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Every morning, FRANCE 24 speaks to a key business, social or cultural player, or a leading voice in the field of humanitarian action, sport or science. From Monday to Friday at 8.40 am Paris time.

Latest update : 2018-10-26

'Vaccines save lives, but all vaccines have side effects'

Vaccines have been credited with reducing some of the world's most deadly diseases. But while the market for vaccinations has tripled since the turn of the century, representing over $25 billion a year, and is expected to continue to rise rapidly, more and more people are starting to decide not to take them. The number of measles infections last year in the EU was three times what it was in 2016, notably because some people had decided not to get immunised.

Dr Richard Halvorsen is the Medical Director of a children's immunisation clinic in London and author of "Vaccines: Making the Right Choice for Your Child". He gives us his perspective on the pros and cons of the inoculations. Dr Halvorsen says his main concern is the number of vaccines some people now take. "We are adding more and more vaccinations. Some diseases we vaccinate against are mild or almost impossible to contract. Let's be clear: vaccines can save lives, there is no question about that, but also all vaccines have side effects."

As with all medication, Dr Halvorsen says each patient is a unique case and one has to look at the benefits to taking it compared to the risk of infection. While side effects are rare, like with all medication they can occur. "We should be cautious when we add more and more vaccines for diseases that are less important," he told FRANCE 24. "I'm not saying we should not vaccinate," he added, "but we should have a debate about the benefits and risks."

>> On France24.com: Low vaccination rates at root of European measles epidemic

By Eve IRVINE

Archives

2018-11-16 Perspective

Concerts Without Borders: Making classical music accessible

For decades, classical music has been seen as too highbrow; a genre that appeals more to the slipper-wearing generation than to hip young people. Bonnie Brown and Michelle Wood...

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2018-11-15 Perspective

'Photography is part of our daily lives and we want to reflect that'

Tucked away in Paris's Marais neighbourhood is a little gem dedicated to photography. La Maison Européenne de la Photographie has been drawing in crowds since it first opened its...

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2018-11-14 Perspective

Men's health in 'Movember': Raising awareness of male wellbeing

"Check your equipment regularly". That's the message from a worldwide campaign, also followed here in France, to encourage men to do more to look after their bodies. "Movember"...

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2018-11-13 Perspective

Nov 13 Paris terror attacks: 'Islam is part of the solution'

On the third anniversary of the Paris attacks that killed 130 people, FRANCE 24 spoke to Asif Arif -- the co-author of a book about terrorist links between France and Belgium --...

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2018-11-12 Perspective

'Women are the great survivors'

For today's Perspective interview, Nadia Massih was joined by Irris Makler, FRANCE 24's Jerusalem correspondent. Makler has written a cookbook called "Just Add Love." But it's...

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