Vaccinations are like chicken soup; something that is good for mind and body in a healthy, preventative way. Vaccinations are on my mind thanks to media buzz about prevention and diseases. Today, it seems people are in favor of vaccinating their children against childhood illnesses, or they are not. The subject is fraught with moral and ethical considerations, but today, one thing stands out in my mind. It’s those meager measly measles still wringing strife in too many a life.
In 2000, approximately 535,300 deaths were reported from this infectious disease. This figure dropped to 139,300 in 2010. This information appeared in a joint news release from the American Red Cross/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention/UNFoundation/UNICEF/World Health Organization. Remember now, these are global figures. Measles and rubella are more prevalent in developing countries than in the United States. Global figures matter. The simple truth about why they matter are that diseases, viruses, such as measles and rubella are easily carried in our travels, international and domestic. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), if all vaccinations ceased, we would see about 2.7 million, global, deaths. We all know how easy it is to catch a virus. This is a disease we shouldn’t have to worry about.
A great deal of progress has helped but still, a global effort must continue to fight for the vaccine and individuals. Partly, the ability to stave off these infectious diseases lies in monetary investment and political commitment. The Global Partners mentioned above, need more funding—globally. As a humane society, we need to insist upon it. From us; them; they; you; everyone needs to make a commitment to getting these dirt bag viruses out of our way.
The 2001 Measles Initiative was to monitor the global prevalence of measles and boost investments to eradicating the threat of infection. The risk to anyone not vaccinated is large. New parents feel reason to fear vaccinations in general to their children. This fear could lead to a public health crisis if we are not aware and active in health globally. The Initiative is a global effort led by the American Red Cross, the United Nations Foundation, the U.S. CDC, UNICEF and the WHO. Be mindful of these organizations. These are the good guys, and they need support.