In October 2007, Dr Robert Sears, in response to growing parental concerns about the safety of vaccines, published The Vaccine Book: Making the Right Decision for Your Child. Sears' book is enormously popular, having sold >40000 copies. At the back of the book, Sears includes “Dr Bob's Alternative Vaccine Schedule,” a formula by which parents can delay, withhold, separate, or space out vaccines. Pediatricians now confront many parents who insist that their children receive vaccines according to Sears' schedule, rather than that recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the American Academy of Family Physicians. This article examines the reasons for the popularity of Sears' book, deconstructs the logic and rationale behind its recommendations, and describes how Sears' misrepresentation of vaccine science misinforms parents trying to make the right decisions for their children.
- Accepted September 8, 2008.
- Copyright © 2009 by the American Academy of Pediatrics