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Three Reasons to Require Children to Get COVID-19 Vaccination

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As a philosophical researcher, based on our research, we provide three ethical arguments in favor of requiring children to be vaccinated with COVID-19. (File photo; CDC / Unsplash)

May 5, Health Canada Approved COVID-19 vaccine for use in children ages 12-15..US Food and Drug Administration Followed immediately,and Other countries You could do the same.Similar approval On the horizon for younger children..

This is very welcome news. Unless most adolescents and children are vaccinated, it is impossible to achieve full protection against COVID-19 at the population level. However, Vaccine hesitant False belief about Risks that COVID-19 poses to children This may be a challenging goal.

That one tool May It is the duty of the vaccine to help promote vaccination intake.

As philosophical researchers, we provide three ethical arguments in favor of requiring children to be vaccinated with COVID-19. Based on our research.. We argue that it is ethically acceptable for the government to impose sanctions (such as fines and exclusion from the social environment and activities) on those who fail to vaccinate their children.

Risk of harm to children

Argument 1: If there is an easy and low cost way for parents or guardians to avoid exposure Children taking care of They should do so against the substantial risk of harm and death.

COVID-19 present Substantial risk of harm — Including long-term health complications such as organ damage Long COVID, Or Pediatric multisystem inflammatory syndrome (MIS-C) and death -at least A few Percentage Of children. Knowledge of the size of the group at risk, who in it, and how treatable these conditions are is limited.

If the COVID-19 vaccine is as safe and effective (or equally safe) as other standard childhood vaccinations guess so, Most COVID-19 vaccines are for adults), it provides parents and guardians with an easy and low-cost way to prevent their children from being exposed to infections that can cause serious harm or death. I will.

The government is obliged to protect children from parents and guardians who protect them. Parents may be at risk of harm or death that their children can easily avoid. Therefore, the state should, in principle, require parents to vaccinate their children with COVID-19 in the absence of a definitive counter-reason.

The state protects children in other situations by obliging adults to adopt simple, low-cost methods to avoid serious harm or death, such as using child seats or seat belts for children while driving. I admit.

Risk of harm to others

Argument 2: When vaccination of children can prevent parents and guardians from imposing a significant risk of harm and death To others They should vaccinate their children in an easy and low cost way.

The threat to all of us from COVID-19 is significant. The risks posed by unvaccinated children are especially great. Children contribute to the spread of the virus Often through social mixing in large groups (eg, through social mixing) In the classroom). In addition, longer children remain unvaccinated, There are more opportunities for new, more powerful variants of COVID-19 Appear and threaten us all.

A safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine provides parents and guardians with an easy and low-cost way to avoid putting the risk of serious harm or death associated with COVID-19 to others. I will.

States need to adopt measures to protect their populations from exposure to the risks of harm and death that could be avoided easily and at low cost. Therefore, the state (as a general rule) should require parents to vaccinate their children if there is no definitive counter-argument.

The state recognizes that it protects its population by imposing speed limits, drunk limits, driving vision requirements, etc., to easily avoid the risk of harm or death in other situations at low cost.

The state has already acknowledged that in many situations parents are obliged to take steps to prevent their children from endangering others.Childhood vaccination has already been done Mandatory in some liberal democracy, And most liberal democracy, for the same reason, requires children to attend school to provide civil education and prohibits children from carrying weapons.

Child happiness

Argument 3: One of the most compelling reasons to end a pandemic and require vaccination is related to the well-being of the child. Children need to be protected from the psychological and physical consequences of blockades and other restrictions, or the effects of inadequate restrictions such as school closures due to the spread of infection.

Limiting and affecting the spread of infection leads to reduced opportunities for the pursuit of well-being. The impact on education alone is significant, especially among the wealthiest people.

But most importantly, we want our children to prosper.The third discussion for mandating children’s vaccinations will be turned on unique Features of children `s happiness.. Children’s well-being can have different elements than adults. For example, adults can focus on values ​​such as genuine well-being and rational desires. This may not be the case for (especially young) children.

Happiness and satisfaction of desires are important for a child’s well-being, but they may not all be important.Other So-called “objective products”Can play an important role in the well-being of children. These include affection and supportive relationships, various forms of play, learning and intellectual development.

Ending the pandemic is what children call “Goods of childhood”, Valuable relationships with friends and extended families (especially the elderly), including various forms of unstructured play, exploration, intellectual development, and comfortably without inevitable concerns about risk. Pursue.

As a child, it is a relatively short period of personal life. It is important to prepare children to meet the challenge of becoming an adult. But it’s also time to taste a particular type of product in a unique way. An effective way to ensure this for all children is to mandate their vaccinations.

We believe these three arguments are compelling reasons for vaccination of children. We believe that they provide a powerful case for considering requiring vaccinations for children. However, even if there is a definitive objection to not requiring vaccination in some circumstances, we argue that our claim provides parents or guardians with a definitive reason to vaccinate their children.conversation

Anthony Skeleton, Associate Professor of Philosophy and Core Member of the Lotman Institute of Philosophy, Western University And Lisa Forceberg, Postdoctoral Fellow, British Academy, Oxford University

This article will be republished from conversation Under a Creative Commons license.Read Original work..

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