With the backdrop of an iron lung machine — used in the 1950s for children with polio — Dell Med pediatric residents and Department Chair Steven Abrams discussed the importance of immunizations with people from the community as part of an exhibit on display this week at the Texas Capitol.
To create the exhibit, pediatric residents Miranda Low, Sarah Gibson, Amanda Lipsett and Jordan Reis worked with Sarmistha Hauger, MD, an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Dell Med and specialist in infectious disease at Dell Children’s Medical Center of Central Texas.
Speaking to a group of concerned citizens viewing the exhibit, Abrams said, “We certainly don’t want to see these diseases come back, diseases like polio, measles, varicella, and haemophilus influenza which have been virtually eradicated in our population. Vaccines have made a huge difference in the lives of our children. We have to be aware that it’s not an innocuous thing to not vaccine your child.”
Experts from The Immunization Partnership helped the pediatric residents research vaccine exemptions in Travis County, which have risen 84% over the past 5 years. Texas ranks 49th in the nation for vaccination rates among young children. This trend, if continued will lead to catastrophic consequences for the children of Texas.
The exhibit is on display until March 24 at the north end of the Capitol Extension Building, Level E2.