Home > Expert Insights, Policy, Preventable Diseases > The Unvaccinated Should Pay for Outbreaks They Cause

The Unvaccinated Should Pay for Outbreaks They Cause

This guest post has been written by Dr. Dorit Reiss, Professor of Law at the University of California Hastings College of  the Law in San Francisco, CA.   Dr. Reiss serves on the Parent Advisory Board of Voices for Vaccines and contributes to various articles, blogs and law journals, utilizing her legal expertise to examine the social policies of immunization.      

DoritYouBreakItIn 2005, an unvaccinated teenager brought back an unwanted passenger from Romania: measles. In spite of not feeling her best, she attended a church picnic, spreading the infection to nineteen other people, who then spread the infection to others. In total, 34 people were infected, the majority of them also unvaccinated. The containment costs to the public purse were $62,216 (in 2014 US dollars).

Containment activities involved “ninety-nine public health officers and infection-control personnel working in 12 health departments and health care facilities. . . .”(p.449). These personnel reported 3,650 hours of work, 4,800 telephone calls, 5,500 miles driven, and 550 lab samples to contain the outbreak started by a single unvaccinated teen returning from travel.

It’s only money, you might think. Compared to the suffering of these 34 people, and the potential complications of measles, which include deafness, encephalitis and death, who cares if health officials worked a little harder and if agencies had to spend more money? After all, that’s their job, right?

But public budgets are limited, and even public employees have limited time. The time and money spent on the outbreak had to come from somewhere. Other important activities did not get done because officials were working to contain the infection.  It is fair to say, other services likely suffered.

Containing outbreaks is expensive. Sometimes, outbreaks just happen. But sometimes, they are caused because of an individual’s decision not to take a precaution. In this case, and in other outbreaks throughout the United States, the outbreak was caused specifically because of a decision not to vaccinate.

Vaccines save lives. Modern vaccines are incredibly safe and generally very effective. When someone chooses not to vaccinate themselves or their child, they are not just choosing to leave themselves at risk of disease; they are also choosing to increase the risks of an outbreak. Even if they themselves don’t travel to an area where the disease is rife, they are undermining herd immunity. Herd immunity exists when there are a high enough number of protected individuals to form a protective ring around those susceptible to the disease.  Herd immunity can prevent a disease from taking hold or spreading through the community. In other words, lower numbers of immune individuals means less protection against an outbreak for the entire community.

Why should the state have to pay for an outbreak due to a choice someone made that ignores the risk of disease, goes against scientific and medical consensus, and creates a risk for the community? Why should there be less money left for services to people with disabilities and other needs because someone decided not to protect themselves or their children?  Why is it acceptable that people choose for themselves and consequences to the community be damned?

In our paper, my co-authors and I argue that those who refuse vaccination for non-medical reasons should pay. (Note: we’re not suggesting imposing costs on those with medical contraindications. They are, perhaps, the group most victimized by purposeful non-vaccination, because they live with a higher risk than others should herd immunity be undermined). A more elaborate discussion of the justifications can be found here.

Our article addresses how the state could recoup those costs. The main choice would be whether to impose payment on all those who choose not to vaccinate before an outbreak occurs, or whether to impose payment on the specific individuals that caused or contributed to an outbreak after the fact. 

Imposing Payment Before an Outbreak Occurs (Ex-Ante):

One way to attribute costs would be to determine that those who choose not to vaccinate are creating a risk for us all. It’s fair to make one pay for that risk, and we’ll simply charge people at a rate that will equal the expected costs to the public.   This can be done via a specially assessed fee, or tax, on those who don’t vaccinate. Alternatively, vaccinating families can get a tax break. Such a system exists in Australia, where certain benefits depend on meeting immunization requirements or having a medical exemption.

An alternative idea is to raise insurance premiums on those who do not vaccinate, and therefore are likely to impose higher costs on the health insurance system. Desirability apart, there are legal barriers with this idea.  Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) there are only four grounds under which insurers can set different premiums – and vaccination status isn’t currently one of them. Changing the ACA would be a political nightmare, and unlikely to happen just for this reason, but it is something to keep in mind if a more general reform of the ACA is suggested at some point.

On the other hand, the ACA allows insurers to offer discounts to those participating in wellness programs – and vaccinating can be seen as a wellness program.

Why would we use one of these mechanisms? Well, they have some important advantages. First, they allow us to distribute the risk among all those who contribute to it.  This is fair because anyone who contributes to the risk has to cover it and it’s practical because one family may not have enough money to cover the extraordinary costs of an outbreak. Second, these mechanisms would eliminate the need to identify the specific individual which caused the outbreak, which can be difficult to do. Finally, this mechanism won’t generate any incentives for families to hide a child who is sick… something we hope families won’t do for the child’s sake.

Ex-ante options do, however, pose some challenges. First, it will be difficult to determine an appropriate fee as there is no way to know the cost of outbreaks in advance of them occurring.   Also, the number of non-vaccinated individuals may be small, but outbreaks can be expensive, therefore if it were an accurate depiction of true costs the fee would likely be pretty high. The other consideration is how we would go about identifying the non-vaccinating families.  We have suggested using either school exemptions or the state’s immunization registry, with a presumption that those who opt out are unvaccinated, unless they prove otherwise. Neither method is perfect, however. It’s also not clear whether a fee or tax would deter people from not vaccinating.  Finally, we don’t usually impose costs of risks in advance; we only impose them if a person actually caused harm. If you drive drunk, you wouldn’t have to pay damages (though you might face criminal charges) unless you actually harmed someone.

Imposing Costs After the Fact (Ex-Post):

Another way to handle the cost issue is to wait until there’s an outbreak and then, after tracing the outbreak to one or multiple non-vaccinated individuals, charge those individuals or families. In this case, we propose a mechanism by which the public health agency itemizes the costs and sends those responsible a bill. If the family does not contest the charges, it can be collected as a debt, with no court involvement.

Since agencies can make mistakes or abuse their power, we propose an appeal mechanism. First, an administrative adjudication within the agency, then, if the billed party wants, with a court. This will ensure that the billing is enforced in a fair manner.

This mechanism has the advantage of clearly identifying the responsible party (or parties).  It’s fair because it fits our usual rules: those who made the choice only pay for the harm their choice caused. It allows us to know the costs, rather than guess them. Further, enforcement might be easier, since there will be a limited number of payers.

On the other hand, this method requires the agency to be able to show who caused the outbreak which is not always an easy task.  It may also be considered unfair because some unvaccinated individuals will have to pay because they had the bad luck to catch a disease, while other unvaccinated individuals will not bear any burden if they were lucky enough not to fall ill.  With the high costs of an outbreak it’s also likely that a single family, or even a small number of families, will not be able to cover the expenses.

States who want to recoup costs will ultimately decide which balance of costs and benefits is most appropriate. But as outbreaks increase, diverting more and more resources from other important public goals, it may be time to assign the costs where they belong – on those making a choice that exposes themselves, their children, and others to potential suffering, harms, and monetary loss. Many citizens, I believe, would like their tax dollars to be spent in better ways than covering costs caused by someone who refuses to help in the fight against infectious diseases.

  1. Bruce
    June 10, 2014 at 4:34 pm

    Unless you are actually breaking the law by not getting vaccinated, good luck on this one.

    There is no guarantee that if this person was vaccinated she wouldn’t have gotten measles.

    How about vaccinated people spreading diseases? Maybe they aren’t feeling well and they make the bad decision of going to church and school and spread it to others. Are you going to charge them for their ignorance?

    How are you ever going to prove where the spread of disease started?

