vaccines

Vaccine Refusal
11:33 am
Thu September 26, 2013

Team Develops Early Warning Tool for Vaccine Skepticism

Seattle researchers say their survey helps predict which kids will be behind schedule on immunizations.
USACE Europe District Flickr

Seattle researchers have developed a kind of early-warning device for identifying parents suspicious of childhood vaccines. With an especially high rate of parents opting out of vaccines for their kids in Washington, pediatrician Doug Opel has been trying to figure out how to intervene early on.

Opel practices at Seattle Children’s Hospital and at its research institute. He is also an assistant professor at the University of Washington School of Medicine. He and others developed a survey of parents’ attitudes about vaccination. In a new study published in JAMA Pediatrics, they found that the survey does a pretty good job of predicting which kids would be under-vaccinated by the time they’re 19 month sold.

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Health
5:01 am
Mon February 4, 2013

Natural living: 5 myths about nature vs. technology

Is the "other white meat" actually healthy pork?

Technology has made us healthier in a lot of ways. It’s beaten back old threats from smallpox to stillbirth to scarlet fever. But many think the march of progress has gone too far, and we need to get back to nature. 

Author Nathanael Johnson says most of us are in the middle – suspicious of technology run amok, but unwilling to trade the condo for a mud hut. He investigates whether the natural approach is really better for us in his book, “All Natural.” 

Nathanael also laid out five common myths about nature versus technology. Get the gist below, or click below and listen to the full conversation:

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vaccines
3:32 pm
Thu January 17, 2013

How good is the flu shot?

The Associated Press

You may have heard this year’s flu shot is about 60% effective. To be precise, the official estimate is 62%, and it's based on research conducted partially at Group Health Cooperative in Washington.

What does that mean for you? How can someone use that information?

And, how did they arrive at a number like 62%?

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Health
8:03 am
Tue January 8, 2013

Can You Get A Flu Shot And Still Get The Flu?

Shea Catlin, a nurse practitioner, doses out flu vaccine to give a shot at a CVS Minute Clinic in Arlington, Va., on Jan. 3.
Barbara L. Salisbury The Washington Times/Landov

Originally published on Tue January 8, 2013 3:06 am

This year's flu season started about a month early, prompting federal health officials to warn it could be one of the worst in years. They're urging everyone to get their flu shots.

But like every flu season, there are lots of reports of people complaining that they got their shot but still got the flu. What's up with that?

Well, as Michael Jhung of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention explains, there are lots of possible reasons.

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vaccination
2:18 pm
Tue December 18, 2012

Local baby is first to die from whooping cough; new tips for pregnant moms

Nurses Fatima Guillen, left, and Fran Wendt, right, give Kimberly Magdeleno, 4, a Tdap whooping cough booster shot, as she is held by her mother, Claudia Solorio, Thursday, May 3, 2012, at a health clinic in Tacoma.
AP

The whooping cough epidemic in Washington is nearly over – but not soon enough for a baby in King County. The newborn was Washington’s first fatality this year, despite a near-record number of infections.

"The baby had gone home, and we believe it was exposed to someone with unrecognized pertussis, got infected, and then developed complications and died," says Jeff Duchin, chief of epidemiology for Public Health Seattle & King County.

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Public Health
4:55 pm
Thu August 23, 2012

Not as many Wash. children opting out of vaccines

This map from the CDC shows how the Northwest remains a bastion of vaccine exemptions.
MMWR Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Fewer Washington parents are opting their children out of vaccinations, giving the state one of the biggest drops in vaccine exemptions in the country. Two years ago Washington had the highest rate of vaccine exemptions in the nation, with 6.2 percent of kindergartners taking a medical, religious or philosophical pass on getting one or more immunizations.

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childhood immunization
6:10 pm
Thu May 17, 2012

Vaccination rates reverse trend, with help from new law

The percentage of kindergartners in Washington who are fully vaccinated has gone up slightly, since a new law took effect making it harder to opt-out.

A change in state law took effect last July, requiring parents who want to exempt their kids from one or more vaccines to first hear from a doctor or nurse about the risks and benefits.

Michele Roberts, of the Washington Department of Health's immunization program, says some people doubted the law was strict enough to make a difference.  

