Editorial Note: This post is by John Stone at my invitation. I am broadly speaking pro-Vaccination and reluctant to stray into the Vaccination Wars but the issues about free debate in recent posts seem most acute in this domain. Anyone who even thinks about questioning is vilified.
There are important public policy issues involved in MMR but less so with the HPV vaccine and the Flu Shot. For many working in healthcare, the Flu Shot is worrying. While in Britain it is not compulsory, there is a lot of pressure even though the case for having it seems weak. Elsewhere Flu Shots have been made compulsory. I’m sure many of us wonder what we would do if put on the spot like this.
Some of the strongest Vaccination advocates double up as Pro-Transparency campaigners. A Furor Vaxicanus just doesn’t seem to match up with transparency. John Stone is a Vaccine Safety Advocate who to my mind has also been one of the most reasonable voices commenting on some of the posts on this site over the last year. I don’t know John from a bar of soap (as we’d say in Dublin).
But I do know Rokuro Hama whose work John cites here. Rokuro and the group behind MedWatcher Japan are the most extraordinary courageous scientists and lawyers and all round safety advocates there are. Their MedCheck Bulletin is being made available in English for the first time this week and will be worth following – see MedCheck.
The point being raised by Rokuro goes to the heart of Evidence Based Medicine. When “girls” complain of serious problems after Gardasil or Cervarix, what weight do we put on what they say? What weight do we put on what we know about the biology of the HPV vaccine? What weight do we put on the fact that any effort to ask about this runs into media flak from SMC UK, or SMC Australia, SMC Canada or SMC USA?
In 2012 Katie Couric was the best paid media presenter in the United States, referred to as America’s Darling. Late in November 2013 it was announce that Couric was to give room in her ABC Television show Katie to the subject of vaccine injury from HPV vaccine. The result was an immediate furore.
Wiki recalls aspects of this historic episode:
In December 2013, Couric ran a segment on the HPV vaccine…which critics accused of being too sympathetic to the scientifically unsupported claims that this vaccine was dangerous…For example, Seth Mnookin accused her broadcast of employing false balance. In addition, Alexandra Sifferlin, of Time magazine, compared Couric to Jenny McCarthy, a well-known anti-vaccine celebrity…On December 10, 2013, a week after the original segment was aired, Couric posted an article on The Huffington Post responding to this criticism, in which she stated:
“I felt it was a subject well worth exploring. Following the show, and in fact before it even aired, there was criticism that the program was too anti-vaccine and anti-science, and in retrospect, some of that criticism was valid. We simply spent too much time on the serious adverse events that have been reported in very rare cases following the vaccine. More emphasis should have been given to the safety and efficacy of the HPV vaccines.”
The show which was falling in the ratings was due to be taken off the air the following summer was suddenly terminated 19 December, but not before a follow-up program had been screened giving all its room to the vaccine advocates. This was obviously a huge professional humiliation for Couric, but it was not the whole of the story: on Couric’s website a gigantic battle raged between families of injured people supporting the show and an angry mob of “skeptics” – many of them Australians – who ridiculed them. There were probably more than twelve thousand posted comments in all: more than a thousand apparently came from the keyboard of ubiquitous vaccine program advocate Prof Dorit Reiss, an academic (but not qualified lawyer) from Hastings law school in San Francisco, which is in partnership with Kaiser Permanente who were hired by Merck to study the post-marketing effects of their HPV vaccine Gardasil. Kaiser Permanente are also partners with Centers for Disease Control. While Reiss was more well-mannered than most of the vaccine advocates she dismissed any attempt to discuss vaccine injury as anecdotal, and her tactics were copied and deployed more brutally others. Many people, of course, speculated on how she could post so often while carrying out her professional duties at Hastings.
The episode also closely echoed a campaign earlier in the year to have Jenny McCarthy – widely labelled “anti-vaccinationist” – excluded from broadcasting, an episode which also involved Reiss and her colleagues at Voices for Vaccines. V4V also parades as not accepting pharma money but is in fact an off-shoot of Task Force for Global Health, which does accept pharma money, and is in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control. It is interesting to note that the chair of Task Force’s Board of Directors is leading Atlanta product liability lawyer Jane Fugate Thorpe.
It should be evident, whatever the words of Couric after the event, that these are not stories about science asserting itself but of corporate leverage and internet bullying. The strategies and their effect say nothing about the quality of the science at all. They speak to the ethics of the proponents. It is particularly salutary to view these events against the background of a recent review of the evidence in the independent Japan Institute of Pharmacovigilance bulletin Med Check – The Informed Prescriber (editor-in-chief Rokuro Hama). Hama is also a special advisor to the Cochrane Collaboration:
Harm of HPV
Abstract: Incidence of serious adverse reactions to HPV vaccine is 3.2% per year according to our recalculation using the latest data (3,200 cases per 100,000 person years). This is almost equivalent to the incidence rate of serious adverse events within 1.2 years after the first vaccination (annual rate of 2.8%) reported in the randomized controlled trials (RCT) of Cervarix. In Cervarix RCTs, the excess incidence of serious reactions, autoimmune diseases and death after 3.4 years comparing with those during 1.2-3.4 years was calculated as 4,000 patients, 630 patients and over 100 deaths per 100,000 person-years respectively. These might also occur in Japan. As to the epidemiological surveys from Europe and North America that Japanese Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare (MHLW) based on as the evidence for safety of the vaccine have flaws in their methodologies. One study confuses prevalence with incidence, and the other two have serious bias derived from “healthy vaccinee effect”. While there is no evidence confirming that HPV vaccination decreases incidence of and mortality from cervical cancer yet, supposing that the vaccine could halve the cervical cancer mortality, the expected maximum benefit would be two deaths per 100,000 person-years at the most. Hence, the harm experienced is overwhelmingly greater than the benefit expected.
In the United Kingdom media reporting of the harms of HPV vaccines has died out since 2009. An article in the Sunday Express by Lucy Johnston, much sneered at by Ben Goldacre in the Guardian, reported much the same thing as Med Check:
The cervical cancer vaccine may be riskier and more deadly than the cancer it is designed to prevent, a leading expert who developed the drug has warned. She also claimed the jab would do nothing to reduce the rates of cervical cancer in the UK. Speaking exclusively to the Sunday Express, Dr Diane Harper, who was involved in the clinical trials of the controversial drug Cervarix, said the jab was being ‘overmarketed’ and parents should be properly warned about the potential side effects.
It looks as if the article was withdrawn after a complaint by Dr Harper because she had alluded to the aggressive marketing of Gardasil by Merck in the US when the main topic was GSK’s Cervarix and this was not clear in the otherwise sound report. Be that as it may this is still a vaccine where the benefits are six years later still entirely theoretical and speculative and there are apparently many injured young women.
They and their families should be allowed to speak to the world without harassment. The public pay for these very expensive vaccines twice, first through the public purse, then through the harms they inflict.Share this:
Copyright © Data Based Medicine Americas Ltd.
Coercion is not justified in Influenza vaccination*
There are mandatory activities in public health, also for clinicians. For example, rules and norms for washing hands to decrease antibiotics resistence. Therefore we can consider the possibility of requesting flu vaccine to health workers if that reduces influenza infection and its consequences in patients. This would be so if the vaccine reduces transmission of infection among health workers and patients. But, according to the Cochrane Reviews and others, we cannot expect such a positive outcomes. In addition, the influenza vaccine causes only short-term immunity (around four months), then should we re-vaccinate if there is a delayed flu epidemic?
The idea behind mandatory flu vaccination is to transform the hospital in a “bunker” in front of flu. But the side effects of mandatory vaccination are not limited to potential damages for health workers’ health, as neuritis. In public health we should consider other harms; for example, the false sense of security that can lead to less rigorous measures of proven effectiveness in the transmission of influenza, such as washing hands and wearing a mask. In addition, patients may perceive all responsibility regarding the flu falls on the shoulders of health workers but logically it should be required compulsory vaccination to patients themselves and those who will visit them (in the case of hospitalization, relatives and friends). Nobody could cross the gate into the “bunker” without the passport of the flu vaccine. So, will we negate access to patients who need care because they are not vaccinated?
Hospitals and health centers are not “castles” with walls to protect patients from flu. This vision has no scientific, nor ethical base. We need more practical and effective measures like improving hand washing, for example.
*J. Gérvas. MD, PhD
Visiting Professor, National School of Public Health, Madrid, Spain
*R. Altisent. MD, PhD
Chair of Professionalism and Clinical Ethics. University of Zaragoza. Spain.
Many thanks for this. I agree. There are two issues – defining when coercion is justified and deciding if issues can be debated – a lot of de facto coercion happens if there is no debate.
In the case of Flu, pregnant women are caught at a vulnerable time and heavily pressured in this country to have the vaccine. I think the heavy pressure is immoral – it comes from health bodies and personnel who will simply not consider that this is a point where people have a right to refuse.
Elsewhere in a comment on a recent post someone says it should always be a persons right to choose vaccination or not. I can’t agree with this either though. There will be times when communities believe mandatory vaccination or even isolation during treatment for tuberculosis is warranted. But my mental health background gives me concerns here – when mandatory treatment began within mental health it was to facilitate the community who had rights to discharge from treatment. These rights are all but lost and just as with the growing prison population we are creating a growing forced treatment population. Finding the right balance is difficult and it seems very easy to slip from something that is warranted and likely does good on balance to something that is oppressive and likely does harm on balance.
There is a sense that the administrative classes within medicine are losing touch with the governed in much the same way as they are in the wider polity.
No pregnant woman should take ANYTHING> I was told zoloft was safe, I gave it up withing the first 8 weeks of pregnancy…. I had a seemingly healthy baby, after three days I had to turn off the life support of a zoloft half a heart baby, who’s life day one to day 3 was agony to watch…………… How dare anyone tell a pregnant woman to take anything……….. DONT DO IT.
Always a persons right to choose vaccination……….. how dare someone forcibly inject another……… just as it is a persons choice to accept medication, not having it forced upon them………… that is a persons one and only possession, themselves, and forcing them against their will, I believe is a criminal act.
Sue? what a joke, I told them of the birth defects, 19 years later finally people in USA are suing.. Me? Nah I am in Australia, USA dont give a shit.
In China, if someone has a virus, a cold, they wear a face mask….. they are not embarrassed. If people with a virus, actually wore a face mask, the transmission would be cut a whole lot more than vaccinating…………… So what is wrong with the Western World? When there are colds, flu going around, we just happily cough our bugs on everyone……. why? Wear a damn face mask, stop giving your bugs away for free………….. Now all the money spent on damn flu vaccines, etc, etc, why not just educated people to stay home……. and if they go out, wear a face mask, simple, works in China.
Thank-you, Juan, for your analogy of the hospital as a ‘bunker’ against the spread of infectious disease. As a medical anthropologist, I find this especially interesting, and appropriate. Associated with this is the ‘bunker mentality’ that goes with it, where opinions harden into a dogmatic form of ideology, which takes on a kind of hegemonic energy.
By ‘hegemony’, I mean the correct definition of that term, as intended by its originator, Antonio Gramsci, ie. a site of contesting ideologies that are ‘battling’ for dominance. That is what is happening here, in an ongoing and dynamic ‘battle’, where the forces of the ‘true religion’ of mainstream biomedicine battle against the ‘heretics’ that have the audacity to dare to challenge any of the accepted dogma of the mainstream.
Just as the forces of the church used to battle against ‘heresy’ in the religious sphere, a similar battle is raging in the 21st century.
I would also briefly mention Foucault’s theory of ‘pastoral power’, which I would suggest is one of the main motivating forces at work behind the scenes in this battle. I will post more about that later, but, briefly, ‘pastoral power’ is the kind of power that the church used to wield, in order to ‘save people’s souls’, which they did through the ritual of confession and absolution. Now that most of us no longer believe in that, the state and its allies took over the administration of pastoral power, by (supposedly) protecting our bodies from harm, which they do through the health system, and also via the police, the military, etc, to ‘protect us from harm’. Vaccines, if indeed they do work, and that is being contested by some, have an obvious major role to play in that protective scenario. I have not seen anybody else make the connection between pastoral power and the vaccination war, but it seems obvious to me, and I will be doing further research on this. I will say more about this in a different post.
I think this is an important point – there is a “dogma” about the good of vaccination which defies reality. To question the detail openly is to become a heretic, and no politician or mainstream journalist will go there anymore. It is far more taboo than any other class of medical product, including SSRIs. Beside the expectation of being set on by Ben Goldacre or the Science Media Centre, it is now enshrined in dubious but uncontested law that the UK Secretary of State for Health must follow the decrees of Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, thus placing Parliament in the hands of a pharma orientated group.
Cochrane have been unusually frank in a succession of reports on flu vaccine highlighting ineffectivess, common mismatch of strain, inadequacy of studies of risks and harms etc. etc. to which it might be added that the risk of actually dying from the illness is probably quite small. When challenged on this in BMJ in 2009 the then Chief Medical Officer, Sir Liam Donaldson, was forced to admit one chilly Christmas Eve that there had been only 131 deaths in the previous four years in which the underlying cause was flu. This contradicted an earlier pronouncement of his that 12,000 people a year died of the disease (involving a factor of 360 times). I personally can recall that the strain going about in the latter part of 2008 (which from statements at the time did not match the vaccine strain) was particuarly unpleasant, and I could barely stand up for 10 days, but there were apparently only 39 deaths that year:
The means by which the death rates were projected were also very strange.
It looks to me like that in order to have the policy you have to fabricate the evidence. But also you have to believe that the vaccine programme is such a good thing you have to lie on its behalf, and this something like religious zeal.
And to put it another way round it is an outrageous public deception which no mainstream source will bring to light. I once had an exchange over this matter with senior mainstream journalist who had published on it quietly in a blog who must have been fully aware of its newsworthiness but took no action.
On the subject of fear-mongering about disease risk and mortality and fabricating evidence…
Consider for example Ian Frazer’s article promoting his HPV vaccine product on The Conversation website, in which he states cervical cancer “…kills over 250,000 women world wide every year”.(1) Where is the evidence for that figure? While Frazer quotes a definite figure to paint a picture of danger and risk, this is really only an estimate. The WHO Human papillomavirus (HPV) and cervical cancer fact sheet notes: “Of the estimated more than 270 000 deaths from cervical cancer every year, more than 85% of these occur in less developed regions.”(2) And I wouldn’t give you two bob for the ‘estimates’ emanating from the WHO…
And then we have the hagiography of Ian Frazer, which is titled “The man who saved a million lives”.(3) Where’s the evidence Frazer has saved a million lives?
