Originally I started to write about the vaccination rates for hepatitis b, rotavirus, hib, pneumococcal, polio, chicken pox, and all five kinds of bacterial meningitis, but I stopped myself partway through and hit the delete button. There are many reasons why– hep b is a blood borne sexually transmitted disease, rotavirus is usually symptomless in adults, polio (by strict definition) was eradicated in the 1970s, bacterial meningitis infection is so rare that even the CDC says it’s rare, and so on– but the real reason why I erased everything is this:
All anyone complains about in the news and in legislative hearings is pertussis and measles.
So let’s have a conversation about about herd immunity for pertussis and measles.
Pertussis (whooping cough)
The widely used pertussis shot came to market as a combination vaccine in 1948, so Americans born before 1948 most likely haven’t had any variation of a DTP vaccine. This means that anyone 69 years or older has a good chance of having dodged the vaccine entirely unless they were swindled into getting a shot while in the ER after slipping while getting out of the bathtub and splitting their forehead– and even then it is more likely they got a tetanus shot that didn’t contain pertussis.
The DTaP vaccine used in kids under 6 years old has a little bit stronger pertussis component than the Tdap vaccine. For everyone over the age of 6, every Tdap vaccine they receive begins waning immediately after it is given, drops to 68.8% effectiveness at 1 year, and after 4 years, its effectiveness was measured to be only 8.9%.
8.9% ain’t fighting off no pertussis infection.
This is why 11 and 12 year olds have the highest incidence of whooping cough, despite having received 5 doses of DTaP and 1 one Tdap. There is no pertussis vaccine on the childhood schedule after 12 years old, and the CDC recommends a single Tdap dose for adults between the ages of 19 and death. It’s almost as if they’re admitting how useless the pertussis vaccine is.
Of course, this single dose of Tdap isn’t even mandated for adults.
When we sort out this math, we are holding all children under 12 years old, who make up only 16.4% of our national population, accountable for 100% of “herd immunity” from pertussis.
How silly is that? If we vaccinated 100% of children under 12 years old annually, we would only be vaccinating 16% of the US population in any given year. But that’s not even close to how we vaccinate. We only vaccinate infants under 18 months 4 times, a 5th shot at kindergarten, and 1 more at 12 years old.
Adding up all infants under 18 months, 5 year olds, and 12 year olds, every year pediatricians are vaccinating only 5% of the entire US population with a whooping cough vaccine that becomes nearly useless after just one year. Then, we hold these children accountable for the pertussis “herd immunity” of all 323 million Americans, while blaming “anti-vaxxers” for the occasional pertussis outbreaks that occur.
Despite this Kaiser study concluding, “Routine Tdap did not prevent pertussis outbreaks,” we are constantly subjected to ignorant academics in the media blabbing about these “dangerous diseases making a comeback because of white, privileged anti-vaxxer parents.”
In conclusion, 95% of the US population has zero-to-very-little pertussis antibodies unless they have 20 year immunity from a natural infection.
But wait! But what about healthcare workers? Nope. Nurses usually just get a one-time dose of Tdap for nursing school, which protects them for almost no time at all, and their recommended 10-year booster is for Td. The Td shot is the mercury-laden tetanus vaccine that doesn’t even contain the pertussis component. And the military? The military doesn’t vaccinate for pertussis at all.
So the parents complaining about people like us would need to get themselves, their spouses, their parents, their siblings, and all of their children Tdap shots annually in order to be contributing to their false sense of herd immunity, since the vaccine isn’t going to be useful much longer than one year.
We all know this is a moot point because the pertussis vaccine can’t protect another person from pertussis anyway. It’s a toxoid vaccine, which is inactive exotoxin, and bacteria don’t make exotoxin until after a pertussis infection occurs. It’s a symptom-reducing vaccine for the person who receives it, but it doesn’t stop infection, doesn’t stop the spread of infection, and doesn’t have the ability to create herd immunity in the people who receive it.
Fun fact: the tetanus component of the pertussis vaccine series provides raging tetanus antibodies for at least three decades, so have fun injecting yourself with that every year.
Does anything make your eyes roll back into your skull harder or faster than having to listen to someone talk about the measles?
