Alarming reason why the birth rate has plummeted in an Aussie state – as anti-vaxxer trolls pounce on a disturbing new chart before being brutally shut down
- The birth rate in NSW has fallen sharply
- COVID and cost of living to blame
The birth rate in NSW’s public hospitals has fallen to its lowest level in more than a decade and Australia’s cost of living crisis is to blame, according to new data.
In the first three months of this year, nearly 16,000 babies were born in public maternity wards.
This is the lowest figure in any quarter since records began in 2010, according to an analysis of data from the Bureau of Health Information.
The number of babies born briefly spiked during the pandemic to a peak of 19,081 in April to June in 2021, mainly due to an increase in conceptions as people were forced to stay at home.
Just under 16,000 babies were born in public maternity wards in the first three months of this year – the lowest figure of any quarter since records began in 2010
Covid, cost-of-living fears and climate change, as well as reduced immigration, are all cited as reasons for dropping out
Australian National University demographer Dr Liz Allen said a number of depressing factors prevented future parents from having children.
“Covid, cost of living, climate change and a growing backdrop of economic downturn are creating the perfect storm,” Dr Allen tweeted.
She added: ‘Time (and data) show how Covid has disrupted families; formation and pregnancy. Delayed, accelerated, delayed and forgotten births.’
But her insights were attacked by a legion of vaccine skeptics and conspiracy theorists who falsely claimed that the downward trend was due to the Covid vaccine.
Jamie McIntyre, a controversial Gold Coast entrepreneur, claimed the drop-off was due to a ‘not as safe, effective or necessary vaccine, which (is) being forced on the elderly, pregnant mothers and even children’.
The Therapeutic Goods Administration found no evidence that Covid-19 vaccines cause infertility in men or women, or future infertility in children.
The Therapeutic Goods Administration found no evidence Covid-19 vaccines cause infertility in men or women, or future infertility in children
Dr. Allen hit back at her critics, claiming that ‘the story of declining births in NSW is a complex social story, not a reductionist anti-vax fear-mongering horror story’.
“To suggest that Covid vaccinations, or any immunizations for that matter, have biologically contributed to declining births is to deny the abundant evidence and shamefully co-opt data to instill fear,” she said. news.com.au.
“It’s a real shame that instead of talking about the real reasons for falling births and how families can be better supported, misinformed and mean people misuse data on falling births to perpetuate unrelated fake science.”
Karen Cutter, an Australian government actuary, said the drop in birth rates could also be explained by a lack of immigrants coming to Australia during the pandemic years.
“Immigrants are usually young and tend to have babies,” she said.
“I suspect that the fertility rate of new migrants in a year or two after migration is well above the population average, so a lack of migration in the last few years could have a significant impact on birth rates.”
WHY VACCINES ARE IMPORTANT
Vaccination is a simple, safe and effective way to protect people against harmful diseases before they come into contact with them.
Vaccination not only protects individuals, but also others in the community, by reducing the spread of preventable diseases.
Research and testing are an essential part of developing safe and effective vaccines.
In Australia, vaccines must pass rigorous safety testing before the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) registers them for use. Vaccine approval can take up to 10 years.
Before vaccines become available to the public, they are tested in thousands of people in large clinical trials.
For many years, high-quality studies have compared the health of large numbers of vaccinated and unvaccinated children. Medical information from nearly 1.5 million children around the world has confirmed that vaccination does not cause autism.
People first became concerned about autism and immunization after the medical journal The Lancet published an article in 1998. This article claimed that there was a link between the measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine and autism.
Since then, scientists have completely discredited this article. The Lancet retracted it in 2010 and printed an apology. The British General Medical Council removed the author from the medical register for misconduct and dishonesty.
Source: Australian Department of Health