Current Content
Volume 47 - Number 5
September/October 2021


The Impact of the Anti-Vaccination Movement and Vaccine Hesitancy on the Health of the Child

Janet Green, Julia Petty, Lisa Whiting, Fiona Orr, Karen Walker, Ann Marie Brown, Elaine P. Crisp, Cathrine Fowler, and Linda K. Jones

Few topics in medicine have been studied more thoroughly than vaccines. The science is clear on the public and global health benefits of vaccinations; however, the topic still results in vigorous discussion about their efficacy, safety, and possible adverse effects. Anti-vaccination groups and conspiracy theorists have found a place in the online world and on social media sites to spread misinformation. Parents want the best for their children, but when they are influenced by the anti-vaccination movement, the health of their children when not vaccinated can be compromised. They also present a risk to the health of others in the community. Health professionals, including nurses, have a responsibility to educate themselves and others about the science of vaccination, and take active steps to dispel misinformation.