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Should Vaccines Be Mandatory?
Routine childhood vaccination against preventable diseases should be mandatory worldwide.
Eradicating certain communicable, vaccine-preventable diseases (like polio & measles) worldwide requires that developed countries continue to maintain high rates of vaccination and immunity, even though individuals in those countries are at low risk of exposure to the disease.
If the specific vaccine decreases the risk of death or other serious health impacts for a child whose parents oppose vaccination, compulsory vaccination might be seen as a way to defend the right to healthcare for the child (
Compulsory vaccinations would reduce the prevalence of disease.
Vaccinations reduce the need to treat diseases with antibiotics, lowering the chances of antibiotic resistance mutations.
In a civilized society the needs of the many should, at times when the impact is greatest, be above the needs of the few or individual. Eradicating or limiting a disease by use of vaccinations is for the greater good of society.
Parents forced to vaccinate their children against their will might become less likely to comply with future immunisation or health care interventions (
), which could have an overall negative impact on public health in the longer term.
It is a breach into individual liberty.
Scientific studies are shaky on the effectiveness of vaccines.
Rendering vaccines mandatory does not necessarily represent a cost-effective way of improving public health in all countries.
There could be negative health impacts for those who are vaccinated.
Mandatory vaccinations open us (completely) up to the potential corruption of pharmaceutical companies.
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