Thank you Jimmy Kimmel!

Kimmel takes on anti-vaccine advocates

jimmykimmelliveI was thrilled when David Pesci, our communications director, shared a clip from Jimmy Kimmel’s show in which he took on anti-vaccine advocates. Some Monday Morning readers might consider the clip risqué or too edgy. This is how I see it. When people with Kimmel’s influence start communicating about an important issue, such as why childhood immunizations are important, it helps to change cultural norms. And when he does it in a way that is creative, funny and attention-getting, that’s even better. So I say, thank you Jimmy Kimmel! Watch it and judge for yourself.

Why it matters

I grew up at a time when there were fewer vaccines than there are today. Polio was a real threat, and one of our neighbors, my age, died from polio one summer. Kids routinely got measles, and some of them suffered serious harms as a result. Meningitis killed. Cervical cancer could not be prevented by vaccines against human papillomavirus (HPV).

The process of getting vaccines approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and then recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) is laborious and filled with careful steps documenting the results of clinical trials. The vaccines that some otherwise smart people are avoiding are safe and effective. By refusing to immunize their children, these folks not only place their children at risk. They also place at risk their larger communities.

There are lots of really scary things in the world that we cannot control. Approved childhood vaccines don’t fall in that category. Listen to Jimmy Kimmel. Get vaccinated, and get your children vaccinated. It really matters.

Happy Monday. Barbara


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