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What is the anti-vaccination movement?
Although immunization is generally considered one of the most important developments of 20th-century public health and beyond, a growing number of consumers are choosing an anti-vaccine approach to their handling their family's health. Many consider the platform a targeted misinformation campaign, but anti-vaxxers believe that essential concerns have been left out of the debate.
The anti-vaccine movement points to studies connecting vaccines to a number of health problems, including autism, thanks to a now panned Andrew Wakefield study, and are putting increasing pressure on healthcare providers and pharmaceutical companies to take a second look.
Vaccine safety may be at the forefront of these discussions. Still, organizations like the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) maintain that immunizations are necessary and responsible for eradicating major infectious diseases like smallpox, mumps, rubella, and measles. The recent pandemic highlighted the need for managing global health -- vaccinations are one such solution.
Learn about Vaccinations
The hesitancy people have about vaccines could be due to misconceptions surrounding their creation, approval, and delivery. EdX offers courses designed in partnership with leading thinkers in the fields of medicine, health, and biomedical research to help you understand vaccine development and other aspects of public health.
Courses happen on your schedule from anywhere in the world. Students can take most courses free for personal growth, but official credit is available for a fee. EdX also offers a growing number of certifications, micro-degrees, and full degrees.
Vaccination Courses and Certifications
Hong Kong University offers a professional certification series, Epidemics: Origins, Spread, Control and Communication. The four-course plan introduces students to the concepts of epidemics, drawing on real-world examples such as polio or measles outbreaks of the past or current outbreaks, the concepts of herd immunity for vaccine-preventable diseases. Course three, in particular, looks at vaccine development, vaccine misinformation, childhood vaccines, and vaccine safety.
The University of Queensland looks specifically at the Anti-Vaccination movement with its course, Anti-Vaccination and Vaccine Hesitancy. Students will learn about studies that instilled doubts, such as the infamous MMR vaccine study linking autism outcomes and current concerns Anti-vaccine groups have.
Understanding Vaccines and the Anti-Vax Movement
Whether you're reconsidering the safety and side effects of vaccinating in the wake of the coronavirus or eager to dispel disinformation and conspiracy theories bandied about on social media, edX.org and partners can shed light on the real history and movement of vaccines. Our courses provide a path for greater understanding. The number of people questioning vaccines and seeking exemptions may be growing, but you can use your knowledge to come to your own decisions.