Polio vaccination Pacific Press/Getty Images

Wenn Populismus tödlich ist

LONDON – Seit einigen Jahren ist die grundlose Skepsis einiger Bevölkerungsgruppen gegenüber Impfungen, in Entwicklungsländern und entwickelten Ländern gleichermaßen, zu einem der schwerwiegendsten Hindernisse für den Fortschritt des öffentlichen Gesundheitswesens geworden. Sie ist tatsächlich einer der Hauptgründe dafür, dass Infektionskrankheiten, die ausgemerzt werden könnten, noch heute existieren.

Beispielsweise wurde der Kampf gegen Polio in Afghanistan, Pakistan und Nigeria behindert, wo die Herrschaft islamischer Militanten zu einem zunehmenden Widerstand gegen die Impfkampagnen führt. Und in vielen Ländern mit hohen Einkommen gab es in den letzten Jahren Masernausbrüche aufgrund von Impfängsten, die mit der Veröffentlichung eines betrügerischen Aufsatzes in der britischen Medizinzeitschrift The Lanzet 1998 begann.

Zurzeit steigt die Skepsis gegenüber der Sicherheit und Effizienz von Impfungen in Südeuropa. Laut einer Studie von 2016 gehört Griechenland jetzt zu den 10 Ländern weltweit mit dem niedrigsten Vertrauen in Impfsicherheit. Und, wie der griechische Gesundheitsminister Andreas Xanthos anmerkte, Ärzte sehen sich immer mehr mit Eltern konfrontiert, die Angst davor haben, ihre Kinder impfen zu lassen.

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