[extropy-chat] Are vaccinations useless?

Damien Sullivan phoenix at ugcs.caltech.edu
Tue Mar 14 19:30:23 UTC 2006

On Tue, Mar 14, 2006 at 05:17:13AM +0000, Russell Wallace wrote:

>    Good article, thanks! Not very specific about actual causes, but it
>    would seem consistent with the idea that things like hygiene,
>    sanitation and quarantine account for the largest part of the
>    improvement (with improved nutrition helping, but not enough to
>    account for the bulk).

> If medicine cannot be credited with the large declines in population
> mortality rates after 1750, what then can be credited?  Other alternative
> candidate causes seem together sufficient to explain the decline:
> reduction in exposure to infection and improvement in the human host's
> ability to resist infection.  Of these two, reduction in exposure was the
> primary method through which public health measures could be effective.
> The role of public health measures is of interest in itself.

Reduction in exposure was the primary method through which *public health*
measures *could* be effective, not necessarily the primary cause of the
reduction of mortality.  But if mortality rates were dropping from 1750,
nutrition would seem like a bigger candidate, at least then, than public

-xx- Damien X-) 

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