    A friend of mine got pneumonia and spread it to other family members and friends. Are you going to charge him?

    How about people who smoke or do other high risk health activities? Are you charging them for the cost of all of that medical care?

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  2. reissd
    June 10, 2014 at 4:52 pm

    The idea here is that the law will be changed. A statute will be passed.
    As the article explains, there is a difference between an outbreak caused naturally and one caused by human choice.
    The article does address the causation issue, too.
    We do actually have precedents. For example, if you start a fire, you can be liable for the costs of putting it out; in some circumstances, you will be liable for costs of rescue. And by the way, tobacco companies settled a law suit by states for the costs to their health departments.

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  3. reissd
    June 10, 2014 at 4:54 pm

    I am very grateful to Craig Egan for creating the image for this post.

    Like

  4. Bruce
    June 10, 2014 at 5:00 pm

    “there is a difference between an outbreak caused naturally and one caused by human choice.”

    Nobody chooses to purposely cause an outbreak. Again, vaccinated or not vaccinated people can get the same diseases and pass them along. I guess if a person chooses not to take care of themselves and they get sick and pass it on, they to can be penalized for negligence?

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  5. reissd
    June 10, 2014 at 5:18 pm

    A. First of all, it’s not clear that nobody purposely causes an outbreak – http://thepoxesblog.wordpress.com/2014/06/08/the-real-threats-to-public-health/.

    B. Unvaccinated people get the diseases at much higher rates, because of their choice to avoid the precaution. The post actually addresses this difference between harm caused by something outside human control and harm caused by negligence. In the past, we did have cases of liability for infectious diseases caused by negligence, yes. The question would be whether the behavior was negligent.

    C. It’s well within the power of the democratically elected legislature to impose these kinds of costs on those who choose a course of behavior that creates a risk of diseases to themselves or their children and the public. Do you see a reason money should be cut from other services because an individual buys into anti-vaccine misinformation?

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  6. Sandy Walker
    June 10, 2014 at 5:46 pm

    Who’s freeloading who? Time for a dispassionate literature review. I found peer reviewed citations for all of the following, and Dorit, you can too. No, I won’t go digging them up for you – do your homework. We know (a) Vaccines fail. A lot. Vaccinated persons can and often do get infections they’ve been vaccinated against. (b) Recently vaccinated persons can spread infections – case precedents are in the literature for measles, chickenpox, flu, pertussis, polio, and rotavirus. (c) The US DHHS Vaccine Injury Compensation Program pays out millions to those injured or killed by vaccines. Guess pay who pays for the life-long care of the surviving disabled? The funds come from taxes tacked on vaccines – never out of Pharma’s deep pockets. (d) Unvaccinated children have less asthma, less allergies, less diabetes, and better overall health than fully vaccinated.

    Clearly, we now overuse vaccines. Clearly, they are not the magic bullet we hoped they could be, a century or two ago. Yes, they are too good to be true, and the bill has come due. In the era of hyper vaccination since the 1980s, our children are not healthier. In fact, CDC monitoring data show they are sicker and more disabled than any generation before them. Time for safer, better strategies.

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  7. novalox
    June 10, 2014 at 5:48 pm

    @sandy

    [citation needed] for your assertions, because your points fly in the face of actual and established science.

    Like

  8. Lawrence
    June 10, 2014 at 5:52 pm

    @sandy – despite what the folks at AoA might tell you, almost nothing you’ve stated is true.

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  9. Lawrence
    June 10, 2014 at 5:53 pm

    @bruce – a person who purposely refuses vaccination, then proceeds to travel abroad to areas where vaccine- preventable disease are still endemic….bring that disease back here (where said disease had been eradicated) and starts am outbreak?

    Heck yes they should be held liable…..because they made a conscious choice to endanger themselves and others.

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  10. Bruce
    June 10, 2014 at 5:54 pm

    Agreed Sandy, they also make the assumption that a vaccine is the single biggest factor of getting a disease or not. I submit that while a vaccine may give you some protection, your over-all health and health lifestyle also play a part. I think that those who get a disease and haven’t been taking their Vit D3 every day should pay too. hahah

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  11. reissd
    June 10, 2014 at 5:54 pm

    When someone claims that they have found evidence for something but refuse to provide it, it’s problematic: it’s very hard to reject the suspicion that they either do not have it, or that they know their evidence is unreliable. I’d concede one of your points: vaccines can fail, though at low rates for almost all childhood vaccines, and vaccinated people can get the disease – though at much lower rates than the unvaccinated: http://www.immunize.org/catg.d/p2069.pdf

    That’s why we need herd immunity, and why – when an unvaccinated individual causes an outbreak – I do worry about my vaccinated child and myself.

    The other point you are correct on is that we paid millions of dollars for vaccine injuries – for 3500 cases in 25 years, out of millions of vaccines, in spite of the program’s low burden of proof – a tiny number that shows how safe vaccines are.

    If you have evidence for your other claims, you may provide it. Your wish to believe it’s so, in the face of evidence, is not enough, I’m afraid.

    The decision not to vaccinate can lead to outbreaks, and those can harm others, and impose costs on the public purse.

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  12. Bruce
    June 10, 2014 at 5:56 pm

    Lawrence, it just as well could have happened if she was vaccinated.

    And the vaccinated person who isn’t feeling well and goes to church and school also made a conscious choice to endanger others.

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  13. Lawrence
    June 10, 2014 at 6:02 pm

    @bruce – maybe, possibly, hypothetically….because it hasn’t happened yet .

    What has happened, over and over again, is unvaccinated individuals bringing diseases back here and causing outbreaks….people have, are, and will continue to harm others by irrational decisions not to vaccinate.

    Real life and scientific evidence trumps your hypothetical.

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  14. Chris
    June 10, 2014 at 6:04 pm

    Bruce: “Lawrence, it just as well could have happened if she was vaccinated.”

    Really? What are the relative chances that a vaccinated person could spread the disease versus the unvaccinated person? Give us those odds.

    Like

  15. Lawrence
    June 10, 2014 at 6:06 pm

    @chris – yes, Bruce is all “could, maybe or possibly” vs. has, did and will…..

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  16. Bruce
    June 10, 2014 at 6:06 pm

    Doesn’t work that way Lawrence. Fact is you say you are punishing somebody for making a conscious choice to endanger themselves and others. Same treatment should be for all that fall under this category. You can’t say it has never happened. There have been many cases of vaccinated people getting diseases from other vaccinated people.

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  17. Bruce
    June 10, 2014 at 6:07 pm

    Chris, the odds don’t really matter now do they. It is a fact that a vaccinated person can get diseases and spread them.

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  18. Lawrence
    June 10, 2014 at 6:08 pm

    @bruce – then you can point them out, can’t you?

    And please limit your answers to Measles.

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  19. Bruce
    June 10, 2014 at 6:08 pm

    Reissd, so you claim that no vaccines shed and a person recently vaccinated can not spread disease?

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  20. Lawrence
    June 10, 2014 at 6:09 pm

    @bruce – not a “fact” just because you day so…

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  21. Bruce
    June 10, 2014 at 6:11 pm

    Lawrence, there are plenty of examples. Just look at any outbreak and how many are vaccinated and/or not vaccinated. Why only measles? I thought this applied to vaccines in general? I thought the “idea here is that the law will be changed. A statute will be passed?” Is that only for Measles?

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  22. Bruce
    June 10, 2014 at 6:13 pm

    Lawrence, it’s your fact, not mine. I didn’t say it, you did. Here it is, “Heck yes they should be held liable…..because they made a conscious choice to endanger themselves and others.”

