Anti-vaxxers are among the top ‘threats to global health’ in 2019, WHO declares
–> Vaccine hesitancy’ joined nine other health problems on the list released on Monday
–> The WHO said a reluctance or resistance to be vaccinated has helped create a resurgence of diseases not seen in year, citing measles in particular
–> A CDC report revealed unvaccinated children up to 35 months old in the US increased four-fold between 2001 and 2015
Mary Kekatos — Daily Mail Jan 17, 2019
Anti-vaxxers have been named one of the top threats to global health in 2019 by the World Health Organization (WHO).
The anti-vaccine movement joined air pollution and climate change, HIV, and a worldwide influenza pandemic on the list released on Monday.
‘Vaccine hesitancy’, as the WHO calls it, ‘threatens to reverse progress made in tackling vaccine-preventable diseases.’
The organization added in its statement: ‘Vaccination is one of the most cost-effective ways of avoiding disease – it currently prevents [two to three] million deaths a year, and a further 1.5 million could be avoided if global coverage of vaccinations improved.’
A report released last year from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that the number of unvaccinated children up to 35 months old increased four-fold between 2001 and 2015.
There are several reasons why people are reluctant or refused to be immunized despite readily available vaccines.
A vaccine advisory group to the WHO listed some of the reasons as complacency, difficulty accessing vaccines and lack of confidence.
There are 18 US states that allow non-medical vaccine exemptions due to ‘conscientious objector’ or ‘philosophical/personal beliefs’.
A survey from May 2018 found that support for vaccinations among Americans has fallen 10 percent in the last 10 years.
About 70 percent said common vaccines, such as for polio and measles, are ‘very important’, found the poll from Research America and the American Society for Microbiology.
This is down from 80 percent who gave the same answer in November 2008.
According to the CDC, more than 90 percent of children under age three have been vaccinated for polio, MMR (measles, mumps, rubella), Hepatitis B and chicken pox.
And more than 80 percent have received Haemophilus influenzae, diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis and pneumococcal infection vaccines.
However, mounting distrust has led some parents to not immunize their children, in turn leading to outbreaks of diseases not seen in years, such as measles, whooping cough and mumps.