There is so much propaganda about the very dubious HPV vaccine products which is being used to mislead parents and their children about the HPV virus, a virus which for most women is likely to be cleared by their immune system, “similar to getting rid of a common cold”.(4)
1. Ian Frazer. “Catch cancer? No thanks, I’d rather have a shot!”. The Conversation, 10 July 2012: https://theconversation.com/catch-cancer-no-thanks-id-rather-have-a-shot-7568
2. Human papillomavirus (HPV) and cervical cancer. Fact sheet No. 380. Reviewed March 2015: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs380/en/
3. Madonna King. Ian Frazer: The man who saved a million lives: http://www.uqp.uq.edu.au/book.aspx/1265/Ian%20Frazer-%20The%20man%20who%20saved%20a%20million%20lives
4. About the human papillomavirus. National Cervical Screening Program. Australian Government Department of Health: http://www.cancerscreening.gov.au/internet/screening/publishing.nsf/Content/about-the-human-papillomavirus
Peter & John, I, too, have noted the similarities between vaccination advocates and religion, although I prefer to use the term “cult,” because here in America, something like 80% of the people claim to be believers. Thus, religion is a positive thing in the USA, whereas cults generally are looked down upon. I created a little graphic showing how vaccination is like a cult. You can see it here: https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CCqCxYwUMAAfTVk.png:large . I’d be interested to hear what other points could be added to it.
It is a shrewd assessment. Of course, one of the chief dogmas of the cult has been the miracle of the 10,000 vaccines. I wrote about this in my article (originally 2010) ‘Paul Offit and the Milgram Experiment’.
Regarding Caplan it may be noted that the aforementioned Dorit Reiss made her debut as a vaccine advocate less than two years ago standing in for Caplan against Mary Holland in Harvard Law Review:
As I pointed out Reiss really got Caplan off the hook. Being an assistant professor of law (and not even qualified to practice) Reiss could fudge the ethical challenges without consequence, meanwhile Caplan – having blessed the venture of harassing citizens who don’t want to vaccinate – has been able to stay silent. Also worth mentioning is the rematch of Holland and Reiss only last week in the California Senate judicial committee.
Otherwise, I just note that despite the eagle eyes of Reiss, the industry, the US and British government, no one has shown up here to dispute appalling nature of these products or the brutal tactics used to hide their damage.
Just took my 15-year-old daughter for her well-visit yesterday and after saying no regarding the HPV vaccine for years and saying no to the nurse who showed us to the room after she said “your daughter is due for her HPV” and then to the doctor who came in the room, the doctor started on and on about how she needs it and how safe it is and there are no metals in the vaccine. She went on for close to 10 minutes. I felt like telling my daughter to get dressed and leave. I had to raise my voice and be direct and state “enough.” I was clearly being bullied and called around this morning for a doctor who will take NO for an answer. There are too many incidents from infertility to paralysis and death around the world with these types of vaccines. It makes me wonder if decreasing the population is on the CDC, FDA, our government, the UN agenda as to why they push this so. Even made mention in George Clooney’s movie Tomorrowland (political movie) with a sound bite regarding decreasing the population as well as Mr. Bill Gates who is the premiere vaccine backer and vocalist on population size decrease. Why the bullying tactics to force kids to get this vaccine with all the injuries when I kindly refused before and now NO means to pressure the patients’ parents? Next the One World Order will be having a mandatory vaccine to make our boys and girls infertile to depopulate the planet like they want. I feel for my potential grandchildren and nieces and nephews children. People were called freaks years ago for stating there would be a OWO and people are nuts for saying they want to depopulate, but there is more and more evidence to it.
Gardasil. Has killed many young women. I am not anti-vaccine, I am pro choice. I would choose some vaccines, but not others. I personally, do not like gardasil (unneccessary level of side effects, for what it actually provides protection for)… I will never have a flu shot again, as the one and only one I had, give me the worse flu I have ever experienced in my life, and I spread it to my family. I believe in pro choice. I have had my kids immunised for some things, not for others.
for the vaccination producers to claim all of their vaccines are safe, is unrealistic, unsupported, and downright wrong……….. I want a choice.
Is this the same Ben Goldacre who has anointed himself spokesperson for GSK by including them in his promotional videos for Alltrials?
Most oldish folks I know receive a telephone call from their surgery “it is time for your flu jab”. Most seem to go along and have it.
I have not yet received one of these telephone calls, but, I would tell them where to put it if they did cast their net in my direction.
My young daughter came home one day from School and announced: “I had an injection today”
“WHAT?” “WHAT FOR?”
“Don’t worry, mum, we all had it. Don’t worry about it!”
A blanket scheme whereby I had no knowledge, no warning, no invitation and all these young girls (aged 14/15) were given Cervarix.
She was supposed to get follow up vaccinations for Cervarix, but, no longer attending main stream education fell out of the system.
She lives now in Victoria, BC. I still receive letter after letter on her behalf from NHS Scotland advising her to attend for her vaccinations which are not current.
These letters are sent from my local surgery. There is no address to inform them of change of circumstances.
Thanks, but, no, thanks….for GSK filling up the mantelpiece with gold plated invitations…..
OMG I would be very, very angry if my child came home, after a jab I had not given permission for.
I have refused immunisations for my son at school (he was sometimes the only one who didnt get them)… I stick by my decision, I analyse every immunisation, AND I JUDGE IF IT IS NECESSARY.
How dare they inject without parent’s permission? The child chooses for themselves when 18? Until then, we have every right to discuss it with our children, the fact you were not even given the right to discuss with your child, is horrific.
Unfortunately in the UK the NHS thinks at 12years old a child is old enough to decide if they want to be vaccinated. My daughter came home from school with a permission slip for HPV vaccine. On it, it stated that even if I didn’t give permission the final decision lay with my daughter! Thankfully though she researched the vaccine and decided not to get it so we returned the permission slip back to school both signing the no part. That’s when the intimidation started from the school nurse. I received a phone call every day for 2 weeks telling me how wrong I was not to agree to have her vaccinated and that I was putting her life in danger! The nurse didn’t stop there though. On the day of vaccination she pulled my daughter out of her class trying to pressure her into receiving the vaccination. She told my daughter that she could die if she didn’t get vaccinated and told her to grow up and stop being a baby! I’m proud of her as she stuck by her decision and refused the vaccination. I can’t believe the NHS are allowed to vaccinate children under 16 without parents permission in the UK!!
Hi The school nurse sounds like she needs to be sacked. I hope you are able to put in a report on her bullying behaviour. And I bet you are very proud of your daughter.
9:03 AM Thank you for calling. Please wait until your call is answered.
09:03 AM You are now connected to GlaxoSmithKline
GSK Hi you’re through to Kerry in GSK Customer Care. How can I help?
Me Can a child be immunised with this at school without parent permission?
Me Kerry are you there?
Me Hello Kerry, can a girl be immunised with Cervvix without a parent’s permission. If you do not reply, I assume the answer is NO?
GSK We are not able to answer this.
Me Simple question, can you immunise without parental consent?
Me Yes, or no, simple question, why can you not answer?
GSK We are the manufacturer of Cervarix. We could not comment on immunising withour parent consent.
Me OK thankyou, who is the person I should be speaking to about this? The Education Department, etc? Please asvise if anyone has the power to immunise without parental consent? Thankyou.
GSK Yes I would suggest the The Education Department or the GP.
Me Was done at school so the Education Department? Do they have the OK to immunise without consent?
Me Can you provide information about Cervarix. The trials done, references to, etc, etc. Would be appreciated. All the trials done by GSK.. would be appreciated.
GSK Can I take the postcode of your surgery ?
Me No. Please supply information as requested.
GSK Are you a healthcare professional ?
Me Regardless, you should be able to provide information about Cervarix. Sorry for previious typo.
GSK Can I take the postcode of your surgery and your GMC number ?
Me Would like information about trials done re: cervarix. Should be public knowledge, please supply references.
Me No, can you supply me with the information please? Why are you refusing to give me information on relevant trials?
Me Dr James Lie
Me Why is it taking you so long to supply me with information on your trials for Cervarix?
Me There must have been trials done, to pass this medication, references required please.
GSK This information is available to healthcare professionals. Dr James Lie could I take your GMC number and surgery postcode ?
Me So the information on the trials, are not available to the general public, wh not?
Me Have there been any trials, whatsoever, on this drug… sounds like there hasn’t been any.
Me are you not open and transparent in your trials of this drug, if not, why not?
GSK When you joined tis webchat in the validation process you ticked you were a healthcare professional. If you are not then you will need to speak to your GP.
Me OK so you are unwilling to provide the links to any references supporting the benefits of your drug?
Me Why not?
Laughing so hard that I have Nescafe running down my left nostril.
In June 2008 a promotional DVD was sent to every G.P in the UK just hours before the launch of the Cervarix vaccine in the UK. The DVD was posted with the G.P. magazine and was a clever marketing strategy aimed at busy G.P.’s to ‘brainwash’ them into believing that the Cervarix vaccine protected young women from the perils of cervical cancer.
The comments at the start of this video juxtapose the claims made by GSK in the promotional video.
The DVD was sent to me and I, along with the help of vactruth.com and sanevax.org, uploaded it to youtube here – https://youtu.be/iD2i7YYAID4
Now I can see how long I spent writing my post–70 minutes or more.
I’m disgusted that the FDA let Merck tout the jab as 98% effective on their home page.
(In your video, when the purple sphere was glomming onto the beige wall, I swear I saw a Serotonin molecule rush past.)
We need a public debate about what level of disease risk justifies a mass vaccination campaign.
Consider HPV vaccination – the co-inventor of the technology enabling the HPV vaccines, Professor Ian Frazer, has acknowledged that the risk of cancer associated with the HPV virus is very low.
In an article on the university and CSIRO-funded The Conversation website, titled “Catch cancer? No thanks, I’d rather have a shot!” Professor Frazer stated: “Through sexual activity, most of us will get infected with the genital papillomaviruses that can cause cancer. Fortunately, most of us get rid of them between 12 months to five years later without even knowing we’ve had the infection. Even if the infection persists, only a few individuals accumulate enough genetic mistakes in the virus-infected cell for these to acquire the properties of cancer cells.”
The Australian National Cervical Screening Program (NCSP) website notes: “Most people will have HPV at some time in their lives and never know it….Most HPV infections clear up by themselves without causing any problems. Infections can cause cervical abnormalities, which, if they persist, can lead to cervical cancer.” The NCSP website notes that : “It is important to remember that most women who have HPV clear the virus and do not go on to develop cervical cancer.”
If only “a few individuals accumulate enough genetic mistakes in the virus-infected cell for these to acquire the properties of cancer cells”, is it really justifiable to coerce mass populations of children around the world to have HPV vaccinations, particularly as the long-term consequences of HPV vaccination are unknown?
 Ian Frazer. “Catch cancer? No thanks, I’d rather have a shot!”. The Conversation, 10 July 2012: https://theconversation.com/catch-cancer-no-thanks-id-rather-have-a-shot-7568
 About the human papillomavirus. National Cervical Screening Program. Australian Government Department of Health: http://www.cancerscreening.gov.au/internet/screening/publishing.nsf/Content/about-the-human-papillomavirus
 Ian Frazer. “Catch cancer? No thanks, I’d rather have a shot!”. The Conversation, 10 July 2012: https://theconversation.com/catch-cancer-no-thanks-id-rather-have-a-shot-7568
The Gardasil HPV vaccine was originally rejected by the Australian Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) in 2006.
An article by Matthew Stevens in The Australian at the time, reports the PBAC rejected Gardasil because it was “too expensive and, just maybe, not what it was cracked up to be anyway”. Apparently, Tony Abbott, then the Australian Federal Health Minister “took to the airwaves, passing on PBAC’s concerns about the efficacy of Gardasil and even floating the bizarre idea that a misplaced confidence in the effectiveness of the vaccine might actually result in “an increase in cancer rates”.” 
According to Matthew Stevens very interesting report in The Australian, it took just 24 hours for the then Australian Prime Minister, John Howard, to “put an end to the nonsense”, delivering “sparkling prime ministerial endorsement to Gardasil along with a clear direction to Minister Abbott that the immunisation program should proceed. And pronto.” 
So is this how important decisions on vaccination practice are made? On the whim of a Prime Minister in pre-electioneering mode? John Howard’s wife had cervical cancer. Did this personal experience affect Howard’s decision? Was this appropriate considering the complexity of the issue in regards to low risk of cancer, controversy re appropriate age for cervical cancer screening etc?
What sort of lobbying took place to overturn the PBAC’s original decision to reject Gardasil?
In her report “Government response to PBAC recommendations”, Marion Haas provides some commentary on the Australian government’s interference with the PBAC’s initial rejection of Gardasil, noting the then Prime Minister, John Howard, “intervened personally by announcing that the drug would be subsidised (ie listed) as soon as the manufacturer offered the right price. The PBAC subsequently convened a special meeting and recommended that Gardasil be listed on the PBS” (Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme).
Haas notes that “the developer of the Cervical Cancer vaccine [i.e. Ian Frazer] was prominent in the media during the debate about listing. His influence was enhanced by his position as Australian of the Year.” 
Haas argues the main objectives “of the PBAC are to consider the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of medicines in making recommendations to government regarding the listing of drugs for public subsidy. A perceived willingness to interfere in this process may undermine these objectives…” Government reaction which results in reversal of PBAC decisions has “the potential to send signals to manufacturers and lobby groups that a decision made by the PBAC may be reversed if sufficient public and/or political pressure is able to be brought to bear on the PBAC…this may undermine the processes used by the PBAC to determine its recommendations and hence the perceived independence of the PBAC.”
Getting a vaccine on the Australian Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme must be the ‘golden goose’ for vaccine manufacturers as this assures a mass market for their vaccine product. Other countries have also adopted HPV vaccination, impacting on millions of children around the world and resulting in multi millions of dollars’ worth of sales for Merck (Gardasil) and GlaxoSmithKline (Cervarix), and royalties for entrepreneurial scientist Ian Frazer from sales of HPV vaccines in developed countries, and for CSL which receives royalties from sales of Gardasil..
No wonder Ian Frazer was willing to forego royalties from developing countries  – how much profit is he reaping from sales of the vaccine to governments in developed countries?
(My detailed letter forwarded to Chris Mitchell, Editor-in-Chief of The Australian newspaper, 8 October 2012, provides more background: http://users.on.net/~peter.hart/Is_universal_HPV_vaccination_necessary.pdf )
1. Howard rescues Gardasil from Abbott poison pill. The Australian, 11 November, 2006: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/archive/business/howard-rescues-gardasil-from-abbott-poison-pill/story-e6frg9lx-1111112503504
3. How the Rudds profited from Janette Howard’s cancer scare. Crikey, 22 February, 2007: http://www.crikey.com.au/2007/02/22/how-the-rudds-profited-from-janette-howards-cancer-scare/
4. Haas, Marion. “Government response to PBAC recommendations”. Health Policy Monitor, March 2007: http://hpm.org/en/Surveys/CHERE_-_Australia/09/Government_response_to_PBAC_recommendations.html
7. FierceVaccines special report on the 20 Top-selling Vaccines – H1 2012 states that H1 2012 sales for Gardasil (Merck) were $608 million, and sales for Cervarix (GlaxoSmithKline) were $285 million: http://www.fiercevaccines.com/special-report/20-top-selling-vaccines/2012-09-25
8. “Catch cancer? No thanks, I’d rather have a shot!”. The Conversation, 10 July 2012: https://theconversation.com/catch-cancer-no-thanks-id-rather-have-a-shot-7568 The disclosure statement on this article by Ian Frazer states: “Ian Frazer as co-inventor of the technology enabling the HPV vaccines receives royalties from their sale in the developed world.”
