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THURSDAY, March 12, 2015 -- In the wake of the measles outbreak that has generated headlines for months, more Americans now say they support childhood vaccinations, according to a new HealthDay/Harris Poll.


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Of more than 2,000 adults surveyed, 87 percent said they thought that the vaccines routinely given to young children are safe. That's up from 77 percent from a similar poll last July.

Dr. Aaron Glatt, a spokesman for the Infectious Diseases Society of America, called the shift encouraging. "I think the measles outbreak is causing some people to re-examine their 'facts' about childhood vaccinations," Glatt said.

In recent years, some American parents have decided to either skip the measles/mumps/rubella (MMR) vaccine and other childhood inoculations, or ask their doctors to delay certain shots -- often due to fears over vaccine safety. Those worries date back to 1998, when a small study claimed to show a link between the MMR vaccine and autism. The study has since been widely discredited.

One poll finding was somewhat surprising. There's a common perception that vaccine detractors in the United States are largely from upper-income brackets. But the poll found that people from the highest-income households -- earning $100,000 or more a year -- were less likely to believe in the MMR-autism link -- only 12 percent did, versus 22 percent of people from households earning less than $50,000.

The HealthDay/Harris Poll was conducted online between Feb. 25-27 and included a nationally representative sample of 2,032 U.S. adults.

The complete findings of the newest joint HealthDay/Harris poll are available here. HealthDay's news report is available here. Full data on the poll and its methodology are available at Harris Poll.

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About HealthDay

HealthDay is a leading producer and syndicator of evidence-based health news for consumers and physicians and is one of the largest health news syndicators to Internet sites. Its daily consumer health news service appears on more than 5,000 websites such as MSN Health, USNews.com, Everyday Health, and government websites like Healthfinder.gov, and MedlinePlus. A daily video version of the top health news story of the day is featured on HealthDay TV and HealthDay TV en Español a 60-second daily news broadcast appearing on several major media and U.S. government websites.

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HealthDay's custom content division produces specialized content for a variety of audiences and works with some of the larger health portals in the United States.

About Harris Poll

Harris Poll is one of the world's leading custom market research firms, leveraging research, technology, and business acumen to transform relevant insight into actionable foresight. Known widely for the Harris Poll and for pioneering innovative research methodologies, Harris offers expertise in a wide range of industries including health care, technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer package goods. Serving clients in more than 215 countries and territories through our North American, European, and Asian offices and a network of independent market research firms, Harris specializes in delivering research solutions that help us - and our clients - stay ahead of what's next. For more information, please visit Harris Poll.

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