Vaccine Safety: Getting the Message to Parents in Doubt

Vaccine Safety: Getting the Message to Parents in Doubt

Source: U.S. News & World Report

Measles, mumps and whooping cough have been around a long time – along with the vaccines to prevent them. But instead of being a distant memory in the United States – like polio – outbreaks of these infectious childhood diseases keep cropping up, and parents refusing or delaying vaccinations are a contributing factor. With a steady flow of misinformation online on vaccine safety, it’s no wonder some parents hesitate. But childhood illnesses can cause serious harm, and teens and young adults can also be at risk when their childhood immunity fades. In response, doctors are going beyond office visits to spread the word on immunizations. Dr. Wendy Sue Swanson, a pediatrician and executive director of digital health at Seattle Children's, has empathy for parents who don’t want to expose their “beautiful, perfect and healthy” baby to a medical intervention. A mother herself, she understands that when it comes to protecting their children, parents often have an instinct that “less is more.” But, she says, childhood vaccinations are “the profound exception” to that notion. When it comes potentially dangerous diseases, the more you can prevent them through immunization, the better.

About Seattle Children’s

Seattle Children’s Hospital, Foundation and Research Institute together deliver superior patient care, advance new discoveries and treatments through pediatric research, and raise funds to create better futures for patients. Consistently ranked as one of the top 10 children’s hospitals in the country by U.S. News & World Report, Seattle Children’s Hospital specializes in meeting the unique physical, emotional and developmental needs of children from infancy through young adulthood. Through the collaboration of physicians in nearly 60 pediatric subspecialties, Seattle Children’s Hospital provides inpatient, outpatient, diagnostic, surgical, rehabilitative, behavioral, and emergency and outreach services to families from around the world.

Located in downtown Seattle’s biotech corridor, Seattle Children’s Research Institute is pushing the boundaries of medical research to find cures for pediatric diseases and improve outcomes for children all over the world. Internationally recognized investigators and staff at the research institute are advancing new discoveries in cancer, genetics, immunology, pathology, infectious disease, injury prevention, bioethics and much more.

Seattle Children’s Hospital and Research Foundation and Seattle Children’s Hospital Guild Association work together to gather community support and raise funds for uncompensated care, clinical care and research. The foundation receives nearly 80,000 gifts each year, from lemonade stand proceeds to corporate sponsorships. Seattle Children’s Hospital Guild Association is the largest all-volunteer fundraising network for any hospital in the country, serving as the umbrella organization for 450 groups of people who turn an activity they love into a fundraiser. Support from the foundation and guild association makes it possible for Seattle Children’s care and research teams to improve the health and well-being of all kids.

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