(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

UVic president offers condolences after two students killed in bus crash

‘We also grieve with those closest to these members of our campus community,’ Cassels says

Greater Victoria high school students head to Honduran jungles, reefs for science

Students from St. Andrew’s High School spent the summer surveying the tropics

PHOTOS: Vancouver Canucks gear up for 50th season with Training Camp in Victoria

‘We have some great guys coming in,’ said player Elias Pettersson

Pacific FC to face off against FC Edmonton Saturday at Westhills Stadium

Visit the Goldstream News Gazette’s tent for your chance to win a prize pack

VIDEO: Vancouver Island mayor details emergency response after fatal bus crash

Sharie Minions says she is ‘appalled’ by condition of road where bus crashed

Coming Home: B.C. fire chief and disaster dog return from hurricane-ravaged Bahamas

The pair spent roughly one week on Great Abaco Island assisting in relief efforts

Newcomer Ferland lines up with sniper Pettersson as Vancouver Canucks camp opens

Ferland provides more depth and a scoring threat up front, Pettersson says

Intelligence official charged seemed to be ‘exemplar of discretion’: UBC professor

Professor Paul Evans says he served on Cameron Ortis’s doctoral dissertation committee

B.C. police watchdog to investigate man’s head injury during RCMP arrest

Suspect fled on a bicycle and fell off when an officer attempted to stop him

Nanaimo company gets licence to test psychedelic drugs for therapy treatment

Salvation Botanicals interested in manufacturing, testing and research and development

‘A real shame’: B.C. MLA says factors behind Tolko mill closing should have been caught

Kelowna-Mission MLA Steve Thomson said the industry is in bad shape across the province

VIDEO: Seniors at B.C. assisted living facility shocked by Oct. 1 eviction notice

Building owners terminate lease for McGuire Lake Congregate Living in Salmon Arm

‘How does it even happen?’: Bear locks itself inside vehicle in Port Moody

It was apparent the suspect had gained entry with his ‘bear’ hands

Most Read