Chiropractor, Childhood Chiropractic, Healthy Baby

Does the CAA represent Australian Chiropractors? The Courage of Their Convictions

Chiropractor, Childhood Chiropractic, Healthy BabyWhen the Australian Vaccination Network (AVN) began, way back in 1994, amongst the core group of 6 founders were 2 chiropractors. One was a local practitioner and another was from further away. They, like most chiropractors, fully supported the rights for all individuals to make free and informed health decisions without fear of coercion, financial penalty or government threats. One of those chiropractors went on to run a State branch of the Chiropractors’ Association of Australia (CAA), one of the 2 peak bodies governing the profession in this country.

Since its inception, the AVN has had a close, cooperative and friendly relationship with Australian chiropractors and the CAA. They had in excess of 10% of all Australian Chiropractors as Professional Members of the organisation when that level of membership was still available and I have personally spoken at many conferences and meetings hosted by both state and national branches of the CAA. Chiropractors who came to hear me have even been granted CE (continuing education) points.

Pressure brought to bear on chiropractors

Several years ago, things started to change. Chiropractors started to come under attack for supporting freedom of choice because many of them are sceptical about the benefits and safety of vaccination and were very supportive of their patients’ right to make informed choices about this issue. They were also being abused for daring to treat infants and children as well as adults, and for having the nerve to claim that chiropractic adjustments could treat more than back and neck pain.

The Chiropractic Board at that time deemed that chiropractors must not discuss any vaccination issues with patients. Chiropractors were not to have any information or books about vaccination in their offices and if a patient asked for their opinion on this topic, that patient was to be referred to the government health authorities or their local GP. In other words, chiropractors – health professionals who go through nearly the same training as medical doctors (without the emphasis on drugs and surgery) for the same number of years, were being told that they were not allowed to use their expertise to help their patients! Many of the chiropractors I spoke with at that time, including sitting Board members of the CAA, were furious about these moves!

Asking the hard questions

A few weeks ago, I was copied in on an email sent to a large list of Australian chiropractors by one of the top practitioners in this country. his question is below as well as my answer sent to him directly.

Q. should we get involved in this [vaccination] debate, as chiropractors, at this time ?

A. I’m not a chiropractor (as you well know, XXXXX :-), but Palmer went to jail (several times, from memory) for what he believed to be true regarding health. If he hadn’t done so, we most likely would not have chiropractic anywhere in the world!

If chiropractors allow themselves to be silenced, they are not doing right by themselves or by their patients. The only ones who will benefit from your silence are corporate government, corporate media and big pharma – all of whom want to see the end of chiropractic care, patient rights, the right to choose any and all forms of natural health. Do you really think that staying silent at this time will be a good thing?

The question is a good one: should chiropractors get involved in the vaccination debate or should they simply hide their own opinions, beliefs and the data their education has prepared them to analyse and just let their patients get information from one side only – the side that has been approved by the government?

On November 14, 2016, the CAA, a body that charges chiropractors for membership and purports to represent their interests with both the government and the general public, issued a statement you can read in its entirety at this link.

On the one hand, the CAA states, regarding best practice when caring for infants and children, that:

Best practice requires:

• placing the interests and wellbeing of the paediatric patient first;
• ensuring there is informed consent from the paediatric patient’s parent or guardian;
• carefully explaining the risks of care and alternatives to care to the parent or guardian; and
• identifying any ‘red flags’ particular to the paediatric patient and investigating, managing, co-managing or referring to an appropriate health practitioner.

All laudable goals when it comes to any form of treatment!

But then, they proceed to state that:

The CAA supports the Australian government’s view that immunisation is an important health care initiative. It is outside the scope of practice for chiropractors. When considering immunisation, patients should consult with either their GP or Maternal and Child Health Nurse for further information.

Now, this is a view that, I can comfortably state after personally speaking with many hundreds of chiropractors, represents a tiny minority of those in the profession.

