Vast Majority of Americans Say Benefits of Childhood Vaccines Outweigh Risks

Source: Pew Research Center

Parents of young children support measles, mumps and rubella vaccine requirements but rate the risks higher, the benefits lower. There are not major partisan divisions on these issues, though.

(Image Source/Getty Images)

(Image Source/Getty Images)

Most Americans support requiring the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine for public school children in order to protect public health. They see high preventive health benefits of such vaccines, and low risk of side effects, and they consider the benefits of the vaccine to outweigh the risks.

Yet, public concerns about childhood vaccines linger in the public discourse, often linked to a now discredited and retracted research study published nearly two decades ago that raised questions about a possible link between the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine and autism. Despite assurances of vaccine safety from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Academy of Pediatrics and a host of other scientific bodies that the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine does not cause autism, a number of prominent figures have expressed concerns about the safety of childhood vaccines. President Donald Trump raised questions about the safety of childhood vaccines on the campaign trail and during the transition period met with Robert Kennedy Jr. reportedly about the possibility of leading a commission on vaccine safety and scientific integrity. Kennedy edited a book that argues that a preservative used in some vaccines causes neurological disorders, including autism.1

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Categories: Children, The Muslim Times, USA

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