When politics and medical science intersect, there can be much debate. Sometimes anecdotes or hearsay are misused as evidence to support a particular point. Despite these and other challenges, however, evidence-based approaches are increasingly used to inform health policy decision-making regarding causes of disease, intervention strategies, and issues impacting society. One example is the introduction of childhood vaccinations and the use of evidence-based arguments surrounding their safety.
In this Discussion, you will identify a recently proposed health policy and share your analysis of the evidence in support of this policy.
Review the Congress website provided in the Resources and identify one recent (within the past 5 years) proposed health policy.
- Congress.govLinks to an external site.. (n.d.). Retrieved September 20, 2018, from
Review the health policy you identified and reflect on the background and development of this health policy.
Post a description of the health policy you selected and a brief background for the problem or issue being addressed. Which social determinant most affects this policy? Explain whether you believe there is an evidence base to support the proposed policy and explain why. Be specific and provide examples.
Expert Solution Preview
The selected health policy is an example of how evidence-based approaches are used to inform health policy decision-making. The policy aims to address a specific problem or issue, and it is important to critically analyze the evidence supporting it.
Health Policy Description:
The selected health policy focuses on increasing childhood vaccination rates. The policy proposes mandatory vaccination for all children in order to prevent the spread of vaccine-preventable diseases. The background for this policy is the concerning decline in vaccination rates in recent years, leading to outbreaks of diseases such as measles and whooping cough.
Social Determinant Impact:
One of the social determinants that most affects this policy is vaccine hesitancy and misinformation. The rise of anti-vaccine movements, fueled by misinformation and anecdotal evidence, has contributed to the decline in vaccination rates. This social determinant influences parental decision-making and affects the overall acceptance and implementation of the proposed policy.
There is a strong evidence base supporting childhood vaccinations. Numerous scientific studies have consistently shown the effectiveness and safety of vaccines in preventing the spread of infectious diseases. For example, a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine demonstrated that childhood vaccinations significantly reduce the risk of measles outbreak by as much as 86%.
Furthermore, the scientific community, including major medical associations and organizations such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO), strongly support the use of vaccines as a safe and effective public health measure. They provide evidence-based guidelines and recommendations for vaccination schedules and strategies.
Additionally, epidemiological studies have demonstrated the impact of vaccination on public health. For instance, the eradication of smallpox worldwide and the significant reduction in diseases like polio and diphtheria can be attributed to successful vaccination programs.
In conclusion, the evidence strongly supports the proposed health policy of increasing childhood vaccination rates. The effectiveness and safety of vaccines have been thoroughly researched and documented. Vaccination is a critical public health measure that protects individuals and communities from preventable diseases. It is essential to rely on evidence-based approaches to inform health policies and address challenges posed by vaccine hesitancy and misinformation.