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  23. Bruce
    June 10, 2014 at 6:14 pm

    Lawrence, if you are passing laws then they do have to fit the, “@chris – yes, Bruce is all “could, maybe or possibly” vs. has, did and will…..” Don’t they?

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  24. Lawrence
    June 10, 2014 at 6:29 pm

    @Bruce – if someone is vaccinated, they have made a conscious choice to protect themselves & others…..if someone does not vaccinate, they’ve made a choice to be unprotected….if, by some reason, a vaccinated person does get infected (most likely from an unvaccinated person, as has been the historical pattern to date), then the unvaccinated person is at fault.

    If vaccine failure occurs, the vaccinated person cannot be held liable, since it was a failure of the vaccine, not the person – this applies in every case, for every vaccine.

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  25. Lawrence
    June 10, 2014 at 6:30 pm

    @Bruce – and not necessarily….again, a vaccine failure is not the fault of the individual, but of the vaccine….not vaccinating, however, is a personal choice & that person should have to accept responsibility if they cause an outbreak.

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  26. Bruce
    June 10, 2014 at 6:35 pm

    As I said before, it’s not all about the vaccine. Getting a vaccine is only one factor of getting a disease or not. Many other factors play a part. So what about those other factors?

    And who is at fault when one vaccinated person gives it to another?

    Like

  27. reissd
    June 10, 2014 at 6:40 pm

    This has been addressed in a previous post on the topi: “Outbreaks caused by non-vaccination are different than outbreaks that happen because of vaccine failure or lack of a vaccine program or recommendations because they are the direct result of a choice by an individual to forego a precaution. Think about the difference between someone whose brakes fail because of an unexpected mechanical reason and someone whose brakes fail because she chose not to have her car maintained – for good reasons or bad. When a human choice imposes costs on others, we can ask, who should pay. ” http://www.skepticalraptor.com/skepticalraptorblog.php/recouping-costs-outbreaks-vaccine-preventable-diseases/

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  28. Lawrence
    June 10, 2014 at 6:41 pm

    @Bruce – vaccines are the primary factor…..if there is a vaccine failure, it isn’t the fault of that individual….and heck, in the cases of measles, mumps and other diseases that only have human hosts, they can and should be eradicated, so no one (vaccinated or not) ever gets exposed again….but some people (like Bruce) seem to love disease so much, as to want to keep them around.

    Like

  29. Lawrence
    June 10, 2014 at 6:48 pm

    And trying to use the excuse that “someone with a health immune system won’t get infected” is ignorant of history – like the 1918 Flu killing people who were primarily young and healthy….you ignore science and evidence – your opinions are ignorant and baseless.

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  30. Bruce
    June 10, 2014 at 6:56 pm

    Lawrence, who says it is the primary factor? And even if it is, what about the other factors? Why stop with vaccines? If a person doesn’t do A,B, or C as well, then go after them.

    How about my neighbor who eats two boxes of cup cakes every day and doesn’t exercise or take care of himself? Should I be paying for all of his medical costs? I believe he makes a conscious decision every day to treat his body like that.

    Like

  31. Bruce
    June 10, 2014 at 6:57 pm

    BTW, Lawrence, a healthy immune system doesn’t guarantee anything but it surely helps. Just as a vaccine doesn’t guarantee anything, but it surely helps. And if your immune system is compromised your chances of getting sick are greater.

    Like

  32. Lawrence
    June 10, 2014 at 6:58 pm

    @Bruce – straw man, and insurance companies already do spread out the costs (and companies have started penalizing employees that don’t take care of their own health)…..

    In the case of vaccines, there is no other primary factor in whether or not someone becomes infected – it is vaccines or not. Hence why the incidence of these diseases did not decrease until the advent of vaccines.

    If you can prove otherwise, please do so.

    Like

  33. Lawrence
    June 10, 2014 at 6:59 pm

    @Bruce – tell that to the millions of healthy folks that died in 1918 – 1921…..

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  34. Lawrence
    June 10, 2014 at 7:00 pm

    @Bruce – a “healthy” immune system means squat when it comes to infection…..

    Like

  35. Sulivanthepoop
    June 10, 2014 at 7:02 pm

    If you are so sure that not vaccinating is the right choice than you should take personal responsibility for that choice and the state should be able to recoup damages from the damage your choice caused.

    Like

  36. Lawrence
    June 10, 2014 at 7:02 pm

    @Bruce – and what I mean by that is a person will be “infected” whether their immune system is healthy or not…..unless. of course, they have been vaccinated.

    Like

  37. Chris
    June 10, 2014 at 7:07 pm

    Bruce: “Chris, the odds don’t really matter now do they. It is a fact that a vaccinated person can get diseases and spread them.”

    Yes they do. There is data, and from those data we can figure out the odds. Let’s look at the latest measles outbreak. Here are a couple of quotes:

    “Of the 288 cases, 280 (97%) were associated with importations from at least 18 countries. The source of measles acquisition could not be identified for eight (3%) cases. Forty-five direct importations (40 U.S. residents returning from abroad and five foreign visitors) have been reported.”

    … and…

    “To date in 2014, a total of 40 importations have been reported among unvaccinated returning U.S. travelers.”

    Now, let’s take the numbers of US travelers, and find out how many were vaccinated. So you take the 40 people and subtract the 40 who were not vaccinated. How many were vaccinated? Bruce, what is 40 minus 40?

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  38. June 10, 2014 at 7:52 pm

    A slight correction to your information on Australia’s position on immunisation. Dorit mentioned medical objections only, and phrased it as a tax break, which is not quite correct. The payments are made to parents who are eligible to receive other government payments – Family Tax Benefit Part A which is only available to parents whose income is below certain limits (which is generally below the average weekly income, and dependent on the age of children). The language our government uses is a little confusing unfortunately :-(.

    Parents can also register a conscientious objection and still receive benefits payable to vaccinating parents. They must have a form signed by a medical professional in order to do this. See this link: http://www.immunise.health.gov.au/internet/immunise/publishing.nsf/Content/coverage-data.htm which also includes data on numbers of children for whom objections have been received.

    For the record, I believe that this loophole must be closed, and non-vaccinating parents should not receive the government payment as they are not acting in the best interests of their children and others.

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  39. reissd
    June 10, 2014 at 7:56 pm

    Thank you for that information – I will correct it going forward, and I really appreciate you saying this.

    Best,
    Dorit.

    Like

  40. Lawrence
    June 10, 2014 at 8:09 pm

    Excellent information – thank you for providing that clarification.

    Like

  41. Bruce
    June 10, 2014 at 9:20 pm

    Sulivan, how about you take responsibility and pay for the damages that vaccines cause?

    Like

  42. Bruce
    June 10, 2014 at 9:22 pm

    Chris,

    ““To date in 2014, a total of 40 importations have been reported among unvaccinated returning U.S. travelers.” How about the vaccinated? This proves nothing. Fact, you can get Measles even if you were vaccinated. Please prove e otherwise.

    Like

  43. Bruce
    June 10, 2014 at 9:23 pm

    Lawrence, of course a healthy immune system matters. What planet are you from? Once you have infection, then what? You immune system plays no role? Come on Lawrence, use some of those smarts you have.

    Like

  44. reissd
    June 10, 2014 at 9:24 pm

    To remind you, the state did take responsibility for the damages that vaccines cause. All those who vaccinate participate in paying for them through an excise tax: the vaccinating are bearing that cost. Sullivan paid his share when he vaccinated his children, even though his choice did not actually cause harm to anyone else.

    What are the non-vaccinating paying for? They cause harm. Why should they not take responsibility for something they did actually cause and cover it? Why should that money come from the rest of us? To remind you, the state’s purse is filled by the citizens.

