Vaccination Success Story in India

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Here’s a good news story – and a kick in the teeth for the anti-vaccination loons out there.

As this article says, in 2009 India had half the world’s recorded cases of polio. Following a massive public health campaign (it is reported that 2.3 million vaccinators immunise 172 million Indian children per week), it has now been one year since the last case of polio was reported.

Well done Indian authorities, and the World Health Organisation.

But shame on anti-vaxx cranks for continuing their misguided crusade, mostly from suburban ivory towers. At the same time as this stunning success story, Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul, is on record as being against government-mandated immunisation, saying:

I don’t think anything should be forced on us by the government, [and] immunization is one thing that we’re pressured and forced into.

Mind you, this stance was being pushed as a good thing by the shameful Age of Autism website, which still peddles the notion that vaccination causes autism despite having no evidence to support it.

What is it with these ‘libertarians’? It’s almost as if zero intellect and zero compassion for society are prerequisites for the tag, isn’t it? Is there clear evidence that herd immunity saves lives (and reduces suffering and the health budget)? Yes, but as long as no one is telling us we have to do it. Liberty for all. It makes you want to scream and/or vomit.

India / USA. Which is really the ‘developing’ country?



6 thoughts on “Vaccination Success Story in India

    Vlad said:
    December 12, 2012 at 8:57 pm

    Once more playing Devil’s Advocate, my personal issue is not with vaccination campaigns against true and widespread health issues (such as polio), and I am truly glad that the project in India has been a success.
    What I am against is mandatory vaccination (i’m ok with being vaccinating based on actual PROOF, and paying for it if there’s a justifiable threat proven) in the case of outright fear-tactics such as Bird Flu and Swine Flu which tend to be pushed down people’s throats in some countries through aggressive nanny-state policies.
    Quite frankly if a disease has killed 100 people worldwide in ten years, I’ll take the 0.000004% chance of infection and tell the government worker to go fuck himself. Especially in Romania, where it WAS made mandatory and the government shelled out a huge amount of money that it couldn’t really afford. There was a reason why many vaccines have been banned from certain countries.
    As anyone with half a mind should admit, just because there are a few bad apples in a tree doesn’t mean that they’re ALL rotten. But just because vaccines are effective and SHOULD be pushed out (although I believe that the individual should still have a right to choose whether to accept administration or not) doesn’t mean they’re god’s gift to man. As it is with any product, when big money comes into play, things get fuzzy.

      rationalbrain responded:
      December 12, 2012 at 9:32 pm

      Yes, well we’re definitely at opposite poles on this one.
      Letting the ‘mommy instinct’ decide public health issues is demonstrably disasterous.
      The truth your wish to remain unvaccinated in the face of overwhelming evidence is a direct threat to me and my children, and I therefore reject your ‘right’ to do so.
      It’s no different to passive smoking in that respect.

        Vlad said:
        December 12, 2012 at 9:39 pm

        Like I said, I believe there’s some differences of scale here. Letting the ‘mommy instinct’ decide public health issues IS demonstrably disastrous. However I believe you’re confusing personal choice with public choice. It’s public if I go out and mandate that people shouldn’t become vaccinated. Which I don’t do, since that would be stupid and irresponsible in the face of overwhelming evidence. However, If I decide based on research and evidence and a bit of personal belief that I don’t personally want the vaccine, that’s private and anyone telling me otherwise will first get politely declined, then verbally assaulted and finally kicked in the nuts.
        I will remind you that there IS overwhelming evidence for vaccination against measles, polio, mumps, and other diseases.
        Contrasting, there is extremely disputed evidence and a lot of contrary evidence to the efficiency and purpose of such vaccines as those against Swine Flu or Bird Flu. Not only is there a lot of political controversy on this subject, it has been admitted by several public health authorities that while the diseases ARE dangerous, they are nowhere near as infectious as originally claimed, and while the possibility of mutation into a highly-infectious form is real, it is also negligible in probability.
        Now I enjoyed a great deal in reading your articles when your position is a highly-logical and emotionally balanced one. Your reply to my previous comment however is short, terse and absolutist in scope, and did not actually counter my claim that Swine and Bird flu in specific (which are the two diseases I mentioned in my previous comment) are nowhere near important or risky enough to generate such a global response and fear.

        rationalbrain responded:
        December 12, 2012 at 9:53 pm

        I’m pleased that you’re trawling my ‘back catalogue’, but it’s been a while since I wrote a lot of those pieces, and I may not be focused enough at the moment to give you the intellectual contest you seek.
        At present I don’t really have time to address all these different issues in the depth I would like, so apologies if you’re offended in some way by my brief reply.
        However, vaccination is one of those things that push my buttons, and I’m completely intolerant of the ignorance which floods the planet at the moment on this subject.
        If you want a comment on Swine or Bird flu, well perhaps these are your views in hindsight. But if public health officials did nothing in the face of fears of such epidemics, you would probably be the first to ‘kick them in the nuts’.
        Sorry, but I’m prepared to go with the health officials in this country. Not sure about where you live.

        Vlad said:
        December 12, 2012 at 10:15 pm

        Heh, I have to admit I like me some arguments.
        But yes, in Romania, anything that comes out of the government’s mouth is to be taken with a pinch of salt, pockets closed and lawsuit ready.

    Interested Dude said:
    September 17, 2014 at 3:01 am

    The big problem for India is that Pakistan has vaccination deniers and Polio is making a comeback there, and many Pakistanis want to visit/emigrate to India given the worsening security situation there.. so its back to square 1 if Polio makes a comeback.

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