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Sci-Fi leads the Way

2010-08-23 13:40:43.719226+00 by petronius 3 comments

California is currently on the way to having the worst year for pertussis (Whooping Cough) since 1958. Last year they had 2,700 cases with 7 deaths. Much of this is caused by a general reduction in vaccination for the disease, which is falsely accused of causing autism.

Fortunately, the forward thinking Science Fiction community is planning a counter-attack. At next week's DragonCon Sci-Fi convention in Atlanta, one group is setting up a nearby vaccination clinic for attendees and their children. The future belongs to the survivors, whether they be the ones with the longest claws or the smartest ideas.

[ related topics: Children and growing up Weblogs Health Community ]

comments in descending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2010-08-23 21:27:13.803226+00 by: Dan Lyke

Yabbut, the anti-vaxxers are also largely people who cling to Hahnneman's rebellion against the medicine of his time, who came to homeopathy through experiment. Sure, his experiment may have been flawed in that the control group of the time was people who were being treated by doctors who were actively killing their patients, and that he confused diseases with symptoms, but it was a great leap forward from the medicine of the time.

So I think rather that we understand them better if we think of them as selectively historical.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-08-23 20:40:59.131226+00 by: petronius

The issue of medicine doing more harm than good is a good one, but it doesn't necessarily apply here. The anti-vax forces are pretty much ahistorical; they don't remember when 28,000 people caught polio in one year, and children in iron lungs were common enough that the image was a common piece of background in movies and Early TV shows. And now its all gone. If Vax didn't eradicate polio, what did?

#Comment Re: made: 2010-08-23 16:04:37.131226+00 by: Dan Lyke

Interesting. I'm reading Druin Burch's Taking The Medicine[Wiki] right now, and wish he'd delve a bit more into the details of why doctors of old thought that way, rather than just dismissing them as cranks, but the several millenia of the medical profession doing more harm than good is definitely going to continue to have impact on shifting public attitudes about medicine.