Senior Consultant at Indira Gandhi Memorial Hospital (IGMH) Dr. Niyasha Ibrahim has said that she believes the recent reports of Maldivians talking against vaccination is largely due to lack of awareness.
Dr. Niyasha said that vaccines save 3 million lives every year, a feat unmatched by any other modern medicine.
Responding to the anti-vaxxers inference that vaccines are unsafe, Dr. Niyasha stated that no man-made medicine will be 100 percent risk free. She said that every person's biology is different, and that someone could technically be susceptible to vaccines as with any other form of medicine.
She explained that all man-made medicine will have side effects, but that even over the counter medicine such as Panadol and paracetamol have more side effects than vaccines. She contended that the benefits of vaccination outweigh the occasional side effects by far, and that this has been proven by multiple studies done all over the world.
Dr. Niyasha noted that we have been able to eradicate numerous diseases in the 40 years vaccination has been mandated in the country and that Maldives has an impressive vaccination rate compared to the countries in the region.
However, a recent survey revealed 8 percent of people were not vaccinated. Dr. Niyasha noted this is as a matter for concern.
There is an overwhelming scientific consensus that vaccines are an effective and safe method to combat infectious diseases, and is a remarkable invention even comparative to modern medicine that continues to show success rates today.