Pediatricians hope new study will reinforce importance of vaccines

2 Calif. residents contract measles from passenger on flight to San Francisco

2 Calif. residents contract measles from passenger on flight to San Francisco

Every couple of years a new study comes out that once again disproves anti-vaxxer assertions that there is a link between childhood immunizations and autism.

People in Greater Manchester are being encouraged to check that they, their children and teenagers have had two doses of MMR vaccine following confirmation that measles is still circulating in the area.

No link has been found between the measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine, and autism in largest, single study to date. This week they published their findings in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Undertaken by a group of Danish scientists, the experiment focused on children born in Denmark between 1999 and 2010. So while "children who had no childhood vaccinations were 17 percent more likely to be diagnosed with autism than kids who did get recommended vaccinations", may seem like smoke-it isn't exactly fire either. In all, they had access to data from 657,461 children; of these, 6,517 received an autism diagnosis during the 10-year follow-up.

The myth linking MMR to autism continues to circulate even though it was completely debunked years ago. This new research proves such fears as baseless. "And both found no difference in risk of autism in those MMR-vaccinated compared to not vaccinated", said Melbye.

"They actually included children with autism, as well as kids who are at risk for autism in the study", said Dr. Beth Natt of Danbury Hospital. Unvaccinated children may be in families with higher rates of autism in their siblings, in the first place. Still, even in these subgroups, no appreciable difference was found for autism risk.

In late February, YouTube said it was taking steps to prevent anti-vaccine channels from making money off their videos.

Measles is a highly contagious viral infection, which is spread when a person coughs or sneezes.

With 66 confirmed cases in Washington and four in OR, health officials there have dubbed the ongoing incident a public health emergency.

Unvaccinated people who come within two metres of an infected person have a 90 per cent chance of contracting the disease.

The outbreak is linked to an anti-vaccination "hotspot" near Portland where almost 7 percent of children are unvaccinated due to exemptions for personal or religious reasons.

According to the World Health Organization, vaccine hesitancy is one of the top ten threats to global health this year. Now, the researchers do not say there is a causation between getting the vaccine and not having autism.

Since that paper and the rise of the anti-vaccination movement, doctors have fought to reassure the public of the safety of immunization.

The authors, from Copenhagen's Statens Serum Institut, concluded: "The study strongly supports that MMR vaccination does not increase the risk for autism, does not trigger autism in susceptible children, and is not associated with clustering of autism cases after vaccination".