9. CSL ups profit guidance on Gardasil sales. The Australian, 27 November 2012:
10. “Catch cancer? No thanks, I’d rather have a shot!”. The Conversation, 10 July 2012: https://theconversation.com/catch-cancer-no-thanks-id-rather-have-a-shot-7568 The disclosure statement on this article by Ian Frazer states: “Ian Frazer as co-inventor of the technology enabling the HPV vaccines receives royalties from their sale in the developed world.”
It’s hard to support Gardasil.
USA has 4092 cervical cancer deaths per year. Other cancers that Gardisil might prevent add to that but not by much.
HPV 16 or 18 is found in 70%-75% of cervical cancer cases
Gardasil protects against 16, 18, and two others. How well?
For lesions caused by the 4 strains it targets, Gardasil claims to be 98% effective in preventing CIN 2/3 or AIS (precancerous lesions), over 3-4 years, in girls and women who were HPV-naive for all four strains after the third shot had been given.
But if I am not mistaken:
It is only 34% effective in preventing CIN 2/3 or AIS precancerous lesions for this group of strains: [lesions due to the four targeted strains + lesions due to all other strains]. ‘
That’s the real world.
It was not much good a preventing Pap Test Abnormalities and Cervical, Vulvar, that required Vaginal Procedures to diagnose or excise them. Even in the protocols where the subjects were still HPV-naive after their third shot, it looks like it reduced abnormal pap tests and the procedures by about 30%
That 98% effective figure is on the Gardasil home page, but it means little. Should not be there.
If the shots knock back pre-cancers by 34%, that does not mean deaths will fall by 30%. Many of the pre-cancers would be caught and got rid of. Can we say half of them? (Hard to say. See new screening schedules at the bottom.)
I see 690 lives saved annually, plus the grief of the procedures.
If everyone in the US over age nine is vaccinated, around 300M people, and 690 lives are saved, is that wise?
I have some friends who started an HPV and Anal Cancer Foundation after their beautiful mother died. They tout Gardasil as their main message.
CDC’s presents screening schedule recommendations from three agencies, as of 2012. All three say that getting vaccinated does not obviate screenings.
CDC and Amer Coll of OBGN say screen for cancer every three years. Only this group stuck with the 1-year schedule: U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF)
The last thing to remember is that no cancers arose during these trials in either group. Though HPV is confidently said to cause Squamous Cell Cancer, it is not necessary or sufficient, as far as I know.
I am a DES daughter and unfortunately therefore somewhat of an “expert” on cervical cancer having been screened annually for it for over 35 years. I have grave concerns about the efficacy and safety (both short-term and long-term) of HPV vaccines. I question that the vaccine is even required as regular Pap smear screening is a proven public health strategy to reduce the incidence of cervical cancer – successful, superior, proven, and completely safe.
I see disturbing parallels between the DES story and the emerging Gardasil story.
Here is my daughter’s story:
I read her story. What an ordeal! It’s hard to believe a human body could recover from it. You must be proud of her.
Needless to say I am very proud of my daughter and the strength she showed through the months of distressing and mystifying symptoms related to severe autoimmune disease triggered by Gardasil.
To expand on the parallels between the use of DES (stilboestrol) and Gardasil/HPV vaccines:
Both were aggressively promoted by drug companies to create a market.
There were existing, better treatments available: With DES a large randomised clinical trial published in 1953 showed bed rest was more efficacious than DES in the prevention of miscarriage. Regular Pap smear screening is a proven, more efficacious strategy to reduce incidence of cervical cancer; and women still need to have Pap smears even if having HPV vaccination.
Both are pharmaceutical drugs that were/are recommended and prescribed by doctors; and doctors understandably have great difficulty dealing with concept that they may actually be doing harm. Furthermore doctors understandably expect that they would be informed if there was any suspicion that the drug does harm; and expect that the drug has been comprehensively tested and proven “safe” before being marketed.
DES is recognised as an endocrine disruptor resulting in serious, unexpected adverse outcomes that are expressed months, years, even decades after the original exposure.
The DES experience is the primary model of how endocrine disruptors work and calls into question research paradigms for public health safety.
It seems to me that HPV vaccines are also endocrine disruptors resulting in serious, totally unexpected adverse outcomes (usually autoimmune diseases) that can appear immediately or over the course of months, presumably depending on epigenetic changes and differences within individuals. And yet all the researchers look for are hypersensitivity reactions or redness at point of injection, within hours or days of the injection.
I was so incensed by a newspaper article reporting a study giving Gardasil the “all-clear”
and knowing that no newspaper would print any criticism or questioning of the wonder vaccine, I wrote 2 rapid responses to the BMJ: The wonder drug we should all wonder about, 7 December 2008; and What bandwagon?, 15 December 2008
[These seemed to have been archived on BMJ but I think they can be viewed here
When the HPV vaccine first appeared a doctor announced on his blog; we have a cure for cancer. I dug and found the original trial and found the usual suspects, small sample size, limited time frame, and surrogate end point.
This led to a very long comment stream with one person wishing my wife to contract cancer and die a terrible death. My argument was based on the numbers and cost, with a big emphasis on spending the money not on the vaccine, but on medical care. This vaccine did not eliminate the need for a PAP smear.
Only when a doctor restated my argument was there any consideration for what I had written.
Currently on another blog a theme in the comments reflects the lag in medical treatment after new information is presented. What is lost is the financial gain of the medical providers and pharma in maintaining myths that support this gain.
Financial gain is a major driver in modern medicine and even at the practice level money plays a part in practice management. One doctor told me of a number of required vaccinations and test. Questioning this, the response was; my insurance paid for them so they had to be done.
We need to look a little more closely at what is being done in the name of modern medicine.
At the beginning of 2102 this subject became quite hot topic, enthusing me as an arch sceptic to examine the statistics both for mortality and incidence. I found the results of my eandevours quite alarming with a considerable element of ‘disease mongering’ obvious even to my somewhat poor statistical capabilities.
It seemed, as I said, a very large hammer to crack a very small nut and the actual vaccine to be quite toxic to sufficient of the cohort to warrant extreme caution in its use.
The cost as well seemed out of all proportion to the likely benefits, especially as these, if they ever even exist, could not be proven for twenty or more years.
My offering on this subject is here; http://blackdog-viewfromthehill.blogspot.co.uk/2012/01/first-they-came-for-your-daughters_28.html
I was then so enthused that I wrote more here; http://blackdog-viewfromthehill.blogspot.co.uk/2012/02/hpv-vaccination-theres-more.html
Please accept my thanks Dr. Healy for existing, and for your invaluable writings.
What year? 2102?
My understanding is this vaccine is not given to children in India due to the adverse effects found in a genetic marker. I cannot imagine giving this vaccine as an across the board injection in the UK due to the population dynamics.
I can find no evidence for this – DH
What bothers me particularly is that “psychiatric vaccination” could potentially come in on the coattails of compulsory immunization.
In “The War Against Children of Color,” Peter Breggin discusses the two Federal Violence Initiatives launched by the NIMH’s Frederick Goodwin as part of a blatantly racist hunt for “crime genes” that Goodwin felt should be “vaccinated against” by “prophylactically” drugging urban minority youth, a population Goodwin compared to “monkeys in the jungle” who just mate and kill. As some know, that campaign gained real traction before public backlash drove it into hiding.
This is what I’m thinking of in regard to David Healy’s concerns that coercion in vaccination could bleed over into and further fuel coercion in psychiatry– that this could manifest even more literally in the case that the overly elastic concept of “war on disease” is extended to “psychiatric vaccination” in which human beings themselves become the “disease.”
The “crime gene” campaign is very important to coerced and court-ordered drugging obviously, since only some official concept of “inherent” mental disease (hopeless, born to, irreversible, not environmental) that is “dangerous to public safety” (equated to “terrorism” despite the lack of any evidence that terrorists are generally mentally ill) could justify forcing people to take medications with proven lethal risks.
To the extent that vaccination and public health are now demonstrably weaponized– i.e., use of fake vaccine drives as cover for assassination and drone operations– a second merger between this and some weaponized concept of psychiatry seems very plausible. The psychobabble on “genetic” psychopathology and terrorism for instance couldn’t get any more absurd than it already is.
What’s also threatening is that the “born psychopath” concept continues with the MacArthur Foundation’s “Minority Report” style Law and Neuroscience Project and is being heavily promoted, although with more stealth than the past violence initiatives. The theory has become extremely popular even among progressives, who never stop to check the sources that support the concept, otherwise they would discover that the supporting research is weaponized as a rationalization for wars of aggression against other cultures, racist, classist and about as far from “liberal” as it can get.
But it looks like many progressives have fallen for the table cloth trick presented in supposedly indy films like “I Am Fishhead” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TB0k7wBzXPY ) which I only first noticed because Skeptic astroturf-affiliated neuroscientist Steven Pinker (also an alum of Koch/Monsanto/pharma/chemical industry front group, ACSH) appears in it. The film proposes an idea that would be completely irresistible to Occupy activists who lack foreknowledge of complex pharmaceutical schemes: that corrupt bankers must suffer from some kind of genetic psychopathology. Naturally progressives are in for a surprise when, after the public has signed off on the idea and has been manipulated into rallying for a “cure,” the tablecloth is pulled away, leaving only the usual targets on the table– minorities, foreign “obstacles” to Halliburton schemes and activists themselves.
I’ve worked with John Stone for 7 years and I think we both share a moderate stance towards vaccination. Nothing wrong with the concept of vaccination or the motive to contain deadly contagions, but just like the commercial music industry doesn’t have sole propriety over the essence of “music,” which would be reduced to a shrieking racket if it did, the current vaccine industry– how it’s run, the ugly PR wars, capture of the media, campaign for deregulation, and the way it’s ballasted with many overlapping and sometimes literally militarized agendas– should not represent the essence of preventive medicine. It would be suicidal to believe that defending industry when it’s wrong is the same thing as noble defense of disease eradication.
I’ve been following the psychopharmaceutical PR wars for longer than I’ve watcheddogged public health, enough to start to notice the overlaps between PR tactics for both, the astroturf proponents in common and the risk of coercion that may be carried over from one to the other.
Dr. Healy, thank you for inviting John Stone to write this post. Your reluctance to wade into the Vaccination Wars is understandable, and it was very wise of you to let John be the one who’s vilified. But I have to wonder why there is a Vaccination War to begin with, or why is anyone who’s not 100% pro-vaccination vilified? What does it even mean to be pro-vaccination or anti-vaccination? There are 79 vaccines licensed for use in the US alone, each with varying degrees of efficacy and safety – must I be “pro” every one of them for every person in order to be considered “pro-vaccine”? If I’m against even one of them, does that make me “anti-vaccine”? What about the hundreds of vaccines in development? Must I be pro all of them, too? Why don’t we use the same terms for other pharmaceuticals? “Are you pro- or anti-medication? Pro- or anti-statin? Pro- or anti-anti-depressant?” I think that terminology is absurd and meaningless, except to use as a bludgeon against people one disagrees with.
Like any medical treatment, it seems to me that the real question boils down to, “Is this intervention more likely to help or harm, based on the best evidence available?” And presented with the facts, the final decision must rest with the patient or her/his guardian. I do not agree that there are ever situations where compulsory vaccination is acceptable, except for the military, where it is generally a necessary condition of service (I’m a retired air force officer). We may quarantine infected people against their will, but it is morally indefensible to vaccinate them against their will, even for for the good of a community. I’ve written more about the ethical requirement for informed consent, and the flaws in the utilitarian argument about the greater good, at http://health.keithriggle.org/articles/informed-consent-vaccination/, so I won’t spell them out here.
Kudos to John for fairly concise article about some of the controversy surrounding HPV vaccines. It definitely highlights the question about help or harm and is an important one to ask about most of the vaccines being used in developed countries, even the MMR. These vaccines have prevented many cases of disease, but at what cost? For example, prominent vaccine researcher Dr. Gregory Poland pointed out as far back as 1994 and again in a 2012 paper that the vaccines for what were considered childhood diseases have shifted the susceptible population from children to adults and babies. Children, with their robust immune systems, were better equipped to overcome the diseases, but adults and babies are not. Babies previously were protected by maternal antibodies, but mothers don’t transfer antibodies to their newborns anymore because most mothers were vaccinated, and the efficacy of vaccines wanes over time, which is partly why we’re seeing outbreaks of measles, mumps and pertussis in highly vaccinated populations. There are also convincing hypotheses that some childhood diseases help stimulate the immune system and help protect against some cancers later in life. Vaccination and disease epidemiology are very complicated subjects that those who demand universal vaccination oversimplify to “vaccines are safe and effective, so just shut up and get the shot/jab.” It appears to me that those engaged in mass bullying about vaccination really don’t want informed consent; they want unquestioning compliance, which is antithetical to both modern medicine and human rights.
Thank you for the post.
I am a 73 y.o. pediatrician and I object to the “all good” contra “all bad” vaccine discussions.
I routinely recommend not getting the flu or HPV vaccinations and delay the MMR until the 2nd birthday. I weigh the risk/benefit profile for each vaccine as well as the timing involved.
Worth noting is that several of my patients who received the Hep B series at 1mo, 2mo, and 6mo had titers taken when entering nursing school and were found to have no Hep B antibodies and needed to repeat the series.
I haven’t changed my views on vaccines – skeptical yet pragmatic.
However, I concur with Dr. Healy on his impression of John Stone. I’ve only seen a handful of people on the internet ever write the word “sorry” and he happens to be one of them.
For that reason alone I’d give him an audience.
Those who push SSRI’s have expressed publicly what vaccine makers will not: that if people learn the truth about the dangers, they might choose not to partake (or to at least partake differently).
What both SSRI’s and vaccines have going for them is that much of the public have had positive or at least neutral experiences with them, therefore most view them safe medicines.
What vaccine makers have going for them in particular is the fact that historically some vaccines have been hugely successful on preventing disease. The public rightly values this, so it is easy for manufacturers to exploit widespread trust in vaccines to further their agendas.
