Are chiropractors anti-vaccine?
Although there is overwhelming evidence to show that vaccination is a highly effective method of controlling infectious diseases, a vocal element of the chiropractic profession maintains a strongly antivaccination bias.
Chiropractors and Vaccination: A Historical Perspective
It would be hard to find someone who says that they aren’t. Even their own professional association policy statements don’t endorse people getting vaccinated.
Since the scientific community acknowledges that the use of vaccines is not without risk, the American Chiropractic Association supports each individual’s right to freedom of choice in his/her own health care based on an informed awareness of the benefits and possible adverse effects of vaccination. The ACA is supportive of a conscience clause or waiver in compulsory vaccination laws thereby maintaining an individual’s right to freedom of choice in health care matters and providing an alternative elective course of action regarding vaccination.
That’s the public policy of the American Chiropractic Association that was revised and ratified in 1998. The problem though, is that even with all of their talk of vaccine choice, most chiropractors don’t seem to give their clients must choice, only talking about negative aspects of vaccines and the risks.
For example, many chiropractors:
- don’t believe in the germ theory of infectious disease – they don’t think that viruses or bacteria actually cause people to get sick
- think that vaccines are harmful and too risky
- don’t believe that vaccines work or are necessary
- think they can stimulate the immune system via chiropractic spinal manipulation, as an alternative to immunization
Of course, many of these are standard myths that other anti-vaccine groups use.
Surprised? You probably shouldn’t be, as many anti-vaccine ‘experts’ give talks at chiropractic conferences, from Sherri Tenpenny to Andrew Wakefield.
And with more chiropractors trying to do “pediatrics,” even seeing newborn babies to do craniosacral therapy, their anti-vaccine message could reach more parents.
We saw that as chiropractors tried to influence the passage of SB277 in California in 2016. Chiropractors overwhelmingly lobbied against the vaccine law.
For More Information on Chiropractors on Vaccines:
- Chiropractors and Immunization
- Anti-Vaccination Attitudes within the Chiropractic Profession: Implications for Public Health Ethics
- Chiropractors and Vaccination: A Historical Perspective
- Why so many chiropractors advise against immunisation
- Anti-vaccine propagandist Andrew Wakefield to speak at “chiropractic pediatrics” conference
- A Touch to Fear: Chiropractic and the Newborn Baby
- Chiropractors lobby against bill ending belief exemptions for vaccines