IAS Questions Push of Whooping Cough Vaccine

IMMEDIATE RELEASE

IAS Questions Push of Whooping Cough Vaccine

The Immunisation Awareness Society (IAS) is raising concern about the incorrect information which is provided to the public regarding the whooping cough (pertussis) vaccine.

Auckland, New Zealand., December 17, 2012 – GIVEN the continued push by the Ministry of Health (MoH) for people to get their whooping cough (pertussis) vaccinations up to date, the Immunisation Awareness Society (IAS) is raising concerns about the incorrect information which the MoH is providing.

Eugenie Kruger, spokesperson for the IAS, says that she would like to set the record straight regarding the whooping cough vaccine. “These are the facts: From 31 December 2011 until 7 December 2012, it was confirmed that 972 vaccinated people and only 541 un-vaccinated people in New Zealand had whooping cough. In other words, 65% of all whooping cough cases with a confirmed vaccination status, occurred in those who had been vaccinated against the very disease. In addition, 198 of these vaccinated cases had received four doses of the vaccine, with a further 116 having completed their whooping cough vaccinations.

These are the official statistics directly from the Environmental Science and Research Ltd., who are contracted by the Ministry of Health.”

The IAS is also concerned about the incorrect information which the Ministry of Health’s Pat Tuohy, put forward in a media release on 17 December 2012, stating that “Babies need to have had all three immunisations at six weeks three and five months to be fully protected.”

“Clearly, the whooping cough vaccine does not fully protect against the disease, so it is totally irresponsible of the Ministry of Health to release such blatantly incorrect information to the public. How are parents supposed to make an informed decision regarding vaccination when they are openly being lied to?” says Kruger.

The Ministry of Health is now also promoting the pertussis vaccine to pregnant women - a combination vaccine called Boostrix, which also includes tetanus and diphtheria. The datasheet for the Boostrix vaccine clearly states that “Adequate human data on use during pregnancy and adequate animal reproduction studies are not available.” Despite this lack of safety research, the MoH will be providing the vaccine for free from 2013 to pregnant women who qualify.

Kruger urges all parents to do their own research into whether vaccination is the best option for their family. “We are very fortunate to live in an age where we have access to a wide range of information. People need to take responsibility for their own, and their family’s health. Find out exactly what ingredients are contained in vaccines, what are the possible side-effects of vaccination versus the possible symptoms for the disease.”

About us: The IAS is a voluntary, non-profit organisation dedicated to promoting informed choice on vaccination in New Zealand.

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