The Immunization Debate…Again ~ VACCeptable Injuries Book Review

| July 4, 2013 | 8 Comments
As someone who has written about vaccines before, I was given a complimentary copy of VACCeptable Injuries: Increasing Childhood Diseases & Developmental Disorders for the purpose of review. Please note that all views and opinions are my own.

vaccination- Vacceptable InjuriesI think to say that this is an emotionally charged topic would be an understatement. With all the new vaccines that have been developed over the years, there’s a lot much more to think about. I think parents today think more about what is going into their children both from a diet and health perspective and the increase in vaccine protocol over the years certainly has something to do with this.

In the past I wrote more about the choice of what to vaccinate for and that there is too much blaming and shaming and not enough dialogue about choices and respecting personal decisions. I wonder if this pointing fingers and judging is more about individual worry and stress of personally making what one thinks is the “right” decision over someone else’s decision to make a different decision. I guess I wanted to highlight that there is choice out there and that everyone, including medical professionals, should respect that. But from what I am seeing and reading, that just isn’t happening. It seems more like there are two sides battling to be right and with no end in sight!

I’ll admit that I wish I didn’t think about immunizations so much. In some ways it would be easier and less stressful to turn it off and just roll up my sleeve or that of my child and just get what everyone else is getting. But making something easier isn’t a good enough reason in my books and so I read and participate in forums to learn more and make my own decisions but it isn’t always easy or fun!

My children are immunized. They received all of their scheduled immunizations and I didn’t think much more about it. But now there are many more vaccines available that weren’t even developed when my children were young, which makes me question whether they really need  a chickenpox vaccine. Fortunately due to timing and age, I did not have to make that decision (phew)!

But now my daughter has entered the age group for the HPV and hepatitis vaccines and I haven’t rushed out in line to get them yet. She’s still young and I have some time to fully read and educate and make that decision without being harassed by schools, family doctors, nurses at clinics, peers, friends, strangers AND the School Immunization Clinics Program, that just sent me a very pro vaccine letter as that is their mandate. Similarly, those who are anti-vaccine present their side  in their literature.

There’s a lot of finger-pointing and time spent trashing and dispelling from each camp. They attack each other and accuse each other of one-sided reports and research-which is often true but isn’t that what everyone does when trying to prove a point-find information and data that supports their findings? Each side presents evidence and reports to back up their own agenda. That’s life. That’s how things get done. And for me, that’s the problem as it leaves me feeling conflicted and wondering who is really right!

Public Health Letter

Public Health Letter

And then we received this in the mail, addressed to my daughter.

Remember when some of these newer vaccines came out but weren’t covered by insurance and so they weren’t part of the regular immunization? And then once they were covered, they were? That’s one thing that personally bothers me. That and the fact that the HPV vaccine hasn’t been out long enough for really long-term and in-depth studies about long-term effects and more. The fact that the HPV virus is found on and spread through “genital areas including the penis, scrotum, vagina, vulva and anus” (source: Ottawa Public Health) and yet while approved for males, the vaccine is not publicly funded by the Ministry of Health. It has to be bought with a prescription from the doctor. These are just a few highlights of the many points I think about when reviewing vaccines.

Markus Heinze is the author of VACCeptable Injuries and his book has received both negative and positive reviews based on what side of the fence the reader is on. The book covers a topic that is controversial for many reasons. Health is precious and no one wants to make a decision that will adversely affect their health or that of their children. Mr. Heinze’s book is written personally and based on the experience of his daughter becoming ill and ending up with Type 1 Diabetes at the age of 3 years old, which he attributes to her vaccine regime. “Vaccines caused my daughter to develop an autoimmune disorder-possibly for the rest of her life.”

Heinze’s book then leads into a focus on different vaccines and the studies that determined they were safe and finding flaws and/or shortcomings with them, including studies that did not compare apples to apples and oranges to oranges in order to prove vaccine safety. This raises a hotbed of questions on both sides of the fence but in the end, if you read this book and then another that is pro vaccine, you do end up quite confused and somewhat caught up in the “he said, she said” debate which is one of the main issues that bothers me the most about the entire vaccine debate.

