100 Million Reasons to Love Vaccines
Scientists from the University of Pittsburgh looked at the number of reported cases of polio, measles, rubella, mumps, hepatitis A, diphtheria and whooping cough before and after vaccines were available. The projections are based on how many cases would have occurred if a vaccine was not developed for each.
We already knew that vaccines were behind the eradication of smallpox and will be a key reason why polio is up next. Then there are measles and rubella, which are pretty much not a problem in the Americas anymore.
The research was published in the New England Journal of Medicine late last week. It showed just how important vaccines have been in a historical context and why they still matter today.
All the infections avoided over nearly a century could be for naught if Americans spend more time getting health advice from former Playboy model Jenny McCarthy as opposed to scientific researchers.
“We also are able to see a resurgence of some of these diseases in the past several decades as people forget how devastating they can be and start refusing vaccines,” said lead author Willem G. van Panhuis, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor of epidemiology at Pitt Public Health.