Why Vaccines Matter in the 21st Century

By Hailey Fox

Charter Opinions 5/17/19

Here at ACA only 71 percent of students are vaccinated. Currently, house bill 3063 is being voted on. This bill will make it so every student will be required to get vaccinated. The only waver from this law are people who are immunocompromised, a person with a immune system that’s so weak vaccines would hurt them. I believe this is a good bill that should be passed because I believe vaccines are harmless and helpful to human existence.

“Traditional vaccines contain either parts of microbes or whole microbes that have been killed or weakened so that they don’t cause disease. When your immune system confronts these harmless versions of the germs, it quickly clears them from your body. In other words, vaccines trick your immune system to teach your body important lessons about how to defeat its opponents,” says NIAID or, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease. This is what I believe how vaccines work.

To sum down a article the NIAID released about how your immune system works, your body has white blood cells and other cells designed to specifically kill bacteria and other viruses from entering the body and causing an illness. Usually it takes a few weeks for your body to completely eradicate the illness from your system, if at all. The body then creates a memory cell to enact a certain protocol when detecting the same virus you had before to kill it faster and prevent an illness all together. This is called natural immunity

So when you combine natural immunity and vaccines, you create memory cells in your body for the vaccine you get. This makes it so the body can produce a memory cell, and the memory cell can rapidly increase the likelihood of you not getting the flu or any other vaccine you get.

Now vaccines themselves don’t guarantee that you won’t get a virus or bacteria, however if as many people as possible get vaccinated, we can protect the people who are more likely to get infected. This method of preventing widespread disease is called herd immunity.

“Herd immunity describes how a population is protected from a disease after vaccination by stopping the germ responsible for the infection being transmitted between people. In this way even people who cannot be vaccinated can be protected. For example, the bacteria meningococcus and pneumococcus can cause blood poisoning (septicaemia) and meningitis… They can live harmlessly in the throat of one person but if they spread to someone who is particularly susceptible (such as a young baby) they can cause severe disease. By being vaccinated an individual is not only protected from being infected themselves but they then also cannot pass this infection onto other people, where it may cause severe disease. However, for herd immunity to work a large proportion of the population need to be vaccinated,” according to the Oxford Vaccine Group.

This is why I believe everyone who can get vaccinated should be vaccinated unless they have medical proof that claims otherwise and has been verified by a doctor. So I believe you should vote yes if house bill 3063 ever gets voted by the public, because it’s not about taking human rights, it’s about creating a well educated and healthier population for future generations.

Share your opinions here

Sources:

NIH National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, How Do Vaccines Work? Accessed 5/6/19

https://www.niaid.nih.gov/research/how-vaccines-work

NIH National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, Making Safe Vaccines Accessed 5/6/19

https://www.niaid.nih.gov/research/making-safe-vaccines

NIH National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease Making Progress, What is a Vaccine? Accessed 5/6/19

https://www.niaid.nih.gov/research/what-vaccine

Oxford Vaccine Group, Department of Pediatrics Clinical Vaccine Research and Immunization Education, Medical Sciences Division. Accessed 5/6/19

https://www.ovg.ox.ac.uk/news/herd-immunity-how-does-it-work

School Report Card Accessed 5/17/19

https://www.ode.state.or.us/data/reportcard/reports.aspx

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