Vaccine injections are proving effective, but many people are opting out. Image: Flickr / seanmichaelragan / CC-BY

Vaccinations are proving more effective than ever before. Despite dropping death rates, many vaccinations are becoming more difficult than ever to get to at-risk groups. In many developing countries, parents and individuals are opting out of vaccination because of mistrust, a problem that the CIA is making worse.

Vaccination proving an uphill battle

In many third-world countries, providing vaccinations to at-risk groups is proving very difficult. As reported on by NPR, vaccine distrust in the developing world is growing. In 2003, Nigerian communities boycotted polio vaccinations. In The Ukraine, MMR vaccination efforts that intended to target 7.5 million people ended up only vaccinating 116,000 people.

CIA program banks on vaccination program

The Central Intelligence Agency of the United States has admitted that it set up a fake Hepatitis B vaccination program in Pakistan in an effort to collect DNA from the Bin Ladin family; this action spread mistrust of health workers. The program delivered placebo rather than Hepatitis B vaccinations. When news of this program broke, the government of Pakistan threatened to shut down planned Polio vaccination drives, while stories of health workers captured and killed, accused of being spies, in developing countries began to resurface. In short, the CIA program spread distrust of vaccinations, and it has put nonpartisan health workers in very real danger for doing nothing more than trying to prevent disease.

Outbreaks of preventable diseases

In April of 2011, a whooping cough outbreak in a private Virginia school highlighted the danger of large groups going without vaccinations. At least 30 people in just one school contracted whooping cough, which can be fatal. The school had to shut down for a week for cleaning. There have been pockets of measles outbreaks as well, throughout the United States. Large, clustered groups of individuals who are not vaccinated tend to be at the highest risk. There are wide varieties of reasons parents choose to not vaccinate their children. No matter what the reason, the larger number of parents exempting their children appears to be contributing to more and more outbreaks of preventable diseases.


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