CAA attacks the AVN-an organisation supported by many chiropractors

As if that were not bad enough, or disrespectful enough of the majority of their members’ informed and educated opinions, the CAA made a statement on their Facebook page:

Chiropractors Association Australia, Freedom of Choice, Chiropractic Care

I have spoken with the AVN Committee and to date, nobody from the CAA has contacted them about removing any link. In addition, since I was the one who set up the AVN’s web page and their links (medical, natural health and general), I can tell you that for many years, the CAA link has been reciprocal – in other words, they linked to the AVN and the AVN linked to the CAA.

Are the leaders of the chiropractic profession in Australia now guilty of cowardice? When their founder, Daniel David Palmer, felt so committed to the health of his patients that he spent time in prison in their defence, have his descendants strayed so far from their roots that their income has now become more important than their morals and knowledge?

Anyone who knows me at all, knows that I revere the chiropractic profession. My family’s healthcare provider has been a chiropractor for the last 25 years. But when I see that profession so afraid to hold to the courage of their convictions that they are willing to allow their patients to make decisions based only on information they themselves disagree with, I have to ask whether their usefulness as a healing modality is in its last days?

I support chiropractic and want to know what you think

By writing this blog, I know that I am exposing chiropractors to attack. In fact, all natural health modalities are and have been under attack. There are no rocks big enough for them to hide under any longer. It is time to fight back. It is time to stand up for what you believe in. It is time to tell the government, organisations like Friends of Science in Medicine and others whose stated goal is to see your profession exterminated that you will not bow to government-approved health tyranny.

Please comment on this blog if you are a chiropractor or if you use chiropractors for your healthcare. Feel free to use an alias since you will be threatened with deregistration if you dare to become public about your beliefs. It is time to support each other!

measles in africa, vaccination africa, measles

Measles deaths in Africa

The following article is by Greg Beattie, author of Vaccination: A Parent’s Dilemma and the more recent Fooling Ourselves on the Fundamental Value of Vaccines. It was originally published on the REAL Australian Sceptics blog and bears repeating.

This information and the graphs included are excerpted from Mr Beattie’s latest book. It demonstrates very clearly that a true sceptic will not necessarily believe in headlines such as “Measles deaths in Africa plunge by 91%” without seeing the proof of those claims. Question everything – accept nothing at face value – that is the credo of the true sceptic.

Man is a credulous animal, and must believe something; in the absence of good grounds for belief, he will be satisfied with bad ones.
Bertrand Russell

Africa, measles africa, vaccination africa
0.450–0.499 0.400–0.449 0.350–0.399 0.300–0.349 under 0.300 n/a (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If you are not one to follow the news, you may have missed it. Others will have undoubtedly seen a stream of good-newsstories over the past five years, such as:

Measles Deaths In Africa Plunge By 91%[1],[2]

There have been many versions on the theme; the percentage rates have changed over time. However, the bodies of the stories leave us in no doubt as to the reason for their headlines. Here are some direct quotes:

In a rare public health success story on the world’s most beleaguered continent, Africa has slashed deaths from measles by 91 per cent since 2000 thanks to an immunization drive.

An ambitious global immunization drive has cut measles deaths…

Measles deaths in Africa have fallen as child vaccination rates have risen.

These stories represent a modern-day version of the belief that vaccines vanquished the killer diseases of the past. There is something deeply disturbing about the stories, and it is not immediately apparent. The fact is: no-one knows how many people died of measles in Africa. No-one! Not last year and not ten years ago.

I will repeat that. No-one knows how many measles deaths have occurred in Africa. So, where did these figures come from? I will explain that in this blog. In a nutshell, they were calculated on a spreadsheet, using a formula. You may be surprised when you see how simple the method was.

We all believe these stories, because we have no reason to doubt them. The only people who would have questioned them were those who were aware that the deaths had not been counted. One of these was World Health Organisation (WHO) head of Health Evidence and Statistics, who reprimanded the authors of the original report (on which the stories were based) in an editorial published in the Bulletin of the WHO, as I will discuss shortly. Unfortunately, by then the train was already runaway. The stories had taken off virally through the worldwide media.

Overview

First, an overview of the formula. The authors looked at it this way: for every million vaccines given out, we hope to save ‘X’ lives. From that premise, we simply count how many million vaccines we gave out, and multiply that by ‘X’ to calculate how many lives (we think) we have saved. That is how the figures were arrived at.

