Government health organisations and big pharmaceuticals are quick to tell the world it is due to vaccinations that the numbers of disease in the population have fallen, when in fact you are better off thanking a plumber.

plumbing

Before plumbing was commonplace, the average ‘sanitation’ station in a house consisted of a basin and a jug to fill with water, human waste was disposed of wherever possible. The rates of death and disease during these times were incredibly high. 

Life expectancy was no better than middle age and outbreaks such as the The Black Plague were commonplace, wiping out huge swathes of the population at once. The Black Plague alone killed 75 million – 200 million people, around 1/3 of Europe’s population.

Polio in India

Polio is known to thrive in fecal matter, and is found in areas where sanitation is poor. Immunization efforts have taken credit for making the country “polio free” as deemed by the World Health Organization. However in 2009, India reported 762 cases of polio, the highest in the world at that time. Since 2014, there are no “official” documented cases of polio, but without proper sanitation this is sure to change.
India has a population of 1.2 billion, making it the second most populous country in the world. Currently, 780 million Indians do not have a toilet; 96 million Indians do not have access to clean drinking water.

The efforts to improve sanitation in the area has been eclipsed by the effort to vaccinate instead, trying to fix the problem rather than prevent it. Over 9 billion has been spent in a vaccination campaign, and in some parts of India children have received as many as 30 doses of the oral polio vaccine before they turn 5. Vaccines are being pushed on people who don’t even have access to safe drinking water by the Bill Gates Foundation, the World Health Organization, and GAV.

The current vaccine situation has been met with anger after 53,000 cases of NPAFP, a non-polio acute flaccid paralysis, occurred in those who had been vaccinated. NPAFP is a disease that is clinically indistinguishable from polio but has double the death rate. As the rates of vaccines went up and down, the cases of NPAFP matched it.It would be a much better solution to spend money on better sanitation rather than trying to paper over the cracks by handing out these dangerous vaccines.

In the past 13 months, India has reported 53,563 cases of NPAFP at a national rate of 12 per 100,000 children—way above the global benchmark set by WHO of 2 per 100,000.” – Jan, 13 2014 quote from LiveMint Newpaper, the second largest business newspaper in India.

Cholera in Victorian London

Enlightenment about sanitation came to England in 1854 when an area of London was subject to an outbreak of cholera that claimed the lives of 500 in just 10 days. Dr. John Snow, who lived near the effected area investigated the outbreak and quickly found the reason behind it.

Five years earlier he had written a paper in which he expressed his thoughts that disease was able to travel through dirty water, although this was shot down by his peers who at that time believed that bad vapors, or a “miasma in the atmosphere” caused disease.But this time he had proof that he was right.

He traced the outbreak back to single water pump on Broad Street which all of the victims had used, and after he persuaded the local authorities to remove the handle of the pump, the cases stopped immediately. Because of this discover, Dr. John Snow is regarded as the father of epidemiology.

Prevention, not cure

The evidence for clean water being a better way to eradicate diseases such as cholera is overwhelming, yet in some of the poorest parts of the world vaccines produced by big pharmaceuticals are taking the credit. The problem needs to be stopped before it happens, rather than money being spent on ‘cures’.

While the medical professionals take comfort in thinking they are reducing disease with their vaccines, we know the real hero is the plummer.