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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 mission is to provide hope, care and cures to help every child live the healthiest and most fulfilling life possible. Together, Seattle Children’s Hospital, Research Institute and Foundation deliver superior patient care, identify new discoveries and treatments through pediatric research, and raise funds to create better futures for patients.

Ranked as one of the top children’s hospitals in the country by U.S. News & World Report, Seattle Children’s serves as the pediatric and adolescent academic medical center for Washington, Alaska, Montana and Idaho – the largest region of any children’s hospital in the country. As one of the nation's top five pediatric research centers, Seattle Children’s Research Institute is internationally recognized for its work in neurosciences, immunology, cancer, infectious disease, injury prevention and much more. Seattle Children’s Hospital and Research Foundation works with the Seattle Children’s Guild Association, the largest all-volunteer fundraising network for any hospital in the country, to gather community support and raise funds for uncompensated care and research.

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