By Kieran Morrissey
I am not an Anti-vaxxer. I believe that many vaccines have improved the lives of the human race, reduced suffering and prevented death since Edward Jenner developed the world’s first vaccine in 1798 using cowpox to prevent smallpox based on a traditional treatment known as variolation.
When a young lady, who is very close to my heart, developed the rare condition of Lupus following her HPV vaccination in secondary school, I began to look closer into the possible risks and side effects of all medicines and became pharmaceutical (not just vaccine) hesitant. While this young lady may now be well protected against cervical cancer due to her HPV vaccination, she now has another serious illness to deal with in its place requiring complex ongoing monitoring and treatment for the rest of her life.
All pharmaceuticals whether used to protect against or treat illnesses have side effects no matter how insignificant they are and we must be given full disclosure no matter how rare they might be. We must also be fully informed regarding the realistic probability of potential benefits, so we may conduct personalised risk-benefit analysis and make our own decisions on whether to use pharmaceuticals or adopt other treatment methods.…