I think debate gets shut down because the vast majority of people 1) have had good experiences; 2) don’t want a resurgence of illnesses; 3) are prone to groupthink; 4) and don’t have the inclination, time, or a reason to look into it further. You have average, good citizens (including doctors) falling for what key opinion leaders and the CDC are saying, without any reason to check it out for themselves.
Added to that are doctors who have a vested interest in maintaining the status quo since facing facts would cause them to realize the part they’ve unwittingly played in the whole matter. I might imagine most have a huge block of denial that simply will not be overcome. The drug companies know this.
So when a pharmaceutical injury occurs, if it is serious enough and one determines it as such, this immediately thrusts one into a socially unrecognized minority group. Especially if someone claims an injury is related to vaccination, there is an automatic stigma attached to it.
Why the stigma? Because drug makers have worked hard to set conditions to where the public (including medical professionals) only see what drug makers want them to see. THEY set the agenda and tone by buying up all available avenues. And at present it seems everything is for sale.
Bottom line: drug makers will not be dragged into the quagmire of having to fairly compensate people for their injuries. That’s not what they’re about. What’s good for business is to deny, as much as possible, that injuries occur. With doctors on board in the way that they are, it’s a slam dunk.
Laurie, your explanation of how the pharmaceutical companies control the debate about their products is compelling. However, your statement, “the fact that historically some vaccines have been hugely successful on preventing disease” really is not a fact; it’s a claim that’s been accepted by most people without any critical thinking. The living conditions of the majority of people until about World War II were appalling: unsafe drinking water and poor sanitation, hygiene, nutrition, etc. Similar living conditions still exist in parts of the developing world. Developing world populations are no more comparable to the developed world than 19th century populations are to the 21st. Most infectious disease rates were already falling by the time vaccines were introduced for them, thanks to improvements in living conditions. I refer you to several excellent sources below for a fuller discussion of the relationship among infectious diseases, living conditions, and vaccines. The best is Humpries and Bystrianyk’s book, Dissolving Illusions. It is thoroughly researched based on scholarly papers and statistical data from about 1800 going forward, and their book is largely a collection of excerpts from these sources. If you read the references with an open but critical mind, I don’t think you’ll come away still believing that vaccines saved the human race.
Lisa, I hope you’ll read my comment above about “pro/anti-vaccination” and also the article I linked about informed consent to vaccination. It addresses the issue of something that may be beneficial to the majority but damages a minority. I argue that it is immoral to compel people to use a product that might harm them. I’d like to add, “But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.” The Buddha said it, but you don’t have to be Buddhist to agree with it. If a pharmaceutical product is to be made compulsory, then it must be beneficial to everyone, not just a majority, even if it’s a vast majority of 99.99%. Thankfully there are still countries, states, and provinces that recognize coercion is neither necessary nor ethical when it comes to vaccination. I only wish the Land of the Free and Home of the Brave were one of them.
John, yes, Dorit Reiss is certainly moving up in the ranks of the cult of vaccination priesthood. I can hardly read an article about vaccines that she hasn’t commented on. As you pointed out, I don’t know how she has time for her day job. If I were a California resident, I’d be very concerned about paying for her activities with my tax money. It’s been suggested that she has an army of volunteers to help her, but still I think her behavior reflects badly on the University of California Hastings College of the Law.
Humphries, Suzanne, and Bystrianyk, Roman. Dissolving Illusions: Diseases, Vaccines, and the Forgotten History. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2013. Previews available on Amazon and dissolvingillusions.com. The latter has all the graphs and photos from the book, as well as the first page of every chapter.
Bystrianyk, Roman. Disease Death Rate Graphs, United States, England, and Wales. http://healthsentinel.com/joomla/index.php?option=com_content&view=section&layout=blog&id=8&Itemid=55
Obomsawin Raymond. Immunization Graphs: Natural Infectious Disease Declines; Immunization Effectiveness; and Immunization Dangers. http://genesgreenbook.com/resources/obamsawin/ImmunizationGraphs-RO2009.pdf
Vaccines Did Not Save Us – 2 Centuries Of Official Statistics. https://childhealthsafety.wordpress.com/graphs/
Note: there is some redundancy in the information, but I’ve provided them all for completeness.
Keith’s position will appeal because of its clarity. But I personally disagree with it and am at a disadvantage because my position can never be as clear.
These issues have come to a head in a number of different medical settings. In the 19th century, the discovery of anesthesia led some to extraordinary philosophical agonies – was it justified to risk the lives of some (some lives would be lost) in order than others might benefit. Many contemplating this question as a question answer that no its not. But in practice we answer that yes it is – and it is on this basis that anesthesia and surgery developed.
Some of us could have open-heart surgery under hypnosis but in practice everyone has anesthesia even though there are more deaths and more significant disabilities caused by the anesthesia than is often realized, and if anesthetists routinely co-administered prophylactic fluoroquinolones the balance of harms might be signicantly tilted.
From mid-19th century, families forced treatment for mental illness on family members. A relatively appropriate balance was struck I believe. My worry is that this balance is being lost and ever more people are being compulsorily treated without getting benefit and when their families who used to be able to liberate them from treatment if the family thought it was not helping now try to do so they too are likely to be diagnosed with mental illness.
The medical model involves poisoning, mutilating, shocking etc. It can never be employed without a risk of significant harm. But if we are vigilant it can produce extraordinary magic. At its best it liberates us from scourges from diphtheria through to AIDS – but as AIDS demonstrates it is at its best when the wider community is involved.
David, I understand that medicine is a calculus of help and harm, and public health requires the involvement of the community. However, mass compulsory vaccination is not very comparable to anesthesia or mental illness treatment. the analogies fail because those practices don’t affect large populations as does compulsory vaccination for school children or healthcare workers. Also, patients can choose to forgo anesthesia, although most do not, as you point out. If vaccination is compulsory, patients don’t have a choice. The only thing comparable is that large proportions of people view both as beneficial, and in countries like the UK where vaccination is not compulsory, 92 to 96% of children complete their primary course by age 2 (https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/356061/The_Immunisation_Coverage_1966_2012_13.pdf). Cleary the vast majority of parents believe vaccination is best for their children. If the 95% can be said to fear disease more than vaccines, then the reverse is true for the 5%, and it is unethical to compel them to take a substance they don’t want, especially given the data about vaccine efficacy and disease exposure. A 95% coverage is sufficient to provide community immunity for most diseases, meaning the odds of disease exposure should be low. If the data about vaccine efficacy are correct, then the 95% have nothing to fear from the 5%. The proportion of people who cannot be vaccinated due to contraindications is very low, less than 1% in most US localities. So the proportion who choose not to vaccinate are implicitly accepting the risk of disease, and indeed many of them actively seek to expose their children to chick pox, measles, and mumps so they can develop natural immunity.
As for your comparison to coercive mental illness treatment, I concede one similarity: both the seriously mentally ill and school children are incompetent to make healthcare decisions for themselves. Those decisions are entrusted to their guardians. The guardians must use the principle of informed consent to decide for their wards. When governments enact compulsory vaccination laws, they usurp the duties and rights of guardians, presuming to know what’s best for each and every one of their citizens – a practical impossibility when it comes to medical treatment. To address your final comparison, that of the AIDS epidemic, to make it truly comparable, governments would have to mandate condom use for all males. Even then it wouldn’t be very comparable because about the only risk of condom use is latex allergy.
But I agree with John, I appreciate you offering your blog as a forum where we can have a civil discussion, and you must be doing an excellent job of moderating the comments!
Hi Keith, I seem to feel you have little personal experience in the mental health area. Drugs are pushed, lies are made about how well they work, they are given off label, and when the effects start to make one look totally mad, their “diagnosis” is proven or upgraded. At that stage we are “seriously mentally ill”…well certainly look like we are. At that stage into the trap we well and truly are. I dont believe any person, should be forcibly medicated. In my case, the drug I refused, was a drug I had been recently given me as a sleeping aid, , yet had sent me manic and psychotic. I had no rights, and was forcibly injected and given the same horrific medication. The outcome was three weeks of more forced medication, and a locked ward, without a newborn baby…… NO-one should be forcibly medicated.
First of all a crucial thing is to be able to have a tolerant and open public discussion about these issues – we certainly can on davidhealy.org but, of course, in a wider public arena the public itself is not to be trusted, journalists are not allowed to write or talk about it, dissenters have to be taken out. Furthermore, a lot of the problems arise from an endlessly expanding schedule, including diseases which are relatively unlikely to do you much harm or you are relatively unlikely to get (why are the US vaccinating against Hep B at birth?): very often the benefits are not so great and the risks greater than generally admitted. Sometimes you are vaccinating one population to protect another, which ought to be a serious ethical problem (and is at the basis of the present forced vaccination drive in the US). And it may also be that vaccine is reducing immunity decade on decade in certain cases. Some may be contraindicated (mumps, chickenpox).
My own guess is that if we are to have it then it should mostly be later, less and with much more care – and not with the purpose of supporting an industry. It seems to be God-given at present that the schedule only gets longer. As for care: people would not angrily be shutting down conversations if they cared. In the UK where vaccine damage may not be discussed in the mainstream media there has not been a single damage award for five years, and access to the courts is politically blocked.
Thank you Keith I will take a look.
Keith, thank you for the feedback. (Annie too). I am trying to approach this from the mindset of the common person. We need allies and we need to meet them where they are. Most people find the idea that vaccines are not responsible for the eradication of childhood diseases to be crazy talk. I believe we need to zero in on a few things people might more readily relate to, like the need for informed consent and scientific integrity.
The occupy movement was said to have failed (I disagree) because there was a lack of clarity about what was wanted from whom. “What is your one demand?” They kept asking. Hopefully the pharmaceutically injured, whether by vaccination, psych, or other med, (and supportive doctors) will get really clear on what the focus is. I think it’s less important to argue the efficacy of vaccines than to demand our injuries be recognized. Like John said, care is lacking. As it stands, there is a medically privileged class that doesn’t have to think about how the systems that benefit them cause injury to others. This is oppression.
Thank-you very much, Keith, for your thoughtful and highly informed comment regarding the true causative factors that led to the decline of many infectious diseases. The generally-accepted narrative that it was ‘heroic’ (‘scientific’) medicine that ‘saved humanity from the scourge of infectious disease’ is a story that is heavily indoctrinated into us, but it is largely a false narrative, as you point out. Many of the more extremist ‘pro-vaccine’ social media warriors repeat this mantra as if it is ‘sacred lore’, which indeed to them it is, as it forms part of their own personal and group ideological sacred dogma.
As a student of medical anthropology, this is of great interest to me, so thank-you for your references. I was already familiar with Dr Suzanne Humphries, who is one person who the pro-vaccine warriors LOVE to attack, but those other reference will be very useful to me in my future postgraduate work on this.
I would just like to add that, while I am not sure about the situation in the USA, here in New Zealand, the truth about the reasons for the historical decline in infectious diseases is outlined in some of the basic social science textbooks that are in common use to teach sociology and medical anthropology to undergraduate students. I am listing two examples below.
Gregor McLennan, Ruth McManus, and Paul Spoonley. (2010). Exploring Society: Sociology for New Zealand Students. Auckland: Pearson. The chapter on “Health, illness and Medical Power”, and specifically the discussion on the reasons for the increase in life expectancy, pages 254 to 256. There is a very interesting series of graphs on page 256 (Figure 13.1, original source McKinlay and McKinlay, 1977), which feature the incidence of nine infectious diseases over time, each one marked with the date when either the vaccine or the antibacterial treatment became available. In every case, the incidence of the disease had very rapidly declined BEFORE the biomedical treatment became available. The measles example is very striking, and the incidence of measles had leveled out at an extremely low rate before the vaccine, and the vaccine made ZERO difference.
Donald Jorelemon. (2010). Exploring Medical Anthropology. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall. Starting from page 75, there is a discussion on these same issues, which interestingly also cites McKinlay and McKinlay (1977) as a source, and also Friedman (1987). That discussion has the same conclusions, and leads into a discussion on the imporant role of ‘primary health care measures, including improved nutrition, safe water and food supplies, improved sanitation, basic maternal and child health care, culturally appropriate treatment of injuries and endemic diseases, etc.
The point of all this is that the truth is known, and widely accepted, and is being taught in sociology and anthropology departments of many universities, but still the myth persists, deliberately propagated as an ideological ‘meme’ by ideologically motivated people and by vested interest groups.
One last thing. Here is a link to a pdf copy of that McKinley and McKinley reference that seems to be cited a lot.
Nice comment, as usual….
Re “I think debate get’s shut down……”
Here – is debate opening up
I really like this last IAI debate from last year and would like to see it on the 2014 calendar page
IAI May Programme
When The Drugs Don’t Work
Are Hospitals Bad For Us
Positive Thinking And The Name Game
Truth, Lies and Self-Deception
The thing that worries me with compulsory is where does it stop. I’m not anti vaccine or pro, I think both sides have very valid arguments. But where is the line drawn if something damages a minority but is beneficial for the majority, does that mean it’s ok to damage the minority? I do definately agree with Ang though, I don’t think pregnant women should be forced to put chemicals in their bodies, look what happened to Ang. What about all the women who were told thalidomide was safe.
That’s one of the reasons I like this blog so much because the vast majority of us are willing to listen to each other and respect that we have our own opinion. If we do disagree we are able to do it without resorting to bullying or nastiness. I like to hear different views. I might not necessarily agree on all the different opinions but I like ti hear them. The trouble on some blogs and forums your just putting yourself up as shark bait if you dare to have a different point of view.
Why drug resistance is now regarded by the UK government as one of the most severe threats to public safety
This programme was on R4 last night and it is about our resistance to antibiotics and how various strains of super bugs are resistant to antibiotics.
The programme features GSK who describe their efforts in this direction.
This is what happens when resistance is broken down and it should scare us.
It puts you off entering a hospital for any operation.
If you can catch a superbug in a supposedly sterile environment and die from the superbug then what is the point of even thinking about having an operation.
What are your chances 1 in 50, 1 in 100, 1 in 1000?
This is exactly the same argument used for an anti-depressant.
The Patient Information Leaflet describe reams of side-effects in exactly the same way 1: 100 1:1000 1:10000
How did pharmaceutical companies research these results and be so pedantic about your chances of one side effect, or two, or three or twenty or even some not even in the leaflet….the whole lot in one fowl swoop……
Doctors don’t even give the patient room for one side-effect, let alone all of them.
It’s ridiculous given that the side-effects are described with some degree of clarity and the length of the PIL leaflet is almost getting too big for the box.
If anyone agrees to see a ‘psychiatrist’ knowing that this is definitely a stigmatising experience – if you are ‘under the care’ of a psychiatrist then everyone in ‘your world’ will become suspicious of you – the gps will then be suspicious of you – and when recommendations are made for an a-d from a ‘psychiatrist’ then this is where coercion prevails.
