With The Yellow Fever, Came a Carnival Of Misinformation
Fear that the vaccine against the disease can do harm may be the greatest exaggeration
At the end of January, a new stage of vaccination against yellow fever began – immunization through fractional doses. It is a successful strategy of the Ministry of Health to reach more people, and faster, although the protection time is only eight years, and not lifetime, as with full applications, without installment payment.
What has not come in installments, on the contrary, was the carnival of misinformation about the disease – and the greatest of exaggerations is perhaps the fear that the vaccine will do badly. Take the case of the death of a boy of only 3 years old, in Osasco, in the Great São Paulo, that occurred five days after he was taken to the bite in a health post. Fatality is still being investigated. The reasons for the boy’s cardiorespiratory arrest are not known.
Eleven other similar cases also undergo analysis. In the absence of certainties, rumors spread in social networks: “The vaccine is a farce!”, “Do not drink!”. For the infectologist Artur Timerman, president of the Brazilian Society of Dengue and Arbovirus, “she is as safe as any other.” One out of 400 000 people protected against yellow fever suffers from serious reactions, such as hemorrhage and hepatic and renal failure. The number of severe adverse events is lower than that seen with other traditional and effective vaccines, including measles and influenza . Security is 95%, equivalent to other forms of protection.