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Woman Whose Life Was ‘Destroyed’ By Vaccination Urges People To Get Vaccinated

by : Charlie Cocksedge on : 27 Jan 2019 17:56
Tiffany Yonts/TweetTiffany Yonts/Tweet@clemfairie/Twitter

A woman who says her life was ‘destroyed’ by a routine vaccination is still urging others to get vaccinated.

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A recent report, published by the Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH), revealed two in five parents are often exposed, through social media, to negative messages about vaccinations. While half of parents with children under five say they see the same messages.

Shirley Cramer, chief executive of the RSPH, said, via IFL Science:

With the dawn of social media, information – and misinformation – about vaccines can spread further and faster than ever before and one of the findings of this report is that this may, unfortunately, be advantageous for anti-vaccination groups.

Finding new and innovative ways to counteract ‘fake news’ about vaccines is likely to be a major battle to be fought in the coming years.

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As recent measles outbreaks in anti-vaxxer hotspots spark public health emergencies, and anti-vaxxers being listed as one of the biggest health threats to the planet, people are sharing the story of Tiffancy Yonts, who took to Twitter to share her own experience of vaccinations.

Tiffany, a healthy 14-year-old at the time, was given the vaccine for tetanus and diptheria. Unfortunately, she went on to develop a condition called Guillain-Barre Syndrome – an extremely rare side effect of the vaccination.

Despite this, Tiffany, now 28, is urging others to still get vaccinated, saying that what happened to her was ‘a one in a million’, and people who don’t get vaccinated are putting lives like hers – those who can’t get vaccinated due a weakened immune system – at risk.

Writing on Twitter, Tiffany said:

that vaccine, in many ways, destroyed my life. i will always have gbs & i will always have serious symptoms. i could relapse again at any time & there is nothing that any doctor can do for me. there is no treatment. this is my reality for the rest of my life.

She added:

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so many would assume that i’m anti-vaccine. which is entirely, thoroughly, grossly incorrect. i am an unwavering supporter of vaccinations for every single person who can receive one. (that does not include immune-compromised individuals, which i also am.)

Tiffany continued:

vaccines have done & continue to do so much good for the health of the general public. a few sad stories like mine don’t change that. it hasn’t changed it for me & it shouldn’t change it for any of you.

Adding:

when you don’t get vaccinated, you put at risk the lives of all of the people like me who CAN’T be vaccinated. you are literally playing russian roulette with OUR lives because you’re nervous about a one in a million statistic. that’s beyond selfish & there’s no excuse.

And wrote:

keep the public healthy & safe. keep US healthy & safe. get vaccinated. get your children vaccinated. stop listening to conspiracy theories & look at actual statistics. think about the people with cancer & serious auto-immune illnesses that a lack of vaccinations puts at risk.

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Couldn’t put it better.

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Charlie Cocksedge

Charlie Cocksedge is a journalist and sub-editor at UNILAD. He graduated from the University of Manchester with an MA in Creative Writing, where he learnt how to write in the third person, before getting his NCTJ. His work has also appeared in such places as The Guardian, PN Review and the bin.

Topics: Health

Credits

Royal Society for Public Health and 1 other
  1. Royal Society for Public Health

    Moving the Needle: Promoting Vaccination Uptake Across the Life Course

  2. IFLScience

    Woman Whose Life Was "Destroyed" By Vaccine Urges Others To Get Vaccinated In Brilliant Viral Thread