The stories and the formula are both products of a deep belief in the power of vaccines. We think the stories report facts, but instead they report hopes.

The nuts and bolts

Hardly any of the willing participants in spreading the stories bothered to check where the figures came from, and what they meant. That was possibly understandable. Why would we need to check them? After all, they were produced by experts: respected researchers, and reputable organisations such as UNICEF, American Red Cross, United Nations Foundation, and the World Health Organisation.

However, I did check them. I checked because I knew the developing world wasn’t collecting cause of death data that could provide such figures[3]. In fact, it is currently estimated that only 25 million of the 60 million deaths that occur each year are even registered, let alone have reliable cause-of-death information[4]. Sub-Saharan Africa, where a large proportion of measles deaths are thought to occur, still had an estimated death registration of only around 10%[5] in 2006, and virtually no reliable cause-of-death data. Even sample demographic surveys, although considered accurate, were not collecting cause-of-death data that allowed for these figures to be reported. Simply put, this was not real data: the figures had to be estimates.

I was curious as to how the estimates were arrived at, so I traced back to the source—an article in The Lancet, written by a team from the Measles Initiative[6]. After reading the article, I realised the reports were not measles deaths at all. They were planning estimates, or predictions. In other words, they represented outcomes that the Measles Initiative had hoped to achieve, through conducting vaccination programs.

Don’t get me wrong. We all know that planning and predicting are very useful, even necessary activities, but it is obvious they are not the same as measuring outcomes.

The title of the original report from the Measles Initiative reads, “Has the 2005 measles mortality reduction goal been achieved? A natural history modelling study.[7] The authors took one and a half pages to explain how natural history modelling applied here. I will simplify it in about ten lines. I realise that in doing so, some may accuse me of editorial vandalism, however I assure you what follows captures the essence of the method. The rest is detail. If you are interested in confirming this, I urge you to read the original article for that detail. Here we go… the formula at the heart of the stories:

My interpretation of the Measles Natural History Modelling Study

  1. Open a blank spreadsheet
  2. Enter population data for each year from 2000 to 2006
  3. Enter measles vaccine coverage for each of the years also
  4. Assume all people develop measles if not vaccinated
  5. Assume vaccination prevents 85-95% of measles cases
  6. Calculate how many measles cases were ‘prevented’ each year (using the above figures)
  7. Calculate how many measles deaths were ‘prevented’ each year (using historical case-fatality ratios)

There, simple. As you can see, this is a typical approach if we are modelling,for predictive purposes. Using a spreadsheet to predict outcomes of various plans helps us set targets, and develop strategies. When it comes to evaluating the result of our plan however we need to go out into the field, and measure what happened. We must never simply return to the same spreadsheet. But this is precisely what the Measles Initiative team did. And the publishing world swallowed it—hook, line and sinker.

As mentioned earlier, WHO Health Evidence and Statistics head, Dr Kenji Shibuya, saw the problem with this method. Writing editorially in the Bulletin of the WHO, under the title “Decide monitoring strategies before setting targets”, Shibuya had this to say[8]:

Unfortunately, the MDG[9] monitoring process relies heavily on predicted statistics.

…the assessment of a recent change in measles mortality from vaccination is mostly based on statistics predicted from a set of covariates… It is understandable that estimating causes of death over time is a difficult task. However, that is no reason for us to avoid measuring it when we can also measure the quantity of interest directly; otherwise the global health community would continue to monitor progress on a spreadsheet with limited empirical basis. This is simply not acceptable. [emphasis mine]

This mismatch was created partly by the demand for more timely statistics …and partly by a lack of data and effective measurement strategies among statistics producers. Users must be realistic, as annual data on representative cause-specific mortality are difficult to obtain without complete civil registration or sample registration systems

If such data are needed, the global health community must seek indicators that are valid, reliable and comparable, and must invest in data collection (e.g. adjusting facility-based data by using other representative data sources).

Regardless of new disease-specific initiatives or the broader WHO Strategic Objectives, the key is to focus on a small set of relevant indicators for which well defined strategies for monitoring progress are available. Only by doing so will the global health community be able to show what works and what fails.

