Evaluating Novel and Relevant Information for Children's Health and Emotional Development

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What is informed consent?


The American Medical Association defines 'Informed Consent' as the following:

The patient’s right of self-decision can be effectively exercised only if the patient possesses enough information to enable an informed choice. The patient should make his or her own determination about treatment. The physician's obligation is to present the medical facts accurately to the patient or to the individual responsible for the patient’s care and to make recommendations for management in accordance with good medical practice. The physician has an ethical obligation to help the patient make choices from among the therapeutic alternatives consistent with good medical practice. Informed consent is a basic policy in both ethics and law that physicians must honor, unless the patient is unconscious or otherwise incapable of consenting and harm from failure to treat is imminent.


  • The Moral Right to Conscientious, Philosophical and Personal Belief Exemption to Vaccination

    Barbara Loe Fisher, Co-Founder & President, NVIC

    The National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC) has not advocated for the abolishment of vaccination laws as other groups have proposed. However, we have always endorsed the right to informed consent as an overarching ethical principle in the practice of medicine for which vaccination should be no exception. We maintain this is a responsible and ethically justifiable position to take in light of the fact that vaccination is a medical intervention performed on a healthy person that has the inherent ability to result in the injury or death of that healthy person.




    Vaccination and Informed Consent

    Suzanne Humphries, MD

    After my experiences  in the hospital system and thoroughly examining both sides of the vaccination debate, it is clear that the issue is not ‘settled long ago, and laid to rest’ as most of the medical profession says it is.


    The history of vaccination is more complicated than most people understand.  The anti-vaccine movement is hundreds of years old. It heated up in the 1800s, when parents in the UK became fed up with watching their healthy infants and children become ill or die shortly after the smallpox vaccinations or get sick from smallpox anyway.  Parents and doctors who refused smallpox vaccines, risked losing their homes, their furniture and their livelihoods if Judges found against them.




    Why I Explore Vaccine Problems

    Sherri Tenpenny, DO, AOBNMM, ABIHM

    Have you ever heard the expression, “Some things you pick…and some things pick you”?  I got drawn into the ever-changing, emotionally charged vaccine debate after attending the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC) meeting in September 2000. I was troubled by what I had heard and decided to search for answers by going straight to the leading vaccine “authority” in the country: the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Imagine my surprise—and dismay—when I discovered that most of what I had accepted as The Truth about vaccines really wasn’t the truth at all.



    Keeping the conversation open: A physician’s thoughts on vaccination

    Michelle Veneziano, D.O.

    I’ve awoken several mornings now thinking about the many people in our community upset by the opposition to vaccine mandates. I respect their frustration, as I myself, not so long ago, did not understand complaints about vaccines. I cannot recall a time when an issue has caused as much concern, or has called as strongly for us to be informed by sound research.


    As a doctor and mother, I’m asking that we open the door to a dialogue, a chance for all of us who care deeply about our kids to share and learn from one another.


Media Resources

Informed Consent: A Human Right

by Barbara Loe Fisher