Approval of a vaccine in the US typically takes years, but COVID-19 vaccine is underway in record time. What does it mean?
A recent survey serves as a small overview of a national issue where some fears may be exacerbated in the fall when children return to school for direct guidance. .
The national survey, published Wednesday and conducted by Orlando Health, found that the vast majority of parents believe vaccines are the best way to protect their children from infectious diseases, but 2/3 are still worried about taking their children to the pediatrician clinic due to COVID -19.
While only about 700 out of 2,000 respondents are the parents of children under the age of 18, the pediatricians say this reflects the trend they are seeing in their offices where they have seen. a decline in childhood vaccinations since the beginning of the pandemic.
Dr. Mary Carol Burkhardt, principal care director of Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, said she has seen a severe drop in vaccination against all diseases since March and has yet to be. recovered that number of patients.
She worries this could lead to outbreaks of vaccine preventable diseases like measles or pertussis, also known as pertussis.
“All it takes is a case of measles enter our community and we will find the loss of life completely and completely unnecessary,” said Dr. Alix Casler, a physician. said the pediatrician and president of the Pediatric Department of the Orlando Association of Health Physicians. “People can find it difficult to understand the importance of universal vaccination because they have never seen how devastating these diseases can be.”
Measles can also be dangerous because they tend not to occur, says Dr. Margot Savoy, associate professor and head of the family and community medicine department at Temple University’s Lewis Katz School of Medicine in Philadelphia. case by case that usually appears in clusters. with many people in one bag of sick.
“We have had more measles cases in the past two years than we have had in a decade,” she said. “And it looks like it’s climbing up.”
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Experts say missed vaccinations are important not only for the patient themselves, but also for other adults and children who have not been vaccinated, including children under one year of age who are not old enough to get the shot. apply for measles first. (The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s vaccination schedule list can be found here.)
Casler says the only reason we have herd immunity against so many diseases is because 90% to 95% of children are vaccinated, Casler says, but no one is considered safe once. the country fell below that level.
“Families are tending to vaccinate less and less children, but in this crisis … number,” said Dr Rahul Gupta, medical director of the March of Dimes and former medical commissioner. immunization rates have decreased sharply. of West Virginia. “There is no doubt that there will be a resurgence of other diseases.”
Although it is not certain whether a new outbreak will occur in the new school year, doctors say it is out of the question.
Before getting measles, Savoy said she was most worried about the flu. As many schools delay the start of school, parents feel less pressure to get their kids flu shots.
“It worries me deeply because the flu is killing more children than we have noted,” she said. “We forget how deadly flu can be in children.”
The pressure to create a coronavirus vaccine is increasing day by day, but for a safe vaccine to enter the market it will take time.
All 50 states have laws that require specific vaccines for students; however, 45 states and Washington DC allow religious waivers, according to the National Conference of Legislature. Fifteen states grant philosophical waivers to those who oppose immunization because of personal, moral or other beliefs.
“Anybody who is in kindergarten or school… up-to-date on their immunizations is essential,” Burkhardt said. “(It) is important for those who are in school, but important to anyone because it can also be a community ripple.”
Experts encourage parents who have missed their child’s vaccination schedule to call their doctor and develop a plan to catch up.
It is never too late for a child to get vaccinated, Savoy says, and they most likely don’t need to restart a series of vaccines if they have had the first. She advises parents worried about COVID-19 to schedule a remote doctor visit in advance so that the trip to the doctor’s office can be quick and easy.
“We have been working very hard to eradicate (measles), so it would be a pity to come back in another way,” she said.
Follow Adrianna Rodriguez on Twitter: @AdriannaUSAT.
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