Drawing conclusions from misinterpreted data and mistakenly correlated facts often leads to unnecessary illness, hospitalization and even premature death. Prioritizing profit over public safety does the same. It is unprofessional, moreover unethical, for a medical professional to put patients at risk by blindly trusting a for-profit enterprise without investigating its claims.
Accordingly, attempting to interject anything into the current vaccination debate is like screaming and waving at two family members, who are arguing over whether the unicorn they thought they saw was dancing or skipping down the sidewalk; meanwhile the house is burning down. Seriously– you’re missing the larger issue!
Vaccines were invented to prevent the contraction and spread of disease. There are 2 types: live and dead.
A live vaccine contains a “wild” strain of a pathogen (disease germ) that was weakened in a laboratory. It grows and replicates inside the body, which produces a response from the immune system– antibodies are generated to attack intruders. Assuming the original germ doesn’t mutate or revert back to its virulent form, only a single administration is necessary.
A dead vaccine is inactivated/ killed with either heat, chemicals, or radiation. The immune system’s response is weaker so repeat doses are necessary.
Most vaccines made for animals are still based on live attenuated pathogen strains. The only live vaccines currently administered to humans are MMR (Measles + Mumps + Rubella combo), Rotavirus, Smallpox, Chickenpox and Yellow Fever.
Unfortunately, the issues surrounding vaccines have become so contentious it’s extremely difficult to see past the emotional baggage on both sides of the debate.
It’s worth noting that in the United States, patents for vaccines are granted faster than anywhere else in the world. In fact, America’s own CDC owns patents to numerous vaccines, including Ebola. Human vaccines are supposed to be more stringently investgated because they’re considered pharmaceuticals, which fall under the jurisdiction of the FDA. (The National Institute of Health no longer manages technological inventions made there.)
Conversely, most animal vaccines fall under the jurisdiction of the USDA, whose standards/ protocols tend to be faster and cheaper.
In the European Union, companies who wish to offer vaccines are assessed and legalized by the European Medicines Evaluation Agency.
The risk of vaccines– both human and veterinary– is in their proprietary ingredients; companies are shy about disclosing details for fear of competition and theft. While the right to protect one’s intellectual property is perfectly reasonable, such secrecy puts consumers at risk, particularly individuals who are predisposed to allergies (sales reps are not trained to recognize derivatives/ substrates and most doctor’s continue to believe– despite evidence to the contrary– that an allergic reaction is to a food’s protein only) and/or those who are unknowingly immune- compromised, especially if they have any genetic predispositions.
Note: the fact I’ve previously highlighted that genes can be activated like toggles flipped on a control panel (read my genetic primer) renders the classic Nature vs. Nurture debate pointless: both can be equally responsible. For instance, the fact that many long-term smokers never become chronically ill doesn’t negate the finding that smoking has been linked to Cancer and Emphysema. Strangely, for some reason the same logic doesn’t apply to developmental disorders even though it’s unpredictable whether children living in the same house, eating the same foods, raised by the same parents will have Autism or not. Environmental factors, along with an inherited gene, must both be present.
Food for thought: hypothetically, what passes for “transparency” could only be disclosure of current ingredients/ manufacturing practices after previous ones have been called into question following reports of severe immune reactions. It wouldn’t be impossible for a slick Public Relations campaign to redirect attention away from a frantic scramble to fix an “oops” batch. (Just sayin’.)
August 1999 statement of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons on vaccines: “public safety and personal choice” before the Committee on Government Reform and Oversight– US House of Representatives