Vax Talk

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Vax Talk is the podcast for people who want to do something about outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases and who understand that knowledge is power. We will discuss the latest news about vaccines and the impact they have on our communities, our families, and our friendships.

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Vax Talk is the podcast for people who want to do something about outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases and who understand that knowledge is power. We will discuss the latest news about vaccines and the impact they have on our communities, our families, and our friendships.
🇬🇧 English
last modified
2019-12-04 05:48
last episode published
2019-12-03 15:01
publication frequency
23.43 days
Voices for Vaccines owner   author  
Number of Episodes
Detail page
Science & Medicine Natural Sciences Medicine



Date Thumb Title & Description Contributors

BONUS: Giving Tuesday (Vaccines)

Thank you for being a Vax Talk listener. Support this podcast by becoming a Voices for Vaccines donor at

Ep. 35: Alternative Schedules w/ Dr. Offit

More frequently than outright refusing vaccines, parents sometimes ask doctors to give vaccines at a slower rate or with more visits than the CDC recommends. What is behind these requests, and are these "alternative schedules" a good idea? We asked Dr....

Ep. 34: Vaccine Hesitancy (from Seattle)

Nathan and Karen traveled to Seattle for the Washington State Immunization Summit to talk to attendees about vaccine hesitancy! This is the episode we have been waiting to do! SLIDES FROM THIS EPISODE:

Ep. 33: California's Vaccine Legislator

Dr. Richard Pan has been a champion for community immunity his entire career, from his beginnings as a resident in Pittsburgh to his work in the California legislation to eliminate non-medical vaccine exemptions. We invited him to the show to give us t...

Ep. 32.4: The Trivia Show

Nurses Who Vaccinate's Melody Butler swung by the podcast and threw down the gauntlet, challenging Nathan to a trivia duel. Who knows more about vaccines and their history? Listen to find out. Thank you to our friends at Vaccine Education Center at Ch...

Ep. 32.3: Vaccines, Baseball, and Da Vinci, NIAM19

Continuing with our NIAM2019 GAME SHOW theme, this time inviting Keith Law to play Offit, Wakefield, or Dan Brown. Keith Law is an ESPN contributor, baseball expert, author, and vaccine enthusiast, making him the perfect person to compete against Nath...

Ep. 32.2: Troll or Be Trolled! National Immunization Awareness Month

You first met him on Facebook when he pretended to be customer service for Large Retail Store. Because he has also satirized the world's most notorious anti vaccine activists, we invited Ben Palmer to play Troll or Be Trolled in celebration of National...

Ep 32.1: Stop the Presses! National Immunization Awareness Month

August is the month every year that the U.S. celebrates the good work vaccines do in our community. For NIAM 2019, we have decided to celebrate with Game Show Month! Our first game is Fact Checker. We invited health journalist Tara Haelle aboard to li...

Ep 31: Rotary's Polio Mission

Polio is *this close* to being eradicated, so we invited Rotary International's Dr. Carol Pandak to the show to discuss their mission to end polio. In addition, Nathan and Karen discuss Jessica Biel and SB 276 as well as Karen's Big ACIP adventure, an...

Ep 30: Measles w/ Dr. Offit

In this episode, Karen and Nathan discuss the latest measles outbreaks with Dr. Paul Offit. He takes us through how these outbreaks behave, what causes them, measles elimination, what measles is actually like, and how we can all work together to preven...

Ep 29: National Infant Immunization Week & Measles Outbreaks

In this special NIIW mini-episode, Karen talks to a different Dr. Nathan (Dr. Chomilo) about the 25th anniversary of National Infant Immunization Rates and how the reasons for not vaccinating have changed over the years. They also discuss current measl...

Ep. 28: Ethan Linderberg, the internet, and teen advocacy

A few months ago, Ethan Linenberger was just a teenager with a Reddit account. He used that account to find out how to get himself vaccinated, and now he is one of the youngest--and smartest--vaccine advocates around. We talked to him about vaccines, s...

Ep. 27: Vaccine Updates from ACIP and HELP!

Vaccine buzz is buzzier lately, with a new, young advocate (Ethan Lindenberger) traveling to Washington, D.C. to testify about why he got vaccinated after his mother had refused to vaccinate him and with anti-vaccine activists trying to "inundate" the ...

Ep. 26: Vaccine Court, Autism, and a New Conspiracy Theory

It's been more than a decade since a U.S. court, in an omnibus proceeding, found that vaccines do not cause autism, but that finding has sparked a new conspiracy theory, thanks in part to Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. We invited vaccine law expert Dr. Dorit R...

