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Vivian Pham Research Proposal Vaccines and Autism: Is there a connection? Since as early as 1000 C.E.

, vaccines have been the miraculous answer to life-threatening diseases. They have varied from primitive to complex methods, such as the Chinese's ground up scabs or the polysaccharides of bacteria to inoculate patients. Before vaccinations became highly researched and mass produced, many diseases threatened children at young ages, such as smallpox or polio. These diseases where deadly, attacking the health of young children and leaving them with very small chances of survival. However, vaccination, a term officially coined by Edward Jenner, was proven capable of protecting children from contracting the diseases. When they were first cultivated and administered to patients, vaccines were seen as a miracle, an essential procedure that every child needed to stay healthy and reach adulthood. Diseases that had caused fear and countless deaths, such as smallpox and polio, has become nearly eradicated from the world due to childhood vaccinations recommended by doctors and required by schools. However, because childhood diseases are not as prevalent today, many parents opt not to vaccinate their children, creating an "immunization gap" that puts these kids and other children, and even adults, at risk. For example, instead of measles becoming completely eradicated by the end of the 20th century, outbreaks hit cities all over the United States in 1989, resulting in over five thousand cases and over one hundred deaths (Yost, Childhood Immunizations, 1993). Because these parents were ignorant to the necessity of vaccines, people were put at risk of infection, despite their own precautionary actions. Some parents venture to accuse that vaccines are linked to the development of autism, a hypothesis that has been falsified repeatedly by many studies. Because of this controversy, vaccination has become a topic of contention. Vaccines are

still an extremely important part of healthcare today, as integral to public health as clean water or air and to personal health as physical check-ups and exercise and it is necessary for parents to know the facts. The intended audience of this paper are parents of newborn children and toddlers and young adults who are approaching or plan on entering parenthood. Kids in the age range of infancy to six years old are in the peak ages for essential immunizations. It is by age six where children need to have many of the essential vaccinations in order "to establish full immunity" for life (Yost, Childhood Immunizations, 1993). These parents and soon-to-be parents need to become aware of the importance of vaccines and aware of the dangers of non-vaccination. In addition, pediatric physicians are part of the audience because the play an integral role in the child's health at that age along with the parents. Parents, especially first time parents, depend on the opinion of the physician for the care and health of their child. If the pediatrician is wellversed and can promote the importance of vaccines, it will help parents recognize the fact that vaccination will better the health of their children. With many controversies surrounding vaccines, such as the alleged link to autism, the negative side of vaccination become more recognized. Because of the general health of many Americans today, it is easy for people to forget the reason why vaccines are so important in the midst of the negativity. This paper will question the alleged connection of vaccines to autism and remind the audience that the only reason for the general great health of Americans today is due to immunizations and that abandoning them will risk reversal of the progress. For this paper, thorough reading and analysis of references found in annotated bibliography will need to be done before the final draft of proposal is due. Additional research using the library's databases as well as sources searched on Google will need to be found to

expound upon the ideas presented in first six resources as follow-up. Reliable sources will need to be somewhat recent, approximately within the last ten years, unless it is only used for background information. Studies to falsify allegations of vaccines being more dangerous than helpful, such as its links to autism, will need to be found for accurate and indisputable support. In addition, any data tables and statistics that support the correlation between vaccination and health or non-vaccination and illness will be useful. These research points will then need to be organized, making the topic points clearer. An outline of the structure of the research paper will be made before writing can begin. The thesis must also be clarified and fine-tuned before writing begins. Within the outline, research points gathered will be referenced until its respective section, ensuring that support of details and ideas are always present. When the writing process begins, proofreading and rewriting will be essential. Because of the length and the amount of information presented, it is necessary that the organization of the paper is optimal for clarity.

References Bardenheier, B., Yusuf, H., Schwartz, B., Gust, D., Barker, L., & Rodewald, L. (2004). Are parental vaccine safety concerns associated with receipt of measles-mumps-rubella, diphtheria and tetanus toxoids with acellular pertussis, or hepatitis B vaccines by children? Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med.,158(6):569-575. Retrieved from Glazer, S. (2003, June 13). Increase in autism. CQ Researcher, 13, 545-568. Retrieved from Koch, K. (2000, August 25). Vaccine controversies. CQ Researcher, 10, 641-672. Retrieved from Smith, P., Kennedy, A., Wooten, K., Gust, D., & Pickering, L. (2006). Association between health care providers' influence on parents who have concerns about vaccine safety and vaccination coverage. Pediatrics, 118(5):e1287-e1292. Retrieved from Stehr-Green, P., Tull, P., Stellfeld M., Mortenson, P., Simpson, D. (2003). Autism and thimerosal-containing vaccines: Lack of consistent evidence for an association. American Journal of Preventative Medicine, 25(2):101-106. Retreived from Yost, K. (1993, June 18). Childhood immunizations. CQ Researcher, 3, 529-552. Retrieved from