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Most Doctors Permit Vaccination Delays

Most pediatricians acquiesce to parents’ requests to delay vaccinations, even though doctors believe the decision increases children’s risk of developing measles, whooping cough, and other illnesses. According to a new survey of doctors published in the journal Pediatrics, 93 percent of doctors said they were asked at least once a month by a parent to postpone vaccination. One-third of the doctors said they “always” agreed to a delay and another third said they acquiesced at least “sometimes” to the request. “It is sad that we are willing to let children walk out of our offices vulnerable to potentially fatal infections,” Dr. Paul A. Offit told The New York Times. “There’s a fatigue here, and there’s a kind of learned helplessness.”