Educating anti-vaxxers a new priority in the Netherlands

Dutch national health institute RIVM is turning its attention on people who do not vaccinate their children. The institute launched an additional training program for peadiatricians and is making 2 million euros available for longer conversations with parents to ease their conserns about vaccinations, the Volkskrant reports. 

In the Netherlands 9 out of 10 children are vaccinated, a high percentage internationally considered. Still the RIVM noticed a growing number of parents wondering whether they should let their children participate in the national vaccination program. For the second year in a row, there was a decline in infants being vaccinated, and the vaccination rate in certain groups in society is remarkably low -  in some reformed churches and private schools only about half of children are vaccinated. 

The health institute describes vaccines as one of the greatest medical success stories of the past 50 years - viruses like polio no longer cause paralysis or death in Western countries, because they've been virtually eradicated in these countries. According to the RIVM, soe 9 thousand children's lives have been saved sinc the Netherlands introduced its national vaccination program.

The RIVM plans to launch its digital additional training course for pediatricians in April. Participation is not compulsory.