In light of a new observational study published in Academic Pediatrics suggesting a possible association between exposure to aluminum in some childhood vaccines and development of persistent asthma in children, the National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners (NAPNAP) hereby reaffirms that vaccines are safe and effective and the best tool health care providers have in protecting public health. Through extensive research and development, vaccines have been saving lives and mitigating serious health threats for more than 200 years.
NAPNAP highly values post-marketing research and medical monitoring for all FDA-approved medications and vaccines. The information learned is key to guiding clinical practice recommendations and future research and development. However, it is important to note that some studies raise important questions that require further research, while falling short of determining specific causation. The study published in Academic Pediatrics is an example.
NAPNAP understands that patient families may be troubled by the information contained in this recent observational study. To help allay concerns, we share the following points with our members and their patient families.
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention agrees with the study’s authors that this single observational study does not show that aluminum in some childhood vaccines can cause development of persistent asthma. Multiple prior studies have found no association between childhood vaccines and development of asthma.
- Small amounts of aluminum are added to some vaccines to help the body build stronger immunity and have been safely used in vaccines since the 1930s.
- CDC will work with the Food and Drug Administration and the National Institutes of Health on additional research on aluminum exposure from routine childhood vaccines.
- There will be no changes to the CDC’s current routine childhood vaccination recommendations and schedule.
As our country evolves from the pandemic and enters into flu season, it’s important to note that COVID-19 and influenza vaccines do not include aluminum.
NAPNAP urges families to follow evidence-based recommendations for the timely and complete immunization of all infants, children, adolescents and adults to maximize the health and wellbeing of all people. Routine childhood immunizations prevent as many as three million deaths per year. NAPNAP’s pediatric-focused nurse practitioners and their pediatric colleagues stand ready to answer families’ questions and provide evidence-based recommendations for their patients.
Sept. 28, 2022