I said quite clearly, it is written in my medical records. Patient not keen on medication.
Obviously, receiving the tablets meant I was coerced. Twice.
This was not a clear cut choice of mine.
Chemically poisoned with these drugs in your system obviously stopping, restarting or other combinations will lead to ‘different’ behaviour.
How could it not?
It is written, it is clear, it is beyond reasoning that doctors cannot see the dangers but they are quite happy to send us to a hospital to receive a superbug……….
They will vaccinate us against all manner of diseases from birth until there are no natural resistances left.
It’s not easy learning all this the hard way.
When the pharmaceutical companies get real and use more words like Akathisia and Homicide and Death will be the day that some poor unsuspecting soul picks up a packet and puts it out with the garbage.
No one is going to tell you anything, you have to learn it for yourself.
I like this polite and well mannered group, too…
We have to discuss ‘severe threats to public safety’ if we have any moral compass at all.
We have to give people who lost children and family something back.
It’s the least we can do.
…no one can fail to love 1BOM and his self-deprecating humour, his wisdom grown from an age of surveying the flawed systems, but, a flurry of flack delivered as ‘comments’ let themselves down…stop it…. we do not countenance that, here, we got enough of that when we joined up to the ‘mental health’ disservice.
Shark bait…..I was attacked….Lisa:); for giving one international opinion….
I feel safer, here.
It’s like a warm womb.
Annie I agree totally, especially the mental health part. 10 years on ADs cost me my humour, my careeer, my husband, my friends, my extended family. I now havea diagnosis, a disability I never had before. Trying to get off the poisons is a nightmare, I have been walking tru hell every day now for 5 months, and trying desperately to reinstate some drugs to help, they dont help any more. They change your personaility, all the while thinking you are well………. off the drugs, the worst part is realising what I have done, my self destructive path, now I am on disability……. How the hell do I get back to the day I took that first pill, and make a better decision?
check out Kelley Brogen who wrote A mind of your own and she is a doctor who takes people off their meds and makes them well again.
Peter, very interesting points and references. The cult of vaccination is a powerful ideology indeed, and it will probably take many more years of many brave people like Dr. Humphries chipping away at it to break the paradigm. But the history of science shows that false paradigms do eventually give way. Thanks especially for the link to the McKinley paper – I look forward to reading it. I’d be interested in corresponding with you further on these points; if you agree, please contact me through my website (this also applies to everyone else in this discussion).
Ang, You’re correct, I have little personal experience in the mental health area. Everything I know I learned from reading Dr. Healy’s blog ;^) Certainly it seems that drug-induced mental illness should not be forcibly treated with further drugs. But what about certain personality disorders where people might harm others or themselves? If they don’t consent to treatment and are judged incompetent, might there not be cases where they should be forcibly treated, but with the informed consent of their guardians? Or should they just be locked up without any treatment?
“But what about certain personality disorders where people might harm others or themselves?”
Keith, in my opinion, “having been born” is a condition that might lead to harming others or oneself!
Being born male is strongest correlate of violence (on others or self), and being on drugs, psychiatric and/or “street,” enhances the correlations. Losing a job, being spurned in romance, going bankrupt, and similar events are triggers for murder and suicide.
Rather than designate a group with symptoms of personality disorders or other psychiatric diagnoses as being overly dangerous, and forcing treatment and its risks on them, it is best to operate case-by-case, with a wide net that includes everyone, not just the “mentally ill,” who, by and large, are no more dangerous than anyone else.
When someone, diagnosed or otherwise, makes threats, joins violent movements, or stockpiles weapons, attention to their intentions is merited. But that’s as far as I would go. I earned a doctorate in social psychology at what was then (any maybe still) the top US university offering the degree, and that’s what I got out of my education and readings in 23 years since then.
To toss in a snide remark about psychiatry, violence (broadly defined) associated with psychiatric diagnoses is more likely to be inflicted on a diagnosed person, by the psychiatrists who diagnose and treat, than by person, except when treatment creates mania, rage, psychosis, and the like where they had not existed before.
Keith, most of the folks who are forced into treatment against their will are diagnosed with schizophrenia, not personality disorders. And if you listen to the ever more shrill & hysterical rhetoric of most professional “mental health advocates” you’ll wind up with two BIG misconceptions. One, you will greatly over-estimate how dangerous people with schizophrenia are. And two, you will greatly over-estimate how effective the drugs to treat it are.
We’re led to believe the drugs are advanced agents that specifically cure hallucinations and things of that sort, restoring people to sanity. They’re not, and to the extent they help at all, it comes at a very high price. While the most common reaction is to feel sedated, slowed down and apathetic, some people feel horribly agitated and upset. Most people aren’t violent at all. Although a few people may be violent because of the illness (i.e., becoming paranoid and lashing out at imagined enemies), there may be as many or more people who are made violence-prone by the medication. That’s not to speak of all the physical damage the drugs can do.
Most people with schizophrenia – even those who have to have a legal guardian for practical reasons – can be reasoned with on a lot of levels. And many people can learn to live with “mild schizophrenia” just as others live with a “melancholy” or “high-strung” nature. Ninety percent of the coercion in mental health these days is totally unnecessary for anyone’s safety. People’s choices should be respected. It’s actually safer and more likely to promote health.
As for personality disorders – Usually when you hear talk of forced treatment or detention it’s for those said to be “psychopaths” or have Antisocial Personality Disorder. The system is bad enough at judging who has “schizophrenia.” Personality disorders are muddier still – the basis for diagnosing Psychopathy is a questionnaire filled out by a healthcare professional based on their impressions of the person’s past and present behavior. All kinds of prejudices can run rampant. And cures are virtually nonexistent. Some people change, by themselves or with help (professional or not). Others never do.
It is a huge leap to go from locking people up for committing actual crimes (which we already do too much of) to locking them up for being “at risk” of committing crimes. Psychiatry does not know nearly enough to be granted the power to do this – certainly not for more than thirty days.
Regrettably, one of the issues which will be remembered most of all from the show are the hundreds of shameful comments, many of which were posted by Doris Reiss’ colleagues, which showed extreme cruelty towards parents of vaccine injured girls.
Thank you for posting the link to your article with its absolutely startling anthology of the foul mouthed abuse to which the families of the injured were subjected. I suppose you could call that “modern science” in action or was it just mob rule in cyber space? The primary evidence disappears. I noticed on revisiting the blog by Steve Schneider on Mark Crispin Miller’s News From the Underground’ (‘Big Parma’s faking a grass roots campaign to keep Jenny McCarthy off “The View”) linked to in my article that the first hundred comments, which included the responses of Voices for Vaccines advocates Karen Ernst and Dorit Reiss have also vanished down a memory hole.
I would argue that this kind of abuse is the 21st century equivalent of the hysterical mobs that used to love to denounce “witches”. In the 21st century version, these people are the most extremist of the true believers in the cult of scientism. That is an over-simplification, as there are many factors involved, and an explanation could be theorised in many ways using the tools of social science, but at its core there is a perceived need to project one’s own fears and doubts onto some ‘other’ who can be blamed for what one perceives to be the ills of the world. A few centuries ago it was ‘witches’, today it is ‘terrorists’ and/or ‘anti-vaxxers’, depending on exactly which ‘ism’ one believes in, and which perceived threat one most deeply buys into, ‘terrorism’, or the fear of harm from disease. As always, the real reasons are hidden, and the issue being supposedly argued about is not really the main issue at all.
Super educational system teaching eloquence and the art and power of words and debate backed up with researched facts…
The whole world has an opinion and is letting us know it with words of their choice…….
Occasionally, in the right place at the right time a particularly strong expletive can be exceptionally powerful….
Mass expletives seem to be the daily chant with those whose brain cannot formulate articulation………?
A little example:
Surviving Antidepressants is a good thing or a bad thing?
A site expressly developed to help surviving antidepressants
Rewarding this site, by research into puffer pictures and painstakingly copy and pasted is a good thing or a bad thing by a doctor?
James O’Brien, M.D.
May 8, 2015 | 10:16 PM
I do like…off the rails…as a concept…when it is established who or what…are off the rails…as per the developing conversation on this topic……
Re flu vaccination effectiveness… According to a report published by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention “getting a flu vaccine this season reduced a person’s risk of having to go to the doctor because of flu by 23 percent among people of all ages”.(1)(2)
The CDC Press Release re this report notes: “One factor that determines how well a flu vaccine works is the similarity between the flu viruses used in vaccine production and the flu viruses actually circulating. During seasons when vaccine viruses and circulating influenza viruses are well matched, VE between 50 and 60 percent has been observed. H3N2 viruses have been predominant so far this season, but about 70 percent of them have been different or have “drifted” from the H3N2 vaccine virus. This likely accounts for the reduced VE. Flu viruses change constantly and the drifted H3N2 viruses did not appear until after the vaccine composition for the Northern Hemisphere had been chosen.”(1)
The CDC Press Release goes on to state: “Another factor that influences how well the flu vaccine works is the age and health of the person being vaccinated. In general, the flu vaccine works best in young, healthy people and is less effective in people 65 and older. This pattern is reflected in the current season early estimates for VE against H3N2 viruses. VE against H3N2 viruses was highest — 26 percent — for children age 6 months through 17 years. While not statistically significant, VE estimates against H3N2 viruses for other age groups were 12 percent for ages 18 to 49 years and 14 percent for people age 50 years and older.”(1)
Despite this reported low flu vaccination effectiveness, particularly for adults “CDC recommends that people get a flu vaccine even during seasons when drifted viruses are circulating because vaccination can still prevent some infections and can reduce severe disease that can lead to hospitalization and death. Also, the flu vaccine is designed to protect against three or four influenza viruses and some of these other viruses may circulate later in the season.”(1)
So, are the discerning readers here convinced to race out and get a flu vaccination…every year?
How has this shambles been allowed to happen? Populations around the world are being pressured to have a vaccination every year against the flu and it’s practically useless. If the CDC is admitting these low figures, I would wager it’s probably worse.
In the US annual flu vaccination is now on the children’s schedule: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/schedules/downloads/child/0-18yrs-child-combined-schedule.pdf
So we can see that a massive market is being developed for flu vaccine products, with plans to vaccinate the entire US population year after year. We are seeing similar pressure for annual flu vaccination in countries such as the UK and Australia.
See also these media reports:
– Why flu vaccines are underperforming this winter. BBC News 6 February 2015: http://www.bbc.com/news/health-31164634
– CDC: Flu vaccine only 23 percent effective this season, but still better than nothing. The Washington Post, 15 January 2015: http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/to-your-health/wp/2015/01/15/cdc-flu-vaccine-only-23-percent-effective-this-season-but-still-better-than-nothing/
– Flu Vaccine Not Working Well; Only 23 Percent Effective. New York Times, 15 January 2015: http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2015/01/15/health/ap-us-med-flu-vaccine.html?_r=0
1. Protection from Flu Vaccination Reduced this Season. CDC Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Press Release: Embargoed Until: Thursday, January 15, 2014, 1.00 pm ET (Note: I suggest the date published is incorrect and should read January 15, 2015): http://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2015/p0115-flu-vaccination.html
2. The CDC Press Release referred to this report: Early Estimates of Seasonal Influenza Vaccine Effectiveness – United States, January 2015. CDC Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR). January 16, 2015 / 64(01);10-15: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6401a4.htm
It seems to have been a new strategy of the CDC to announce a “23% match” as a disappointment when usually the match is likely even less and they just don’t talk about it.
John, here’s a link to a report I came across a little while ago which is very illuminating as to why flu vaccination is pressed upon us every year…
It’s a report produced by the World Health Organisation, published in 2006, titled “Global pandemic influenza action plan to increase vaccine supply”: http://www.who.int/csr/resources/publications/influenza/CDS_EPR_GIP_2006_1.pdf?ua=1
So, the objective is to increase the use of seasonal flu vaccines so that production capacity will be in place in the event of a pandemic…you know, like the ‘pandemic’ we experienced in 2009 with swine flu, which was supposed to kill us all…and which proved to be so lucrative for the vaccine industry, and a massive waste of money for the rest of us. See for example these Spiegel Online International reports:
1. “Reconstruction of a Mass Hysteria: The Swine Flu Panic of 2009 (12 March 2010): http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/reconstruction-of-a-mass-hysteria-the-swine-flu-panic-of-2009-a-682613.html
2. Interview with Epidemiologist Tom Jefferson: ‘A Whole Industry is Waiting For A Pandemic’ (21 July 2009): http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/interview-with-epidemiologist-tom-jefferson-a-whole-industry-is-waiting-for-a-pandemic-a-637119.html
The WHO report is very interesting reading. It’s the blueprint for the global influenza vaccine industry, and the ultimate goal to vaccinate all 7 billion or so of us. Countries are being encouraged to “develop an immunization policy to increase demand for seasonal vaccines” and “motivate industry to develop greater capacity for manufacturing vaccines”, i.e. press upon citizens a generally useless vaccine for a virus that is mutating all the time. And we have no idea of the long-term consequences of this annual vaccination.
We need to wake up to what is going on here, particularly the increasing threat of compulsory vaccination. The thin edge of the wedge is compulsory flu vaccination for healthcare workers(1), and then the spread to employers demanding that employees be vaccinated, schools demanding that schoolchildren be vaccinated etc.
The consortium of the pharmaceutical industry, ‘health organisations’ and the scientific/medical establishment is posing a very serious threat to our bodily autonomy with these very questionable medical interventions for mass populations.
1. Nurses fired for refusing flu vaccine. Nurse Uncut, 28 February 2013: http://www.nurseuncut.com.au/nurses-fired-for-refusing-flu-vaccine/
Thank-you for that, Elizabeth.
That’s an interesting question you pose, as to why the CDC continues to promote a program that the evidence is demonstrating is almost useless, and continuing to devote huge resources to that program?
I would suggest that there are complex sociological and psychological reasons for this, including an imperative for the ‘authorities’ that the citizens have entrusted their wellbeing to, to “do something” (Ref. Foucault’s theory of ‘pastoral power’, where the state and its allies are expected to keep the citizen’s ‘safe’ from harm). The problem is, in the fulfilment of that imperative, those same ‘authorities’ have painted themselves into a corner regarding the only ‘something’ that they are able to do, which fits within their own philosophical-ideological paradigm.
It is impossible for them to change course, they have put all their eggs in the one basket, the basket labeled “vaccines”, and there literally is NO OTHER basket in existence: within the confines of their own worldview, no other basket exists.
