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Our Thoughts on Vaccination

SVPAM is an advocate of vaccine administration. We want your baby/child to be protected. But we also want you to realize that the decision to vaccinate your child impacts the health of other children in the community. choosing NOT to vaccinate your child is choosing to put your child and your community’s children at risk. As a parent, you want to make the right choices to protect your child. We want you to ask questions; we want you to be informed; and we want you to get your child vaccinated. Your decision impacts ALL children. Why?

There are two critical points for vaccination to work:
1. You need to be vaccinated
2. Your neighbor needs to be vaccinated.

This concept is called herd immunity. And yes, you are a member of a herd. When 90 to 95% of “the herd” is protected, it is nearly impossible for a germ to cause an epidemic. Think of germs as rain. Vaccination is a raincoat. Even with a raincoat on, you can still get wet. You need an umbrella, too. The umbrella is “herd immunity.” Those who don’t vaccinate expect someone to share their umbrella when it rains. But society can only buy umbrellas together. And raincoats aren’t made for newborns – they need umbrellas!

Some parenting decisions have little or no impact on the community at large. Deciding whether or not your child eats organic baby food, goes to preschool, or sleeps in a family bed is entirely up to you ~ your decision only affects your child.

However, your decision whether or not to vaccinate your child affects all children. If you are a parent who is considering delaying or skipping vaccinations altogether, please realize the impact of your decision.

If more than 10% of American parents choose to “opt out” of vaccines, there is no question that our entire country will see these horrible diseases of bygone days return. Fortunately, very few parents decide to do this. What is most concerning today is the pocket of under-vaccinated children. With lower immunization rates there is no herd immunity.

For over 50 years now, the staff and providers at Sewickley Valley Pediatrics have prided ourselves in delivering the best possible medical care for your child(ren)in accordance with American Academy ofPediatrics (AAP), the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP)and best practice guidelines.  As such, after much discussion and in accordance with new Pennsylvania state vaccination laws, eective August 1, 2017 Sewickley Valley Pediatrics has opted to no longer accept or retain unvaccinated/under-vaccinated children in the practice.  What does this mean for you?

  • All newborns will be vaccinated per AAP and ACIP guidelines and schedules.
  • All incoming new patients who are unvaccinated/under-vaccinated (excluding medical exemptions) will initiate and/or complete allschool required immunizations as soon as possible per AAP/ACIP catch-up schedules and guidelines.
  • All pre-existing patients who are unvaccinated/under-vaccinated(excluding medical exemptions) wil initiate and/or complete allschool required immunizations as soon as possible per AAP/ACIP catch-up schedules and guidelines.
  • All the above unvaccinated/under-vaccinated children will be provided an approved catch-up schedule.Failure to comply with this schedule will result in dismissal from the practice.
  • No “alternative” schedules, other than the AAP/ACIP approved catch-up schedules, will be accepted.
  • Medical exemptions will be determined by SVPAM providers.
  • Currently, required vaccines do not include HPV, Hepatitis A, Trumenba or Flu vaccine.  SVPAM willNOT dismiss if there is refusal or delay of these optional vaccines, although we STRONGLY encourage them.

Sewickley Valley Pediatrics respects your right as a parent/guardian to make appropriate medical decisions regarding your child(ren). However, as medical providers,we are responsible and obligated to safeguard the health of all people, including infants/toddlers too young to be fully immunized, medically fragile children who are unable to be vaccinated, our staff, and all other visitors to our office space who may have their own health issues.  We appreciate your understanding with regards to our decision.  We are more than willing to address any questions or concerns you may have.

DOES THE MMR CAUSE AUTISM?
No. We have also heard in the past that vaccinations cause multiple sclerosis, diabetes, asthma and SIDS. None of these are caused by vaccination. The government operates a safety monitoring system (Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System, Food and Drug Administration, CDC) watching for any possible adverse effects from vaccines. No one wants to increase autism rates.

One small case report of only eight patients in 1998 let a research group to feel that the combination measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine might cause autism. But don’t try to find the article online because the journal that published it, later retracted it when a former member of the research lab revealed that the data reported in the study was fabricated. Twelve years later, the lead author lost his license to practice medicine in England and was accused of fraud. The whole thing was a hoax.

Before this came to light, several reputable scientists tried to duplicate the findings of this now discredited researcher. No one ever could and now we know why!

Unfortunately, frightened parents chose to skip the MMR vaccine and measles epidemics occurred in the UK and US as a result of these unfounded claims.

The bottom line ~ don’t base health decisions for your child on one research study or what the media says. Talk to us about any vaccine safety concerns.

IF THE MMR DOESN’T CAUSE AUTISM, WHY IS THE DIAGNOSIS MADE AROUND THE SAME TIME AS THE VACCINATION?
One of the criteria used to make a diagnosis of autism is a language delay. Because children do not have significant expressive language under one year of age, doctors have to wait until 15 to 18 months to confirm a language delay and make the diagnosis. That’s about the same time as the MMR vaccination, which leads some parents to wonder about autism and vaccination.

DOES THIMEROSAL (a vaccine preservative) CAUSE AUTISM?
No. The Institute of Medicine reached this conclusion in 2004. Thimerosal has been removed from most vaccines since 2001, but the rates of autism are still skyrocketing. A 2008 survey of autism rates in California confirms that mercury is essentially out and autism rates are still going up. If thimerosal was the cause and it was removed from vaccines 12 years ago, autism rates would have been going down by now. Why? Because autism spectrum disorders are usually diagnosed by 3 years of age.

WHAT ABOUT DELAYING VACCINES OR USING AN ALTERNATIVE SCHEDULE?
The CDC publishes a recommended vaccine schedule for American children. Many, many doctors and scientists and researchers work together with the CDC to decide what is the best timing to give shots. The goal ~ protect babies as soon as it is safe and effective to do so. This schedule was not created out of thin air.

There is absolutely no research that says delaying certain shots is safer. The simple truth is that you are leaving your child unprotected, at a time when they are most vulnerable.

We realize that parents who choose to delay or opt out on vaccines are not bad parents. They are scared parents. What we are trying to help you realize is that the fear you should have is for the diseases that vaccines prevent. If you are on the fence about vaccinations, please take the time to research the disease as well and talk with US about all of your concerns!

Mission

To provide high quality and personalized medical care to our patients in a pediatric medical home environment.

Vision

To be the community leader in delivering complete healthcare services to our pediatric and adolescent patients in a medical home environment, utilizing all appropriate & available medical and social services.

Our Locations & Hours

Offices open at 8 a.m., Monday through Saturday.
Patients are scheduled by appointment.

Watch for special posts in our Breaking News Section & at the top of this home Page for holiday hours adjustments

See the "About Us" tab for information on our walk-in hours for sick patients

Rochester

300 Brighton Avenue
Rochester, PA 15074
Tel: 724-774-7110
Fax: 724-774-7394

Sewickley

701 Broad Street, Suite 422
Sewickley, PA 15143
Tel: 412-741-8700
Fax: 412-741-3710

Wexford

119 VIP Drive
Wexford, PA 15090
Tel: 724-935-6644
Fax: 724-935-9644

Billing Office

119 VIP Drive
Wexford, PA 15090
Tel: 724-935-2610
Fax: 724-935-0331

Rochester

300 Brighton Avenue
Rochester, PA 15074
Tel: 724-774-7110
Fax: 724-774-7394

Sewickley

701 Broad Street, Suite 422
Sewickley, PA 15143
Tel: 412-741-8700
Fax: 412-741-3710

Wexford

119 VIP Drive
Wexford, PA 15090
Tel: 724-935-6644
Fax: 724-935-9644