A fascinating informal survey of Steemian opinions on the vaccination of children and corruption. It was collated after 2 days from the discussion of my post about child vaccinations in Australia.
The results are intriguing!
Below I have also provided further information on Pharmaceutical Industry corruption which I feel is relevant to this discussion.
Graph courtesy of JSFIDDLE
Some interesting statistics on the vaccination discussion after 2 days:
Number of votes: 75
Number of individual commenters: 34
Number of posts (excluding mine): 99
My original post - Children Vaccinated At Birth For Hepatitis B In Australia! Why? :
I wish to thank everyone for passionate yet respectful comments on this spicy subject!
I believe open and frank discussion is positive for us all! In my original post I attempted to pose only questions and not make statements about this controversial topic.
I took the time to read each response and follow leads to further information as they arose. I also tried to respond to each post and ask questions when possible.
Trends From The Discussion
It seems clear from reading the comments and looking at the statistics that the majority of posters were adamantly anti-vaccination (25 Steemians or 73.5%). Some of the points they raised and the links they provided to further information were very informative and definitely worth reading!
That is not to say that there weren't those who were undecided or pro-vaccination. The pro-vaccination camp held equally strong convictions and consisted of 3 Steemians, 2 of which took significant time to respond to comments. One had even written a pro-vaccination post of his own.
The Argument For Herd Immunity - Does It Make Sense?
A particularly interesting pro-vaccination argument was raised regarding unvaccinated children harming "Herd Immunity". If you type this term into Google the definition you get is:
"The resistance to the spread of a contagious disease within a population that results if a sufficiently high proportion of individuals are immune to the disease, especially through vaccination. The level of vaccination needed to achieve herd immunity varies by disease but ranges from 83 to 94 percent"
Images thanks to @theaustrianguy
This pro-vaccination argument peaked my interest as it seems to describe a contained population. However Australia is not contained. Australia's current population stands at 23.78 million and Australia currently receives 8.46 million visitors per year. Australia does not require vaccinations to visit and does not vaccinate people on arrival.
How does a yearly influx of potentially unvaccinated people (equivalent to almost 30% of the population) impact Herd Immunity?
Does this negate the Herd Immunity argument or should Australia vaccinate all visitors on arrival to maintain Herd Immunity? It would devastate tourism if they did! As a comparison animals are quarantined when entering Australia to manage biosecurity risks.
None of the pro-vaccination commenters had an answer to this question and I would be very interested in hearing from anyone who does in the comments below! =)
Big Pharma & Corruption
The roots of the answer to the question "are vaccinations helpful or harmful to our children" can be found in another question: "how corrupt is Big Pharma?"
This subject was only briefly addressed by the pro-vaccination camp and when it was the view appeared to be that corruption was negligible and historic.
My personal participation in the corruption of 300 Doctors by one of the world's largest Pharmaceutical company's with the tacit participation of the Government made me sick (pun intended). That experience irrevocably changed my perspective. Here is the link to the post describing my experiences:
I leave it to the reader to do their own research and decide for themselves how corrupt Big Pharma is and how that potentially impacts the information we and our Doctors are given regarding the safety of vaccinations.
Settlements On Corruption Cases - USD $19.755 Billion In 13 Years!
Wikipedia's list of the largest pharmaceutical settlements for misconduct in the USA is enlightening. The list totals 22 settlements for corruption cases in just 13 years for a combined settlement total of a whopping USD $19.755 Billion! Bear in mind this figure does not include the enormous costs of defending these cases in court.
Do these companies appear trustworthy to you?
Do you believe them when they tell you they have the health interests of the public at heart?
As pharmaceutical companies continue to make vast profits the USD $19.755 Billion in fines for corruption are clearly considered just part of the cost of doing business!
3 Of The Largest Pharmaceutical Corruption Fines
GlaxoSmithKline - 2012 - USD $3 Billion - Off-label promotion, failure to disclose safety data, kickbacks to physicians, making false and misleading statements
GlaxoSmithKline agreed to pay a fine of $3 billion to resolve civil and criminal liabilities regarding its promotion of drugs, as well as its failure to report safety data. This is the largest health care fraud settlement in the United States to date. The company pled guilty to misbranding the drug Paxil for treating depression in patients under 18, even though the drug had never been approved for that age group. GlaxoSmithKline also pled guilty to failing to disclose safety information about the diabetes drug Avandia to the FDA.
Pfizer - 2009 - USD $2.3 Billion - Off-label promotion/kickbacks
Pfizer was fined $2.3 billion, then the largest health care fraud settlement and the largest criminal fine ever imposed in the United States. Pfizer pled guilty to misbranding the painkiller Bextra with "the intent to defraud or mislead", promoting the drug to treat acute pain at dosages the FDA had previously deemed dangerously high. Bextra was pulled from the market in 2005 due to safety concerns. The government alleged that Pfizer also promoted three other drugs illegally: the antipsychotic Geodon, an antibiotic Zyvox, and the antiepileptic drug Lyrica.
Johnson & Johnson - 2013 - USD $2.2 Billion - Off-label promotion/kickbacks
Johnson & Johnson agreed to pay a $2.2 billion fine to resolve criminal and civil allegations relating to the prescription drugs Risperdal, Invega and Natrecor. The government alleged that J&J promoted these drugs for uses not approved as safe and effective by the FDA, targeted elderly dementia patients in nursing homes, and paid kickbacks to physicians and to the nation’s largest long-term care pharmacy provider, Omnicare Inc. As part of the agreement, Johnson & Johnson admitted that it promoted Risperdal for treatment of psychotic symptoms in non-schizophrenic patients, although the drug was approved only to treat schizophrenia.
My Favorite Punchy Quotes From The Debate On My Post:
There were a plethora of excellent comments and it is worth reading through them!
"My response is that I'm not going to Light My Child on Fire because you think that it will keep your child warm. NO WAY!"
"Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I have actually not thought about the intention behind why it is required to get vaccinated. I always just assumed it was "because it's good for you," but greed and money from the government could very will push for vaccinations. I like articles that give me food for thought to think more before just assuming things are just face value. So THANK YOU!"
"Take vaccines as an example. I know a lot of doctors and grew up with many kids whos parents were doctors. They all got vaccinated. Do you think those parents would willingly harm their kids?
Some may love money. But I dont' think any loved money more than their own blood.
And I also have not seen any serious side-effects in all of those kids.
With my knowledge up to date I also would vaccine my own kids!"
The Jockey loves you all... ;-)
I wish to express my gratitude to the following Steemians for their passionate contributions to this interesting and important discussion:
@canadian-coconut @teamsteem @themorningstar @samstonehill @misslasvegas @isabellablue @shlomokikestein @jzeek @whatamidoing @michael-kahunka @jupiter5 @uruiamme @carodebali @ambedextrous @oceansoul13 @themorningstar @realitycheck @gwiss @andrewlarson @jmehta @theblindsquirl @nataralcures @off-the-grid @weetreebonsai @wyzz2020 @bolang @nrajesh @karensuestudios @randowhale @jonuzi @delvamaynardreid @theaustrainguy @john1981 @synapse