”safe” for you? As a matter of fact, these two ingrediants have been directly linked to autism and Gulliane-Barre Syndrome. How safe is that?
    And why, oh why won’t our trusted media talk about this?

    The vaccine is garbage. The real cureis in vitamins and minerals thatbuild-up and maintain a healthy immune system.
    But, you won’t hear any doctor tell you that on via the media – especially since “big pharma” doesn’t approve of any “natural medicine.”

  3. Gene Dean permalink
    October 13, 2009 2:01 pm

    Personally, I have grown quite skeptical of anything coming from Government sources/minions. Whether it’s CDC or World Health Organization telling me to get H1N1 makes no difference to me: I decline! And, I am a 62yr old male who has weak lungs due to a life-long disability. When our Government passes laws exempting the vaccine makers from liability, it sounds bad to me!

  4. Melissa Whelchel permalink
    April 6, 2010 7:30 pm

    I just stumbled across this blog & I’m right there with you savvymom. Thank you for presenting the topic in such an honest & straightforward manner.

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