In simple terms, Shibuya was saying:

  • We know it is difficult to estimate measles deaths, but
  • You should have tried, because you attracted a lot of interest
  • Instead, you simply went back to the same spreadsheet you used to make the plan—and that is unacceptable!
  • If you want to make a claim about your results, you need to measure the outcomes and collect valid data
  • Until you do, you cannot say whether your plan ‘worked’

Unfortunately, by the time Shibuya’s editorial was published, the media had already been trumpeting the stories for more than a year, because the Measles Initiative announced its news to a waiting media before subjecting it to peer-review. So, without scientific scrutiny, the stories were unleashed into a world hungry for good news, especially concerning the developing world. The result… the reports were welcomed, accepted, and regurgitated to a degree where official scrutiny now seems to have the effect of a drop in a bucket.

The question of who was responsible for this miscarriage of publishing justice plagued me for a while. Was it the architects of the original report? Or was it the robotic section of our media (that part that exists because of a lack of funds for employing real journalists) who spread the message virally to every corner of the globe, without checking it?

One quote which really stands out in the stories is from former director of the United States Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

“The clear message from this achievement is that the strategy works,” said CDC director Dr. Julie Gerberding

What strategy works? Is she talking about modelling on a spreadsheet? Or, using the predictions in place of real outcomes? More recent reports from the Measles Initiative indicate the team are continuing with this deceptive approach. In their latest report[10] it is estimated 12.7 million deaths were averted between 2000-2008. All were calculated on their spreadsheet, and all were attributed to vaccination, for the simple reason that it was the only variable on the spreadsheet that was under their control. And still there is no scrutiny of the claims. Furthermore, the authors make no effort to clarify in the public mind that the figures are nothing but planning estimates.

No proof

Supporters of vaccination might argue that this does not prove vaccines are of no use. I agree. In fact,let me say it first: none of this provides any evidence whatsoever of the value of vaccination. That is the crux of the matter. The media stories have trumpeted the success of the plan, and given us all a pat on the back for making it happen. But the stories are fabrications. The only aspect of them which is factual is that which tells us vaccination rates have increased.

Some ‘real’ good-news?

General mortality rates in Africa are going down. That means deaths from all causesare reducing. How do we know this? Because an inter-agency group, led by UNICEF and WHO, has been evaluating demographic survey data in countries that do not have adequate death registration data. These surveys have been going on for more than 50 years. One of the reasons they do this is to monitor trends in mortality; particularly infant, and under-five mortality.

Although the health burden in developing countries is inequitably high, there is reason to be positive when we view these trends. Deaths are declining and, according to the best available estimates, have been steadily doing so for a considerable time; well over 50 years.

One of the most useful indicators of a country’s health transition is its under-5 mortality rate: that is, the death rate for children below five years old. The best estimates available for Africa show a steady decline in under-5 mortality rate, of around 1.8% per year, since 1950[11]. Figure 1 shows this decline from 1960 onward[12]. It also shows the infant mortality rate[13]. Both are plotted as averages of all countries in the WHO region of Africa.

Figure 1. Child mortality, Africa

This graph may appear complex, but it is not difficult to read. The two thick lines running horizontally through the graph are the infant (the lower blue line) and under-5 (the upper black line) mortality rates per 1000 from 1960 to 2009. The handful of finer lines which commence in 1980, at a low point, and shoot upward over the following decade, represent the introduction of the various vaccines. The vertical scale on the right side of the graph shows the rate at which children were vaccinated with each of these shots.

The primary purpose of this graph (as well as that in Figure 2) is to deliver the real good-news. We see a slowly, but steadily improving situation. Death rates for infants and young children are declining. I decided to add the extra lines (for vaccines) to illustrate that they appear to have had no impact on the declining childhood mortality rates; at least, not a positive impact. If they were as useful as we have been led to believe, these vaccines (covering seven illnesses) would surely have resulted in a sharp downward deviation from the established trend. As we can see, this did not occur.

