Emily Oster has written a terrific post for FiveThirtyEight about vaccinations and why we should aim for 100 percent vaccination. You may recall CauseScience’s previous post about herd immunity here. Oster puts together a great explanation for why we should vaccinate as many children as we can. Oster supports this with recent data from measles and pertussis and puts together numbers and stats to make her points. Great piece!
From a public health standpoint, this data argues for continuing to push to increase vaccination rates and stem any declines. A 95 percent vaccination rate in a state doesn’t mean every place in the state is at 95 percent. At rates even a bit lower, we start to see increases in whooping cough and measles cases. And remember that parents who choose not to vaccinate their kids are also putting other people’s kids at risk: Many of the victims of whooping cough are babies who are too young to be vaccinated.