The SkeptVet comments on an Irish study looking at how the mother's use of complementary and alternative medicine is associated with a lower uptake of MMR vaccine. As the study notes in its introduction, these mothers aren't making a decision for their own child, they are actively affecting the health of other children who (along with their parents) have had no say in such delusional decisions since they're too young to be vaccinated, but old enough to be infected with diseases.
Since August 2009 there has been a large outbreak of measles in Ireland, with 320 cases of whom 206 were unvaccinated, 36% of the cases were hospitalised, but no deaths were reported up to February 2010. Fifty-six cases were aged under 1 year and so not eligible for vaccination, showing that in communities were vaccination uptake is low, younger children are vulnerable to infection.
It also shows how it only takes a minority to have these beliefs and, even if those vaccinating are in the majority, herd immunity becomes ineffective:
This linkage cohort study showed that most children aged 5 years had received their first MMR immunisation, but below the recommended threshold for population protection.
So how many children died because of one man's fraudulent science?
And why aren't there more people in the media giving delusional nutter Meryl Dorey the treatment she deserves?