So, the CDC, and all the apparatuses of ‘scientific’ medicine, continue to weave a (mythical) narrative that they are indeed fulfilling that role of protection of the citizens from harm. The logic in this case, is that, as there is, by DEFINITION, no other viable alternative to vaccines, then 23 percent is a lot better than nothing at all, so the citizens should take advantage of that: because the alternative, of not having the vaccination, is worse, and, by definition, there is no other alternative. Anybody who dares to suggest that in fact there ARE other alternatives (I could suggest some, and I use some of them successfully myself, but that would be going off at a tangent to this present discussion), is attacked as being not only ‘wrong’, but, by definition, either a deluded fool or a charlatan. (Can you see the circular reasoning at work in this?)
I would suggest that, in fact, the whole of the vaccine paradigm has some serious and fundamental flaws, but that the vested interests (by ‘vested interests’, I include all forms of that term, including financial and philosophical-ideological), are incapable of ever even suspecting that they might be investing all their efforts in a dead-end, because their ideology is so deeply-held that to them, it is indistinguishable from a basic ‘Truth’.
I would also suggest that this problem is not unique to the vaccine issue, it is endemic in various other areas of medical science, for reasons that are very complex, and which I do not have time or space to go into right now.
Before the swine flu scare we had avian flu scare (btw the WHO has just announced it intends to abolish such terminology on the grounds that it is offensive to the animals) and I recall asking a leading politician how they could pay for vaccines when the disease had not crossed the species barrier and they didn’t even know what the mutation would be if it occured. The answer was that they could not be seen to do nothing. Another problem in the UK over avian flu which was never directly reported in the media was that while the Chief Medical Officer and the Department of Health were busy claiming that we would not be able to bury the human dead fast enough the Chief Government Scientist and the Department
for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs were correctly insisting that it was not going to happen.
What of course these event did do was cause misdirection of policy and resources, inappropriate prescription of antiviral medicines (much documented by Rokuro Hama), administrative chaos, patients not examined or appropriately treated, every last head cold being diagnosed as swine flu, children getting narcolepsy from the swine flu vaccine (with the emergency re-introduction of mercury salts). These are three articles I wrote in August 2009:
There is obviously a huge amount of the tail wagging the dog here. There were even credible reports that the swine flu virus had been artificially created:
Extract from the famous interview of Rokuro Hama’s Cochrane colleague Tom Jefferson in Der Spiegel:
“SPIEGEL: Mr. Jefferson, the world is living in fear of swine flu. And some predict that, by next winter, one-third of the world’s population might be infected. Are you personally worried? Are you and your family taking any precautions?
“Tom Jefferson: I wash my hands very often — and it’s not all because of swine flu. That’s probably the most effective precaution there is against all respiratory viruses, and the majority of gastrointestinal viruses and germs as well.
“SPIEGEL: Do you consider the swine flu to be particularly worrisome?
“Jefferson : It’s true that influenza viruses are unpredictable, so it does call for a certain degree of caution. But one of the extraordinary features of this influenza — and the whole influenza saga — is that there are some people who make predictions year after year, and they get worse and worse. None of them so far have come about, and these people are still there making these predictions. For example, what happened with the bird flu, which was supposed to kill us all? Nothing. But that doesn’t stop these people from always making their predictions. Sometimes you get the feeling that there is a whole industry almost waiting for a pandemic to occur.
“SPIEGEL: Who do you mean? The World Health Organization (WHO)?
“Jefferson: The WHO and public health officials, virologists and the pharmaceutical companies. They’ve built this machine around the impending pandemic. And there’s a lot of money involved, and influence, and careers, and entire institutions! And all it took was one of these influenza viruses to mutate to start the machine grinding…”
John, re your reference to “credible reports that the swine flu virus had been artificially created”…
There’s also the debacle about scientists trying to make H5N1 (bird flu) more transmissible, i.e. more deadly, research that was funded by the US National Institutes of Health, ostensibly to pre-empt Nature and facilitate production of vaccines. (Honestly, you couldn’t make it up…)
When this came to light it caused a furore in the international scientific community about controversial lab-engineering of viruses (now described as ‘gain-of-function’ experiments), see for example:
• Scientists call for 60-day suspension of mutant flu research (Nature, 20 January 2012): http://www.nature.com/news/scientists-call-for-60-day-suspension-of-mutant-flu-research-1.9873
• Work resumes on lethal flu strains (Nature, 23 January 2013): http://www.nature.com/news/work-resumes-on-lethal-flu-strains-1.12266
• ‘Appalling irresponsibility’: Senior scientists attack Chinese researchers for creating new strains of influenza virus in veterinary laboratory (The Independent, 2 May 2013): http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/appalling-irresponsibility-senior-scientists-attack-chinese-researchers-for-creating-new-strains-of-influenza-virus-in-veterinary-laboratory-8601658.html
• Experts call for alternatives to ‘gain of function’ flu studies (CIDRAP, 22 May 2014): http://www.cidrap.umn.edu/news-perspective/2014/05/experts-call-alternatives-gain-function-flu-studies
Annie, I found the page. Dr. C. seems to have a grudge against A. S. from S. A.
He’s reasonable in book reviews and comments on journal articles, but unmasks himself on 1BOM. There’s another hothead on 1BOM, too. BOM lets them work it out among themselves from what I’ve seen.
What did you mean about pictures and copy and pasting? Curious!
It’s interesting to consider the way healthcare practitioners are used to aggressively push vaccination. Here’s an example re HPV vaccination from Australia.
Last year an article in the Gold Coast Bulletin reported a 15 year old boy was given the Gardasil HPV vaccine against his mother’s explicit wishes which were made clear on a consent form.
According to the article, Ms Blakemore’s son “came home from school last Tuesday and said he had been given the vaccination after he was told to sign his own consent form”.
Ms Blakemore said: “My son doesn’t comprehend that sort of stuff, they don’t actually get the other side of the story so he’s not well informed enough to make those decisions when put on the spot.”
According to the article, “Ms Blakemore said 15-year-olds were too young to make decisions about their body”. She said: “They can’t vote, they can’t drink and legally they can’t have sex but yet they’re allowed to sign a form for vaccine for a sexually transmitted disease…If they don’t have consent forms from parents they should be sending a note home to say they weren’t vaccinated, not just go ‘here’s a form, we think you’re old enough to make these decisions’”.
Ms Blakemore said: “From a parent’s point of view, giving us consent forms then going over our heads is just abominable and terrible.”
When her son was vaccinated with the HPV vaccine, Ms Blakemore said: “He questioned the lady doing it as he was only supposed to get one vaccination, and she said ‘Your name’s on the list, so you’re getting the shot’.” The boy’s mother said when her son came home he was “really upset…He asked if there is an injection that could get rid of it and I said ‘No’”. (It appears the boy was given another vaccine product at the same time, but this is not identified in the article.)
According to The Australian Immunisation Handbook, for consent to vaccination to be legally valid, the following elements must be present:
1. It must be given by a person with legal capacity, and of sufficient intellectual capacity to understand the implications of being vaccinated.
2. It must be given voluntarily in the absence of undue pressure, coercion or manipulation.
3. It must cover the specific procedure that is to be performed.
4. It can only be given after the potential risks and benefits of the relevant vaccine, risks of not having it and any alternative options have been explained to the individual.
Whether vaccination was legally valid in the case of Ms Blakemore and her son appears questionable, particularly as the Queensland Government’s information sheet on HPV vaccination states: “IMPORTANT! Consent of a parent/legal guardian is needed before any student can be vaccinated.”
The Gold Coast Bulletin article also acknowledged Ms Blakemore “was concerned about lack of research into the vaccine and potential side effects”. 
I suggest Ms Blakemore has grounds for her concern as mass populations of children around the world are currently being used as guinea pigs for this experimental vaccine, the long-term effects of which are unknown.
 Megan Weymes. Merrimac State High School student given Gardasil vaccination against mother’s wishes. Gold Coast Bulletin, 22 May 2014: http://www.goldcoastbulletin.com.au/news/gold-coast/merrimac-state-high-school-student-given-gardasil-vaccination-against-mothers-wishes/story-fnj94idh-1226926116790
, , ,  Ibid.
 2.1.3 Valid consent. 2.1 Pre-vaccination. The Australian Immunisation Handbook. 10th Edition 2013: http://www.immunise.health.gov.au/internet/immunise/publishing.nsf/Content/Handbook10-home~handbook10part2~handbook10-2-1
 Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination. Year 8 students. Year 10 male students. Queensland Government. Immunise Australia Program – A joint Australian, State and Territory Government initative: https://publications.qld.gov.au/storage/f/2014-01-21T01%3A13%3A25.907Z/hpv-consent-form.pdf
 Megan Weymes. Merrimac State High School student given Gardasil vaccination against mother’s wishes. Gold Coast Bulletin, 22 May 2014: http://www.goldcoastbulletin.com.au/news/gold-coast/merrimac-state-high-school-student-given-gardasil-vaccination-against-mothers-wishes/story-fnj94idh-1226926116790
Off the rails…
Surprise that GlaxoSmithKline have leadership on data disclosure efforts says BMJ.
International Spokesperson for GlaxoSmithKline, Ben Goldacre, says it is Wellcome
The efforts of three industries here creating a stranglehold on kudos…..for themselves
Will this take the pressure off the patient or is this subliminal acrobatics?
The BMJ requires data sharing on request for all trials
by Elizabeth Loder and Trish Groves
British Medical Journal. 2015 350:h2373
Heeding calls from the Institute of Medicine, WHO, and the Nordic Trial Alliance, we are extending our policy. The movement to make data from clinical trials widely accessible has achieved enormous success, and it is now time for medical journals to play their part. From 1 July The BMJ will extend its requirements for data sharing to apply to all submitted clinical trials, not just those that test drugs or devices. The data transparency revolution is gathering pace.2 Last month, the World Health Organization [WHO] and the Nordic Trial Alliance released important declarations about clinical trial transparency.
These announcements come on the heels of the US Institute of Medicine’s [IOM] report on sharing clinical trial data, which called for a transformation of existing scientific culture to one where “data sharing is the expected norm.”
The efforts of industry, too, must be acknowledged, some of which caught many people by surprise.
In particular, Medtronic’s cooperation with the Yale University Open Data project and GlaxoSmithKline’s leadership on data disclosure efforts stand out.
WHO’s statement on public disclosure of clinical trial results and the accompanying rationale reiterate the organisation’s support for registration of clinical trials. WHO declares that the main results of clinical trials should be posted on a clinical trial registry or other acceptable website and submitted for journal publication within a year of study completion. The expectation is that results will be “made available publicly at most within 24 months of completion.” The statement does not call for mandatory sharing of primary data from trials but instead “encourages” sharing of research datasets “whenever appropriate.”
In a move that is particularly welcomed by Ben Goldacre, cofounder of the AllTrials campaign, WHO also recommends disclosure of previously conducted but unreported clinical trials in a searchable and free registry and says it is “desirable” that these trials should be published in a peer reviewed journal. Goldacre notes that this is important because “the overwhelming majority of prescriptions today are for treatments that came onto the market — and were therefore researched — over the preceding decades rather than the past five years”…
Thanks for that abou tthe Avian Flu and Swine Flu scare, John. As far as I know, the “antiviral medications” (eg Tamiflu) are virtually useless, yet goverments have spent huge sums on them, once again, because fo they did not, they would be accuded of not “doing something”. It’s a RORT, a SCAM.
Regarding “antiviral medication”, there are some essential oils, if used correctly, that will perform this function, a lot better than Tamiflu. I have udes them myself, many times (I have a professional diploma in this). The French medical doctor, Dr Daniel Pénoël, has spent decades, along with a few colleagues, working on this, and there is a large body of research that supports this, which is totally ignored by the mainstream medical system, and, if asked, all they can say that there is “no research” in this, which is rubbish, there is a LOT of research, but of course an essential oil cannot be patented and have billions made from it.
Re The Couric Incident: HPV Vaccine & Mass Bullying…
There was a similar incident in Canada recently when the Toronto Star published a front page article on HPV vaccination with the title “A wonder drug’s dark side”, and focussed on several young women who had become ill after Gardasil HPV vaccination.(1)
The article provoked outrage in the medical establishment, and it was subsequently taken off-line. A note from the publisher explained: “All vaccines, including Gardasil, have side-effects. The better known they are, the more safely the vaccine can be deployed. This is what the article sought to achieve as well as to note the acknowledged risks are not always properly communicated. We remain committed to this line of reporting. However, we have concluded that in this case our story treatment led to confusion between anecdotes and evidence. For that reason, the Gardasil story package of Feb. 5 will be removed from our website.”(1)
Juliet Guichon (the recipient of the Canadian Medical Association Medal of Honour for HPV vaccine related work) and Dr Rupert Kaul (a professor in the areas of immunology and infectious diseases) gave their opinions: “The Star story states that some people became sick and even died after being vaccinated against HPV infection. Yet, after HPV vaccination, some people might have won a major scholarship or the lottery. Does this mean the vaccine caused the award or the win? Hardly. The fact that one event follows another does not mean that the first event caused the second – in scientific terms, correlation is not causation.”(2)
Ahhhhh…the flourishing of the ‘correlation is not causation’ card. How often have we seen that one?
Dr Jen Gunter, an obstetrician/gynaecologist, also rallied to the cause referring to the ubiquitous ‘studies’ that show no increased incidence of autoimmune disorders after HPV vaccination etc. While Dr Gunter was prepared to acknowledge “No one is doubting that the girls in the article had illnesses and that there was great suffering” she assures us that “study after study shows that there is no link between the kinds of events reported and the vaccine.”(3)
It appears only records from possibly conflicted clinical trials are considered ‘evidence’, mere anecdotes from young women becoming ill out in the real world after Gardasil vaccination don’t count.
What we learn from this is that if something goes wrong after a vaccination you’re pretty much on your own. ‘Correlation is not causation’ is likely to be the off-hand response, particularly by those reluctant to acknowledge adverse events after vaccination.
This is why I take a different tack… I suggest people should be very cautious *before* the vaccination intervention, and carefully consider whether this medical intervention is justifiable *before* they give their consent, e.g. *before* HPV vaccination, which I suggest is a vaccination of very questionable value, particularly as the long-term effects are unknown.
However, in the case of vaccination the right to give consent(4) is being eroded. For example, in Australia, Prime Minister Tony Abbott has recently announced that vaccination will be effectively compulsory to obtain family tax benefits, and this has been extended to children of all ages.(5)
I foresee some challenges to Prime Minister Abbott on this front.
