(PHOENIX) -- Authorities and doctors are warning parents who want to avoid chicken pox vaccines for their children that a new mail-order scheme to share lollipops licked by children infected with the disease as a way to create immunity in their kids is not only unsafe, but illegal.
News reports in Phoenix and Nashville this week looked into groups forming on social media sites that offer ways to get “natural immunity” from chicken pox by deliberately exposing children to the disease.
Concerns about the vaccine range from worries about whether some of the ingredients are harmful to children, to fears that the vaccine itself is ineffective and would only be creating short-term immunity to the disease.
Facebook groups such as “Find a Pox Party in Your Area” have popped up, offering ways for people to connect and share the virus through infected items, according to the TV news reports.
Doctors warn that the practice is not only impractical, but it’s dangerous.
Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio