Updated: 07/02/2014 5:10 PM
Created: 07/02/2014 4:55 PM WHEC.com
By: Rebecca Fath
For the first time in a decade, the state is making some eye opening changes when it comes to immunizations. The changes do not add any new vaccines, but they could add more rounds of the current vaccines. The goal is reducing the number of diseases that can be prevented, like measles and whooping cough.
The New York State Department of Health says these changes were made so that New York’s immunization requirements match the most current recommendations from experts. This is a controversial issue, but some disagree with the change.
Dr. Gregory Peechatt says he has been studying vaccines and their effects on kids for a decade.
Dr. Gregory Peechatt said, “It can do real damage especially to a child’s maturing brain, which is not mature at all.”
So Peechatt says the longer one can wait to give a vaccination, the better. He is one of many who are asking questions about the New York State Department of Health’s updated school immunization requirements, which would change the number of doses required.
According to the state health department's website, this is meant to reduce the incidences of preventable diseases. The New York State’s Acting Health Commissioner Howard Zucker said, “Immunizations protect children from serious childhood diseases, like whooping cough and measles, and have an excellent track record of safety and effectiveness. I encourage parents to talk to their children's healthcare provider and work with their school's health services to ensure that all immunizations are up-to-date."
The state says diseases can be serious for young children. That's why it's important to give these shots early in life before they're exposed to those potentially life-threatening illnesses. Peechatt says he doesn't tell parents to avoid vaccines, just to be aware of the age kids are when shots are administered.
Dr. Peechatt said, “Ask your pediatrician, ‘can I give it, instead of six months old, can I give him or her it when they are 18 months old.’”
News10NBC reached out to the New York State Department of Health several times, but no one returned our calls.
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