1. A note from the publisher. Toronto Star, 5 February 2015: http://www.thestar.com/news/2015/02/20/a-note-from-the-publisher.html
2. Science shows HPV vaccine has no dark side. Toronto Star, 11 February 2015: http://www.thestar.com/opinion/commentary/2015/02/11/science-shows-hpv-vaccine-has-no-dark-side.html
3. Toronto Star claims HPV vaccine unsafe. Science says the Toronto Star is wrong. 5 February 2015: https://drjengunter.wordpress.com/2015/02/05/toronto-star-claims-hpv-vaccine-unsafe-science-says-the-toronto-star-is-wrong/
4. 2.1.3 Valid consent. The Australian Immunisation Handbook, 10th Edition 2013 (updated January 2014): http://www.immunise.health.gov.au/internet/immunise/publishing.nsf/Content/Handbook10-home~handbook10part2~handbook10-2-1
5. No Jab – No Play And No Pay For Child Care. Prime Ministerial Media Release, 12 April 2015: https://www.pm.gov.au/media/2015-04-12/no-jab-no-play-and-no-pay-child-care-0
Yes, I am in Australia, this is a terrible abuse of power. We pay taxes, some get some of the taxes back as a family support payment, most poeple get this, unless extremely wealthy. It is now being used as a form of control, that is immoral, I wish to fight this. My daughter has had to have her kids immunised, to survive financially, three of these boys, out of 5 kids are now autistic. How dare the government force this on the middle income, and poor of Australia. Control.
Thanks for that Elizabeth.
The really shocking thing is that people like Dr Gunter really and totally and sincerely BELIEVE with all their mind and all their heart that they are totally corrrect in this, and that anyone with an opposing view is, by definition, seiously deluded. And, the even more shocking thing is that they comprise about 95 percent of the medical profession.
And, most of the mainstream media know to not touch those kind of vaccine injury stories, most editors and producers know that this is a totally forbidden subject, totally taboo, and, if they do not want to suffer the same fate as the Toronto Star, they automatically comply with the unofficial blacklist for this kind of story.
This is one of the mechanisms (not the only one), of how the ‘establishment’ enforces the orthodox dogma. For a social science theroetical explanation of how this works, Althusser’s theory of the “Ideological State Apparatus” (ISA) is a good (if somewhat similistic) starting point.
Peter, re Dr Jen Gunter, I left a comment on her article “Toronto Star claims HPV vaccine unsafe. Science says the Toronto Star is wrong”: https://drjengunter.wordpress.com/2015/02/05/toronto-star-claims-hpv-vaccine-unsafe-science-says-the-toronto-star-is-wrong/
Here’s my comment which didn’t make it through moderation…
Dr Jen Gunter, re your comment: “Perhaps we might find a booster is needed at 10 or 15 years, that doesn’t mean the vaccine is a failure.” I’m sure the vaccine manufacturers would agree with you, and are rubbing their hands with glee at the prospect of expanding their market.
How many people are informed that the long-term consequences of the HPV vaccine products are unknown, including the possibility of waning efficacy or type replacement? I suspect very few children and their parents are giving their fully ‘informed consent’ to this medical intervention.
Your comment is awaiting moderation.
POSTED BY ELIZABETHHART | MARCH 3, 2015, 8:02 PM
END OF QUOTE
I’m curious about the difference between this and something like when Ibuprofen causes Stevens Johnsons. When a child gets Steven Johnsons after taking Motrin there isn’t the same denial even though children can get it without having taken medicines. Why are some rare adverse effects acknowledged while others are denied? Did Steven Johnsons actually happen in a clinical trial?
The difference between ibuprofen and vaccines is that ibuprofen is not bound up in a powerful ideology like vaccines are. For over 200 years doctors, government officials, and the general public have been indoctrinated that vaccination is the best prevention for infectious diseases like smallpox and polio. This despite strong evidence to the contrary, to include the fact that most infectious diseases declined long before there were vaccines for them. Some diseases still don’t have a vaccine; for example, we never hear about outbreaks of scarlet fever (which can be confused with measles). Now vaccines are tied up in the pharmaceutical-government industrial complex; vaccines are a multi-billion-dollar industry, and literally hundreds of them are in development, not only for diseases (including cancers), but also for genetic predispositions to obesity, drug addition, and criminal violence. In countries like the USA where there’s no product liability for defective vaccines, manufacturers have a financial incentive to develop as many vaccines as possible (with no disincentive to develop poor quality or even defective products). At least J&J could be sued for the harmful effects of acetaminophen/paracetamol, but Merck is untouchable for any adverse effects caused by Gardasil. Instead, victims must file a “claim” with the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (http://www.hrsa.gov/vaccinecompensation/index.html), which has about a 26% chance of being approved. Can you imagine if only 26% of auto or medical insurance claims were approved? I think people would revolt against insurance companies.
It should be said that this is 26% of the total applications to the VICP (just under 16,000 claims in 25 years) and few people even know of the VICP, would have legal nous to make an effective claim, which has to be lodged with 3 years of the injury. I suspect claims that are made on behalf of adults are far more successful whereas it is easy to claim that infants wouldn’t have developed normally or developed seizures anyway. Secondly, over the same period the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting Scheme (VAERS) has recorded over half a million events, and actually again this is not the bottom of it, because VAERS is a passive reporting system and may only record 1 or 2% of cases.
To make an effective claim on the VICP you probably have to be a doctor or lawyer.
Is your Point more valid if you can add the source to a published article or trial?
Am I the only one who finds the reference to certain articles/publications/authors completely superfluous?
Why not stick to what we, ourselves, Believe. Because that is just about all we can say for certain.
The idea of any general “accepted truth” will most certainly Always lean towards “benefitial for the greater good”. Thereby we also accept that some, fewer in numbers, will suffer, but outweighed by “greater good”.
It’s noble to defend and stand up for those who suffer, and definately needed, but it will Always fall second to the “greater good”.
The correlation between HPV-vaccines and strange symptoms in adolescent Girls is obvious, but deemed necessary, so that we might see a decrease in cervical cancer in the future! That’s all.
The girl who suffers the sideeffect feels the ‘harm’, the woman who never gets diagnosed with cervical cancer sees the ‘benefit’. The later is seen in positive statistics while the first one is forgotten about.
No matter if you’re a doctor or a patient, Always make sure you are on the ‘benefitial’ side of the line. No reference to any Clinical trial or scientific article can ever traverse you back over that line once you’re stuck with a sideeffect.
(Because you know there is just about twice as many citations to be made that overthrows your arguement that your illness is caused by the cure)
If I thought that then I would evidently have written a different article. Of course, if you have suffered a serious adverse reaction and/or injury from a product you might well dread a conversation in which people talk across you asserting their evidence that you don’t matter, are not statistically significant, standing in the way of progress… And such a conversation would of course be based on the bad faith of the other side, their lack of compassion, their unwillingness to entertain counter evidence, their wish to shut you up at all costs etc. etc. And that is much what I am talking about anyway.
One of the specific problems with these products is not only the mass of harms recorded but also that any benefits are presently purely conjectural, cannot be established even on their analysis – if at all – for decades. So, we have this Behemoth project sponsored by industry and governments which has so far achieved no benefit to any of the product users and may not ever. In the meantime it is important to note the brutal methods used by governments and manufacturers to deny those harms – methods which are of course not just restricted to the products in question, but illustrate the problem particularly dramatically bacause no benefit has even been demonstrated in this case, and the machinery of denial rolls on regardless.
It is also worth noting that in this instance the conversation which troubles you has not in fact taken place – no one to dispute the factual basis of the article, the report of Rokuro Hama and the Japan Institute for Pharmacovigilance or the grotesque events surrounding the Couric broadcast: nothing from Dorit Reiss, nothing from Ben Goldacre who took up cudgels over the good name of Cervarix in 2009, nothing btw from Dr Phil Hammond – Big Pharma’s favourite after dinner speaker – who has been pushing Gardasil in the columns of the British satirical journal Private Eye for a decade. Nor any of their dispensible surrogates. It has been pushing at an open door. No one has anything to say!!!
John Stone, of course I am no expert of vaccines nor medicine in general. I know one pharmaceutical, and I know it well. And so I get biased from the struggle people have had with this drug for almost 30 years.
And if you face Little opposition to spread truth about this vaccine, I’m just happy for that. My Point lies beyond that: 1: the Product has allready had its time to generate (probable) large incomes to Merck. 2: A handful of professors and promoters have recieved payouts and luscious gifts. 3: It has given a (possible) false sensation of security for women in fear of cervical cancer. AND.
4: Given a certain number of women scars for the rest of their lives. 5: The damage has been done allready, and continues to do so.
I can’t be bothered with 1 through 3, though very wrong. But my experience with Another pharmaceutical makes me furious at how we treat the women in “4”.
No society has the right to rest assured they did something in the best of intentions, only to ‘forget’ those who didn’t stand to benefit from their actions.
As I said, I’m not professional nor academic. And I have the highest respect for any who stands up tall and tells the truth. But I will never approve of it being done after the Product becomes available on the market. That said, ofcourse you and Healy and your peers do an outmost important job. But it has a ‘hint’ of futile in itself.
Thank you, Ove, Sweden.
Obviously no good would ever come about if everybody took that attitude when they saw bad things.
That is obvious, yes, but my reaction must be considered just as ‘obvious’, right?
And I almost idolize those that stand up and fight. (You included)
But I’m still just as allowed to Think it’s a backwards approach to Health and safety, to have Pharmaceuticals approved for market and then start to wonder wether they are good or not!
I told you I have no vaccine-background, but I have Seroxat background, 15 years of it. And when ‘shit hits the fan’ with Seroxat (Paxil), shit goes very bad, as it has for me. And I get furious when I see Ann-Blake Tracy wittnesing of how dangerous Paxil can be, in 1991-92, almost ten years Before I started taking it. Still I was allowed to take the drug and have the problems she had warned about. My doctor never mentioned that there could be correlation between my behaviour and the drug, and he sure as hell never said anything Before I took my first pill.
Adverse events advocats are of course needed.
But if schoolshootings won’t stop SSRI, what would it take to stop a vaccine that can paralyze 1 in 100’000?
Ove, re your comment: “But I’m still just as allowed to Think it’s a backwards approach to Health and safety, to have Pharmaceuticals approved for market and then start to wonder wether they are good or not!”
That’s the point! Who approves these pharmaceuticals? There’s no consultation with the community as far as I’m aware. Small, powerful, and often secretive committees make these decisions. There’s little or no transparency, e.g. disclosure of conflicts of interest, as I argue in my letter to Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott (21 January 2015): http://users.on.net/~peter.hart/Letter_to_Tony_Abbott_PM_re_vax_policy.pdf
And when these pharmaceuticals, i.e. vaccine products, are added to the national vaccination schedule, manufacturers are assured of a mass market for their product, i.e. a ‘golden goose’, particularly when their use is compulsory to access family tax benefits. Who has orchestrated this?
And consider HPV vaccination, the mixed messages we get about this product. On the one hand Ian Frazer plays up the risk saying cervical cancer “…kills over 250,000 women world wide every year”(1) when in fact this is only a questionable estimate.(2)
On the other hand Ian Frazer admits that “Through sexual activity, most of us will get infected with the genital papillomaviruses that can cause cancer. Fortunately, most of us get rid of them between 12 months to five years later without even knowing we’ve had the infection. Even if the infection persists, only a few individuals accumulate enough genetic mistakes in the virus-infected cell for these to acquire the properties of cancer cells”.(1) The Australian National Cervical Screening Program (NCSP) website says the HPV virus is a virus which for most women is likely to be cleared by their immune system, “similar to getting rid of a common cold” and “It is important to remember that most women who have HPV clear the virus and do not go on to develop cervical cancer.”(3)
In Australia, the age-standardised mortality rate from cervical cancer has more than halved since the start of the organised cervical screening program, from four deaths per 100,000 women in 1991 to two deaths per 100,000 women in 2011.(4)
GARDASIL Consumer Medicine Information approved by the TGA in Australia acknowledges GARDASIL will not protect against all HPV types, and women will need to continue to follow their doctor or health care provider’s instructions on regular Pap tests.(5)
I question whether mass global vaccination is justifiable with this expensive and experimental vaccine, particularly as we have no idea of the possible long-term effects, including the possibility of type replacement (and the current experience with the failing pertussis vaccine should ring alarm bells here, see for example: http://over-vaccination.net/questionable-vaccines/whooping-cough/ ).
Certainly it is my opinion that children and their parents are not being properly informed about this questionable vaccine product.
1. “Catch cancer? No thanks, I’d rather have a shot!”. The Conversation, 10 July 2012: https://theconversation.com/catch-cancer-no-thanks-id-rather-have-a-shot-7568
2. Human papillomavirus (HPV) and cervical cancer. Fact sheet No. 380. Reviewed March 2015: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs380/en/
3. About the human papillomavirus. National Cervical Screening Program. Australian Government Department of Health: http://www.cancerscreening.gov.au/internet/screening/publishing.nsf/Content/about-the-human-papillomavirus
4. Key statistics – detailed figures on cervical cancer and cervical screening in Australia. National Cervical Screening Program. Australian Government Department of Health: http://www.cancerscreening.gov.au/internet/screening/publishing.nsf/Content/key-statistics-2
5. GARDASIL Consumer Medicine Information leaflet: https://www.ebs.tga.gov.au/ebs/picmi/picmirepository.nsf/pdf?OpenAgent&id=CP-2010-CMI-05715-3&d=2015051416114622412
Very true Ove, I wrote somewhere that my baby died due to me taking Zoloft in the first trimester. I was very hurt, when a “doctor”started quoting statistics, that this was not caused by zoloft (a report from 2014)…. My great sadness? I and a friend both had Zoloft babies (half a heart, same deformity)…. and neither of these are shown in any statistics, despite me reporting it everywhere I could 19 years ago…. I finally tried to find my original report with Australia’s TGA, there was none. So I did another…………. so for some ignorant person to quote statistics at me, when deformed babies, never get report (despite my best efforts), why the hell would I believe those statistics.
Hmmm…. I see that the Measles Police are active in my own area.
A small outbreak of measles, at this stage involving only two siblings from the same family, and the Vaccine Police spring into action! In the high school where one of these cases is a student, the school has imposed a so-called “quarrantine”, but they are NOT “quarrantining” cases of the actual disease, they are banning everyone from attending school who cannnot PROVE they have had at least two doses of the vaccine! The excuse being that measles has a long incubation persiod, and the rationale being that everybody who is vaccinated will automatically be “innume”, and all the unvaccinated will NOT be “immune”.
Outrageous theorising, but undertsandable, because it totally supports their own ideological dogma, of course.
When I was a child, there was no measles vaccine (fortunately), and everybody at some time ‘caught’ measles. There was no quarrantine, and no big drama. Children who were ill stayed home for two weeks, and NOBODY died, and NOBODY was seriously ill. NOBODY, not at my school of several hundred kids, nor at any other school that I ever heard of: if anybody had of died, or been seriously ill, I would have heard about it, and nobody did. And, having had the disease once, we were all genuinely immune for the rest of our lives, unlike the psuedo ‘immunity’ that vaccination provides. Same with Chiken Pox and Mumps. Everybody caught it at some stage, and NODODY died.
