Camille Echols’ photo of her crying daughter Ashley in hospital has gone viral – and it’s shattered one of the anti-vaxxers’ favourite arguments.
However, it’s made the mum the target of vile abuse from anti-vaxxers, including one who told her that she should have let her daughter die.
Echols, a paediatric registered nurse from Atlanta, Georgia, took the photo of 11-year-old Ashley in the ER last week. Ashley had a kidney transplant when she was two. She hasn’t been able to be fully vaccinated against chickenpox, and she’s highly vulnerable to infectious diseases.
“I’ve seen smart-ass memes saying, ‘Why would my unvaccinated kids be a threat to your vaccinated kids if you’re so sure they work?’” Echols posted on Facebook.
“THIS is why. There are people who cannot have live vaccines, like my daughter.
“She was exposed to a child with chickenpox this weekend and now we are in the ER. She’s getting lab work, injections of immunoglobulin and then we have to wait to see what the infectious disease doctor says.”
Ashley’s hospital treatment is costing $US5000, but it’s still not guaranteed to stop her developing chickenpox.
“That would mean an automatic admission to the hospital for IV antiviral meds,” Echols added. “She could become very, very sick from this.
“Please, if you are someone who believes your child will get autism from vaccines, PLEASE educate yourself. There isn’t a single peer-reviewed study that came to that conclusion. And the people choosing to skip vaccinations put children like my daughter at risk. She has been through SO much already. And this was avoidable.”
Echols made her post public after a friend asked if she could share it. Within a matter of hours it had been shared 20,000 times. Anti-vaxxers quickly went on the attack against her, tagging their friends to get them to join in.
Echols tells Mamamia that the comments from anti-vaxxers did get to her a few times, and she made the post private again.
“One person said I am to blame for Ashley’s pain and suffering for getting her a transplant, and that I should have let her die at two.”