Here are some interesting facts about vaccines:
- American microbiologist Maurice Hilleman developed eight of the fourteen vaccines that are now routinely administered. He is credited with saving more lives than any other scientist of the 20th century (thanks, Reddit).
- Polio, which can cause lifelong paralysis, can be prevented with a vaccine that costs only $0.50. In the 1980s, polio paralyzed at least 1,000 children every day all over the world, but today, after international efforts to immunize every child everywhere, 5 million people are walking who would otherwise be paralyzed and the world is almost polio-free. (Source: United Nations Foundation)
- The United Nations actively backs vaccination campaigns in third world countries, such as this one in Afghanistan.
- A recent Measles outbreak in Texas is linked to an anti-vaccine Pastor. Meanwhile, in Afghanistan and Pakistan, the Taliban tries to stop polio vaccinations, accusing health workers to be “US spies”.
- In Israel, a recent government funded emergency vaccination campaign ignited debate on the necessity of vaccination, that even reached the High Court.
And me? I’m just grateful to live at a time when we have advanced medicine and science, without which vaccines wouldn’t even exist.