WTVM Editorial 4-29-19: Get Vaccinated!

WTVM Editorial 4-29-19: Get Vaccinated!

(WTVM) - With more new cases of Measles now identified in Georgia and the possibility of new cases in Alabama, it deserves to be stated again: vaccinations are safe and effective.

That would seem to be obvious to most of us, especially those of us who grew up as kids in the 60’s and 70’s when vaccinations were routine.

However, today, there are still some people who decline to vaccinate their children. That’s ultimately the parent’s right, in most cases.

But it’s important to remember that the experts on communicable diseases, like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, have evidence your child could be at risk, even at risk of dying, if they’re not vaccinated.

That’s because serious measles complications, if you don’t vaccinate and your child gets exposed to the virus, are more common in children under 5 or in adults over 20.

Those complications include pneumonia, encephalitis, which is swelling of the brain, and life-threatening diarrhea, any of which could lead to death.

Get your children vaccinated. The CDC and the World Health Organization both concur that vaccines do not cause autism, a fear expressed by some very vocal anti-vaccine parents.

Ask yourself: If you knew your child would be safe from a virulent, potentially life threatening disease unless they received a proven preventive measure - wouldn’t you make the choice to keep your child safe?

The preventive measles vaccine is proven to be 97 percent effective.

The CDC says 2019 will be a banner year for measles - and not in a good way. 22 states already have dozens of cases.

Just as smallpox and polio have been almost completely eradicated, we can do the same for measles.

Measles were almost wiped out in the year 2000.

We need to do our part, now, to vaccinate so measles becomes something our children and grandchildren never have to experience.

General Manager Holly Steuart brings two editorials a week to WTVM. If you would like to respond to an editorial, e-mail your response to hsteuart@wtvm.com or write to:

WTVM Editorial Committee

1909 Wynnton Road

Columbus, GA 31906

Copyright 2019 WTVM. All rights reserved.