Health & Wellness

Stats Show Safety of Measles Vaccines, Other Immunizations

Less than 1/1000 of one percent of vaccines lead to claims of harms.

A new report has revealed data which shows the relative safety of vaccines, amid the worst measles outbreak in the United States in decades.

According to data reported by the New York Times, over the last dozen years, patients in the U.S. have received about 126 million doses of vaccines against measles. During that time, 284 people filed claims of harm from the vaccines through the federal government. Half of the claims were dismissed, and 143 have been compensated.

The data is staggering--showing that just 0.00000225 percent of individuals vaccinated for the measles filed a claim of harm.

The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program covers 15 vaccines and the seasonal flu shot. Since 1988, billions of doses of vaccines have been given to hundreds of millions of patients, but the program has compensated just 6,600 people for harm they claimed was caused by vaccines. According to the New York Times, 70 percent of these cases were settlements where officials did not find sufficient evidence that vaccines were at fault.

For more on the data and information about how the Program handles and settles claims, you can click here.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, there have been more than 1,000 confirmed measles cases in 28 states this year . That makes this the worst measles outbreak since 1994. A separate report found that lawmakers in states trying to limit or eliminate vaccine exemptions have often been met with strong pushback from a vocal minority of voters. So far, only Maine and New York have successfully eliminated all exemptions except those granted for medical reasons .

Last month, lawmakers in Pennsylvania introduced a bill that would regulate vaccine exemptions by creating a standardized request form which would need to be signed by a doctor . A doctor or health care provider would need to explain the impacts and consequences of not getting vaccinated to a student's parents before signing.

The Allegheny County Health Department is operating an immunization clinic, located at 425 First Avenue, Fourth Floor, in downtown Pittsburgh. Clinic hours are: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday: 9 AM-4 PM and on Wednesday: 1-8 PM .

You can also talk to your doctor about a vaccine, or click here for more information on the vaccine and where to get it .

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