Friday, February 6, 2015

Our Stance on Vaccines

Because why not post on a hot topic and piss some people off, right?

I research each and every vaccine myself. Here's the background:

I was pregnant with Jena and was given the CDC info sheets for the vaccines they want her to get right away. One of them (I think Hepatitis B), had stats that didn't sit right with me for some reason. Took me a while to figure out. Then I realized. They presented some numbers as percentages, some as fractions, and some as raw numbers. Having spent years at my job making various numbers-based presentations to executives, I know this trick well: you present it in whichever format spins your story the best. Any time you see a report, news article, etc. with numbers presented in multiple fashions, it should be a red flag that they are trying to sell you something. And so I began digging. I just wanted to see for myself.

Think back to math class. Probably late elementary school timing. One of the basic rules of comparing numbers is that to do an accurate comparison you have to get them in the same format. This is when you learn to convert fractions to percentages and vice versa. It is literally elementary school level math. And both sides are using it to their advantage on a regular basis.

It was hard for me to find legitimate info at first. The problem being that the vast majority of sites out there are either very pro-get-every-vaccine-exactly-on-schedule or very-don't-trust-any-vaccine-and/or-the-schedule. Which means they're all spinning the numbers one way or another. So I went to the source.

I now pull all of my stats from the CDC, FDA, and WHO sites. I read manufacturers inserts. When I can I read the policies for those vaccines for other 1st world countries. If there is a difference in recommendation, I try to find out why.

I will tell you that some of this information is VERY hard to find. Which is VERY frustrating to me. I get even more flustered when I can find a stat on one vaccine then can't find it on another. It happens. I'm irritated that the wording is different from one to another. For example, sometimes "death" is lumped in with all serious complications. Other times it is its own entry. These inconsistencies and lack of transparency are perhaps the largest red flags to me.

The end result: we do get the majority of vaccines, and on schedule. We skip a few when the data to support it just isn't there.

I am not an "anti-vaxxer". I am not a "pro-vaxxer". I am a question everything kind of person. I am the kind of person who wants to see for herself. I encourage everyone, no matter what side of the issue you are on, is (if you haven't already) to do your own research. Don't be a sheeple (I love that term).

I'm not going to put our decision regarding specific vaccines on this post (although I think for Jena it's been mentioned before). For a long time I've wanted to publish the numbers and information as I pull them for each individual vaccine, so I'm going to make a concerted effort to do so in the future, lay the numbers out for you, and hopefully help my readers make a more informed decision regarding the care of their families, no matter what they decide.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...