In Africa, the vaccines were introduced at the start of the 1980s and, within a decade, reached more than half the children. The only effect observable in the mortality rates, is a slowing of the downward trend. In other words, if anything were to be drawn from this, it would be that the introduction of the vaccines was counter-productive. One could argue that the later increase in vaccine coverage (after the year 2000) was followed by a return to the same decline observed prior to the vaccines. However, that does not line up. The return to the prior decline predates it, by around five years.

With both interpretations we are splitting hairs. Since we are discussing an intervention that has been marketed as a modern miracle, we should see a marked effect on the trend. We don’t.

The WHO region of Africa (also referred to as sub-Saharan Africa) is where a substantial portion of the world’s poor-health burden is thought to exist. The country that is believed to share the majority of worldwide child mortality burden with sub-Saharan Africa is India, in the WHO south-east Asia region. Together, the African and South-east Asian regions were thought in 1999 to bear 85% of the world’s measles deaths[14]. Figure 2 shows India’s declining infant and under-5 mortality rates, over the past 50 years. Again, the introduction of various vaccines is also shown.

Figure 2. Child mortality, India

And again, vaccines do not appear to have contributed. Mortality rates simply continued their steady decline. We commenced mass vaccination (for seven illnesses) from the late 1980s but there was no visible impact on the child mortality trends.

In a nutshell, what happened in the developed world is still happening in the yet-to-finish-developing world, only it started later, and is taking longer. The processes of providing clean water, good nourishment, adequate housing, education and employment, freedom from poverty, as well as proper care of the sick, have been on-going in poor countries.

I would have loved to go back further in time with these graphs but unfortunately I was not able to locate the data. I did uncover one graph in an issue of the Bulletin of the WHO, showing the under-5 mortality rate in sub-Saharan Africa to be an estimated 350 in 1950[15]. It subsequently dropped to around 175 by 1980, before vaccines figured. It continued dropping, though slower, to 129 by 2008[16].

The decline represents a substantial health transition, and a lot of lives saved. When cause-of-death data improves, or at least some genuine effort is made to establish credible estimates of measles deaths, it will undoubtedly be found they are dropping as well. Why wouldn’t they? This is good news, and all praise needs to be directed at the architects and supporters of the international activities that are helping to achieve improvements in the real determinants of health. In the midst of all the hype, I trust we will not swallow attempts to give the credit to vaccines… again.

I am not confident, however. I feel this is simply history repeating itself. Deaths from infectious disease will reach an acceptable “low” in developing countries, at some point in time. And although this will probably be due to a range of improvements in poverty, sanitation, nutrition and education, I feel vaccines will be given the credit. To support the claim, numerous pieces of evidence will be paraded, such as:

Measles Deaths In Africa Plunge By 91%

We need to purge these pieces of “evidence” if we are to have rational discussion. The public have a right to know that these reports are based on fabricated figures.  Otherwise, the relative importance of vaccines in future health policy will be further exaggerated.


[1]    Medical News Today 30Nov 2007; http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/90237.php

[2]    UNICEF Joint press release; http://www.unicef.org/media/media_41969.html

[3]    Jaffar et al. Effects of misclassification of causes of death on the power of a trial to assess the efficacy of a pneumococcal conjugate vaccine in The Gambia; International Journal of Epidemiology 2003;32:430-436 http://ije.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/full/32/3/430

[4]    Save lives by counting the dead; An interview with Prof Prabhat Jha, Bulletin of the World Health Organisation 2010;88:171–172

[5]    Counting the dead is essential for health: Bull WHO Volume 84, Number 3, March 2006, 161-256 http://www.who.int/bulletin/volumes/84/3/interview0306/en/index.html

[6]    Launched in 2001, the Measles Initiative is an international partnership committed to reducing measles deaths worldwide, and led by the American Red Cross, CDC, UNICEF, United Nations Foundation, and WHO. Additional information available at http://www.measlesinitiative.org

[7]    Wolfson et al. Has the 2005 measles mortality reduction goal been achieved? A natural history modelling study; Lancet 2007; 369: 191–200 Available from http://www.measlesinitiative.org/mi-files/Reports/Measles%20Mortality%20Reduction/Global/Wolfson%20Lancet2007_Measles_Mortality_Reduction.pdf

[8]    Kenji Shibuya. Decide monitoring strategies before setting targets; Bulletin of the World Health Organization June 2007, 85 (6) http://www.who.int/bulletin/volumes/85/6/07-042887/en/index.html

[9]    MDG – Millennium Development Goals, to be discussed shortly in this chapter.

