[12/26/16] Many parents believe their child’s health care provider will offer sound, trustworthy advice about what their child needs to stay healthy. There are many doctors and nurse practitioners who do this well.
However, some health care professionals promote vaccination not because vaccines are safe and effective, but because of other reasons that are not in the best interests of your child.
Read on to discover eight reasons why your child’s doctor will tell you to vaccinate your child.
1. Doctors are taught in medical school that vaccines are safe and necessary.
A previous VacTruth article, Vaccines: What Your Doctors Know and Don’t Know, is an excellent resource for parents who believe their child’s doctor knows best because they attended eight or more years of medical school. Sadly, this training doesn’t give doctors the answers parents hope they will have. Medical school programs often lack adequate education about vaccines, and the information that is provided is often funded by pharmaceutical companies. 
Dr. Suzanne Humphries stated:
“We learn that vaccines need to be given on schedule. We are indoctrinated with the mantra that ‘vaccines are safe and effective’—neither of which is true. Doctors today are given extensive training on how to talk to ‘hesitant’ parents—how to frighten them by vastly inflating the risks during natural infection … on the necessity of twisting parents’ arms to conform, or fire them from their practices. Doctors are trained that NOTHING bad should be said about any vaccine, period.”
Dr. Bob Sears, who is known for addressing parents’ concerns about vaccines, also shared his thoughts about the lack of training in medical school:
“Doctors learn a lot about diseases in medical school, but we learn very little about vaccines … We don’t review the research ourselves. We never learn what goes into making vaccines or how their safety is studied. So, when patients want a little more information about shots, all we can really say as doctors is that the diseases are bad and the shots are good.”
Additionally, many medical schools receive excessive amounts of funding from pharmaceutical companies. An informal survey conducted by National Public Radio (NPR) showed that up to 16 percent of medical schools’ annual budgets were funded by pharmaceutical companies. 
When asked about the consequences of university employees criticizing popular drugs, one university researcher told NPR, “So they could potentially lose their job, lose their employment. Or if they don’t, their life can be made quite miserable in terms of receiving adequate research space, not receiving administrative support or something like that.”
A more exact study from the American Student Medical Association evaluated 150 medical schools to determine how much money and gifts they received from pharmaceutical companies. The results of their research, conducted because medical students were worried that their instructors were influenced by pharmaceutical funding, were published on Time magazine’s website and in The New York Times. 
Harvard Medical School earned a failing grade, due to the $11.5 million it received in one year from pharmaceutical companies, combined with the fact that 1600 of its teachers, nearly 20 percent of its faculty, confessed ties to pharmaceutical companies. Some of those connections were worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.
One government agency, the National Academy of Sciences, cited pages of concerns in their report about the way medical schools and continuing education are currently funded with donations and grants from pharmaceutical companies. They offered dozens of recommendations to improve the content of medical training, so that it is unbiased and free from pharmacuetical influence. 
Until those recommendations are voluntarily adopted or mandated, neither of which are likely to happen, parents must find other sources of information to make decisions about their children’s health, sources that are not funded by vaccine makers.
2. Doctors are subject to fee quotas.
In recent years, corporate hospitals have purchased private practices, allowing them to create a monopoly in health care. Many physicians who are employed by a hospital system must meet certain quotas for the number of patients seen and number of procedures prescribed to receive bonuses. As a result, numerous hospitals have been the subject of government investigations.
A disconcerting article in The New York Times explained how doctors are rewarded with recognition and financial bonuses for meeting targets established by their employer hospitals to boost profits and insurance payments, including admitting more patients to the hospital, limiting number of days per stay at the hospital, and seeing an increased number of patients per hour.
A number of doctors have expressed concerns and dissatisfaction, in the form of lawsuits as well as anonymous complaints, against these practices, some of which are even outlined in their contracts.
In addition, according to Dr. Janet Levatin, a medical doctor with 25 years of experience, physicians who have their own private practice may lose privileges to refer their patients to a hospital if they do not vaccinate their patients. 
3. Doctors feel pressured to use expiring vaccines already in the office.
Vaccines are expensive and some of them have a short shelf life before they expire and should not be used. With the exception of vaccines provided through the government program Vaccines for Children, doctors in private practice must pay for the cost of the vaccines they use in their practice.
One doctor shared her concerns about the high costs of vaccines in a recent New York Timesarticle:
“’The security company can call me any time of the day or night so I can go save my vaccines,’ said Dr. Irvin, a pediatrician. Those in the refrigerator recently cost $70,000, she said — ‘more than I paid for four years of medical school.’
Vaccination prices have gone from single digits to sometimes triple digits in the last two decades … some doctors have stopped offering immunizations because they say they cannot afford to buy these potentially lifesaving preventive treatments that insurers often reimburse poorly, sometimes even at a loss.” 
Why would doctors willingly let these vaccines remain in their inventory past their expiration date, when they could recoup at least a fraction of their costs by administering them to patients?