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April 19, 2019

Should immunizations be mandatory?

In early colonial America, the smallpox virus spread quickly among growing populations, killing as many as half of those who caught it. When one of the earliest forms of immunization, called “inoculation”, was introduced in the West, colonizers fought over whether it was safe. Their fear was reasonable. In the 1700s, inoculation was less safe than modern-day vaccination. Even back then statistics showed that immunizing communities helped reduce the number of deaths. Reflecting back on history, it’s easy to see that the battle over whether to enforce vaccination is not new. Although certain groups in society may have objections to vaccinations, requiring parents to vaccinate their children is in the best interest of the lives of the American civic society because vaccines are safe, economic benefits would accrue to society, and they save the lives of many people both in present and future generations.

Vaccine-preventable diseases have not disappeared so vaccination is still necessary. Recently, there has been a measles outbreak throughout the U.S. because many parents have decided to stop vaccinating children.

While some believe that vaccines cause irreversible illnesses in children, research has proven that the ingredients in vaccines are safe and adverse reactions are extremely rare. The most common side effects of vaccines is anaphylaxis, a severe allergic reaction, and it occurs one per several thousands to one per million vaccinations.

Vaccines provide economic benefits for society as it saves children and parents time and money. Vaccines cost less in time and money to obtain than infectious diseases cost in time off of work to care for a sick child, potential long-term disability care, and medical costs.

Many argue that the government shouldn’t intervene in personal medical choices and this is true, to an extent. When the health of the population is at risk because some feel that their rights have been violated, drastic measures need to be taken.

In conclusion, the benefits of vaccinating have been continually proven and requiring parents to vaccinate children benefits society.

Works Cited

https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/article/a-very-short-history-of-vaccines-in-america/

https://vaccines.procon.org/

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