Dr. S and I are happy* to tell you that we are expecting a child in December.
Unfortunately, winter is prime time for infections! As you may know, vaccine refusal in combination with several other factors has led to a pertussis epidemic in the US. Over 24,000 pertussis cases were reported to the CDC last year. A large amount of data suggests that the pertussis vaccine essentially provides no protection after somewhere between 6 and 10 years, and that immunity begins to wane after 4 years in both children and adults.
The CDC's current recommendation is that adults receive a single pertussis booster shot, or with every pregnancy, or when over 65. However, based on the overwhelming evidence indicating no pertussis immunity after ten years, we are asking that everyone who comes into contact with our child let us know they have had a pertussis or TDaP booster within the last ten years, and no less than a month before visiting. Many health departments will provide this booster for free to all people who are in contact with infants. We also ask that you receive an influenza vaccine for this winter's flu strains (2013/2014) at least a month before visiting.
If there is a medical reason you cannot be immunized, please let us know; we'll trust to our own (and the rest of our visitors' and families') immunizations to protect you as well as the baby. If you are not comfortable with being vaccinated, then you are welcome to visit us any time after next August, when the baby will have received enough protection from her own vaccinations to be safer from these dangerous illnesses.
The Drs. Scientist
* Not really! But let's pretend!
(Yes, I am really sending an email very like this to our friends and family. It seemed nicer than 'Get your fucking shots and keep your unimmunized germbags the fuck away from us.')