Vaccination FAQs (cont.)

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What are invalid reasons for postponing vaccination?

Vaccination should not be postponed for any of the following reasons:

  • Mild illness: Low-grade fever, colds, upper respiratory-tract infections, and mild diarrhea are not reasons to put off vaccination.
  • Antibiotics: The current administration of antibiotics is not a reason to put off vaccination.
  • Household contacts of pregnant women or immunosuppressed patients: Living in a house with a pregnant woman or an immunosuppressed patient is not a reason to put off vaccination. Two exceptions are the live attenuated nasal influenza vaccine and smallpox vaccine.
  • Breastfeeding: Breastfeeding is not a reason for either the mother or baby to put off vaccination.
  • Preterm birth: Preterm birth is not a reason to put off vaccination.
  • Generalized allergies: Children with allergies, but no history of reactions to vaccine components, should receive vaccines as recommended.
  • Family history: Having a family member who had an adverse reaction to a vaccine is not a reason to put off vaccination.

Why do people keep getting vaccines if the numbers of cases of the vaccine preventable diseases are at a record low in the United States?

Vaccine-preventable diseases are indeed infrequent in the United States because of the success of the vaccine program. However, if people stop receiving vaccines, these diseases will come back rapidly. This occurred with measles in the early 1990s and resulted in many deaths.

Is there any financial help for people who have been injured by vaccines?

In 1986, the United States government set up the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act. This act provides a "no fault" compensation mechanism for people injured by vaccines.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 2/24/2014

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