Doctor fed up with measles outbreak takes controversial stance
LOS ANGELES -- Pediatrician Charles Goodman has a message for parents: Vaccinate your children against the measles or find another doctor.
"I can't protect every kid in the United States, but I can protect the ones I care for," said Dr. Goodman. "It's a very hard line to take, but at some point I had to draw the line in the sand and say you know what, I got to protect my kids, that's my job as a pediatrician."
The measles virus can linger in the air for up to two hours and babies under a year old are especially at risk because they're too young to receive the vaccine.
"Those babies could die," said Dr. Goodman. "I have to weigh the risk of a kid in my office getting measles and potentially dying versus the rights of those parents to not immunize when I thought most of them were making that choice based on bad information."
Dr. Goodman says he's tried for years to educate parents about the safety of vaccines but says he's rarely able to convince them. The parents aren't valuing his medical expertise and are instead getting unscientific information from the internet, said Dr. Goodman.
"That's why I took the stance, believe your doctor, listen to your doctor, not the Internet, or go somewhere else," Dr. Goodman said.
Some parents we spoke with, who oppose vaccines, say they feel bullied by doctors who threaten to drop un-immunized patients. But Dr. Goodman says his new policy is already having an effect - large parents are calling his office to make an appointment for vaccinations.
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