Ep. 25: HPV Vaccine and How We Decide

The HPV Vaccine seems to have a special place--not as a cancer-preventing tool but as something people sometimes fear. But when the science is clear that this vaccine is safe and needed, why do some refuse it? For answers, we talk to Dr. Noel Brewer, ...

Ep. 24: The One About Influenza

Do you get your flu shot? Does everyone you know get one, too? We invited Dr. LJ Tan to talk to us about last year's flu season, this year's flu forecast, flu vaccine uptake, and Riverdale. Links from this episode: Wonder Woman Vaccinates--https://www...

Ep. 23: Vaccines Did Not Cause Rachel's Autism

Dr. Peter Hotez is a pediatrician, a vaccinologist, and a parent of Rachel, who is autistic. His new book, Vaccines Did Not Cause Rachel's Autism, leaves no wiggle room for doubt about whether or not he embraces scientific consensus concerning vaccines...

Ep. 22: Measles Eradication and Elimination

If measles has been eliminated from North America, what's up with these outbreaks? Is it even possible to get rid of it globally and for good? We invited CDC's Dr. Mark Papania and Dr. Manisha Patel to answer all of our measles eradication questions. ...

Ep. 21: Anti-Vaccine Nurses

A PICU nurse contemplates swabbing a measles patients to infect her own child. A nurse practitioner makes a video about how to school pediatricians on vaccines. What is a pro-vaccine advocate to do? We invited Nurses Who Vaccinate's Melody Butler to di...

Ep. 20.4: Superman, Cancer, and Vaccines

At age 44, Jason Mendolsohn was diagnosed with Stage IV HPV throat cancer, and now he's on a mission to convince families to prevent this cancer in their children through immunization. Check out Jason at In this episode, we a...

Ep. 20.3: Young Superheroes Protect Herd Immunity

Please note: This episode IS appropriate for kids of all ages, and we invite everyone to listen. Ethan Posard has a film credit and has published a book--and he's only 17. Meet vaccine advocacy's most influential young hero in this week's episode abou...

Ep. 20.2: Protecting Our Littles w/Dr. Jacobson

New parents have many questions about vaccines. What is the best way to answer those questions and to handle potential vaccine concerns? We talked to Mayo Clinic's Dr. Bob Jacobson and tapped into his wealth of experience about all things vaccines befo...

Ep 20.1: All the Pregnant Ladies w/ Heidi Murkoff

It's National Immunization Awareness Month, week 1. We are focused on vaccines during pregnancies, the two-for-one that protects both mom and baby. To talk about this important topic, we invited What to Expect's Heidi Murkoff to share her expertise an...

Ep 19: Hashtag Vaccines: the Social Media Episode

Echo chambers, Dunning-Kruger, misinformation, and conspiracy theories. These bad parts of social media are what pro-vaccine advocates battle daily and are the subject of this episode. Nathan and Karen talk to Dr. Jen Golbeck, director of the Social In...

EP 18: Advocacy We Believe In with People We Like

Karen traveled to Atlanta for the National Immunization Conference and met many amazing people, a few of whom are featured in this episode. Nathan talks about the great pro-vaccine advocates we know, and they both discuss why we all advocate and what w...

Ep 17: Mamas, don't let your babies miss NIIW

Nathan and Karen talk to Every Child By Two's Amy Pisani about how the immunization challenges have changed over the decades and what challenges we face in our work together combatting vaccine-preventable diseases. Links from the episode: Every Child ...

Ep 16: What about the dads?

So much of vaccine advocacy is aimed at mothers, but where are the dads in all of this? To find out, Nathan and Karen talked to Dean Masello, writer, comedian, and SAHD. Find him at This episode was made possible by a generous donation fr...

Ep 15: Parenthetical Science

Karen and Nathan host Dr. Chad Hayes and Natalie Newell from the Parenthetical Science podcast for a rousing discussion about how parenting is harder than it needs to be and how people fall into the neverending woo rabbit hole. Links from the episode:...

Ep 14: Ask Dr. Offit

Nathan and Karen talk to Dr. Paul Offit--head of infectious diseases at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and all around good guy. Dr. Offit took the time to answer questions our listeners submitted online, covering topics from influenza to pertussis...

Ep. 13: HPV Cancers, Vaccines, and Cervivors

It's Cervical Cancer Awareness Month! In this episode, Nathan and Karen talk to Tamika Felder about her battle with HPV-caused cervical cancer and her organization, Cervivor. Links from this episode: Someone You Love: https://www....

