"You have to inform people that they both lose protection themselves, but most of all they put others at risk." Questioned by France Info, the famous immunologist Jean-François Bach, also honorary permanent secretary at the Academy of Sciences, denounces the lack of eagerness shown by the French when it comes to go under the needle.
Starting with the health professionals themselves, who are only 26% to be vaccinated against the flu. "If there are people who should be informed about the public health problem of delaying vaccination, it's them," the scientist said. But the problem is not specific to white coats: the general population shows a form of lightness vis-à-vis vaccination.
Uncertainty and neglect
"It's due to a little different factors Some people are afraid of the side effects There is a lack of information: there are absolutely irrefutable scientific facts at the international level that show that there is no side effect of current vaccines ", explains Jean-François Bach. "And there is this laziness, this negligence: we are not going to be vaccinated because we do not have the time."
The aluminum present in the vaccines, if decried by the antivaxal movement, poses a risk null or marginal. In 2016, the Academy of Pharmacy recalled that the "dose of vaccine is negligible in terms of food intake, cosmetic or professional". The advanced link between aluminum adjuvants and possible clinical manifestations of macrophage myofasciitis is not established by epidemiological studies, and is considered by most experts to be very implausible.
The most suspicious country in the world
Rational arguments that seem unlikely to convince the population. "Unfortunately, an international survey published two years ago showed that France is the country in the world where there is the greatest reluctance for the vaccine," notes Jean François Bach. In fact, 41% of the French population indicated that they did not agree with the statement that "vaccines are safe", compared to an average of 12% in the rest of the world.
The crises that have plagued France over the last twenty years have probably not helped to maintain trust in health institutions, public health scandals (tainted blood, mad cow disease, Mediator) to missed vaccination campaigns (hepatitis B in 94-97, H1N1 in 2009-10). A lack of confidence that eventually results in lower immunization coverage. With the key, avoidable deaths, like every year with the flu or the epidemic of measles of last winter.
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