In a recent interview, the former CEO of Spirit Airlines said that vaccines cause autism. This is a dangerous myth that has been debunked for years and causes people to avoid getting vaccinated. It’s important to know how this myth got started and what it means for public health in general.
A dangerous vaccine myth is being spread by a former Spirit Airlines CEO.
on October 17, 2021 by Gary Leff
Former Spirit Airlines CEO Ben Baldanza, speaking on the Airlines Confidential podcast last week about vaccination regulations and firing of workers who don’t get vaccinated, said that it’s acceptable to exclude pregnant women. Anyone who receives a medical or religious exemption from vaccination requirements will not be permitted to work (and will not be paid).
The major airlines have been warned that if they do not mandate immunization without a tested alternative, they risk losing government funding. Several carriers have joined the fray, threatening to fire any employee who has not been vaccinated. They’d also have to deal with an upcoming OSHA emergency requirement requiring businesses to demand vaccinations (a rule still not released a month after the President announced it).
Baldanza’s assertion that pregnant women should not be immunized is concerning.
I’m also worried about pregnant women, particularly if they’re still early in their pregnancy and their job performance isn’t affected in any way, allowing them to work every day. Even so, they’re presumably advised not to receive the vaccination if they haven’t already, and I’d hate to see individuals like them lose their jobs because they can’t obtain the vaccine. In such scenario, I’d want to give you two months after the delivery, or something similar, if your doctor thinks it’s okay.
When you tell a tale concerning possible dangers, particularly when you depend on the phrase “this is new, we don’t know,” you have some duty for at least describing the biological process through which allegedly negative consequences may occur.
In any event, humans are poor at assessing risk because, although there is nothing in the world that is completely risk-free (people die every year from buckets), you must also consider the dangers of not doing. In this instance, the CDC recommends immunization for women who are planning to become pregnant, are pregnant, or are nursing. It’s crucial to understand.
- There hasn’t been any evidence of an increased risk of miscarriage.
- Vaccine doses have been given to billions of people, including pregnant women and women who are pregnant early in their pregnancy, with no specific concerns found.
- Getting Covid-19 during pregnancy seems to be a bad idea.
- Vaccination during pregnancy has resulted in antibodies that are expected to protect infants.
For pregnant women, the danger of Covid much exceeds any potential benefit from immunization against it.
Those who are pregnant and symptomatic with Covid-19 have a more than twofold increased risk of being admitted to an intensive care unit and a 70% increased risk of death from the disease, according to the C.D.C. When compared to nonpregnant symptomatic people with Covid-19, those who are pregnant and symptomatic have a more than twofold increased risk of being admitted to an intensive care unit and a 70% increased risk of death from the disease. When compared to pregnant women who do not use Covid-19, pregnant women with Covid have a greater chance of problems such as preterm delivery, stillbirth, or their infants being hospitalized to a critical care unit.
It’s hazardous to repeat myths like pregnant women shouldn’t receive vaccines; just around a third of pregnant women have had injections, and they seem to be putting themselves and their unborn children at risk as a consequence. To be sure, public health has failed pregnant women by not researching them well enough, and the CDC has not collected the sort of statistics that would be comforting. Mr. Baldanza’s misunderstandings are reasonable, but his comments aren’t based on the best available data, and they don’t do a good job of evaluating relative risk.
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