Study suggests pertussis outbreak related to wealthy, anti-vax parents

A new study published in Pediatrics shows that pertussis outbreak had a lot to do with parents misinformation about vaccinations.

2010 Calif. whooping cough outbreak linked to vaccine-averse parents – CBS News.

Researchers have linked parents not vaccinating their children for whopping cough to outbreaks of the disease that occurred in 2010 in California.

They hope their study adds more evidence to convince parents to get their kids vaccinated to not only save their life against this dangerous infection, but to protect children who are most at risk because they’re too young to get the shot.

For the study, researchers analyzed all the non-medical exemptions for kids entering kindergarten from 2005 through 2010 in the state of California.

The researchers matched this exception list to the number of pertussis cases diagnosed during the 2010 outbreak. In 2010, the state experienced his highest number of whooping cough cases in more than 60 years, with more 9,000 cases including 809 hospitalizations and 10 deaths reported, a Dec. 2012 Journal of Pediatrics review of the outbreak found.

The study did not look specifically at the reasons for why parents were refusing vaccines, but the researchers noted that wealthy families were more likely to not be vaccinated. Thanks Jenny McCarthy and Andrew Wakefield!

Also note that the pertussis vaccine did not provide as long-lasting immunity as was hoped. That also contributed to the increase. But when both factors are together – waning immunity and hesitancy to be immunized go together, you have big problems.

Here is more on the <a href=””>Whooping Cough Epidemic « Science-Based Medicine</a>.

  2 comments for “Study suggests pertussis outbreak related to wealthy, anti-vax parents

  1. Chris Howard
    October 1, 2013 at 3:26 PM

    I often wonder if it’s ignorance, or willful ignorance?

    That demographic tends to be (in the US, anyways) a conspirituality minded sub-culture (right leaning, conspiracy theorist male married to a left leaning New Age believing female).

    It’s a fascinating sub-culture that some religion scholars consider to be an emerging NRM. As such pseudoscience such as anti-vaccine fervor is taken on, and defended like a faith.

  2. Someguy
    October 3, 2013 at 8:49 AM

    The rich have the luxury of being able to embrace stupidity and then afford to pay to have the damage un-done by conventional medicine. There are only a few cases I can think of where it didn’t bite others in the ass. Steve Jobs was one, opting for “alternative medicine” because he feared being cut open to have his cancer taken care of and by the time he realized how dumb that was, it was too late.

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