There was an interesting piece in today's New York Times' science section looking back on the historic uses and attitudes toward vaccines at the time of the founding of our country. Benjamin Franklin, after the sad loss of one of his children, John Adams and George Washington were all advocates of vaccination as a way to fight the devastating effects of diseases like small pox.
Today, the search for new and better vaccines and treatments for infectious diseases goes on. America's biopharmaceutical research companies are developing nearly 400 new vaccines and other medicines to treat infectious diseases. Needless to say, medicine and health care have improved immeasurably since our country's founding fathers' were early proponents of vaccination. But, clearly, the battle against infectious disease goes on.