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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

September 5, 2013 at 7:01 AM

The risks of avoiding vaccinations

Living in fear

I work in a clinic, and frequently answer phone calls from frightened and panicked mothers. [“Editorial: The heavy cost of vaccination free-riders,” Opinion, Sept. 1.]

These mothers are beside themselves, because their unvaccinated child just was cut deeply while on vacation yet they never got a tetanus shot, or they’ve been exposed to pertussis in school and they hadn’t received the DTaP vaccine, or there is a threat of measles going around and they opted out of the MMR immunization for their child.

I just listen patiently, but I want to say, “You chose not to vaccinate out of fear that something bad might happen and now you are living in fear because something bad is actually happening.”

You can’t have it both ways. Either trust that vaccines will protect your child as they are designed to do, or live in fear, but be prepared when your unvaccinated children are exposed to things out of your control.

It’s your choice.

Sapphire Sun Hort, Seattle

Comments | More in Health care | Topics: children, fear, immunizations

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