Celebrate National Immunization Awareness Month

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

We’re blessed. Blessed to live in a time when it’s no longer commonplace for Americans to lose their children to infectious diseases. Blessed to live in a time when antibiotics can treat many serious infections and immunizations can prevent many of them from ever sickening our children in the first place. It’s hard to imagine there was a time when polio struck fear in parents in the summers and when more than 200,000 people each year were sickened by diphtheria. Ask someone over the age of 70; they’ll remember what it was like.

While Tennessee enjoys one of the highest childhood immunization rates in the country, there are young children in our state who remain vulnerable to serious, but preventable, infections. Nearly 22 percent of Tennessee’s children ages 19-35 months are missing critical immunizations. For some, immunizations are incomplete due to lack of access to care: parents may lack transportation or may work multiple jobs that limit their ability to take their children to receive immunizations on time. For others, parents have made a choice to withhold immunizations from their children, leaving them at risk for contracting many preventable diseases.

The fact that vaccines work to prevent disease may lead some to think they are no longer needed. Many parents and providers have never seen polio or tetanus. Some parents haven’t even seen chicken pox. It’s easy to think of these as diseases of the past; however, children in the United States still can, and do, get vaccine-preventable diseases. It’s critical that we not lose sight of this. In a global world where diseases like measles are a plane ride away and the next influenza pandemic is unpredictable, immunizations are our best defense.

The science around vaccines is clear. Extensive research has proven vaccines don’t cause autism and are not toxic. While some vaccines are more effective than others, all vaccines have saved lives. 

August is National Immunization Awareness Month. It’s a time to celebrate all that medical science has accomplished in order to help our children grow up healthy and without disease.

Every child deserves the best start in life. Immunize your baby. Make sure your grandchildren have received all of the recommended immunizations. Offer to help a young mom take her baby to the doctor for immunizations. While you’re there, make sure you’re up to date on your immunizations. Adults need shots, too. 

Michelle Fiscus, MD FAAP
Medical Director, Tennessee Immunization Program
Tennessee Department of Health


Republicans I Know Don't Act This Way

Send Your Opinions To Chattanoogan.com; Include Your Full Name, Address, Phone Number For Verification

Roy Exum: Our New ‘Lack Of Trust’


Republicans I know would not tear crying children from the arms of their parents because their moms and dads are seeking a better life for their families. Republicans I know would not terrorize ... (click for more)

We welcome your opinions at Chattanoogan.com. Email to news@chattanoogan.com . We require your real first and last name and contact information. This includes your home address and phone ... (click for more)

When I saw the first videos of School Superintendent Bryan Johnson unveiling the numbers on the Aquarium’s plaza that “proved” educational promise and prosperity has returned to our county’s ... (click for more)


Opinion

Republicans I Know Don't Act This Way

Republicans I know would not tear crying children from the arms of their parents because their moms and dads are seeking a better life for their families. Republicans I know would not terrorize an entire segment of society with mass incarcerations just to make a political point. Republicans I know would not ignore advice on national security from people who clearly are smarter ... (click for more)

Send Your Opinions To Chattanoogan.com; Include Your Full Name, Address, Phone Number For Verification

We welcome your opinions at Chattanoogan.com. Email to news@chattanoogan.com . We require your real first and last name and contact information. This includes your home address and phone number. We do not post the contact information, but need it for verification. There is no word limit, but if your article is too long you may lose your reader. Please focus more on issues ... (click for more)

Breaking News

Man, 44, Stabbed To Death On East Main Street

Chattanooga Police said a 44-year-old man died after being stabbed in the 1200 block of East Main Street around midnight Thursday. Upon arrival, officers located a man suffering from a stab wound. Hamilton County EMS responded and transported the victim to a local hospital. Officers secured the scene and called for the Violent Crimes Bureau to respond. Investigators ... (click for more)

Gary Cross, 23, Is 4th Suspect Arrested In Shooting Death Of Tracy Calloway On July 21

On Friday a fourth suspect, Gary Cross, 23, was arrested on outstanding warrants in relation to the July 21, 2019 shooting which occurred in the 4600 block of Trailwood Drive. The victim from that shooting, Tracy Calloway succumbed to injuries sustained from that shooting on July 22. The arrest of Cross is a result of an extensive investigation by the CPD Homicide Unit. ... (click for more)

Sports

Saturday's Best Of Preps Football Jamboree Scores

SATURDAY'S RESULTS Howard 14, Copper Basin 0 Cleveland 7, Red Bank 7 Howard 8, Signal Mountain 6 East Ridge 14, Copper Basin 6 Red Bank 13, Walker Valley 7 Sale Creek 6, Signal Mountain 0 Walker Valley 14, McMinn Co. 0 Brainerd 0, McMinn Co. 0 Brainerd 13, Sale Creek 7 Ooltewah 13, Notre Dame 7 Baylor 14, Soddy Daisy 0 Notre Dame 20, Soddy Daisy ... (click for more)

Red Wolves Suffer First-Ever Loss At David Stanton Field

For the majority of the match, Ronaldo Dumas floated around the pitch, suffocated by the Red Wolves defense for 86 minutes. Rendered invisible, the high-scoring 19 year-old was a ghost, unable to impose his skills on the match. That all changed in the 87th, when Dumas wrangled a Arturo Rodriguez pass away from Chattanooga’s back line, and slotted in a short-range shot to ice the ... (click for more)