The World Health Organization (WHO) has identified the anti-vaccine movement as one of the top ten health threats in 2019. This list also includes dengue, air pollution, climate change, and noncommunicable diseases such as cancer, among other problems.
WHO has warned that the anti-vaccine movement has become “viral” in several countries around the world. The campaign is primarily impacting the United States. Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that while coverage of most recommended vaccines remained relatively stable and high in 2017 for US children aged 19-35 months, the percentage who have not received vaccines has quadrupled since 2001.
According to a recent study published in the journal PLOS ONE, a growing number of people in many states across the United States have changed their minds about vaccination.
Anti-Vaccine Movement Is Among The Top Ten Health Threats in 2019
“Since 2009, the number of non-medical exemptions for ‘philosophical beliefs’ vaccines has increased in 12 of the 18 states currently permitting this policy: Arkansas, Arizona, Idaho, Maine, Minnesota, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Utah,” the researchers said in the study report issued in PLOS OEN.
Other countries with notable anti-vaccine movements include Australia, where about 40,000 children are not vaccinated because of parental objections; and Italy, which introduced new rules in 2018 suspending the mandatory immunizations required for children to be admitted to the school.
According to WHO, humanity has made significant progress in recent decades in global health, including life expectancy that has increased in many parts of the world, polio which is now on the brink of eradication, while by 6 million fewer children under age of 5 died in 2016 in comparison with 1990. However, there are increasingly more people around the world that don’t trust vaccines and join the anti-vaccine movement which is now among the top ten health threats in 2019, according to WHO, the World Health Organization.