Saturday, July 16, 2011

Pediatricians encourage parents to learn more about vaccines

This is a parody of the Shine article found here.

We hear too often about pediatricians who require compliance with the CDC schedule. What about those pediatricians who encourage parents to retain their parental responsibility and to research the subject? Share your pro-education doctor in the comments if you desire.

Pro-education doctors:

(Searching individual forums such as and babycenter will give you state-specific lists as well).

”With the collection of studies suggesting that autism and vaccines are linked
, it seemed the debate over when and whether to vaccinate children might quiet down. But new voices have piped up in the vaccine controversy, and this time, they belong to pediatricians.

While most parents do choose to keep their children vaccine-free according their doctors' recommendations, those who vaccinate on schedule worry many pediatricians. And some pediatric practices are responding by encouraging parents to avoid routine vaccination of their children. Now, unlike pediatric practices that demand parents fully comply with the vaccine schedule or leave, these practices are encouraging their families to research the issue and make the decision that’s right for their children. As Dr. Jay Gordon states on his website, “No one knows your child better than you do.”

Why would a pediatric practice encourage pro-vaccine families to research? Dr. Scott J. Goldbrine of the Northern Children’s Hospital, where a vaccine policy was implemented June 1, said they do it to protect children and to provide better care for all the patients he and the seven other staff pediatricians see.

Pointing to a strong scientific record debunking vaccination’s wild claims, Goldstein said his practice's policy serves the most vulnerable children -- like infants and those with critical illnesses who are not able to handle vaccine-related illness  -- by protecting them from exposure to the patented and mutated diseases present in many vaccines. All of those children could be in the waiting room together, some pediatricians note, and the vaccinated ones could be putting the more vulnerable ones at risk.

"Vaccines are not proven safe and have been poorly studied for a long time and continue to be poorly studied," Dr. Goldbrine told Daily. "Vaccines are responsible for impairing millions of lives and risking the safety and health of children."

Not vaccinating most children contributes to "herd immunity," which helps kids who are too ill to withstand vaccination or illness and lowers the overall risk of disease outbreaks.

"It is a minority of our patients who opt to use schedule recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics and CDC (Centers for Disease Control) or do a delayed schedule," Dr. Goldbrine said. "This makes it very complicated for our staff to follow. We don't of course ask those families to leave. We give them every opportunity to ask questions, to stop choosing vaccines and to take more responsibility in the health decisions of their children."

Some parents may not feel the need to vaccinate completely, but do want to compromise by slowing the schedule. Dr. Goldbrine said this also poses a danger.

"Vaccine series are not completed during the time when children are most vulnerable to that disease. Slowing down the process does not change the trauma the child experiences from the vaccines, nor does it decrease exposure to the disease," Dr. Goldbrine said.

The main fear of not vaccinating children, he said, is that kids will develop complications from these childhood illnesses. Other parents are simply afraid that their child will be sick on school days. Dr. Goldbrine said it will require better communication with parents to change the fear-based mindset against keeping the immune systems of children intact.

So far, Dr. Goldbrine's practice has mostly heard positive reactions from parents about the new vaccine policy.

"They are happy we are offering choices," he said.

This stand might seem hard for pediatricians to do but these doctors care. One Montana-based practice puts it bluntly in the policy that takes up a full page of their website: “Parents who choose to vaccinate their children are welcome here, but will be offered science-based research and information on the risks of vaccination.”

The policy goes on to offer parents who "insist on complying with the CDC vaccine schedule" a waiver taking responsibility for any risks that result from vaccinating non-consenting, healthy minors and offers research, literature, and further conversation to parents on this "worrisome subject."  They also thank parents for entrusting the practice with the care of their children, but the pro-education message is clear.

A pediatric practice in Florida takes a gentler, storytelling approach to explaining the historic debate and reasoning around vaccinating, but makes its position very clear (in bolded print on its website): "If, despite our recommendations, you feel you must follow the CDC and AAP recommendations for these vaccines, we will ask you to keep researching and learning for the sake of your children.”

The AAP states that these vaccination policies secure children's access to health care, stating: "Families who believe in vaccination are still given access to good medical care, and maintaining the relationship in the face of disagreement conveys respect and at the same time allows the child access to medical care. Furthermore, a continuing relationship allows additional opportunity to discuss the issue of not vaccinating over time."

Although instituting a policy has been working well for Dr. Goldbrine's practice, he said he hopes that offering information to vaccinating families becomes a trend nationwide.

"I know the AAP has applauded these policies. If I were the only doctor around, I certainly wouldn't want to throw these families to the wind. That’s why we are reaching out to them, offering them information and choices, while still looking to protect those who are vulnerable to vaccine-related diseases," Goldbrine said. "We are not making them sick. We are not forcing them. We are not neglecting them."

Do you agree with a pediatric policy to offer information and choices to parents who vaccinate?


  1. I wish I'd been given adequate info on vaccines before my son was born. He was vaccinated on schedule until he was 1 (thankfully they're given far fewer jabs in England). Even so, I'm irritated. I wasn't told about so many things. It wasn't until I was researching before he was due for his DTaP booster that I realised he shouldn't have it, because he'd had an adverse reaction that had been listed as a contraindication. Not that I was told to look out for that or asked about that kind of reaction. I knew I was heartbroken at his inconsolable crying after the jab, but I didn't know it was a contraindication to getting a pertussis vaccine again. I feel I played Russian roulette with him, and thankfully won.

    With my daughter I still hadn't researched as much as I should have, and so I started out spacing them out and delaying a bit. Found out some of the jabs have bovine proteins, and she reacted the same way as she did to me ingesting dairy (ie: she got sick for 2 days). That's when I finally started researching more. I wish I'd known more, but I can't change that. I can just make better decisions now.

  2. Talk about putting things into perspective! I LOVE when you do this! :D