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Sources on vaccination - a thread for sharing and evaluating resources

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

After a great deal of contentious discussion regarding how to make this forum actually useful to its intended audience, I proposed a thread in which people provide some basic information about informational resources on vaccines.  People from opposing camps in this debate hit "like," so here it is. 

 

Important things to remember:

 

- We don't all like the same sources.

- Restrict your comments to the sources.  Commenting about other posters will not help people find the information they need to make their decisions about vaccination.

- There will be disagreements about sources, but to keep the thread constructive, these should be voiced as concerns about the source. 

 

So:

"How can you say that Offit is trustworthy?  Everyone knows that he is a profiteering ego-maniac who rolls in piles of money while fantasizing about injecting innocent children with pig DNA!" - Not going to be useful.  Maybe mods could agree to remove?

 

Alternately:

"I feel that Offit's conflicts of interest (he served on ACIP while the vaccine he invented was being approved), and his lack of response to concerns that Rotateq was contaminated with pig DNA demonstrate that he is primarily motivated by his own financial concerns." - Useful.  The concerns are clearly explained.  Plus, you can't really argue with "I feel . . ."  People feel how they feel.  Posters can respectfully disagree by posting their own feelings and the reasons for them. 
 

post #2 of 18
Thread Starter 

To quickly get things rolling, I'm posting one of my own faves:

 

http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/

The CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report presents short articles on public health issues and diseases of note, but the real fun is in the weekly Notifiable Diseases and Mortality Tables (go to the table of contents on the issue for the week of your choice - it's usually the last item listed, and will open in a .pdf).  The CDC is a government agency that tracks diseases and public health issues in the US, and makes recommendations for policy and medical practice.  It also carries out research on diseases in its labs and probably does some other stuff - it's ten and I still have to shower, so I'm not looking up a complete description of the CDC's mission right this second.

 

If you're wondering how many cases of measles have been reported in the US in the last four years, or just want to assure yourself that 2009 really was a banner year for Plague in the US, this baby's for you!  In some cases, the Mortality and Data Tables also list states that have reported new cases in the last week, so you can track disease outbreaks as they spread across the country.  MMWR sometimes publishes articles on vaccination - the CDC is generally in favor of the current US vaccine schedule. 

 

Articles tend to be dry in tone, but are sometimes kind of dramatic anyway.  MMWR fans will recall the rip-roaring thrill ride of their 2002 article on anthrax - involving a drummer, some black market goat hides, and the FBI.  (The CDC recommends that you not buy goat hides from a guy you meet on a street corner in NYC.)

 

I trust the CDC because they are a government agency dedicated to science, which I feel gives them a little bit of a buffer from the profit motive that sometimes corrupts businesses that carry out scientific research.  They are the only agency in the US that tracks disease outbreaks.  MMWR presents the data they have - sometimes issues at the state and county level mean that information can be missing for a period of time (or forever). 
 

post #3 of 18

I like the idea of this. 

 

Personally I would recommend the World Health Organization pages on vaccination

http://www.who.int/immunization/en/

 

Lots of great statistics there (I love statistics!), and again a not for profit organization with I assume representation from many countries I feel should be trusted to be trying to do the best for the health of the world. :)

 

They are the people most of us trust on breast feeding recommendations for example.  

 

They also have a page on how to asses the reliability of other sites online which I think is helpful. 

http://www.who.int/immunization_safety/safety_quality/vaccine_safety_websites/en/index.html

post #4 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by stik View Post

 

 

Articles tend to be dry in tone, but are sometimes kind of dramatic anyway.  MMWR fans will recall the rip-roaring thrill ride of their 2002 article on anthrax - involving a drummer, some black market goat hides, and the FBI.  (The CDC recommends that you not buy goat hides from a guy you meet on a street corner in NYC.)

 

 

 

Stik, you crack me up!

post #5 of 18

The CDC Pink book is useful for information and statistics on vaccine, disease, reactions, etc:

 

http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/pinkbook/index.html

 

It has a limitation common to all resources - it is difficult to get accurate statistics on vaccine reactions and disease prevalence.  Under-reporting of both diseases and vaccines reactions occurs for many reasons- but how much is up for debate, and depends on disease and reaction.

 

None-the-less, IMHO, the pink books offers solid baseline stats for anyone exploring the issue.

 

As stated upthread, CDC is a government agency.  


