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AAAS CEO Rush Holt Says Evidence Clear: Vaccines Save Lives

Rush Holt speaks out about long-standing and consistent research that confirms vaccine safety. | Chet Susslin/National Journal

AAAS CEO Rush Holt underscored the enduring value of vaccinations in protecting children and adults against life-threatening diseases and warned of the risks of encouraging skepticism about vaccination safety.

“Vaccinations have been shown over and over again to shield children from debilitating diseases, to keep them healthy and free of illnesses,” said Holt, who also serves as the executive publisher of the Science family of journals. “Resurrecting long debunked theories and fraudulent claims that link vaccines to autism poses a significant threat to public health.”

Scientists, doctors, and public officials – including U.S. health agencies and organizations, from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to the American Academy of Pediatrics, have definitively and repeatedly studied the issue and found no link between vaccinations and autism, Holt noted.

“The evidence is solid: it shows that vaccines are safe and they save millions of lives each year,” Holt added. “Not getting vaccinated or keeping children from getting them endangers other lives.”

"Vaccines have been part of the fabric of our society for decades and are the most significant medical innovation of our time," Drs. Fernando Stein and Karen Remley of the American Academy of Pediatrics said in a 10 January statement.

“For any administration that wants to make new policies about vaccinations, public interest demands that they follow established scientific evidence,” said Holt.

[Associated image: Credit:  PV2 Andrew W. McGalliard/ Wikimedia Commons]