Fact Check: Did SIDS become nearly non-existent in 2020 due to drop in vaccination among babies?

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Quick Take

A social media post claims that during the 2020 lockdown, millions of babies missed their scheduled vaccines and became nearly non-existent. it says that in the same year Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) became nearly non-existent. We fact-checked and found this claim has misleading information and is Mostly false.

The Claim

An Instagram post reads, “Did you know that during the lockdowns of 2020, millions of babies missed their ‘well baby checkups’, which meant they didn’t get their scheduled v a c c i n e s.” The screenshot of the post is attached below.

The original post, whose screenshot was uploaded on Instagram, can also be seen on Twitter

Fact Check

What is SIDS?

Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is the sudden unexplained death of a child less than one year of age. It usually occurs during sleep. The baby seems healthy before its death. There is no explanation for the cause of their death. Even after a thorough investigation, an explanation for the cause of death may not be found. It is also known as crib death or Cot death. According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, “SIDS is the leading cause of death among babies between 1 month and one year of age. About 1,360 babies died of SIDS in 2017.”

Can vaccination lead to SIDS?

No. The US Department of Health and Human Services clarifies this by stating, “Recent evidence suggests that shots for vaccines may have a protective effect against SIDS. All babies should see their healthcare providers regularly for well-baby checkups and get their shots on time.”

The CDC also states, “Babies receive multiple vaccines when they are between 2 to 4 months old. This age range is also the peak for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). The timing of the 2-month and 4-month shots and SIDS has led some people to question whether they might be related. However, studies have found that vaccines do not cause and are not linked to SIDS.

Multiple research studies and safety reviews have examined possible links between vaccines and SIDS. The evidence accumulated over many years does not show any links between childhood immunization and SIDS.”

Did SIDS become nearly non-existent due to the drop in vaccination rates?

Not exactly. There is no medical or epidemiological basis for this claim. The vaccination rates indeed dropped in babies during the lockdown, which is proven by the studies done by the JAMA Pediatrics. The research concluded that as of September 2020, the childhood vaccination rates were lower than in 2020. But, contrary to the claim, the rate of SIDS increased, and it never became nearly non-existent due to the drop in the vaccination rates. It can be backed up by the studies done by the CDC, which recorded 33.3% deaths in 2019 and 39.4% deaths in 2020 due to SIDS. Also, as stated above, despite various claims, there is no proven link between vaccination among babies and SIDS. 

THIP MEDIA TAKE: To this date, there is no proven association between SIDS and childhood vaccinations. Also, even if it’s true that the rate of vaccination dropped in 2020, it is false to say that SIDS almost became non-existent. In fact, the rate of SIDS increased as compared to previous years. Therefore, the claim is mostly false.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Disclaimer
Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can further read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

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