What Is the Alternative Vaccine Schedule?
Experts debate the pros and cons of the alternative vaccine schedule, and what it means for parents.
Reviewed by Laura J. Martin, MD
When pediatrician Robert W. Sears, MD, FAAP, wrote The Vaccine Book: Making the Right Decision for Your Child, he envisioned giving parents more choices on how to vaccinate their children if they were concerned about a vaccine's side effects or ingredients or the large number of shots that kids receive today.
"A lot of parents don't really trust the vaccine system," Sears says. "I felt that if I could give parents a better understanding of
Sears, who practices in San Juan Capistrano, Calif., says that he isn't against vaccinations. Instead, his book suggests an untraditional "alternative" schedule that delays shots or spaces them further apart. If parents are skittish about any shots at all, he offers a separate "selective" schedule to encourage them to give their kids at least the "bare minimum" of vaccinations.