Just my imagination?

Just my imagination?

I have a variety of Google and PubMed alerts that send me links to topics related to science-based medicine. Everyday I get a dozen or more emails with updates.

It is perhaps my imagination, a touch of confirmation bias, but I get a sense that the pendulum is, for the time being, swinging away from the anti-vaccine crowd in the popular media.

It is probably the well publicized resurgence over the last few years of measles, pertussis (whooping cough) and mumps that have lead to an increase in articles on the web, often from traditional news sources, blaming the anti-vaccine crowd for the increase in these disease.

Examples include 3 Diseases That Have Suddenly Made a Comeback, Thanks to Anti-Vaccine Truthers

But as an increasing number of parents decide not to vaccinate their children, we lose "herd immunity," which needs the majority of a community to be vaccinated in order to eliminate possible chain infections. This is no longer an issue of "I'll worry about my kids, you worry about yours" — not vaccinating your children can have seriously dangerous implications for the entire population.

and, from the LA Times, Measles is spreading, and the anti-vaccine movement is the cause

A backlash against anti-vaccination falsehoods is long overdue.

You think? Orac was ahead of the curve.

Celebrities who oppose vaccines have been called to task, From McCarthy to Cavallari, How Much Harm Are Anti-Vaccine Celebs Doing?

C-list reality star Kristin Cavallari is learning this while on a press tour to promote her latest E! talk show, “The Fabulist.” She told Fox News she wasn’t expecting the “harsh response” she got when she confessed she didn’t vaccinate the son born to her and husband Jay Cutler, the Chicago Bears quarterback, and that the couple wouldn’t vaccinate the second child they were expecting.

to Meet Hollywood’s Awful Anti-Vaxx All-Stars

Who’s to blame for the return of measles? Is it the 'loons' who refuse to vaccinate their children? Or is it the celebrities who champion the anti-vaccination campaign?

Jenny McCarthy is the poster indigo child of the anti-vaccinators responsible for the increase in vaccine preventable illnesses. When asking on Twitter what she should look for in a mate, a common response was 'someone who vaccinates'.

If I believed in Karma, this would be an excellent example.

I do not expect it to last. The outbreaks will fade, hopefully with no deaths or damage. Then complacency and the irrational fear of vaccines will likely return. The pendulum always swings back.

Points of Interest: 3.20.2014
Points of Interest 3.19.2014