There doesn’t seem to be any calm debate, with two sides listening to each other and then hashing it out, debate style. It’s more a screaming and yelling match with study after study thrown at each other and judgement and ridicule if you don’t fall on the same side of the fence. And that’s the hard part. It should be so simple but it’s not. The government and public health agencies say the vaccines are safe and they probably believe that and maybe most of them are, and their funded studies support that but they have been wrong before: lead, smoking and DDT were all purported to be safe “back then” but it was later discovered that they are very unsafe. This isn’t to compare the two but to say that mistakes happen and maybe there hasn’t been enough time to really study some of these vaccine effects and I don’t want to feel bullied into accepting them before I have done my own due diligence in the research department.

There is no doubt that Markus Heinze has done a lot of research and that he is passionate about what he believes and that he truly believes his daughter became ill due to her vaccine regime and as a parent, I understand his feelings and feel empathy for his situation. He feels like his actions led to her illness just like many are fearful that if they don’t vaccinate as per official guidelines, that they could jeopardize their child’s health.

Reading this book definitely brought a new perspective to my own thoughts and has me thinking (sigh, again) about some aspects of vaccine protocol and so to be fair,  I’ve decided that I will seek out another book that comes from the opposite opinion and supports the current vaccine regimes, so that I have renewed information from both sides as I continue my own personal research.

There are no easy answers but definitely continued debate and Mr. Heinze’s book definitely adds another spark to the fire of  the ongoing vaccine protocol debate.

 

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Category: Books/Magazines, Family, Health, Reviews, Wellness

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  1. The Immunization Debate…Again and a Review | Laurel E. Anderson | July 4, 2013
  1. Jim says:

    Thank you to the author, Lola, for this quick review. I started reading it with scepticism, anticipating the article to again, like so many do (as she pointed out), fall heavily on one side of the debate or the other. I appreciate that she has emphasized that parental choice does enter into this medical issue, epecially when it pertains to some more recently available vaccines. I would agree that children’s vaccinations may be considered an issue that demands an analysis of risks vs. benefits. However, it is worth remembering that some of the debilitating/fatal diseases, for which we now have the regiment of prescribed vaccines in place (eg. polio), have not been eradicated from our global society. I do hope that everyone who contemplates withholding any vaccination from their child is properly informed, for the decision to give some key vaccinations should not be difficult.

  2. Bill says:

    Laurel, A very interesting article. I grew up in the 50’s where you got stuck once a week with the new drug of choice. My daughter grew up in the 80’s you still got stuck on a regular basis, but you were slightly better informed than in the 50’s. My granddaughter is growing up now, and her parents are quite careful in regard to what she gets stuck for. Being the cynic I am, I do believe that reports are created without all the facts, and I also believe that drugs are pushed further and harder after insurance begins paying. Thank you for sharing it. — take care, Bill

  3. VMChick says:

    A very good write-up of the issues that are plaguing us as parents trying to make the best decisions for our children!

  4. kathy downey says:

    A very interesting write-up for sure,drugs scare me and i try to research before we use

  5. kathy downey says:

    Some times as parents its difficult trying to make the best decisions for our children!

  6. Elizabeth Matthiesen says:

    It’s a hard choice for parents to have to make but in my opinion some of these are a must like TB, smallpox, polio etc and for me I’d add at least chickenpox to the list. I had chickenpox as a child (there was no immunisation in those days) but the horrible thing was that the virus lurked within me and caused shingles to break out and I can tell you that is really a painful experience. Not only that but one time when I had shingles I also infected 2 of my sons both teenagers at the time. They had such a terrible dose of chicken pox, I’ve never seen anyone look and feel as bad as they both did. My youngest daughter who also caught chickenpox from me was younger and didn’t suffer as much as the boys who were older. I’ve advised all of my 7 children (now adults) to get the vaccine against shingles.

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