The physicians and providers of New River Valley Pediatrics firmly believe in the effectiveness of vaccines to prevent serious illness and save lives.
We firmly believe in the safety of our vaccines.
We firmly believe that all children and young adults should receive all of the recommended vaccines according to the schedule published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Academy of Pediatrics.
We firmly believe, based on all available literature, evidence, and current studies, that vaccines do not cause autism or other developmental disabilities.
We firmly believe that vaccinating children and young adults may be the single most important health promoting intervention we perform as health care providers, and that you can support as parents/caregivers. All physicians and staff provide vaccines on schedule to our own children. The recommended vaccines and their schedule given are the results of years and years of scientific study and data-gathering on millions of children by thousands of our brightest scientists and physicians.
We firmly believe there is no such thing as a tested or safe "alternative" vaccine schedule. We will be happy to provide information to help you understand the science behind vaccines, but we have a commitment to our patients to keep them safe and provide the best pediatric care available. This includes vaccinations on time, according to CDC/AAP schedule.
The vaccine campaign is truly a victim of its own success. It is precisely because vaccines are so effective at preventing illness that we are even discussing whether or not they should be given. Because of vaccines, many of you have never seen a child with polio, tetanus, whooping cough, bacterial meningitis, or even chickenpox, or known a friend or family member whose child died of one of these diseases. Such success can make us complacent or even lazy about vaccinating. But such an attitude, if it becomes widespread, can only lead to tragic results.
Over the past several years, many people in Europe have chosen not to vaccinate their children with the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine after publication of an unfounded suspicion (later retracted) that the vaccine caused autism. As a result of under-immunization, there have been small outbreaks of measles and several deaths from complications of measles in Europe over the past several years. Even more recently in California and throughout the United States there have been outbreaks of measles associated with under immunization.
We are making you aware of these facts not to scare you or coerce you, but to emphasize the importance of vaccinating your child. We recognize that the choice may be a very emotional one for some parents. We will do everything we can to convince you that vaccinating according to the schedule is the right thing to do. We will discuss our views and policies with you, allowing you some time to make an informed decision. If you have concerns, please discuss these with us.
Finally, if you should absolutely refuse to vaccinate your child despite all our efforts, we will ask you to find another health care provider who shares your views. By not vaccinating, you are putting your child at unnecessary risk for life-threatening illness and disability, and even death. Our policy requires that all children be current in required immunizations by their second birthday. We also require that all children receive the school entrance required vaccines unless there is a documented medical exemption. Religious exemptions do not apply. If you choose not to comply with our policy and not receive school required immunizations we will ask you to find another health care provider who shares your views.
As medical professionals, we feel very strongly that vaccinating children on schedule with currently available vaccines is absolutely the right thing to do for all children and young adults. Please feel free to discuss any questions or concerns you have about vaccines with any of us.