Primum non nocere is a Latin phrase meaning “First do no harm.” This is one of the first doctrines taught to new physicians in medical school. It is a sacred oath, and it reminds doctors to first consider any possible harm that might occur from any medical procedure before conducting any intervention for an illness. If a doctor fails to adhere to this dictum, it is negligence.
It is a fact that vaccines can trigger serious and sometimes life-threatening reactions. It is also true that vaccines have helped to eradicate many dangerous infections that used to be common. Faced with these incontrovertible facts, physicians are confronted with the daunting decision whether to immunize their patients. Parents must also decide whether immunization is the right thing to do for their children.
Immunization has become a controversial topic for many reasons. Parents are more savvy and information is more easily accessible with modern technology. In addition, consumers are more inclined to take control of their health care than to blindly follow the advice of health-care professionals. However, the vast quantity of readily available information has not simplified the decision-making process. Sometimes the information is outdated, and sometimes the information is inaccurate. It is often impossible to ascertain the reliability of the source of the information, especially if the information was obtained from the Internet. To determine which vaccine is safe and beneficial, it requires years of professional training and a scientific background.
This book is written to present reliable and up-to-date information on immunization from an unbiased perspective. Facts are presented to the readers in an easy-to-read format and without any technical jargon. Unlike many pro-vaccine and anti-vaccine titles, there is no agenda for writing this book. Facts are presented without a bias, and the reader must weigh the information and make a personal choice on whether to get vaccinated.
Communities for and against immunization are passionate about what they believe. Devastating conditions, such as autism, have been attributed to vaccines. Consequently, the debates can create high tension between physicians and patients. Many doctors refuse to provide service to patients unless they agree to be vaccinated according to the standard immunization schedule. As a result, patients are forced to abandon their doctors and search for ones who will accommodate their needs. This is unfortunate, because at the end, doctors and patients are really after the same thing. Preserving good health is the goal of all physicians. There is nothing for doctors to gain if patients suffer from complications resulting from vaccines. The fact that there is a common goal between doctors and patients is often overlooked in the immunization controversy. This book will help you to look beyond the hype and emotions and study the matter with a clear head.