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Joining Michelle today on the show is Dr. John Molinari to discuss the importance of vaccinations and immunizations. Dr. Molinari is a microbiologist who was awarded Professor Emeritus at the University of Detroit Mercy, where he served for 32 years as Professor and Chairman of the Department of Biomedical Sciences and Director of Infection Control. He was later Infection Control Director for THE DENTAL ADVISOR in Ann Arbor, Michigan from 2009-2018, has published over 500 scientific articles, text chapters, and abstracts in the areas of microbiology and immunology, and lectures nationally and internationally on topics dealing with infectious diseases and infection control. Dr. Molinari is also a founder and Past-President of OSAP, and co-author of the text Cottone’s Practical Infection Control in Dentistry.
This week’s episode explores the impacts of vaccines as a topic under infection control, with Dr. Molinari delving into the history of vaccines for diseases such as polio, smallpox, and many others. He goes on to talk about the ideal properties of vaccines and the need for them to be safe, and herd immunity including the risks associated with it and how it is achieved by infection and vaccination. The episode rounds off with Dr. Molinari reviewing the need for boosters, the typical side effects of vaccines, and why vaccine hesitancy exists.
Interview starts: 9:28
– Dr. Molinari’s journey in infection control in the dental industry
– The successful impacts of vaccines- a brief history
– What are the ideal vaccine properties?
– The six phases of vaccine development
– Why a vaccine is not 100%
– Herd immunity: What is it?
– How does herd immunity work?
– 2 ways to accomplish herd immunity
– The problems with herd immunity
– The effects of new variants on the success of the vaccines
– Is there a need for boosters?
– Vaccine hesitancy and refusal- is it new?
– Typical vaccine side effects
– Why dental care providers should have immunizations
“Vaccines were one of the greatest public health achievements of the 21st century”
“Back in my day, when these vaccines came out, like the polio vaccine, it was a personal family responsibility, but also people looked at it as a public health responsibility to get vaccinated.”
“You protect yourself, your family, but also others that you’ve come in contact with.”
“First and foremost, vaccines have to be safe. A vaccine has to be safe.”
“The benefits have to far outweigh the potential risks.”
“No vaccine is 100% foolproof.”
“Not everybody responds to vaccines…your immune response is different from mine.”
“Herd immunity basically says that the larger the percentage of the population that is immune against the disease, the greater the protection because you have less susceptible hosts for that virus or bacteria to spread in the population.”
“The more you allow the virus to spread between individuals, the better the chance it has to mutate to other variants which may retard the effectiveness of the vaccine.”
“I’m really okay not having any diseases, please and thank you.”
“The more the viruses replicate, the more they’re able to spread, the better the chance for natural mutations.”
“It always comes down to the same thing – get vaccinated, give yourself the best level of protection that you possibly can.”