[10]  Dabbagh et al. Global Measles Mortality, 2000–2008; Morbidity & Mortality Weekly Report. 2009;58(47):1321-1326 http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/714345

[11]  Garenne & Gakusi. Health transitions in sub-Saharan Africa: overview of mortality trends in children under five years old (1950-2000);  Bull WHO June 2006, 84(6) p472 http://www.who.int/bulletin/volumes/84/6/470.pdf

[12]  If you perform a ‘google’ search for ‘infant mortality rate’ or ‘under-5 mortality rate’ you will locate a google service that provides most of this data. It is downloadable in spreadsheet form by clicking on the ‘More info’ link.  http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SH.DYN.MORT/countries/1W-US?display=graph :Vaccine coverage data is available from the WHO website http://www.childinfo.org/files/Immunization_Summary_2008_r6.pdf

[13]  Infant mortality rate is “under-1 year of age” mortality rate.

[15]  Garenne & Gakusi. Health transitions in sub-Saharan Africa: overview of mortality trends in children under five years old (1950-2000);  Bull WHO June 2006, 84(6) p472 http://www.who.int/bulletin/volumes/84/6/470.pdf

Does Malcolm Turnbull support censorship?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Patrick Stokes – vaccine-risk denialist

A very active and lively discussion has been taking place on the Prime Minister’s Facebook page regarding the No Jab, No Pay law.  I made several posts in response to Dr Patrick Stokes – a Senior Lecturer in Philosophy who supports censorship when it comes to vaccination as evidenced by his article on The Conversation entitled: No, You’re Not Entitled to Your Opinion.

Dr Stokes is an Australian academic who readily admits that he is not an authority on the this issue.  Furthermore, he openly states that he does not WANT to know about the science of vaccination, instead claiming that everyone should defer to doctors and health authorities because they are the only ones capable of understanding the subject. Please read his statement below:

Stokes Defers to Experts

Is the PM Censoring Debate?

Getting back to the Prime Minister’s Facebook page, as I said, I was having a lively debate with Mr Stokes about the issue of vaccination. I prepared a comment in response to his repetition of the fact that he does not know anything about vaccination and does not believe the issue should be publicly debated. When I tried to post my response, however, I got a warning that there was a problem and I should try later. This was yesterday afternoon and I have tried 4 times now and each time, I get the same warning.

Lucy TurnbullSince there are plenty of new comments on this page, including many casting aspersions on my honesty, integrity and intelligence, I can only assume that I have been blocked. Fair go, Malcolm or whoever you have delegated to moderate your page! Are you afraid that your wife’s profits at Prima BioMed (profits that jumped to AUD $5.5 million mere weeks after No Jab No Pay legislation was announced) might be affected if enough people start to question vaccination? Valid fear, that – but is that a reason to silence opponents of government policies? Do we live in a democracy or not, Mr Turnbull? Or are the Australian people no more than cash cows (cash vaccas, the origin of the word ‘vaccination’, appropriately enough?) to you and your government?

Think about it for a minute. NSW Premiere, Barry O’Farrell resigned over the gift of a bottle of wine; then Prime Minister, Paul Keating, scandalised the nation when it was discovered that he had profited from the sale of a piggery to Indonesia whilst undertaking trade negotiations with that country; and former Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd’s wife, Therese Rein, was forced to sell the Australian division of her international employment agency when her husband was elected due to contracts the company had with the Australian Government.

Australia has a long history of holding its elected representatives accountable when there is even a hint of corruption or profiteering – yet the current PM’s wife is Chairman of the Board of a company involved in vaccination and other pharmaceutical pursuits whose value has increased dramatically due – at least on the surface in my own opinion – to policies which her husband has helped push through Parliament. Did Mr Turnbull excuse himself during the debate on No Jab No Pay? Did he tell Parliament that he had a conflict of interest and excuse himself from the vote on this legislation? These are genuine questions – I don’t know the answer and my investigations so far have not been fruitful. Despite the apparent conflict of interest, not a word has been raised about this in the media or by the opposition.