Edited by purslaine - 5/25/12 at 7:46am
post #6 of 18

Science Friday (the NPR show) had Offit on back in 2011.  I think the transcript is really helpful, people called in with questions and they talked about a lot of the common concerns and issues.  I think it's a great place to get started because it gives you an idea what people are concerned about and also succinct and clear discussion of them.

 

http://www.npr.org/2011/01/07/132740175/paul-offit-on-the-anti-vaccine-movement

post #7 of 18
I have enjoyed all these links greatly EXCEPT the Offit transcript. It was probably as far from evidence based as it could be. It is extremely biased and frankly a little offensive (which many things Offit are.). I'd say it should be removed from this thread just like I would if someone posted a blatant anti vaccine link.

The link to the MMWR was great. Thanks Stik. Are there no updates since 2009?
post #8 of 18
Thread Starter 

For the purposes of this thread, I don't think it matters if a link is blatantly in favor of one side or another.  If you don't like it, explain what aspects of the source make you not like it. 

 

There is a new issue of MMWR every week.  They are archived on the site.  You have to do a little hunting to find them. 

post #9 of 18
I'm sorry you didn't like the science Friday transcript. I thought it provided an interesting perspective.
post #10 of 18

i enjoy cruising the CDC stats.  I find them very interesting.  usually it's on food and illness for me, but this was fun too!  thanks!

post #11 of 18

I like this site:

 

http://www.nvic.org/

 

Who is it for?

-  Non vaxxers and selective delayed:  it offers a fair bit of information on laws pertaining to those who choose not to vaccinate - including school exemptions by state

-those critical of vaccines. It offers numerous critiques of vaccines, all fully referenced.  

 

It is a non-profit.

post #12 of 18
Thread Starter 
Thanks Kathy! What does NVIC stand for? Who writes the critiques?
post #13 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by stik View Post

Thanks Kathy! What does NVIC stand for? Who writes the critiques?

 National Vaccine Information Centre

 

Here is a link for "about us"  - it will give info as to who is on its board:

 

http://www.nvic.org/about.aspx

 

Individual information pages do not list the authors - however, they are well cited.  Here is an example on Hep A:

 

http://www.nvic.org/Vaccines-and-Diseases/Hepatitis-A.aspx

 

If you scroll down to the bottom of the page, you will note that all the sources of info are from well accepted sources, such as CDC.  

 

In the interest of full disclosure, the co-founder of the organisation did have a child who she believes suffered a severe vaccine reaction.  I do not find that so odd - people often start foundations when their child or loved one has an issue.  Here is a bio:

 

http://www.nvic.org/about/barbaraloefisher.aspx


Edited by purslaine - 5/28/12 at 5:04am
post #14 of 18

Looks useful - from the Australian Government: A Quick Guide comparing the risks of side effects of various vaccines compared to the risks of the disease they are trying to protect from. 

 

http://www.health.gov.au/internet/immunise/publishing.nsf/Content/Handbook-quickguides-sideeffects

 

Although I will say I don't know how complete it is, and they also don't (on this page) list the references for the statistics they quote. 

post #15 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by prosciencemum View Post

Looks useful - from the Australian Government: A Quick Guide comparing the risks of side effects of various vaccines compared to the risks of the disease they are trying to protect from. 

 

http://www.health.gov.au/internet/immunise/publishing.nsf/Content/Handbook-quickguides-sideeffects

 

Although I will say I don't know how complete it is, and they also don't (on this page) list the references for the statistics they quote. 

 

 

That is a handy chart.  I would add a chart showing the likelihood of catching a disease to the above.

 

Here is one, go to page ix  (it is near the beginning)

 

http://www.health.gov.au/internet/publications/publishing.nsf/Content/CA25774C001857CACA2577FF00791B8A/$File/cdi34suppl.pdf

post #16 of 18

     Quote:

Originally Posted by kathymuggle View Post

That is a handy chart.  I would add a chart showing the likelihood of catching a disease to the above.

 

Here is one, go to page ix  (it is near the beginning)

 

http://www.health.gov.au/internet/publications/publishing.nsf/Content/CA25774C001857CACA2577FF00791B8A/$File/cdi34suppl.pdf

 

I think it's important to note that those are the risks in a highly vaccinated population.

post #17 of 18
There are some cool threads in the vax archives on evaluating resources. smile.gif
post #18 of 18

This is really great guys. :)  Thanks for getting the ball rolling.

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