Vaccination represents the most successful form of disease prevention available today. In the past 20 years, vaccine technology has improved, resulting in production of vaccines against a broad range of infectious diseases.
Vaccines are responsible for many global public health successes, such as the eradication of smallpox and significant reductions in other serious infections like polio and measles. Even so, vaccinations have also long been the subject of various ethical controversies. The key ethical debates related to vaccine regulation, development, and use generally revolve around (1) mandates, (2) research and testing, (3) informed consent, and (4) access disparities.
The coronavirus pandemic has been unprecedented in its impact, leaving no aspect of life unaffected from its arrival in late 2019. From day-to-day impacts on work, school, social gatherings, and travel, to larger shockwaves to the world’s economy and health care systems, COVID-19 is a once-in-a-lifetime crisis on the global stage.
Vaccines work by exploiting the immune system’s memory. Vaccination simulates an infection, training the immune system and enabling it to develop weapons to fight back. This AFP videographic explains how the body fights infection and how vaccination works.
Immunisation is one of the greatest achievements of modern medicine. It protects us against diseases that cause death or debilitating illness. The new Gardasil vaccine was co-developed by Professor Ian Frazer. It has nine strains of virus in it which provide effective protection against the viruses that cause cervical cancer. It has been distributed within Australian schools since 2007. As the technology improves, other diseases will be targeted and hopefully eradicated.
Single-use solid micro-dose vaccines are minimally invasive and easy to self administer.
Patients could one day self-administer vaccines using a needleless, pill-sized technology, called the MucoJet, that jet-releases a stream of vaccine inside the mouth, according to a new technology developed at UC Berkeley. Roxanne Makasdjian from Berkeley News talks to Dorian Liepmann, professor of mechanical and bioengineering, about the MucoJet.
Proponents say that vaccination is safe and one of the greatest health developments of the 20th century. They point out that illnesses, including rubella, diphtheria, smallpox, polio, and whooping cough, are now prevented by vaccination and millions of children’s lives are saved. They contend adverse reactions to vaccines are extremely rare.