Lack of access and anti-vaxxer sentiment causes plateau in vaccinations
A study from the World Health Organization and UNICEF found that 20 million children globally have not had “lifesaving vaccines such as measles, diphtheria and tetanus in 2018.” A combination of inaccessibility in poorer countries and anti-vaccine sentiment in wealthier nations is causing a concern plateau in vaccination rates.
Globally, vaccine coverage for diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis, in addition to measles, “has stalled at around 86 percent” according to the report. According to the WHO, 95 percent coverage is required for vaccines to prevent outbreaks.
While efforts are underway to push for vaccinations in underserved countries and communities, nations like the United States and Germany are working to stop the spread of misinformation regarding vaccines. Germany introduced legislation to mandate the measles vaccination for children this week, as New York state passed a measure to achieve a similar result.
The U.S. is in the midst of the worst measles outbreak in 25 years, according to the CDC. There have already been 1,123 cases in 2019, compared to just 63 in 2010. The scientific community has rejected anti-vaccine sentiment, with the Pew Research Center reporting that 80% of Americans believe in school-based vaccination requirements for children.
Other states are joining New York in calling for an end to most exemptions, apart from medical reasons, for vaccinations. Do you think the United States should mandate vaccinations for preventable diseases?