Today on the Inland Journal podcast, we’ll hear two viewpoints about vaccines and vaccine safety. Part one is with Del Bigtree, the founder and CEO of the Informed Consent Action Network. He has challenged the federal government’s system of evaluating and approving vaccines.
In the second half of this podcast, we’ll get a different view from Kayla DeBusk from the Immunization Assessment and Promotion Program at the Spokane Regional Health District.
Measles outbreaks in several states, including Washington, have brought a new public focus to the concept of vaccination. In Vancouver, at least 73 people have reported contracting the measles this year. In neighboring Oregon, health officials attribute four cases of the measles to the outbreak in Washington’s Clark County. Around the nation, federal health officials report more than 550 measles cases, the second-largest outbreak in 20 years.
Rep. Paul Harris (R-Vancouver) has introduced a bill that would eliminate the personal and philosophical exemption allowed parents to enroll their children in school without the required measles, mumps, rubella vaccine. That’s one of many illnesses for which children are vaccinated. That bill was approved by the House on 57-to-40 vote. That came after a strong show of opposition from parents at a legislative committee and attempts by several legislators, including those from Spokane Valley’s Fourth Legislative District, to change the bill. The bill has also been approved by a Senate committee, but there’s no guarantee it will move further in the process.
A few weeks ago, a listener contacted us to complain that parents who have questions about the safety and frequency of vaccines are portrayed as crazy. In fact, she says, they’re simply worried that the health effects of the ingredients in the vaccines cause more problems than the illnesses they’re designed to prevent. She said their point of view is often ignored and pointed to a February panel discussion on the OnPoint radio program we carry on KSFC that included only pro-vaccination views. She asked if we would do a program that includes their views and I agreed.