In 1996, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) added many vaccines to its list of recommended inoculations for teenagers. Objections and unanswered questions that have followed incidences of vaccine injuries - particularly those caused by the HPV vaccine, which have been the subject of intense debate worldwide -- highlight the need for awareness among parents about vaccine ingredients and their adverse effects. Although ingredients are listed in the drug inserts, very few parents carefully read through them and doctors rarely spell out a vaccine’s potential side effects before administering the dose. Hence, maintaining personal immunization records for children, from birth through adulthood, is vital for a number of reasons.
Health authorities and the media relentlessly repeat the mantra that vaccines are unequivocally safe, and many uninformed consumers cling to this mantra like a lifeboat. More often than not, however, consumers know little or nothing about the vaccine safety testing process and assume that vaccine manufacturers and regulatory institutions have exercised due diligence in ensuring that vaccines are as safe as possible.