Monday, 14 December 2009
Leave emotion out of it
The post at the end of my Whitehaven News blog from Mary Grady is typical of the frustration felt by many people hearing conflicting views about the swine flu jab. She asks for my opionion and I always have to start by saying I'm a journalist, not a doctor. But I'm not going to chicken out of stating my view: Yes, I would get the swine flu jab (I have asthma so will no doubt get called up at some point). Mary says it is "very emotional" trying to decide. Well it is but emotion is probably the last thing you need to make the decision. I'd rely instead on cold logic. Which is more likely - getting swine flu or getting complications from the swine flu jab? In short, getting swine flu. Both are rare occurrences at the moment but it's no good starting to get a bad reaction to swine flu and then wishing you'd had the jab. If you're deciding to have or not have the jab it has to be based on 'something' and "just a feeling" ain't no good. So you have to base your decision on cold scientific logic - in which case there's no argument: have the jab and stay well. These articles on the New Scientist website may also help you: Swine flu - eight myths that could endanger your life.