Parental Authority Choice on Childhood Vaccinations Research Paper

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Parental Authority Choice on Childhood Vaccinations

Should parents be permitted to opt out of required vaccinations for their children?

Childhood immunization has over the years grown to attract numerous attentions both as a necessary measure and an appalling means to safeguard spread of diseases. With the growing need to make the world a disease free zone, the number of immunization shots to children has increased in double figures since 1980 (Madlon-Kay and Harper 611). Today by the time a child goes to kindergarten they will take in between 20 to 28 immunization shots that protect between 10 to 15 possible ailments. The safety and effectiveness attributable to the majority of these immunization shots is questioned and criticized by parents, physicians, and religious leaders. The queries are discrediting childhood immunization and advocating for parents to opt out ought to be dispensed with. There are regulatory bodies that ensure vaccines administered to children are safe and effective. The diphtheria and measles vaccination programs contributed to a reduction in the number of possible deaths by up to 500%. These facts argue for the effectiveness of the compulsory child vaccination programs disproving those who argue that the vaccinations contribute to autoimmune diseases (Madlon-Kay and Harper 612).

Arguments For and Against Children Immunization and Parental Choice

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Research Paper on Parental Authority Choice on Childhood Vaccinations Should Assignment

In as much as the State's authorities seek to guarantee the safety of their citizens, parents have a socially and biologically accorded right to make choices for their children. It is true that, the more immunizations continue to prevent spread and occurrence of diseases the greater their advocacy grows (Geier and Geier 8). This growth fuels more enthusiasms to disregard parent's right of choice for what is good for their children and enforces increasing measure for immunization. Parents' feel overshadowed by the state in deciding what is good for their children. Increasing objection to the government vaccination policies has fueled a growing revolt among parents with of reasons for objecting being brought out on a daily basis.

Parents are highly against mass dissemination of vaccination questioning the healthy measures used in disseminating the vaccines. The sterility of the medical equipment's potential of one's child contracting other forms of ailments owing to the dissemination measures is questioned. While some parents look at the dissemination means, others look at the side effect potential to yield to other complications such as autism. Numerous arguments have been advanced against the immunization claiming that immunized children end up suffering autism after the administration of the injection. The most popular case that propagated more uproar from parents was by Doctor John Wakefield in 1998. Wakefield, a British Doctor, sited possibility of a link between MMR vaccine, and autism. The allegations by Wakefiled were that the vaccines were not properly tested prior to dissemination. With media picking up on Wakefield's story, it created a sense of insecurity among the public igniting fear and confusion over the use of vaccines.

It is also seen that preexisting condition can be injurious to one receiving a vaccine. In the case a child has an unstable pre-existing condition the possibility of the vaccine administered aggravating the preexisting complication is significant. This was the case for a nine-year-old girl who experienced side effects from the vaccines given. Following confession by the U.S. government that the vaccine given worsened the girl's condition, the public became more worried of the vaccination exercises.

Some Physicians and Medical practitioners raise concerns arguing that the numerous injections administered to a child compromise a child's possible good health outcome. On other fronts, parents have been receiving information regarding the toxic chemical composition of the vaccinations. This in effect heightens their discontent with some of the mandatory injections their children must receive as they grow. Religious leaders' arguments pinpoint that the mandatory injection are an infringement of some citizenry right to choice as well as their religious beliefs (Madlon-Kay and Harper 612).

Parents opposing mandatory immunization say that it goes against their religion and some basic natural laws. The argument put forth to protect the civil right of the citizens of freedom of choice looks at the parents' choice and their religious believes (Salmon, Haber and Gangarosa 45). As a State's enforced measure, it is considered to be interference to the natural process and biological formation of the human body. Going by some religious belief of some these parents, forceful immunization of their children is an infringement of their religious belief. The argument is that the first amendment is an violation on the rights of the individual to exercise their religion freely (Salmon, Haber and Gangarosa 45). Additionally proponent of the religious argument claim the government's advocacy for vaccination is an effort to support pharmaceutical's profit driven motives. This argument makes it inevitable for parents to consider that vaccination as unnecessary and therefore, opt out (Institute of Medicine 1)

Despite the heavy clarifications made by scientists and government on the safety of the injections given, more and more parents are positive that the injections are unsafe. The idea immunization injections are a source of more trouble, places immunization as undesirable to more parents. The strong conviction is such that if something is ideal and necessary, no cut throat measures are necessary for something to be taken up. Parents' belief the excessive use of force makes the good measures by the State rather appear questionable.

