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MOM Vaccines

is a non-profit organization founded in 1993 dedicated to providing educational information on the subject of vaccinations and to protecting and supporting individual/parental rights to make vaccine decisions in Michigan.

Frequently Asked Questions

Aren't vaccines required for children to go to school and attend day care?
In Michigan, the law states (MCLA 333.9215, entitled "exemptions"): A child is exempt from this part if a parent, guardian or person in loco parentis of a child presents a written statement to the administrator of the child's school or operator of the group program to the effect that the requirements of this part cannot be met because of religious convictions or other objections to immunizations.

As long as the law remains intact, your child may attend school in Michigan with all, some, or no vaccinations.

Why do people choose not to use vaccinations?
Of the many reasons, perhaps the most fundamental is that we deserve the right to make our own health care decisions. Others include:

  • Conflicts with religious beliefs
  • Concern about the lack of research on adverse reactions
  • Desire to use alternative medicine
  • Concern that doctors downplay the risks involved
  • Beliefs that factors other than vaccines have reduced disease
  • Personal experience with adverse vaccine reactions
  • Allergies to the compounds used to grow vaccines

  • Isn't it really dangerous if a person, especially a child, gets any of these communicable diseases, like whooping cough, diphtheria, measles, mumps, rubella, chicken pox, and polio?
    Most of the time, no. Like any acute illness, they can cause a good deal of discomfort. With proper care, the person makes a full recovery. It is interesting to note that the death rate due to these diseases began their decline before vaccines were introduced.

    Haven't vaccines been responsible for reducing the number of cases of communicable diseases, like whooping cough, diphtheria, measles, mumps, rubella, and polio?
    There is no doubt that vaccines have helped to reduce the incidence of reported cases of these diseases in recent years. Better education, improved sanitation, better nutrition, and use of antibiotics have also played important roles.

    It is interesting to note that on an average annual basis for almost the last 100 years diseases like whooping cough, diphtheria, measles, polio, and hepatitis have been reported in less than 1% of the population in Michigan:

    Average Annual Totals for the time period from 1900 through 1995*
    Disease Reported Cases School Enrollment (%) Population (%)
    Diphtheria 1,724 0.11 0.03
    Small Pox 896 0.06 0.01
    Whooping Cough 3,769 0.24 0.06
    Measles 15,351 0.99 0.25
    Polio 372 0.02 0.01

    Sources: Michigan Department of Public Health, 1995; Michigan Compiled Laws, Annotated; Michigan State Board of Education, 1995; U.S. Bureau of Census, Michigan Manual, 1995-1996
    * Average annual public school enrollment and population were 1,551,343 and 6,063,186 respectively.

    Aren't vaccines safe to use?
    It appears that vaccinations do work to prevent full blown symptoms of the disease for which they are made to protect against. However, there is a growing concern as to the possible long term effects of vaccine use. For vaccines to be licensed for use, effectiveness (prevention of the symptoms of disease) rather than safety is of primary concern. There have been no large, long term studies done to investigate reported links between vaccination and asthma, diabetes, chronic ear infections, arthritis, Crohn's disease, multiple sclerosis, learning disabilities, attention deficit disorder, autism, cancer, chronic fatigue, Gulf War-associated illness and other immune and neurological dysfunction.

    Known side effects range from fever to brain damage. These side effects are reported through the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS). In Michigan from 1991 through 1995, 461 adverse events have been reported through VAERS ((800) 822-7967), resulting in 69 hospitalizations and 13 deaths. Nationally, between 10,000 and 12,000 adverse events are reported yearly. Adverse events are underreported by up to 90%.

    Please remember that it is your decision to vaccinate or not. Please research all aspects of this important health care decision and make an informed choice. Please help us keep our right to make vaccine decisions.

    How many people suffer from Vaccine Preventable Diseases?

    Disease Total Cases YTD 1999 Total Cases YTD 1998 Cases < 5 Yrs. old YTD 1999 Cases < 5 Yrs. old YTD 1998
    Congenital Rubella Syndrome (CRS) 0 0 0 0
    Diphtheria 0 0 0 0
    H. Influenza Invasive Disease 17 13 6 3
    Hepatitis B 512 476 18 21
    Measles 6 10 1 7
    Mumps 10 33 1 9
    Pertussis 71 71 53 53
    Poliomyelitis 0 0 0 0
    Rubella 0 1 0 0
    Tetanus 2 2 0 0

    Sources: Michigan Department of Community Health's Michigan Immunization Update. Vol 7, No. 1. Winter 2000.