Anti-Vaxxers: Do They Pose A Public Health Risk?
Measles cases have been cited in 19 people in New York City alone. “Many are children who were either too young to receive vaccinations or whose parents where anti-vaxxers.”
If more and more people become anti-vaxers, the majority of society would not be immune.
What is the effect of this? “Measles incidences dropped 99 percent after the measles vaccine was introduced in 1963. Between 2000 and 2007, the United States saw an average of just 63 measles cases per year, and almost all of those victims brought the disease into the United States from abroad. In 2013, however, the incidence of measles tripled.” Because of lower vaccination rates than previous years, measles outbreaks are now a serious national public health risk.
Why would anti-vaxxers be to blame for this? As stated here, “There is such a thing as herd immunity. Herd immunity refers to the majority of the population being immunized, and therefore providing immunity for those who cannot be immunized. The individuals who cannot be immunized include infants too young to receive vaccines, and individuals who have compromised immune systems, like cancer patients.” If more and more people become anti-vaxers, the majority of society would not be immune. In some opinions, including my own, anti-vaxxers are risking the immunity of the herd. As the number of unvaccinated children go up, so does the increase of disease.