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vaccine controversy
10:57 am
Tue November 29, 2011

Pediatricians struggle over patients who won’t vaccinate

Sitting in her home in Ashland, Ore., earlier this month Jennifer Margulis shows off empty vials of vaccine that she saves in case one of her children has a bad reaction. Like many parents, she is concerned about the right schedule for vaccinations.
Associated Press

Doctors across the country are saying they might fire you as a patient if you refuse to let your child be immunized, according to a few stories that have ignited all kinds of discussions about vaccines and the role of pediatricians.

But a new survey confirms that’s a minority viewpoint, particularly among pediatricians in Washington. 

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Global Health
3:07 pm
Tue October 18, 2011

Malaria vaccine pushed by PATH and Gates shows some success

Children in the RTS,S malaria vaccine trial wait with their parents at a hospital in Tanzania on June 28, 2011.
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Leaders at the Seattle non-profit group PATH – and their sponsors at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation– say they’re excited about the latest results from a malaria vaccine trial in Africa. The interim results don't guarantee it will be a success, but it’s the best any malaria vaccine has ever done.

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Global Health
2:30 pm
Tue September 27, 2011

Gates announces new push to conquer deadly rotavirus

Rotavirus vaccine given to child in Sudan
Doune Porter GAVI

It kills anywhere from a quarter-million to half-a-million kids every year and is one of the world’s leading causes of child mortality.

But it wasn’t too long ago hardly anybody had even heard of it: Rotavirus. It is the killer bug that set off Bill Gates and gave direction to his philanthropy. Now his foundation is launching a major new global jab against rotavirus and another big killer of young children, pneumococcal disease.

Health
11:40 am
Wed September 14, 2011

Doctors Counter Vaccine Fears In Pacific Northwest

Many parents today expect to have choices — and that includes picking and choosing which vaccines their children gets.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue September 13, 2011 3:48 pm

Parts of the U.S. are seeing a drop-off in vaccination rates among young children. The falling rates don't necessarily track with poverty or other poor public health trends; in fact, a recent U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report flagged the poorest rates of kindergarten vaccination in relatively prosperous states, like Washington and Oregon.

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immunizations
4:54 pm
Thu September 1, 2011

State sees gains on child immunizations, still lags

More kids in Washington are getting immunizations, but the state still lags behind vaccination goals.
Flickr

Washington continues to make progress boosting immunization rates among toddlers, despite having the highest percent in the nation of families exempting kids from vaccines. 

The new survey from the Centers for Disease Control shows the gains come with room for improvement.

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Humanosphere
4:54 pm
Thu July 14, 2011

Why CIA's faked vaccines may cause damage

johanoomen Flickr

The CIA has acknowledged running a deceptive, if not totally fake, vaccination program in Pakistan as part of the effort months ago to hunt down Osama bin Laden, and here are three reasons why the deception may cause problems in global health efforts:

  • This isn’t just about vaccines.
  • Health workers and aid workers overseas have to be seen as neutral and independent if they are to operate effectively and safely.
  • National security isn’t achieved just by hunting and killing bad guys. It’s also achieved through humanitarian efforts.

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Humanosphere
2:18 pm
Tue July 12, 2011

Did CIA's fake vaccination program undermine global health?

Associated Press

One of the chronic problems the international community has with almost every disease-fighting campaign has been the need to overcome mistrust — mistrust of government, of foreign health workers or outsider do-gooders in general.

This is, for a variety of reasons, especially true of vaccines.

So many worry that such global health efforts will suffer from the revelation, reported first in The Guardian and later by the New York Times and others, that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) set up a fake vaccination program in Pakistan in order to collect DNA samples.

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childhood immunizations
7:40 am
Mon July 11, 2011

Injecting personal values into vaccine policy

Three-year-old Jeffery Trzeciak grimaces bravely as a doctor prepares to give him an anti polio inoculation in New Kensington, Pa., Feb. 23, 1957. The shots were given as part of " Victory Over Polio Day."
Associated Press

Parents who are hesitant about giving their children all the required immunizations have an unusual chance to share their views Tuesday. The national committee that decides when kids should get vaccines is taking testimony in Shoreline, north of Seattle -- inviting the public into a discussion of values. It’s just the second time they’ve asked for input.

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