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Why is there public resistance to vaccination?

Dr. Edgar Marcuse
Image Credit: Contributed
March 20, 2016 - 5:00 PM

VERNON - To vaccinate or not to vaccinate? This is a question loaded with contention in a public debate that has come to be mainstream in recent years.

Vaccines are generally regarded as among the most effective public health interventions. Scientific research has increased knowledge about immunology and new technologies have made possible the development of countless vaccines that protect against diseases that were otherwise common only a generation ago.

Paradoxically, why is it then that we are seeing a decline in public confidence in the safety and effectiveness of vaccines?

Concluding this year’s Science in Society Speakers Series, Dr. Edgar Marcuse, MD and Pediatrics Emeritus Professor at the University of Washington, will address this question in a public talk titled “Let’s talk vaccines: was there ever an age of reason?” on Thursday, April 7 at 7:30 p.m. at Okanagan College’s Vernon campus lecture theatre.

“The crux of the issue is that our understanding of the science of vaccine development far exceeds our understanding of individual decision-making and how best to influence it,” claims Marcuse.

In his talk, Marcuse will review the history, origins, scope and impact of vaccine hesitancy, highlighting some common concerns, while exploring the relative role of science, culture and emotion in parents’ decision-making about vaccines. He will make the case that timely and complete immunization should be standard practice. He will suggest that values play a central role in both individual decision-making and policy development and argue for the need for a public discussion of values.

Marcuse is an academic general pediatrician with a special interest in immunization policy, practice, ethics, economics and vaccinology. He has served as a member and Chair of the US Department of Health and Human Services National Vaccine Advisory Committee and most recently has served on the US Food and Drug Administration’s Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee. He has authored more than 100 publications relating to immunization, general pediatrics and public health.

Admission to the lecture is $7 in advance or $10 at the door. For advanced tickets call the Okanagan Science Centre at (250) 545-3644. To subscribe or obtain more information visit

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2016
InfoTel News Ltd

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