    Like

  45. reissd
    June 10, 2014 at 9:26 pm

    “How about the vaccinated? This proves nothing. Fact, you can get Measles even if you were vaccinated. Please prove e otherwise.”
    A. You can get measles, rarely, if you’re vaccinated. That’s why the unvaccinated are a risk to vaccinated children: they are a lot more likely to bring it in and infect others.

    B. As the source Chris brought pointed out, as a factual matter, in the last years measles has almost exclusively been brought in by unvaccinated.

    C. Above the explanation – repeatedly given to you – about the difference between an outbreak caused by human choice and an outbreak caused in spite of precautions. you know what? Let me save you and repeat it: “Outbreaks caused by non-vaccination are different than outbreaks that happen because of vaccine failure or lack of a vaccine program or recommendations because they are the direct result of a choice by an individual to forego a precaution. Think about the difference between someone whose brakes fail because of an unexpected mechanical reason and someone whose brakes fail because she chose not to have her car maintained – for good reasons or bad. When a human choice imposes costs on others, we can ask, who should pay. ” http://www.skepticalraptor.com/skepticalraptorblog.php/recouping-costs-outbreaks-vaccine-preventable-diseases/

    Like

  46. Chris
    June 10, 2014 at 10:46 pm

    Bruce: “How about the vaccinated?”

    Why don’t you tell us how many there were, at least among the group with known vaccine status: the Americans. So how much is 40 minus 40? Surely you can do a simple subtraction problem. Give it a try, answer the question.

    Like

  47. novalox
    June 11, 2014 at 2:08 am

    @bruce

    [citation needed] for your assertions within 3 posts, or we can all assume that you have no evidence for your posts and have been lying to us the entire time.

    Like

  48. June 11, 2014 at 5:21 am

    FACT: An unvaccinated person who is exposed to measles has around a 90% chance of contracting it: http://www.cdc.gov/measles/about/transmission.html

    FACT: A fully vaccinated person who is exposed to measles has less than a 1% chance of contracting it: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vpd-vac/measles/faqs-dis-vac-risks.htm

    FACT: Only in the anti-vax Bizarro World where every day is Opposite Day would these numbers be considered remotely the same.

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  49. Lawrence
    June 11, 2014 at 6:39 am

    @Craig – welcome to anti-vax bizarro world……they’ll believe anything (except little things like facts, evidence & reality, etc.)

    Like

  50. Jason
    June 11, 2014 at 8:38 am

    @bruce

    You mention people not doing anything about bad habits leading to an unhealthy lifestyle. Actually many insurance companies and corporations do incentivize healthy lifestyles by providing discount gym memberships, and discounts to those who meet weight and health goals. This is a method mentioned above as a possibility(offering discounts to vaccinated families). So they already do that why not add vaccines to the mix.

    Like

  51. JGC56
    June 11, 2014 at 9:48 am

    “Lawrence, it just as well could have happened if she was vaccinated.”

    Just as motor vehicle accidents can happen if even you’re driving while sober, but if you’ve choosen instead to drive while intoxicated you are accountable for having made that deliberate choice to act in a manner that places yourself and others at increased risk of injury.

    Like

  52. JGC56
    June 11, 2014 at 9:51 am

    “Fact is you say you are punishing somebody for making a conscious choice to endanger themselves and others. Same treatment should be for all that fall under this category. You can’t say it has never happened. There have been many cases of vaccinated people getting diseases from other vaccinated people.”

    In those cases where vaccinated individuals have been vectors of infection, however, they DIDN’T make that concious choice to endanger themselves and others. Quite the opposite, actually: they made the concious choice to reduce the risks to themselves and others to the extent possible, by being vaccinated against infectious disease.

    Like

  53. Lawrence
    June 11, 2014 at 10:10 am

    @JGC – logic isn’t Bruce’s strong suit….

    Like

  54. JGC56
    June 11, 2014 at 10:39 am

    Not his strong suit? I’m not even sure he’s dressed…

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  55. JGC56
    June 11, 2014 at 10:41 am

    (Bridge players will forgive me the mixed-metaphor, I trust.)

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  56. Chris
    June 11, 2014 at 12:10 pm

    Lawrence: “@JGC – logic isn’t Bruce’s strong suit….”

    I suspect he was the same person claiming a Anne Dachel quote was direct quote from one of Dr. Offit’s books (it was from a review of his book by Dachel).

    Like

  57. Patty Howe
    June 11, 2014 at 12:23 pm

    The unvaxed person with a vaccine-preventable disease caught it from someone, who might have been vaxed or unvaxed. Many diseases, including measles and pertussis, can be spread even by appropriately-vaxed people, who may or may not have symptoms of the disease him/herself. The whole idea is ridiculous, a way to compel those with entirely reasonable fears of vaccines to get the vaccines for fear of lawsuit. The idea of exonerating from blame those who obeyed and got the vaccines, even though they may have spread the disease, while fingring trhe unvaxed as the most likely, though not proven, perpetrators of spreading usually harmless diseases, violates American values of civil liberties and individual choice.

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  58. Lawrence
    June 11, 2014 at 12:42 pm

    @Patty – except that, up to today, it has been the unvaccinated that have started these outbreaks….that’s a fact. As much as you would like to deny it, it is because of people like you trying to scare people about vaccines, that these outbreaks occur.

    Measles can be eradicated (in fact, it had been eradicated here in the US) – so your actions are merely prolonging the misery of others….get the hell out of the way & ultimately, we can have less vaccines, because we will have less disease in the world to worry about.

    Like

  59. Lawrence
    June 11, 2014 at 12:44 pm

    @Patty – since many scenarios have already been provided as a foundation for the stance that the unvaccinated can and should be held accountable vs. someone that suffers a vaccine failure, it leads me to believe that you have serious reading comprehension issues.

    Like

  60. Chris
    June 11, 2014 at 12:51 pm

    Patty Howe, again what are the odds? Provide us the data of the relative risk of a vaccinated person getting measles and spreading it versus a nonvaccinated person. The numbers are discussed in other comments.

    Really, how many of the forty Americans who entered the USA from elsewhere were not vaccinated? It is simple subtraction problem, I gave you the numbers from the CDC report on this years measles outbreaks.

    Like

  61. reissd
    June 11, 2014 at 12:54 pm

    “The unvaxed person with a vaccine-preventable disease caught it from someone, who might have been vaxed or unvaxed.” The point is: by omitting the simple precaution of a vaccine, the unvaccinated individual substantially increased their risk of harm – just like someone who chose not to stop at a stop sign increases the chance of an accident. Stopping at a stop sign is not a guarantee that you would not have an accident, but it dramatically reduces the chances. It’s the lack of a precaution that justifies the liability. Those that took the precaution did what they could to prevent the harm. Those that did not, didn’t.

    “The whole idea is ridiculous, a way to compel those with entirely reasonable fears of vaccines to get the vaccines for fear of lawsuit. ” Wrong article. This article is not about lawsuits – it’s about an administrative mechanism to recoup the costs.

    Like

  62. Richard
    June 11, 2014 at 12:58 pm

    Here is a link to an excellent book review by Arthur Caplan of two books about vaccination.

    http://content.healthaffairs.org/content/30/6/1205.full

    I especially like this quote taken from the review:
    “And for those who see personal choice as the foundation for nonvaccination, choice has its limits—big limits. You cannot kill helpless babies by your choice. You should not end the lives of the frail, elderly, and immunologically vulnerable by your choice. Instead, you should feel a strong duty to protect your neighbors and your community.”

