Vaccinations keep us safer and healthier – Marin Independent Journal, 4/16/2019

I was disturbed to read chiropractor Don Harte’s comments that include incorrect medical information stated as true science and his endorsement of a paranoid conspiracy theory (Readers’ Forum, April 13).

My gut response was frustration with seeing vaccine misinformation in print once again. Appropriately, his statements were in Opinion, which is what his statements on how vaccinations work and the cause of autism are — just his opinion.

I have been fortunate to be a pediatrician during the era where vaccinations have eliminated measles and encephalitis, chicken pox lesions infected by aggressive resistant bacteria, invasive infections caused by hemophilus and pneumococcal bacteria that resulted in hospitalizations, meningitis, deafness and death of children, and a decline in the incidence of painful ear infections with the subsequent decrease in use of antibiotics in children.

Children have an improved quality of life because of vaccinations administered during the years when they are the most vulnerable to the severe complications of preventable infections. While scientific progress now allows us to vaccinate against a greater number of infectious diseases, the load of proteins that children are exposed to through vaccination is significantly smaller than 35 years ago.

Senate Bill 276 creates a system for the Department of Public Health to review and validate medical exemptions to immunization.

Let’s acknowledge and appreciate the progress made by the use of immunizations. Endorse SB 276 to keep our children safer and healthier.

Susan B. Dab, MD, Tiburon