CYBERJAYA: Parents who claimed to be exercising their right not to get their children vaccinated are being selfish, said Selangor Health director Datuk Dr Zailan Adnan.
“When all studies show that vaccination can prevent diseases and you (parents) insist you are right, that is wrong,” she said during a press conference after a forum entitled “Vaccination, Is It Really Safe” at the Cyberjaya University College of Medical Sciences.
Fellow panellist, consultant paediatrician Datuk Dr Musa Mohd Nordin said parents who don’t vaccinate their children exposed them to a 30% greater chance of getting measles or whooping cough and worse, they can spread this infection to other children, who may be too young to have gotten vaccinated.
“I would say you have a right not to vaccinate your child, but you don’t have the right to harm my child,” said Dr Musa.
He pointed out that measles infection would be a death sentence for a child with leukaemia.
Dr Musa added that he was encouraging Muslim parents to vaccinate their children, which was in accordance with the higher objectives of Islamic jurisprudence.
The Dublin-based European Council of Fatwa and Research has also endorsed vaccination.
“Vaccination is an investment in health and is Islamic-centric,” he said.
He pointed out that the Malaysian Islamic Development Department regularly went on road shows with the Health Ministry to create this awareness.
“So I hope Muslims will embrace this, from both the scientific and Islamic perspective,” he said.
Dr Mohd Rashidi, the chairman of MyHELP which organised the forum, pointed out that most refusing vaccination are from the Malay community.
“These numbers are alarming and need to be addressed,” he said.