Bonus Episode: Live at NFID

In November, Nathan and Karen traveled to Bethesda, MD to record a live episode at NFID's Vaccinology Course. They discussed vaccine messaging with the good people there, and now, as a holiday treat, are sharing it with you. Watch for more great VAX T...

Ep 12: Get Your Flu Shot

It’s also National Influenza Vaccination Week, which means it isn’t too late to get your flu shot. We invited Dr. Bill Schaffner (Vanderbilt) to discuss the difference between influenza and colds/tummy illnesses, this year’s flu season, the effectivene...

Ep. 12: Get Your Flu Shot!

It's National Influenza Vaccination Week, which means Karen and Nathan are talking about flu and flu vaccines. Our guests are Dr. William Schaffner from Vanderbilt University and Serese Marotta from Families Fighting Flu ( ...

Ep 10: The Unvaccinated Kids I Love

When her firstborn was just a baby, Catie heard some frightening rumors about vaccines that made her stop immunizing completely (until she learned how wrong that rumor was). Erica, however, has always been a staunch vaccine advocate, but her relatives ...

Ep. 9: What Can I Do?

Many people like the idea of highly immunized communities, but they aren't sure what they can do to solve the problems of vaccine refusal and hesitancy. We talk to Dr. Tara Smith about her ideas, which she outlines in a new article, "Vaccine Rejection ...

Ep. 8.4: Remembering Kimberly; Teens & vaccines

Kimberly Coffey was only a few days from high school graduation when she fell sick with what she thought was the flu. Patti Wukovits, her mother, joins us to remember Kimberly and to encourage parents to vaccinate their teens and pre-teens fully and on...

Ep. 8.3: Vaccines aren't just for kids!

When you turned 19, you entered a different landscape in the vaccine world. Recommendations, access, funding, and so much else changed for you. We turned to Dr. Bill Schaffner (Vanderbilt University) and asked him what all adults need to know about vac...

Ep. 8.2: Pregnancy and vaccines w/ Dr. Munoz

Did you know that your baby receives her first vaccines before she is even born? In this episode, Nathan and Karen discuss maternal vaccines with Dr. Flor Munoz from Texas Children's. We cover a broad range of how, why, when, and where concerning an ex...

Ep. 8.1: NIAM 17, Baby!

It's National Immunization Awareness Month! This week, Nathan and Karen introduce NIAM to listeners, talk about how anyone can advocate during the month of August, and discuss the importance of infant immunizations. Plus, we give an important update ab...

Ep. 7: Craig's Pro-Vax World Tour

Why would a pro-vaccine advocate take hiatus from his job and embark on a multi-state journey following the notorious Wakefield Vaxxed Bus? We invited Craig Egan to discuss his tour protesting this anti-vaccine bus and his philosophy about countering a...

Ep. 6: Andrew Wakefield

Everyone knows Andrew Wakefield as the author of "that paper," but few know the full extent of his dealings in the anti-vaccine community. We talk to Ken Reibel and Matt Carey, two father of autistic children and active writers and autism advocates, to...

Ep. 5: Measles in Minnesota

The worst measles outbreak in Minnesota in 25 years, sparked by anti-vaccine misinformation, has us asking how officials handle outbreaks. We talk to Joe Kurland, Infection Preventionist at Children's Minnesota, and Minnesota Representative Mike Freibe...

Ep. 4: National Infant Immunization Week!

We kick off our NIIW celebration William Shatner (topic, not guest) #ivax2protect What diseases can we prevent in early childhood? Genevieve's son and rotavirus Emily's daughter and pertussis

Ep. 3: Vaccines and Legislation Updates

Statements made by HHS Secretary Price Sarah Despres from ECBT The AHCA and president's budget State legislative roundup Jinny Suh from Immunize Texas How you can make a difference

EP. 2: Outbreaks! with Dr. Paul Offit

Mumps, pertussis, HPV, influenza, and measles. What is causing outbreaks of these diseases and what can you do to protect your family. Nathan and Karen discuss the whole issue with Dr. Paul Offit from the Vaccine Education Center at Children's Hospital...

Ep. 1: HPV Vaccine and Someone You Love

RFK Jr. "Vaccine Safety Commission The Conjunction Vaccine Cervical Cancer and HPV Cancer Deaths HPV Vaccine safety Frederic Lumiere and Christine Baze (30 min)

Ep 0: Big News!

If the idea that we can debate prevention and science has your attention, then we have a podcast for you. Karen Ernst (Voices for Vaccines) and Dr. Nathan Boonstra (Blank Children's Hospital) introduce a new podcast all about vaccines and the conversat...