Immunization by the Numbers
Most children born now will never know the horrors of epidemic disease and how it can decimate entire nations. While disease may seem like a thing of the past, it wasn’t even 60 years ago that polio was making its way across the country. Without the advent of the vaccine, polio, and other diseases, would still be a threat to our populations. Keep reading to learn more about the benefits of vaccines and how they’ve aided in the war against epidemic disease.
Numbers don’t lie. Since the widespread use of immunizations, some diseases have essentially been eradicated and millions of lives have been saved. Read through some of these quick facts on vaccines and how they’ve changed the face of epidemic disease.
- The Centers for Disease Control estimates that the measles vaccine alone has prevented over 700,000 child deaths and tens of millions of hospitalizations in the past two decades.
- Smallpox is now eradicated due to the effort of vaccinators who travelled tirelessly, immunizing children in every pocket of the world.
- The Haemophilus influenza type B (Hib) virus, which causes childhood meningitis and postnatal mental retardation, has been essentially wiped out.
- Polio, a crippling disease affecting children, has been eliminated throughout the world except in Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Not all populations have the same level of access to life-saving healthcare and preventative medicine as we do in the United States. The Council of Foreign Relations created the map below with each dot representing an occurrence of a vaccine-preventable disease – the larger the dot, the larger the outbreak.
Immunizations do occasionally produce mild physical symptoms. The National Health Service describes common side effects such as:
- Mild fever
- Muscle pain
- Temporary injection site reactions including redness, tenderness and swelling
For the vast majority, side effects from vaccination are negligible or incredibly mild. In less than one in a million, patients may have a severe allergic reaction that can be reversed if treated promptly.
In small children and infants, temporary common side effects may include:
- Small hard lump at the injection site
- Agitation and irritability
It’s important to remember that small children are incapable of articulating their pain or discomfort so they should be monitored closely for any of the above symptoms.
You can learn more about vaccines at the Centers for Disease Control home page and the World Health Organization.
During this National Immunization Awareness Month, we want our patients to feel confident in their healthcare choices and the healthcare of their loved ones. If you experience any of the symptoms listed above, come and visit our emergency center in Victoria for quick and compassionate care.
Nutex Health, Inc supports you and your family’s health. You can depend on Victoria ER or any one of our concierge-level, freestanding emergency facilities to deliver the emergency care you deserve, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.