    Like

  63. Chris
    June 11, 2014 at 1:04 pm

    By the way, the outbreaks that would require payment are most likely of measles. They are what are expensive and economic studies show they are a burden to the taxpayers. Along with the 2005 Indiana outbreak mentioned in the article there is also these two examples:

    Measles Outbreak in a Highly Vaccinated Population, San Diego, 2008: Role of the Intentionally Undervaccinated, which costs of:

    County and state personnel reported spending 1745 person-hours on investigation and containment efforts, producing a public-sector cost of $124 517, or $10 376 per case. Direct medical charges for the case-patients and exposed infants totaled $16 163 ($14 458 for the hospitalized infant), or $1347 per case. Quarantined families reported average direct and indirect costs of $775 per quarantined child. Total outbreak costs were $176 980 (Table 1).

    The Cost of Containing One Case of Measles: The Economic Impact on the Public Health Infrastructure—Iowa, 2004, which was:

    A total of 2525 hours of personnel time were expended to review flight manifests, contact exposed passengers, set up vaccination clinics, trace >1000 potentially exposed contacts, and institute and enforce quarantine orders for vaccination refusers. Two thousand twenty-five phone calls were received from the public, and 2243 miles were driven by staff. The temporal distribution of personnel time was characterized by marked peaks at the report of potential secondary cases. The total estimated cost was $ 142452.

    If someone who has decided to take a free ride on their community’s immunity to measles by not getting two MMR doses, travels elsewhere and picks up measles, they should take some of the financial burden for their decision. Why should they still get a free ride for what they cost the taxpayer? They made a conscious decision to both not get vaccinated and to travel where measles is still circulating. Therefore they need to help defray the cost they caused to their community.

    Like

  64. Patty
    June 11, 2014 at 1:49 pm

    Richard,
    The Supreme Court found for good reason that vaccines are unavoidably unsafe. We disagree on just how often the diseases and the vaccines are ultimately dangerous. Much information exists on both sides. But no one has a right to attempt to force anyone else to hold the same views or make the same choices on this issue. You do not have a right to force anyone to cause serious outcomes in themselves or their children by accepting the vaccines.

    Like

  65. Patty
    June 11, 2014 at 1:53 pm

    Bruce made excellent points. The lifetime cost of caring for victims of vaccine injury, which destroys many famlies in the short term and is a burden which must be shouldered by taxpayers in the long run, is considerable and should be included in any analysis. Denying that such injury occurs very often is not a stategy which will work much longer.

    Like

  66. novalox
    June 11, 2014 at 1:56 pm

    @patty

    [citation needed] for your assertions, since I cannot find anything regarding a Supreme Court case.

    Also, what are the odds regarding vaccine injuries vs. actual injuries regarding the wild-type disease?

    Like

  67. JGC56
    June 11, 2014 at 1:56 pm

    “The idea of exonerating from blame those who obeyed and got the vaccines, even though they may have spread the disease, while fingring trhe unvaxed as the most likely, though not proven, perpetrators of spreading usually harmless diseases, violates American values of civil liberties and individual choice.”

    Once again: those who are vaccinated are being excluded because they’ve actively taken action (by being vaccinated) to reduce the likelihood that they will be a contributor to an outbreak. Those who are unvaccinated are not because they’ve instead voluntarily elected not to take action to reduce the likelihood they will be a contributor to an outbreak.

    By what rational argument should those choosing not to vaccinate not be held responsible for choosing to place others at increased risk of harm?

    Like

  68. reissd
    June 11, 2014 at 1:56 pm

    You are welcome to provide credible evidence that vaccine injuries are anything other than extremely rare. Here is one calculation of how rare: http://www.redwineandapplesauce.com/2013/03/05/a-look-at-the-numbers-in-vaccine-reactions/

    Like

  69. Lawrence
    June 11, 2014 at 2:00 pm

    @patty – perhaps you should familiarize yourself with the actual Supreme Court decision…..as seat belts are also classified as “unavoidably unsafe,” yet they are mandated.

    Like

  70. Chris
    June 11, 2014 at 2:04 pm

    Patty, you are not even reading the replies nor attempting to engage in honest discussion. You are behaving like a robot just spouting off unrelated false assertions.

    Like

  71. JGC56
    June 11, 2014 at 2:06 pm

    “But no one has a right to attempt to force anyone else to hold the same views or make the same choices on this issue.”

    And no one is attempting to force anyone to make the choice to be vaccinated; instead we’re simply holding them accountable for the choice they’ve elected to make. Choices have consequences: you may choose not to comply with routine vaccination, but as a consequence you may not be able to enroll your child in a public school. You may choose not to be vaccinated yourself, but as a consequence you may nolonger be elgible for continued employment in a field where you’d place others at increased risk (e.g., most health care professions).

    “You do not have a right to force anyone to cause serious outcomes in themselves or their children by accepting the vaccines.”

    And your evidence that routine childhood vaccination causes serious harm to children, rather than significantly reducing the risk of being serious harm as a consequene of remaining vulnerable to the infectious diseases they protect against, would be…what exactly, Patty? Be specific.

    Like

  72. JGC56
    June 11, 2014 at 2:10 pm

    “The lifetime cost of caring for victims of vaccine injury, which destroys many famlies in the short term and is a burden which must be shouldered by taxpayers in the long run, is considerable and should be included in any analysis.”

    What vaccine injuries are you referring to here, and what is the mean lifetime cost of caring someone who has suffered one? Be specific (and please don’t waste our time by providing figures for the costs associated with autism spectrum disorders, which are not causally associated with vaccination).

    Like

  73. Chris
    June 11, 2014 at 2:18 pm

    Patty: “The lifetime cost of caring for victims of vaccine injury, which destroys many famlies in the short term and is a burden which must be shouldered by taxpayers in the long run, is considerable and should be included in any analysis.”

    Except some of us are dealing with the results of actual disease injury. Please post the PubMed indexed studies by reputable qualified researchers that the vaccines cause greater injury than the diseases.

    “Denying that such injury occurs very often is not a stategy which will work much longer.”

    No one is denying anything. We are just requesting that you stop making baseless assertions and actually provide some real evidence. What you seem to be denying is that several hundred have suffered with measles just this year in the USA, with about 15% requiring very expensive hospital care (see CDC link I provided above).

    Now, please tell us how many of the forty Americans who imported measles this year to the USA were vaccinated.

    Like

  74. Bruce
    June 11, 2014 at 2:53 pm

    Craig,
    Maybe you need to get your facts straight. Your links do not lead to any facts whatsoever.

    JGCC56,
    I guess you are the one not using any logic? You are asking for proof that vaccines are risky and inure people?

    When you have a family member injured by a vaccine, it changes your perspective. It is absolutely absurd to force people to do anything that may cause them harm. If you are the person who feels forced into getting vaccines for fear of punishment and then your child is injured, no amount of money will ever fix that. If you are unable to understand this view point, then there isn’t anything to talk about.

    Like

  75. reissd
    June 11, 2014 at 2:58 pm

    There’s no doubt that the rare cases of serious vaccine injuries – and their family – suffer very much. Even those who believe without basis that their child was injured by vaccine no doubt suffer. That does not remove the reality that for most people, not vaccinating is the greater risk and that not vaccinating imposes costs on society.

    Note that the suggestion here is not to force vaccinate, but to imposes the costs of the choice on those making them. If someone decides to reject the scientific and medical consensus that the risks of not vaccinating far outweigh the small risks of vaccines, a consensus based on abundant data, shouldn’t they take personal responsibility and pay for the consequences if the risks of that choice materialize? Why should services to the elderly or disabled children suffer because of that choice?

