One of the largest public health initiatives has been the introduction of immunization. It has saved more lives than health promotion measures other previously adopted. Immunization was first discovered by Edward Jenner, a British scientist.
The first human to be vaccinated is a child named James Phillip, inoculated with cowpox virus to protect against smallpox in 1796. Continue reading to get more information about childhood immunizations.
Because the vaccine has been developed for a variety of infectious diseases and some diseases such as smallpox have been eradicated as well.
The immune system is responsible for protecting against bacteria and viruses. The immune system protects the body by first recognizing some of the proteins located in this layer of the organism and recognizes non-self. This is the essence of immunity- "self-forming non-self recognition".
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There are two subdivisions of immunity: active and passive. Passive immunity is mediated by antibodies against a specific protein on the surface of the infecting organism. It is quick in onset and leads to the initial response to infection.
Active immunity is mediated by cells of the immune system, particularly T lymphocytes These cells are involved in the process of adaptation of immune enzymes whenever they are introduced to a foreign protein.
They then produce a variety of chemicals that stimulate the production of antibodies and also call other cells known as natural killer (NK) cells to attack infectious organisms. Also, cell-mediated immunity is required for immune memory.
The purpose of immunization is to enable active immunity against this important cause of morbidity and mortality, namely polio, tetanus, diphtheria, measles, whooping cough, tuberculosis, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, H Influenzae, and measles.