Arguments against Parents Opting out

On the contrary, advocates for the mandatory injections show the communal good that immunization guarantee. Additionally policy and law institutions affirm that, religious beliefs, should not be grounds to compromise the well-being of the masses (Madlon-Kay and Harper 615). Parents concern of there being numerous vaccines administered to their children in early childhood contribute to their desire to opt out of the vaccines. The vaccines are scientifically tested, scheduled and designed to provide timely protection for the infants early in life. The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) take adequate measures to license and oversee safety of the administration of the vaccination activities. The measures put across under the FDA guarantee the safety of the drugs administered and the practices in the administration of the vaccines are safe. With the established regulations, there are sufficient guarantees that ensure children safety in taken into consideration and there are limited or no risks associated with administration of the vaccines.

Proponents for state mandatory childhood vaccination argue that the vaccination safeguard the future of mankind by guaranteeing the health outcomes of the existing generation. Many potential life threatening diseases that were responsible for thousands of child deaths are counteracted by the vaccinations. Statistics shows the effectiveness of these vaccinations to fall between 90 and 99% with up to 33,000 deaths and 10 million cases of infectious diseases prevented (Dave). Considering a child who is vaccinated may contract a disease, the symptoms of the contracted ailment are milder than they are in the case for a child who is not vaccinated. Compulsory vaccination is advocated in order to achieve between 70 to 90% immunization and thus "herd immunity." "Herd Immunity" implies that a group has a higher resistance to disease attacks and possible infections within the group are greatly minimized (Welch 1). Once "Heard Immunity" is achieved, infectious and life threatening diseases potential of settling within a group is averted completely.

The State's obligation and function in ensuring the well-being of its population including the vulnerable is absolute. This obligation and function is similar to moral duty and maternal instincts of a mother to fend and protect their young ones. It is an accepted fact that vaccination exercise provides a shield to the individual and community at large. Since most of the diseases vaccination is provided are transmissible from person to person, vaccinating a larger proportion of individuals serves to hinder any likely hood for the disease. This protects individuals in the community including those not vaccinated and those who though vaccinated experienced vaccine failure. On this front, parents are duty bound to ensure the community is free from infection by immunizing their children. This is a moral obligation that calls for selfless actions.

Following campaigns by the high-profile opponents of mandatory vaccinations to children the number of parents opting out soared (Welch 1). The campaigns argued that vaccinations result to autism as a side effect to children vaccinated. Such arguments are misguided since, the potential for one child ending up with autism is not similar to another. The biological makeup of each child is different and the chances of developing autism following immunization are slim. Considerably, a child's body is expected to respond differently to the vaccine administered. Not all children who receive the immunization develop a complete guard neither is it obvious that a child will develop complications after immunization.

Following the heated campaigns against immunization, there was an increase in the number of children hospitalized with whooping cough. The immunization opposing campaigns increased the incidence of death and number of children with chest complications following an outbreak of whooping cough. Compared to this… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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How to Cite "Parental Authority Choice on Childhood Vaccinations" Research Paper in a Bibliography:

APA Style

Parental Authority Choice on Childhood Vaccinations.  (2014, November 28).  Retrieved September 21, 2020, from

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"Parental Authority Choice on Childhood Vaccinations."  28 November 2014.  Web.  21 September 2020. <>.

Chicago Style

"Parental Authority Choice on Childhood Vaccinations."  November 28, 2014.  Accessed September 21, 2020.