(Black Press Media files)

Mistrust, lack of info holding back Canadians getting vaccinated: B.C. pharmacist

11 per cent of B.C. adults say their trust in vaccinations have decreased in the past year

As recent measles scares have led the province to bring in a mandatory vaccine registry for children, B.C.’s pharmacists are hoping to make sure adults are keeping vaccinated too.

Rashin Mandegarian, a Vancouver-based pharmacist with Shoppers Drug Mart said recent studies show only 3 per cent of Canadian adults are up-to-date on their vaccinations.

“Mistrust is one of the main reasons people don’t vaccinate,” Mandegarian told Black Press Media by phone.

“And 11 per cent of B.C. adults say their trust in vaccinations has decreased in the past year.”

Mandegarian points to the recent attention given to the anti-vax movement as a key reason for the distrust, noting that although there’s no scientific proof that vaccines can be dangerous, misinformation can sow mistrust.

READ MORE: B.C. launches mandatory vaccine registry for schoolchildren

Pharmacists in B.C. can administer vaccines, and Mandegarian hears a lot of questions and concerns in her day-to-day.

“About 30 per cent of people believe that vaccine can result in sickening side affects,” she said.

“But vaccines cannot make you sick, you cannot get a disease.”

Most vaccines don’t contain a live copy of the virus, Mandegarian said, and even in those that do “the virus is severely weakened so there is just enough to trigger an immune response.”

She said that even among British Columbians who aren’t specifically concerned about vaccines, many think it’s a “one and done” situation.

But that couldn’t be further from the truth.

“It’s a common misconception a childhood vaccination lasts a lifetime but it is really important to receive a booster shot for diseases like tetanus and diphtheria.”

In B.C., the two vaccines are given together and the government recommends a booster shot every 10 years.

Although immunization records can be difficult to find, Mandegarian points out that an extra vaccine or a booster shot is never harmful.

READ MORE: B.C.’s measles vaccination program gains traction


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

BC Wildfire Service to burn ten piles in Joe Rich

The service will begin the burning in late September and conclude by December of 2019

Motorcycle involved in multi-vehicle crash on Highway 97 in Kelowna

A man is being treated for injuries after he crashed his bike in an accident at Dilworth Drive intersection on Highway 97

Caught on Camera: Boat catches fire at Kelowna marina

The cause of the fire is unknown at this time, no injuries were reported as a result of the blaze

Kelowna Chiefs win in epic overtime battle in emotional memorial night to late owner

The Chiefs hounoured Grant Sheridan with a win in the team’s home-opener

West Kelowna’s stuggles continue as Warriors drop game in Merritt

The Warriors gave up a 2-0 lead to lose 4-2 Friday night

VIDEO: A moment to remember during the World Lacrosse Men’s Indoor Championship in B.C.

Diego Hernandez Valenzuela’s team lost, but he felt like a winner Saturday

Internet speed testing implemented in the CSRD

Test results will be tracked to find areas where improvement is needed.

Former South Okanagan resident found dead in Alberta

Candace Deleeuw was reported missing Sept. 16

PHOTOS: Steller sea lion with plastic around neck rescued on Vancouver Island

Rescue staff determined the plastic band cut the protected animal’s neck approximately two inches

B.C. VIEWS: School officials join fact-free ‘climate strike’

Students, public get distorted picture of greenhouse gases

Latimer surveyed much of Summerland

Civil engineer was also responsible of community’s irrigation system

Handgun crackdown, health spending and transit plans latest campaign promises

Friday was the end of a busy week on the campaign trail

B.C. woman photographs massive ant swarm on Abbotsford driveway

She asked what the ants were doing? The answer: war

Most Read