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What would YOU do?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
My husband, and 13 month old daughter and I will be moving to South Africa for 12 months in March. We're very excited.
My dauther is not vaxed, and my husband was very supportive of it but is now having doubts because of living in South Africa. I know there have been threads about this subject so forgive me if i'm duplicating anything but I didn't want to hijack another thread and i wanted to explain our situation a bit more.
We're going to be living in a white area, but working very much in a project in a local township. We will be interacting with and working with young children and mothers, and we very much want our daughter to be a part of what we're doing. We don't want to say "don't play with the black kids darling"
I know the main risk to her health will be various tummy bugs etc. and the CDC actually sites very low numbers of VPD's in the nation as a whole, but I just thought I'd put this out there and just ask, if it was you, what would you do?
I am unsure of how much access I will have to natural remedies, a health food store, organic food etc. So our lifestyle is going to change a lot and I fear i won't be able to maintain our same standard for those 12 months. I do plan to keeping bfing though.

Anyways, thanks for any input.
post #2 of 12

honestly...

I'd be a bit worried about a couple of VPDs, BUT I'd be terrified vax-ing her. So, I would NOT vax anyway. With all the nasty tummy bugs they have she definitely could use a healthy uncompromized immune system, imo...
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yulia_R View Post
I'd be a biWith all the nasty tummy bugs they have she definitely could use a healthy uncompromized immune system, imo...
Hmmm True. That's a good point.
post #4 of 12
I'm not sure. I imagine I'd have to start over in my risk analysis since I haven't researched some of the "issues" that may exist over there.

HOWEVER, given what I've learned about the real-life (short/long-term)effectiveness of vaccines, I probably would still opt out. (I'm not talking about seroconversion rates or clinical efficacy....I'm talking about studies showing ACTUAL effectiveness, which is a whole 'nother ballgame.)

Look for that information on any vax you're considering. This should help you make up your mind. IMO, what's the point if it's not gonna work anyway?
post #5 of 12
I'd be more worried about the clean water situation.
post #6 of 12
:
I wouldn't vaccinate in this case. Another question to ask yourself is this....what quality of medical care will you have access to in the event of a VPD or any other illness?
post #7 of 12
post #8 of 12
Devil's advocate here!

Some years back, South Africa had a notorious case of pneumococcal disease that spread among coal miners. I haven't researched the matter and don't know the details, e.g. whether this was a unique strain. And I'm not saying to rush to the doc for Prevnar, but the matter may be worth researching.
post #9 of 12
Off the bat and only with about 30 min research here, I would do MMR. I would consider Hib and prevnar only with further research on the matter. I might do DTaP but pertussis doesn't seem to be too much of an issue so that one I would probably skip out on. I would want more info on their Hep A numbers since they are a high zone. I would also look into malaria prevention measures.

Again, that's what *I* would do.

Those look like the only specific vaccines I would do for this specific country; others might be based on travel.
post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thank you for all your input, and Gitti, the info you put on that link was very helpful. I would be interested in learning more about that.
We will have access to a western standard of medical care while we are there.
IF we do decide to vaccinate (really hoping we don't) They offer single vaccinations there as opposed to the cocktails, and apparently send the babies off with a homeopathic kit to deal with side effects......not that I think that justifies it or makes it better...it just means it's possibly be less damaging than if we got them here...but who knows.
post #11 of 12
I would do hep A maybe and probably nothing else. I would be much more worried about clean water and access to medication/vitamin C and other treatments in the chance she catches anything.
post #12 of 12
I wouldn't consider vaxing in that situation at all. If anything, I'd be happy that my child was about to get the chance that we don't have anymore in the US, to be exposed to normal childhood diseases- in childhood. I don't not vaccinate because I think my dd can't be exposed to VPDs here, I don't vaccinate because I don't trust that the risks of the vaccine are lower than the risks of the diseases, and that doesn't change with location- as long as I have access to good food, water, and basic medical care. I would bring high vitamin cod liver oil (capsules, as they'll last longer).

Hep A is not one I would ever consider for a child, as it is almost always asymptomatic in children, and the reason for the vaccine is to protect adults. It doesn't cause chronic liver disease (unless you already have hep B or C), and one infection protects the individual for life.
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