    Like

  76. Richard
    June 11, 2014 at 3:17 pm

    I hesitate to post this link at the risk of devaluing a serious discussion on this important topic, but the chart at 1:22 of the video shows the efficacy of some vaccines for some diseases. Dr. Offit makes the point, ‘the good news about vaccines are that they are not a belief system, they are an evidence based system.’

    http://www.mediaite.com/tv/the-daily-show-tears-into-liberal-idiocy-on-vaccines/

    Like

  77. JGC56
    June 11, 2014 at 3:21 pm

    “I guess you are the one not using any logic? You are asking for proof that vaccines are risky and inure people?”

    No, what I’m asking for is evidence demonstrating the risks associated with being vaccinated are greater than the risks associated with remaining vulnerable to infection by the diseases they protect against.

    The risks associated with vaccination are well understood: most adverse events are both transient and mild (irritation at the site of injection, mild fever, etc.) while those that are serious (encephalopathy, Guillain Barre syndrome, etc.) are all but vanishingly rare. The risks associated with infection are in most cases orders of magnitude greater.

    Consider encephalopathy: while it’s seen to occur in 1 out of every 1 million MMR inoculations, it occurs in 1 out of every 1000 measles infections: that’s 3 orders of magnitude more often as a consequence of infection than as a consequence of vaccinating to prevent infection.

    “When you have a family member injured by a vaccine, it changes your perspective.”

    Exactly what injuries are you speaking of here and how exactly has it been factually established they were a consequence of routine vaccination? (It is, I would hope, founded on something other than a classic ‘post hoc ergo procter hoc’ logical fallacy.)

    Like

  78. lilady
    June 11, 2014 at 3:34 pm

    Per Bruce:

    “When you have a family member injured by a vaccine, it changes your perspective. It is absolutely absurd to force people to do anything that may cause them harm. If you are the person who feels forced into getting vaccines for fear of punishment and then your child is injured, no amount of money will ever fix that. If you are unable to understand this view point, then there isn’t anything to talk about.”

    Which type of vaccine injury are you referring to Bruce?

    Have you got any, um, proof in the form of citations, from studies that a severe adverse reaction from a vaccine which a family member experienced, is a valid medical contraindication for other family members to receive that vaccine?

    http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/pinkbook/genrec.html

    Like

  79. Lawrence
    June 11, 2014 at 3:39 pm

    @Bruce – no one is forcing anyone to get vaccinated, what is being discussed is accepting the consequences that not-vaccinating can have on public health in general (i.e. hundreds of thousands, if not millions of dollars spent as a result of a disease outbreak caused by a person’s decision not to vaccinate).

    Like

  80. Chris
    June 11, 2014 at 4:26 pm

    Bruce, how many of the forty Americans who came back with measles from overseas were vaccinated? Have you figured out what forty minus forty is yet?

    Like

  81. Bruce
    June 11, 2014 at 4:34 pm

    reissd,

    “Note that the suggestion here is not to force vaccinate, but to imposes the costs of the choice on those making them. If someone decides to reject the scientific and medical consensus that the risks of not vaccinating far outweigh the small risks of vaccines, a consensus based on abundant data, shouldn’t they take personal responsibility and pay for the consequences if the risks of that choice materialize? Why should services to the elderly or disabled children suffer because of that choice?”

    I disagree, so you are not forcing, but oh you will be punished. And you are possibly punishing somebody who cares for their child and doesn’t want to be that “rare case” as you say of vaccine injury. If that makes sense in your mind then so be it. I guarantee, somebody will be injured at some point and if they felt they had to vaccinate for fear of punishment, then that just isn’t right.

    Like

  82. Lawrence
    June 11, 2014 at 4:38 pm

    @bruce – and if that “person” takes that child to a country where vaccine preventable diseases are prevalent & that child is infected, brings them back here & it causes an outbreak where people die….then what do you say?

    How about instances where the people that are infected by this person are too young to have been vaccinated themselves (i.e. babies in a doctors waiting room – as happened during the San Diego outbreak).

    If a person decided not to vaccinate & they do in fact cause an outbreak, why do you have a problem with them being held accountable for their actions?

    Like

  83. Chris
    June 11, 2014 at 4:39 pm

    Bruce: “I disagree, so you are not forcing, but oh you will be punished.”

    Just like those who are punished for causing accidents when running a red light.

    “And you are possibly punishing somebody who cares for their child and doesn’t want to be that “rare case” as you say of vaccine injury.”

    Especially if you are driving your injured child to the hospital when you ran that red light.

    Oh, what is the frequency of those “vaccine injuries”? Please tell us with verifiable scientific evidence the comparative risk of the vaccine versus the disease.

    And how many of the forty Americans who imported measles into the USA this year were vaccinated?

    Like

  84. Chris
    June 11, 2014 at 5:02 pm

    Another example: If you ski out of bounds in some places and require a rescue, you will be billed for the cost. From the URL:

    Be aware that man-made and natural hazards exist; these include tree-wells, stumps, cliff bands, rocks, trails and roadways. These rules are absolute: CLOSED MEANS CLOSED. Out of bounds are not patrolled. If you require an out-of-bounds rescue, you pay the entire bill.

    So if you decided to go outside the bounds of public health vaccine recommendations, go where measles is endemic, get measles and then start an outbreak in your community. You should pay the bill of what it cost your community’s tax dollars to contain.

    Like

  85. reissd
    June 11, 2014 at 5:05 pm

    If you would like some more examples, Chris, the table at the end of the paper – you’d have to go to the full paper – lists them.

    Like

  86. Bruce
    June 11, 2014 at 5:11 pm

    Lawrence and Chris, you miss the whole point, which is you are asking somebody to do something that may harm them. It is not negligence, it is proactive decision based on the fact the child may be injured. That is a big difference then any examples you have provided. if there were no risk to injury then I might agree with you, but the fact still remains that a person may be injured from a vaccine and therefore should not be punished for decision not to do it.

    Like

  87. Lawrence
    June 11, 2014 at 5:30 pm

    @Bruce – if you make the decision not the vaccinate, no one is going to “punish you.”

    On the other hand, if you don’t vaccinate, go into an area where you get infected, bring that disease back here & cause an outbreak, expect that your actions will have consequences….if, in causing that outbreak & a person is infected and dies….what then? What means do they have to hold you accountable?

    If someone is vaccinated & they do suffer a serious side effect (it does happen, very rarely, but it does) – at least there is a means, through the Vaccine Court, for that person to seek compensation.

    At the end of the day, you cannot expect that your actions will never have consequences – you are missing the point entirely. In the cases we’ve discussed and in this situation, a person’s negligent actions result in some form of accountability (i.e. punishment). Again, if you don’t vaccinate, fine – but infect someone else through your inaction, then you should expect to be held accountable for it.

    Like

  88. Lawrence
    June 11, 2014 at 5:33 pm

    @Bruce – we ask (well, mandate) that everyone wear their seat belt while driving….and in some cases, the act of wearing the seat belt during an accident can do harm to that person.

    Do you honestly believe there shouldn’t be laws mandating the use of seat belts because a very small fraction of people could potentially get hurt in an accident?

    And we aren’t even passing laws requiring that people get vaccinated – only asking that a person be held accountable if, through not vaccinating, they cause an outbreak of disease that harms others.

    You just don’t get it, do you?

    Like

  89. Chris
    June 11, 2014 at 5:36 pm

    Bruce: “Lawrence and Chris, you miss the whole point, which is you are asking somebody to do something that may harm them.”

