Speed Reads

vax populi

Retro Report has a timely look back at the anti-vaccination movement

The United States wiped out the measles within its borders in 2000, but two years earlier, the seeds of its return were planted in a fraudulent paper in Britain's The Lancet claiming a link between the measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine (MMR) and autism. That report, by now-de-licensed Dr. Andrew Wakefield, and the public assertions of actress Jenny McCarthy helped lower vaccination rates to the point where the herd immunity in certain communities lowered to a point that the preventable disease could make a comeback, Retro Report recounts in its latest, timely video.

The problem for public health officials is that when they talk about vaccinations, parents tend to vaccinate less. And the problem for parents is that if the herd immunity fails, their children could die of diseases that should have been wiped out years ago. Watch Retro Report tackle the history of the anti-vaccination movement and its consequences below. —Peter Weber