People with lower levels of antibodies against mumps -- the second "M" in the MMR vaccine -- are likelier to have a severe case of COVID.
America is now facing its second lockdown. Other countries are verging on a third. Repeated efforts at COVID-19 containment seem elusive. No respite seems in sight – other than hope of a vaccine. Along with concerted efforts in this direction, the vexing incidence of escalating vaccine resistance is raising its ugly head – yet again, stoked by a growlingly effective anti-vax movement and false prophets of vaccine doom. This trend seems to have hit the Black community particularly hard.
A very disturbing paper published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases proposes that vaccines can have unexpected side effects. Some are good, such as protecting against unrelated diseases, while some are bad, such as increasing all-cause mortality. This is highly useful and potentially life-saving information that must not be hijacked by anti-vaxxers.
American culture, specifically our disdainful attitude toward expertise and leadership, is not conducive to making improvements to public health policy. Don't expect many changes in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
Being anti-science and anti-technology is a luxury for when times are good. In times of crisis, people beg for help from scientists, doctors, and pharmaceutical companies.
Children's Health Defense says governments and corporations are using the coronavirus (SARS-COV-2) to advance a "global immunization agenda." The anti-vaccine group claims that our leaders just needed the right pandemic as a pretext to goad us into getting vaccines. This is a clever story. It's also false.
Many public health officials have called for mandatory vaccines to prevent the spread of infectious diseases. The motivation for this policy is understandable, but forcing parents to immunize their kids emboldens the anti-vaccine movement. By incentivizing people to vaccinate and holding them legally accountable when they don't, we can preserve individual autonomy, maintain herd immunity and undermine the anti-vaccine movement.
While the Germans' no-nonsense approach to life can be irritating to some, it also has some very notable benefits. They will no longer tolerate parents who refuse to give the measles vaccine to their children.
While Facebook has drawn massive criticism over manipulative political ads, the social media giant also runs advertisements around vaccinations, which is another divisive policy topic. A new study gives us a glimpse of the ads' content, targets and purchasers.
Bancroft, a popular author, claims that "soft-spoken, gentle, and supportive" men are actually emotionally manipulative abusers of women. Perhaps it shouldn't come as a surprise that an author who spreads destructive, evidence-free psychobabble is also an anti-vaxxer.
Is leptospirosis, an infection from a bacterium that's transmitted through contact with urine, on the rise among dogs in Utah and Colorado, as headlines declare? Possibly. Maybe an optional leptospirosis shot for the pooch isn't a bad idea.
Usually, when we have something to say about California, it's bad. After all, this is the state that gave us Proposition 65, a smorgasbord of insane public health policies, as well as 38 seasons of The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. But now, the state has done something good. In fact, very good.