Redmont Pediatrics' Vaccine Policy Statement
The physicians at Redmont Pediatrics firmly believe in the effectiveness of vaccines to prevent serious illness and to save lives. We firmly believe in the safety of vaccines. We believe that all children and young adults should receive all of the recommended vaccines according to the schedule published by the Centers for Disease Control and the American Academy of Pediatrics.
We also believe, based on all available literature, evidence, and current studies, that vaccines do not cause autism or other developmental disabilities and that thimerosal, a preservative that has been in vaccines for decades and remains in some vaccines, does not cause autism or other developmental disabilities.
We firmly believe that vaccinating children and young adults may be the single most important health-promoting intervention we perform as health care providers, and the most important preventive action you can perform as parents/caregivers. The recommended vaccines and their schedules given are the results of years and years of scientific study and data gathering on millions of chidren by thousands of our brightest scientists and physicians.
These things being said, we recognize that there has always been, and will likely always be, controversy surrounding vaccinating children. The vaccine campaign is truly a victim of its own success because vaccines are so effective at preventing illness that we are even discussing whether or not they should be given. Because of vaccines, many have never seen a child with polio, tetanus, whooping cough, bacterial meningitis or even chickenpox, nor know a friend or family member whose child died from one of these diseases. Such success can make us complacent about vaccinating; however, such an attitide, if it becomes widespread, can only lead to tragic results.
Over the past several years, many people in Europe have chosen not to vaccinate their children with the MMR (Mumps, Measles and Rubella) vaccine after publication of an unfounded suspicion (later retracted) that the vaccine caused autism. As a result of under-immunization, there have been small outbreaks of measles and several deaths from complications of measles in Europe over the past several years.
Furthermore, by not vaccinating your child, you are taking selfish advantage of thousands of others who do vaccinate their children, which decreases the likelihood that your child will contract one of these diseases. We feel such an attitude to be unfair to those who choose to protect their children by vaccination.
We are making you aware of these facts, not to scare you or coerce you, but to emphasize the importance of vaccinating your child. We recognize that the choice may be a very emotional one for some parents. We will do everything we can to convince you that vaccinating according to the recommended schedule is the right thing to do; however, should you have any doubts, please discuss these with your health care provider.
Please be advised that delaying or "breaking up the vaccines" to give one or two at a time over two or more visits goes against expert recomendations and can put your child at risk for serious illness (or even death). This approach to vaccinating goes against our medical advice as providers at Redmont Pediatrics. Such additional vists may require additional co-pays on your part. Furthermore, please realize that you will be required to sign a "Refusal to Vaccinate" adknowledgement in the event of lengthy delays.
Finally, if you should absolutely refuse to vaccinate your child, despite all of our efforts, we will ask you to find another physician who shares your views. We do not keep a list of such health care providers nor do we recommend any such physician. Please recognize that by not vaccinating, you are putting your child at unneccessary risk for life-threatening illness and disability, or possibly even death.
As medical professionals, we feel very strongly that vaccinating children on schedule with currenly available vaccines is absolutely the right thing to do for all children and young adults. Thank you for your time in reading this policy and please feel free to discuss any questions or concerns you may have about vaccines with any one of the doctors.