As I have argued elsewhere, the pro-vaccine hysteria is founded on ideological dogma, and a complex web of psychosocial beliefs that have hardened into dogma, of a similar class to fundamentalist religious beliefs. It definitely is not really ‘science’, it is dogma masquerading as ‘science’, and when the actual scientific evidence is closely examined, it can be seen that the evidence is rather weak. So, because the Vaccine Police have a weak case, they never discuss the acual evidence, they just repeat their ideologically-driven theories, which is no more than PR spin.
Peter, it is not outrageous theorising. It has been pointed out many times to senators in California that whereas a child with Hep B has the right to attend school under new legislation a child who has not had the vaccine would not. Anyhow, California is becoming a little academic now as the bill ‘H.R.2232 – Vaccinate All Children Act of 2015’ has just arrived in Congress.
Lots of bills get introduced in Congress that are never passed. Take H.R. 1757 Vaccine Safety Study Act, which was introduced the last Congress by Rep. Bill Posey of Florida. It only ever garnered one additional co-sponsor. Posey has reintroduced it this Congress as H.R. 1636 (https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/114/hr1636). GovTrack give it a 1% chance of passage. They give 2232 a 2% chance (https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/114/hr2232). At the moment both houses of Congress are controlled by the Republican Party, who are supposed to stand for States’ rights. H.R. 2232, sponsored by a Democrat, is a usurpation of those rights (not to mention the rights of parents). I don’t see Republicans passing this bill.
I understand that’s right. Perhaps, it is also good news that the lobby were unable to get a Republican to sponsor it.
Peter, for the past few years I’ve been making the argument that people should be offered the option of an antibody titre test after the first dose of live Measles/Mumps/Rubella (MMR) vaccine to verify an immune response. According to the manufacturer’s data (GSK Priorix)(1), most individuals are likely to be immune after the first dose of live MMR vaccine, but a second dose is given to cover the small amount of individuals who might not have responded to the first dose. Two doses are stipulated on the Australian National Immunisation Program Schedule(2). This means the majority of individuals are over-vaccinated with the second dose of live MMR vaccine.
Of course we are told that vaccines are so safe it’s no problem to have two doses, but I disagree. Vaccines are medical interventions and there are always potential risks. I suggest to not properly inform people (e.g. parents of children) that there is an alternative to the second dose, i.e. the option of antibody titre testing to verify a response to the first dose, contravenes the obligation to obtain ‘valid consent’ before vaccination, as outlined in The Australian Immunisation Handbook (10th Edition)(3):
For consent to be legally valid, the following elements must be present:
1. It must be given by a person with legal capacity, and of sufficient intellectual capacity to understand the implications of being vaccinated.
2. It must be given voluntarily in the absence of undue pressure, coercion or manipulation.
3. It must cover the specific procedure that is to be performed.
4. It can only be given after the potential risks and benefits of the relevant vaccine, risks of not having it and any alternative options have been explained to the individual.
END OF QUOTE
Point 4 specifically states that any ‘alternative options’ must be explained to the individual. I suggest in the case of the MMR second dose this is not happening in many cases, particularly for children, i.e. their parents are not being informed of the option of antibody titre testing to check if they’re already immune, an option that some cautious parents might be willing to pay for themselves if necessary.
This matter bears some serious consideration, particularly in light of Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s recent edict that vaccination will be compulsory to obtain family tax benefits with no exemptions other than medical.(4) This means children will have to be vaccinated with two doses of live MMR vaccine as stipulated on the National Immunisation Program Schedule.(1) Of course proof of immunity via an antibody titre test after the first dose should qualify for a ‘medical’ exemption, but I suggest most parents of children are not informed of this evidence-based option.
1. GSK Priorix Product Information: https://www.ebs.tga.gov.au/ebs/picmi/picmirepository.nsf/pdf?OpenAgent&id=CP-2010-PI-05279-3&d=2015042916114622412
2. Australian National Immunisation Program Schedule: http://www.immunise.health.gov.au/internet/immunise/publishing.nsf/Content/national-immunisation-program-schedule
3. 2.1.3 Valid Consent. The Australian Immunisation Handbook 10th Edition 2013 (updated January 2014): http://www.immunise.health.gov.au/internet/immunise/publishing.nsf/Content/Handbook10-home~handbook10part2~handbook10-2-1
4. No Jab – No Play And No Pay For Child Care. Prime Ministerial Media Release, 12 April 2015: https://www.pm.gov.au/media/2015-04-12/no-jab-no-play-and-no-pay-child-care-0
As a criminologist/sociologist I’m currently researching and writing (in the early stages) about the vaccine industry, regulation, undue influence, intimidation, corruption etc. (and would be pleased to be in contact with anyone who has experienced intimidation because of their views on vaccines). I am convinced we are actually looking at forms of state-corporate crime where harmful outcomes support mutual interests, even when putative ‘benign’ intentions are involved. As you say Peter, Foucault’s work is apt here in particular what he refers to as regimes of truth, that is the how and who of ‘truth’ construction and legislations to entrench it within society (Biopolitics lectures 1978-9). In this context there is no vaccine debate, only dogma and dissent (Stalin would have approved) and punitive measures against those who dare to question, never mind oppose. Categorising attitudes to vaccines as pro- or anti is something that the powers-that-be have constructed. Even stating that one is pro-choice has now become an anti-vaccine stance. Once language is appropriated for ideological purposes, as happened in Soviet Russia, it becomes impossible to say anything without being positioned as either for or against ( George W said the same during the ‘war on terror’). Medical science, a particular kind that is, is now a powerful regime of truth. Hence there is no, and in this climate cannot be, genuine vaccine debate. Mary Holland was refused (by Paul offit) a face to face televised discussion as he deemed her not worth talking to. Instead he gave a studio interview claiming her to be a conspiracy theorist and her own interview as no more than ‘ranting’ despite the fact that she is a respected human rights scholar at NYU. We are indeed looking at an industry, a business. That is the job of Pharmaceutical companies, to make profits. We cannot blame them for doing what they do. And as with any other business in this particular economic environment, short cuts are taken to increase profit margins. The real problem, as i see it, lies in the collaboration between the state agencies that should be protecting the public, the media, as Elizabeth writes (another industry of course) and pharma-business. However, unlike most other industries, even tobacco, no governments actually mandate for consumption of their products. And that’s where state-corporate crime really hits. or as Foucault might put, biopower in extremis.
Paddy, I’m interested in your view that “we are actually looking at forms of state-corporate crime where harmful outcomes support mutual interests, even when putative ‘benign’ intentions are involved.”
This brings me to Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s recent edict that vaccination will be compulsory for children of all ages to obtain family tax benefits.(1)
The Prime Minister is ultimately responsible for the Federal Government’s vaccination schedule(2), which effectively mandates vaccination interventions for healthy people, particularly children.
In this regard I am forwarding letters to Prime Minister Abbott, questioning vaccination policy in Australia.
In the first instance my letter to Prime Minister Abbott (21 January 2015): http://users.on.net/~peter.hart/Letter_to_Tony_Abbott_PM_re_vax_policy.pdf requests he urgently address the problem of potential conflicts of interest and lack of disclosure by members of groups influencing vaccination policy in Australia, i.e.
• the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI);
• the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC);
• the TGA Advisory Committee on the Safety of Vaccines (ACSOV);
• the Australian Influenza Vaccine Committee (AIVC); and
• the Working Group and Oversight Committee for the Australian Academy of Science publication The Science of Immunisation: Questions and Answers, which was funded by the Australian Federal Government’s Department of Health and Ageing.
In my letter to Prime Minister Abbott I describe the lack of transparency and accountability for the groups providing advice on vaccine products to the Australian Federal Government, there is an alarming amount of secrecy in this area.
As the influence of these groups can result in the imposition of medical interventions (i.e. vaccinations) for healthy people, and massive sales of lucrative vaccine products for pharmaceutical companies, it is vital that the process of adding vaccine products to the national vaccination schedule is open and transparent, and that any potential conflicts of interest of the members of these groups are accessible for public perusal.
I have now received a response to my letter to Tony Abbott from the Immunisation Branch of the Department of Health* https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B9ZVuVqOGTd5ZkgtRm14eXNTOHc/view which indicates we may be at last obtaining some sunlight on this matter, at least in regards to the ATAGI committee. The letter advises:
The ATAGI has an established process for the declaration and, if necessary, the management of CoIs. At its 19-20 February 2015 meeting ATAGI reviewed the COI policy and agreed to publish details of the CoIs of its members on the Immunise Australia website to improve transparency. It is anticipated this information will be published in March 2015.
END OF QUOTE
Checking the Immunise Australia website(3), the information on conflicts of interest is now finally available – refer to this document http://www.immunise.health.gov.au/internet/immunise/publishing.nsf/Content/FC7BB2DC63225F8ACA257D770012DBF7/$File/2015-ATAGI-conflict-interest.pdf which discloses potential conflicts of interest for members and ex-officio members of ATAGI.
The document makes for interesting reading as many of the members, and an ex-officio member, of ATAGI have associations with pharmaceutical companies via funding for clinical trials and travel expenses.
I requested this information from then Health Minister Nicola Roxon in November 2011 and from then ATAGI Chair Professor Terry Nolan in March 2013 – why has it been kept secret for so long? Why do citizens such as myself have to fight for access to this information in our liberal democracy?
It is notable that only information for current members and ex-officio members of ATAGI is currently accessible. I suggest it is imperative that this information be retrospective and also detail associations with the pharmaceutical industry of previous members.
For instance Professor Terry Nolan has only recently departed the ATAGI Chair, yet there is no information on his potential conflicts of interest in the recently published document.
An article published in Australian Doctor in November 2005 titled “We’ll be fast: new vax boss”(4) notes that: “The new head of the Federal Government’s revised vaccine advisory group, Professor Terry Nolan, will prioritise timely responses to new vaccines and industry developments…”
As Professor Nolan has overseen the addition of vaccine products to the national schedule during his long tenure, including the Merck/bioCSL Gardasil HPV vaccine and GlaxoSmithKline’s Priorix-Tetra measles, mumps, rubella and varicella vaccine, I suggest it is imperative that potential conflicts of interest during his tenure should also be disclosed.
I will pursue this matter further.
* While the letter from the Immunisation Branch of the Department of Health is written in the ‘first person’, it is curious that no individual has signed the letter, the sign-off merely stating “Immunisation Branch Department of Health”, with no signature and no date.
1. No Jab – No Play And No Pay For Child Care. Prime Ministerial Media Release, 12 April 2015: https://www.pm.gov.au/media/2015-04-12/no-jab-no-play-and-no-pay-child-care-0
2. Australian National Immunisation Program Schedule: http://www.immunise.health.gov.au/internet/immunise/publishing.nsf/Content/national-immunisation-program-schedule
3. Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation webpage on the Immunise Australia website: http://www.immunise.health.gov.au/internet/immunise/publishing.nsf/Content/atagi
4. We’ll be fast: new vax boss. Australian Doctor, 2 November 2005: http://www.australiandoctor.com.au/news/latest-news/we–8217;ll-be-fast–new-vax-boss
Please, please start an on-line petition…. 70% of Australians do not want forced immunisations….. I am not well enough to start this myself, I am a victim of Antidepressants…….
If 70% of people dont agree with Tony Aboot…. and forced vaccines for the poor and middle class, your petition would do well.
The Maudsley Debate – Debatable?
Antipsychotics – More Harm than Good?
The Guardian guy got it in one.
He suffers intermittent anxiety and depression and is taking Prozac.
He says he still suffers intermittent anxiety and depression.
Does Prozac work then?
He also said he didn’t realise what a vicious world the world of psychiatry is….welcome to the world of psychiatry.
Try being the patient in the vicious world of psychiatry and practitioners preferring insulting behaviour to looking at how an ssri can destroy every single aspect of your life with their wilful denial of cold turkey and resulting morbidity.
Did any of these debaters come out of this with a shred of respectability?
A complete dog’s dinner…………however, a few people were converted that psychotropic drugs do more harm than good.
My vote for favourite…exquisite shirt worn by Peter. G. and by far the most reasonable voice…amongst a sea of hecklers…
Ove, let’s hope they enjoyed their beverages and food after their performance – this is what doctors do after a hard day at the office – whilst the patient is frozen in a time warp…….
Well said. I also am a wreck after 8 years on effexor………. but of course once on the drugs, your credibility is gone, so who listens to a person with a psychiatric “label” even though the label is false? We are not only victims, but totally ignored, while the psychiatrists somehow get put on an invisible pedestal ……… challenge them at your own risk of getting a “label”… no other doctors on earth have this sort of irrational power… just because they judge someone as this or that, often in 10 minute appointment. I would like to know of just one person who ever went to a psychiatrist and didn’t get a “label”….
I just came across something of interest from a us gov agency.
“H1N1 vaccine (administered in Europe) can act as a rare trigger for the [narcolepsy]. It is not yet known if these infectious agents are direct triggers for the disease, or whether they increase likelihood of disease indirectly.”
No references were listed.
European Medicines Agency launches inquiry into HPV vaccines:
‘The safety of the HPV vaccine has today been thrown into doubt as health experts launch a review of the jab amid concerns over its side-effects.
‘The European Medicines Agency’s probe will focus on rare reports of two conditions, complex regional pain syndrome and postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome.
‘The EMA was quick to note the review does not question that the benefits of HPV vaccines outweigh their risks.
‘While the review is ongoing, the EMA said there is no change in recommendations for use of the vaccine.’
http://ahrp.org/death-following-hpv-vaccine/ (case history at link)
Dr. Lucija Tomjenovic, a post-doctoral biochemist at the University of British Columbia School of Medicine, presented an abstract at the International Conference on Pharmacovigilance and Clinical Trials held in Chicago (October, 2012). The abstract of a detailed scientific paper about to be published by the Open Access publication OMICS, describes the abnormal autoimmune response 14 days following vaccination with the quadrivalent human papillomavirus (HPV), which ultimately led to the death of a 15-year old girl.
In Spain, on October 9, 2012, Don Carlos Álvarez Dardet, Professor of Preventive Medicine and Public Health at the University of Alicante, and Dña Alicia Capilla Lanagrán, Vice President of the AAVP (the Association of those Affected by Papillomavirus Vaccines) held a press conference to explain the reasons behind requests by medical professionals urging a Moratorium on the use of HPV vaccines in Spain.
Indeed, in 2009, more than 10,000 health professionals and scientific associations signed a document entitled, “Reasons for a Moratorium on the use of HPV vaccines in Spain,” and submitted it to the Department of Health.
The AAVP posted their demand for removal of HPV vaccines and the creation of a compensation fund for vaccine injury victims. Their website: http://www.nogracias.eu
See Rough English translation of Spain’s demand.
Read the illuminating detailed chapter by Mark Blaxill and Dan Olmsted analyzing the faulty basis for approval of the HPV vaccine in Vaccine Epidemic.