Colorado Permanente Medical Group pediatrician Matthew Daley, MD, whose research focuses on vaccinations, was recently quoted for his expertise by several media outlets, including Mother Jones and Healthline. He discussed topics such as fears surrounding vaccinations and how to improve immunization rates.
An engrained fear among parents surrounding vaccinations complicates the decision to get immunizations for many individuals, according to Dr. Daley.
“Nothing is 100-percent safe or effective in medicine,” Dr. Daley said. “There’s always a risk-benefit analysis that needs to be done, even with vaccines. While that makes it sound like a pretty rational and analytical decision, it’s also an emotional decision — people are really scared about the bad things they’ve heard about.”
This trepidation may explain why some areas of the United States are encountering challenges when it comes to preventing the spread of certain diseases.
With the recent measles outbreaks that have surfaced throughout the country — there have been a total of 555 this year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — a number of the flareups are occurring in regions with low vaccination rates. This highlights the dangers associated with not meeting vaccination thresholds among population groups.
“That means the difference between a measles outbreak and no measles outbreak,” said Dr. Daley in the Mother Jones article. “Strategies to improve immunization rates don’t just protect those individuals, they protect folks who can’t get immunized.”