Vaccines may be, as Caplan describes them, “the most effective
and efficient invention in the history of medicine,” but public
misunderstanding and fears in the wake of controversy and
litigation often translate into popular resistance to vaccination.
For example, Japan dropped a mandatory vaccination law in
1994 in the wake of a public outcry against frightening allegations
about the dangers of the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR)vaccine. Thereafter, the incidence of several childhood illnesses shot up, and Japan now has the highest rate of measles in the
To help break this cycle and bring sensibility
and sanity to bear on the issue,
Feldman and his colleagues have crafted
a roadmap to guide the group’s deliberation.
Three main areas will be addressed in