    Explain. What causes more harm, measles or the MMR? Provide the PubMed indexed studies by reputable qualified researchers that to support your answer. Remember that 15% (43) have been hospitalized with complications for measles this year in the USA. You really need to explain how the MMR causes that level of injury.

    And tell us how many of the forty Americans who imported measles this year to the USA were vaccinated.

    Thank you, Prof. Reiss, I just downloaded the paper. I chose those two because the full papers are free online, and the ski resort was quite adamant about their rescue bill policy. The costs that hit the state of California’s taxpayer supported health insurance were noted for the 1990 epidemic at Pediatric hospital admissions for measles. Lessons from the 1990 epidemic.

    Like

  90. Bruce
    June 11, 2014 at 5:50 pm

    As far as I know Lawrence, putting on your seat belt doesn’t hurt you, and if it does I’m sure you can get a waiver not to wear one.

    Vaccine court does not bring your injured kid back. Period.

    Being held accountable, for not risking injury to themselves or their family, doesn’t make a lot of sense Lawrence.

    And yes, your version of being held accountable and punishment are the same thing.

    Like

  91. Bruce
    June 11, 2014 at 5:52 pm

    Chris,

    “Explain. What causes more harm, measles or the MMR?”

    It is irrelevant.

    Like

  92. Lawrence
    June 11, 2014 at 6:02 pm

    @bruce – you are very ill-equipped to participate in this discussion, since you don’t seem to have any concept of accountability or negligent actions or activities.

    And yes, seat belts have the potential for harm, under certain conditions. Yet, seat belt laws exist….and still, we aren’t advocating passing laws requiring vaccination – merely holding individuals accountable who cause harm through negligent actions.

    Again, I can’t see why you would have a problem with that, since someone who is harmed by a vaccine has a means of compensation…….who is held accountable if you infect an infant with measles and they contract SSPE and die?

    Like

  93. Chris
    June 11, 2014 at 6:09 pm

    Bruce: “It is irrelevant.”

    No it isn’t. You are claiming you are being forced to do something harmful, therefore you need to provide the relative risk of harm.

    You two more tries to answer the question. You have failed to tell provide us the answer the the simple subtraction of 40 – 40. Are you admitting that you are mathematically illiterate? Or that you are just whining about nothing just to troll?

    Like

  94. Bruce
    June 11, 2014 at 6:18 pm

    Lawrence, if you can’t see a difference between seat belts and vaccines, then there is no hope for you. No amount of compensation makes up for an injury, again, you seem to disagree with this statement, so be it.

    Chris, Excuse me but I don’t. If there is any risk to my health, I have the right to choose what goes into my body and the relative risk to it. I don’t care if you say it is one in a trillion. My choice to take the risk or not.

    Like

  95. June 11, 2014 at 6:26 pm

    Bruce, what your argument falls under the category of Omission Bias. You are elevating the risk of an action over the risk of inaction, even when the risk of inaction is higher. It’s still a choice between the two. Choosing inaction does not remove liability.

    Also, you claimed that my links did not lead to evidence of the numbers I am claiming. Did you just not read them, or are you claiming the numbers are invalid because the source was the CDC?

    Like

  96. Evan
    June 11, 2014 at 6:28 pm

    I like Bruce’s calm dismissal of your argument with the word “irrelevant.” He’s saying that if someone chooses to risk the vaccine-preventable disease(s) rather than risk vaccine injury, it is his/her right, his/her decision. Even if one child were damaged by the vaccine, while ten were by the disease (which is not the case), if the parent were forced to vax and his child was the one damaged, then that vaccine mandate would have ruined those people’s lives. They would not have been ruined if that person had been free to refuse the vaccine. Any other attempt at argument is indeed irrelevant.

    Like

  97. Evan
    June 11, 2014 at 6:31 pm

    Sorry, Bruce, I really just restated what you said, I was just trying to say I agreed with you.

    Like

  98. Bruce
    June 11, 2014 at 6:40 pm

    I’m glad you understand where I am coming from Evan. I have a child that was injured by vaccines and I have a different perspective then these folks.

    Like

  99. reissd
    June 11, 2014 at 6:40 pm

    Once again, the discussion here is not about a mandate. It’s about covering the cost.

    You are, however, wrong about the premise. Since the risks of vaccinating are so much smaller than the risks of not vaccinating, the state can also intervene to protect a child from a parent’s decision to leave her exposed to the greater risk.

    That said, let’s go back to the initial point. A parent believes, in spite of the medical and scientific consensus, that the risks of vaccines justify not vaccinating her child and leaving the child exposed to the risks of the disease. The child then contracts the disease – and starts an outbreak, transmitting it to other. Public health authorities have to step in to contain the outbreak. Why should the parent who made the decision not pay for the costs? She has the right to make the choice. But does she have the right to impose its costs on others?

    Like

  100. Bruce
    June 11, 2014 at 6:43 pm

    Craig, here’s your first fact link: “Measles is highly contagious and can be spread to others from four days before to four days after the rash appears. Measles is so contagious that if one person has it, 90% of the people close to that person who are not immune will also become infected with the measles virus.”

    I’m sorry, but a general paragraph written by the CDC does not make it a fact. Wonder what they define “immune” to be? Only if you have had the disease or vaccine? Other options? Where’s the proof for the 90% number? Did they just make it up? Do you see how you can’t use this information and state it as a fact?

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  101. Evan
    June 11, 2014 at 6:44 pm

    Well, as Bruce said at the top, we’ll see how far you get with that. I’d say that at this time, in this social climate, with this level of vaccine-damaged children everywhere, you’re not going to be able to push this one through. I have one too, Bruce.

    Like

  102. Lawrence
    June 11, 2014 at 6:45 pm

    @Bruce – Chris has a child injured by a vaccine- preventable disease, I believe she perfectly understands the situation.

    Again, stop arguing around the issue and explain exactly why a person who, by not getting vaccinated, starts an outbreak that harms others, shouldn’t be held accountable?

    Like

  103. Lawrence
    June 11, 2014 at 6:48 pm

    @bruce – the answer is easy. It is called the Science of Immunology and Infectious Disease….you act like there aren’t tens of thousands of researchers that do this for a living to track the infectiousness of diseases and the human immune response.

    Like

  104. Bruce
    June 11, 2014 at 6:49 pm

    Yes reissd, who is going to pay for an vaccine inured child? Who reissd? No amount of money will ever make up for that kind of injury. Who will be held accountable for that injury? Answer: Nobody. Again, if you want to discuss people, health, and costs to the public, there are many more fights/causes you should be interested in. And don’t forget the medical costs to the people of vaccine inured people. Maybe those who want un-vacinated people to cover the costs of outbreaks, should be the people who cover the cost of vaccine medical injuries?

    Like

  105. reissd
    June 11, 2014 at 6:52 pm

    Vaccine injuries are compensated. We have a plaintiff-friendly, no-fault program for that. In contrast, those harmed by vaccine preventable diseases are not – and no amount of money makes up for that kind of injury too, and that injury is much more common.

    Similarly, who will make up for the lack of services for the elderly and the disabled because one parent decided to reject the evidence and not protect their children?

    Like

  106. Lawrence
    June 11, 2014 at 7:09 pm

    @bruce and Evan – then please direct is to your VAERS reports and docket number for your Vaccine Court cases…..

    Like

  107. Chris
    June 11, 2014 at 7:15 pm

    Bruce (and now his pal Evan): “If there is any risk to my health, I have the right to choose what goes into my body and the relative risk to it. I don’t care if you say it is one in a trillion. My choice to take the risk or not.”

    Even though you have chosen a fantasy version of the risk assessment, you do have that choice to take the risk. But if you do travel overseas and bring back measles, then you should be liable to repay the costs to the taxpayers who had to pay to control the damage you caused.

