Friday, July 01, 2005

Meningococcal vaccine opposition debunked

Associate Professor Glen Buchan from the University of Otago has wrote a very readable and well argued letter to the ODT in support of the MeNZB vaccination campaign, debunking numerous claims from anti-vaccination groups in New Zealand. My favourite quote from the article and something I wonder about myself was this
"I am often astounded by some people’s opposition to something as positive as vaccination. I believe that the real issue that lies behind the frenzied attacks on the vaccination programme by a vocal few is a belief that vaccination is unnatural or unnecessary and that there is some great conspiracy under way to line the pockets of multinational companies. The purpose of a vaccine is to mimic infection in a safe way."
It is unfortunate that such beliefs are unreasonably propagated as 'facts' and are even required to be debunked to begin with. Indeed, as the conclusions sums up perfectly:
"My biggest fear is that, because of their efforts, the anti-vaccine lobby will be proved right. If more and more people withdraw from the programme it is only a matter of time before the numbers immunised drop too low to stop the spread of the disease. The disease will continue to kill and maim and the opponents will be able to say, “See, we told you so”.
My only question to them would be, “Will our children benefit from your pyrrhic victory?”"