In a 2008 study published in the prestigious Journal of Infectious Diseases, researchers discovered that measles vaccine antibodies were shown to decrease a whopping 50% in the first 8 years after the second dose of MMR, and yet another 23% 7 years after that.
But, for whatever reason, the CDC likes to say that anyone who can show documentation of two doses of the MMR vaccine are “presumed to be immune.”
Say it with me, and smile when you do it. “Presumed to be immune.” Is there anything more ridiculous? How are you immune by vaccination for life when the vaccine wanes 50% in just 8 years?
The measles vaccine was licensed in 1963 and the combination MMR vaccine came to market in 1971. Going with the 1963 year, everyone older than 54 was probably never vaccinated for it, and every vaccinated person over the age of 20 has less than 25% of waned protection, but shhhhh… the CDC doesn’t want to hear about that because revaccinating Americans with the MMR would cause a lot of brain damage that you’re sure to hear about on Facebook.
While a mild measles infection was once a right of passage that the majority of people in their mid-50s and older caught naturally, only 75% of Americans have likely been vaccinated for measles today. Military get one extra dose, but health care workers do not. Of that 75%, how many people could possibly still have neutralizing antibody levels high enough to fight off a wild measles infection in the event of exposure when the vaccine wanes so drastically in just 8 years?
And how often have we heard “95%” tossed around as the “herd immunity” vaccination rate needed for measles? How could we ever achieve a steady 95% of people with measles neutralizing antibodies unless we vaccinate the entire American population with the MMR every 8 years? It’s impossible. The only people with even 50% of the two-dose vaccine-induced measles immunity antibodies are between the ages of 5 years and 13, which is 11.96% of the US population.
There you have it. Based on the peer-reviewed published efficacy of the Tdap and MMR, at any given point in time only 5% of Americans have some sort of waning vaccine-induced immunity to pertussis, and 12% have full to half-immunity to measles. But let’s blame moms who have taken years to educate themselves on vaccine safety for this failure.
Vaccine-induced herd immunity is absolute fiction. No country has ever had disease-fighting titers for 95% of the population, and the 1% of Americans who forego all vaccines for their kids have zero impact on that.
According to the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the major decline in child mortality that occurred from 1900 to 1930 (predating widespread use of vaccines, which became popular after WWII) was due to “improved socioeconomic conditions” and “public health strategies.”
For stopping diarrheal disease, methods included water treatment, food safety, organized solid waste disposal, and public education about hygienic practices. For person-to-person airborne disease, they cite improved housing and decreased crowding.
“Thus vaccination does not account for the impressive declines in mortality seen in the first half of the century…nearly 90% of the decline in infectious disease mortality among US children occurred before 1940, when few antibiotics or vaccines were available.”
Starting in 1945, it was the widespread use of a new antibiotic called penicillin that caused the drastic drop in deaths from secondary infections.
I’ll leave you with a quote from a brilliant retired US neurosurgeon:
“That vaccine-induced herd immunity is mostly myth can be proven quite simply. When I was in medical school, we were taught that all of the childhood vaccines lasted a lifetime. This thinking existed for over 70 years. It was not until relatively recently that it was discovered that most of these vaccines lost their effectiveness 2 to 10 years after being given. What this means is that at least half the population, that is the baby boomers, have had no vaccine-induced immunity against any of these diseases for which they had been vaccinated very early in life. In essence, at least 50% or more of the population was unprotected for decades.
If we listen to present-day wisdom, we are all at risk of resurgent massive epidemics should the vaccination rate fall below 95%. Yet, we have all lived for at least 30 to 40 years with 50% or less of the population having vaccine protection. That is, herd immunity has not existed in this country for many decades and no resurgent epidemics have occurred. Vaccine-induced herd immunity is a lie used to frighten doctors, public-health officials, other medical personnel, and the public into accepting vaccinations.”
– Dr. Russell Blaylock
For the hyperlink impaired:
http://vaccinesafetycommission.org/pdfs/45-2000-Pediatrics-Vital-Statistics.pdf (See bottom right corner, page 1313, under “child mortality” to top left corner of page 1315.)