    Like

  108. Bruce
    June 11, 2014 at 7:19 pm

    reissd, not sure why you don’t understand? “Plaintiff-friendly, no fault” does not compensate an injury, and further more in the end that does come out of our pockets. Also, your “plaintiff-friendly, no fault” system is not that friendly and good luck getting paid. Get in line and wait your turn and then maybe you’ll have a small chance of getting compensated.

    Like

  109. Bruce
    June 11, 2014 at 7:22 pm

    Chris, oh so now it’s only if you travel over-seas? What about Mexico? Canada? How about traveling to another state? Baja Mexico? Hawaii?

    Fantasy version? Tell that to my kid. Please tell my vaccine injured kid that I have a fantasy version of all of this.

    Like

  110. Chris
    June 11, 2014 at 7:22 pm

    Bruce, what federal website should I contact to help compensate us for the damage caused by a now vaccine preventable disease? Who should we sue for infecting our kid?

    And tell us again how many of the forty Americans who imported measles infections to the USA were vaccinated. You truly need to prove you can subtract forty from forty.

    Like

  111. reissd
    June 11, 2014 at 7:24 pm

    NVICP is a lot more plaintiff-friendly than the courts: https://shotofprevention.com/2013/11/08/congressional-briefing-attempts-to-discredit-vaccine-injury-compensation/.

    Someone who cannot prove their case in NVICP probably does not have good evidence that it was the vaccine that caused the injury, or may be arguing against abundant scientific evidence, like in the case of parents who believe vaccines caused their child’s autism.

    It’s true that money does not fix a hurt child. But you asked who pays, and that’s the answer. Money does not fit the hurt when a child is harmed because a family chose not to vaccinate and that child got a disease because of that either – but those families have, on top of their harm, the financial costs: there’s no similar system to compensate them.

    Like

  112. June 11, 2014 at 7:25 pm

    “I’m sorry, but a general paragraph written by the CDC does not make it a fact. Wonder what they define “immune” to be? Only if you have had the disease or vaccine? Other options? Where’s the proof for the 90% number? Did they just make it up? Do you see how you can’t use this information and state it as a fact?”

    90% is the number I have always seen referenced. Do you have a better source with a more accurate number? I’m open to being corrected.

    Like

  113. Chris
    June 11, 2014 at 7:26 pm

    Bruce, actually you are safer going to Mexico since they have more vaccination compliance than the USA.

    By the way, in colloquial English any country outside the USA is “overseas”, even if we share a border. So to work on your geography, Baja California is in Mexico and Hawaii is part of the USA. And since you seemed confused, New Mexico is in the USA.

    So how many of the forty Americans who imported measles into the USA were vaccinated?

    Like

  114. novalox
    June 11, 2014 at 7:28 pm

    @bruce

    Please tell us what is the frequency of actual permanent sequelae from actual diseaes, such as measles, compared to vaccine injury.

    Also, if you do have a vaccine-injured child,do you have a VAERS report and documentation?

    Like

  115. Lawrence
    June 11, 2014 at 8:07 pm

    Bruce seems to believe that actions (or failure to take action) should never have consequences…..

    Like

  116. Chris
    June 11, 2014 at 8:21 pm

    … and I hope to never encounter Bruce in an intersection. We had to replace a care because someone like him thought the stop sign was optional, plus they did not have auto insurance!

    Like

  117. Chris
    June 11, 2014 at 8:22 pm

    Stupid typo: replace a car! That was a bunch of fun when it happened the week before my son’s open heart surgery.

    Like

  118. Liberty4all
    June 12, 2014 at 11:49 am

    Ok….so the vaccinated people who spread whooping cough to unvaccinated should pay as well? And all the illegals that bring disease over our border…..what about them. All vaccine fascists should be staunchly opposed to any immigration for that matter.

    You people are so incredibly narcissistic.

    Like

  119. Lawrence
    June 12, 2014 at 11:57 am

    @L4A – if you bothered to read any of what had been posted above, you’d see that taking an “affirmative action” such as getting vaccinated, doesn’t create a situation where someone can be held liable (i.e. vaccine failure does not reflect back on to the individual).

    As to your racist comment about “illegals,” perhaps you aren’t aware that vaccine laws in Mexico & other countries are far more stringent then our own – so these so-called “illegals” have a higher rate of vaccination than we natives do. So please take your uneducated and quite frankly idiotic comments elsewhere.

    Like

  120. Chris
    June 12, 2014 at 12:36 pm

    Liberty4all: “Ok….so the vaccinated people who spread whooping cough to unvaccinated should pay as well?”

    So what are the relative risks? Who is more likely to get and spread pertussis, some who is or is not vaccinated? This paper might help you figure out that answer.

    “All vaccine fascists should be staunchly opposed to any immigration for that matter.”

    The forty Americans who imported measles this year were not immigrants. By the way, how many of them were vaccinated? Perhaps we should just require anyone who leaves the USA to get vaccinated, or not let them back in unless they do. You weren’t planning any trips to Europe were you?

    By the way, Liber4all, have you thanked your responsible neighbors who are protecting your family by increasing community immunity by vaccinating their families?

    Like

  121. novalox
    June 12, 2014 at 1:27 pm

    @liberty

    You do know that your comments are incredibly racist, considering that the refugees that my family took in had the required vaccinations for their home country.

    Like

  122. JGC56
    June 12, 2014 at 2:58 pm

    “Ok….so the vaccinated people who spread whooping cough to unvaccinated should pay as well?”

    If a credible and compelling case can be made that they have somehow acted in a manner known to increase the likelihood they might serve as a vector for infection (which is the case with respect to those who volunatrily elect not to be vaccinated against pertussis) then sure: make them financial liable as well.

    Would you like to try to make that case, Liberty?

    Like

  123. redpill1
    July 22, 2014 at 10:45 am

    Who pays for the children who are killed or damaged by the vaccines. Why can’t the perpetrators of the vaccine industry be arrested? They can’t be arrested because they have blanket immunity which gives them no incentive to make children safe. You do want children to be safe and healthy don’t you? How about doing the study that congress havs been asking the CDC to do for over a decade-comparing the health of vaccinated children to unvaccinated children. I’m sure there are enough children who are unvaccinated to complete the task. Just look to Chicago or the Amish communities.

    Like

  124. Chris
    July 22, 2014 at 11:19 am

    redpill1: “Who pays for the children who are killed or damaged by the vaccines”

    The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program.

    “How about doing the study that congress havs been asking the CDC to do for over a decade-comparing the health of vaccinated children to unvaccinated children. ”

    Actually that has been done several times in several countries, and is ongoing. A parent compiled a list of that research, some of it being funded by SafeMinds and Autism Speaks. If you have an issue with that list, then discuss with those two organizations.

    Like

  125. JGC56
    July 22, 2014 at 11:53 am

    “Why can’t the perpetrators of the vaccine industry be arrested?”

    What crimes do you believe they have committed which would justify their arrest? What evidence demonstrates their guilt? Be specific.

    BTW, the idea that Amish communities do not vaccinate their children is a myth. The majority of Amish parents do vaccinate their children, and among the minority who do not the most common reasons cited for failure to vaccinate are the same anti-vaccine fueled fears that non-Amish anti-vax parents embrace in the absence of supporting evidence. (see PMID:21708796)

    Like

  126. novalox
    July 22, 2014 at 12:08 pm

    @redpill1

    [citation needed] for your assertions, since they fly in the face of actual science.

    Like

  1. June 13, 2014 at 3:29 am

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