Why Are Texas Parents Opting Out of Back to School Vaccinations?

DALLAS -- What time is it? It's back to school time! And you know what that means, back to school shots! But this year, it seems like more parents than usual are opting out of the regularly scheduled vaccinations.

The lone star state is one of eighteen states where parents are able to have their kids skip the needle because of medical reasons or religious beliefs. And this year, forty-five thousand parents are having their kids do just that, a number that's up nine percent in one year.

Which begs the question, why? Figuring out why are moms and dads are having their kids skip a process that has been synonymous with school for years is not as simple as ABC or 123!

The most common reason for parents is, apparently, safety concerns.  There are some shots that  cause mild side effects but is that better than the alternative?

Catching a life-threatening disease?

"This all started with concerns about Autism from the vaccinations but as best as being reported in the medical literature really this has not been shown to be a known cause. And there’s not mercury or the things that have been claimed in the past vaccines that would cause something like that,” says Dr. John Secor,  of Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology.

Long term, vaccines have been proven to protect the kiddos from deadly diseases. The CDC credits vaccines for all but eliminating diseases like whooping cough, polio, measles and more.

"We’ve pretty much gotten rid of because of the vaccinations in this country. Now what we’re seeing a lot nowadays with people coming into the United States that have not have those vaccinations, you’re seeing pockets of those diseases starting to increase again.”