I guess when it comes to vaccination, carte blanche is always given to those who support the procedure and a blind eye will be turned if there is any question of propriety or what is right for the nation.

But I digress.

Before I was unceremoniously booted from the PM’s Facebook page, I had issued a challenge to debate the benefits and risks of vaccination at a public venue. My challenge stands – if anyone from the medical industry, pharma or government believes that they can publicly support vaccine safety and effectiveness, I will gladly meet you in a fair debate with a neutral compere.

For those who would like to see my response to Patrick Stokes, here it is.

@Patrick Stokes – if I have no expertise on this subject (and by your own admission, you are neither qualified nor interested enough to learn about what you discuss when it comes to vaccination), then it should be simple to prove it. Not debating me or anyone else from the pro-information side of the issue is simply a ruse.

And here are just a few recent studies that HAVE been published on the ineffectiveness and risks of vaccination. Maybe you need to get someone more qualified to read them for you and tell you what they say?

BMJ. 2014 Jun 24;348:g3668. doi: 10.1136/bmj.g3668.

Whooping cough in school age children presenting with persistent cough in UK primary care after introduction of the preschool pertussis booster vaccination: prospective cohort study.

Objective To estimate the prevalence and clinical severity of whooping cough (pertussis) in school age children presenting with persistent cough in primary care since the introduction and implementation of the preschool pertussis booster vaccination.

Design Prospective cohort study (November 2010 to December 2012).

Setting General practices in Thames Valley, UK.

Participants 279 children aged 5 to 15 years who presented in primary care with a persistent cough of two to eight weeks’ duration. Exclusion criteria were cough likely to be caused by a serious underlying medical condition, known immunodeficiency or immunocompromise, participation in another clinical research study, and preschool pertussis booster vaccination received less than one year previously.

Main outcome measures Evidence of recent pertussis infection based on an oral fluid anti-pertussis toxin IgG titre of at least 70 arbitrary units. Cough frequency was measured in six children with laboratory confirmed pertussis.

Results 56 (20%, 95% confidence interval 16% to 25%) children had evidence of recent pertussis infection, including 39 (18%, 13% to 24%) of 215 children who had been fully vaccinated. The risk of pertussis was more than three times higher (21/53; 40%, 26% to 54%) in children who had received the preschool pertussis booster vaccination seven years or more previously than in those who had received it less than seven years previously (20/171; 12%, 7% to 17%). The risk of pertussis was similar between children who received five and three component preschool pertussis booster vaccines (risk ratio for five component vaccine 1.14, 0.64 to 2.03). Four of six children in whom cough frequency was measured coughed more than 400 times in 24 hours.

Conclusions Pertussis can still be found in a fifth of school age children who present in primary care with persistent cough and can cause clinically significant cough in fully vaccinated children. These findings will help to inform consideration of the need for an adolescent pertussis booster vaccination in the United Kingdom.

Divider 1

Clin Infect Dis. (2012) doi: 10.1093/cid/cis287

Unexpectedly Limited Durability of Immunity Following Acellular Pertussis Vaccination in Pre-Adolescents in a North American Outbreak

Results We identified 171 cases of clinical pertussis; 132 in pediatric patients. There was a notable increase in cases in patients aged 8-12. The rate of testing peaked in infants, but remained relatively constant until age 12. The rate of positive tests was low for ages zero to six, and increased in preadolescents, peaking at age 12. Vaccination rates of PCR positive preadolescents were approximately equal to that of controls. Vaccine Effectiveness was 41%, 24%, 79%, for ages 2-7, 8-12, 13-18, respectively.

Conclusions Our data suggests that the current schedule of acellular pertussis vaccine doses is insufficient to prevent outbreaks of pertussis. We noted a markedly increased rate of disease from age 8 through 12, proportionate to the interval since the last scheduled vaccine. Stable rates of testing ruled out selection bias. The possibility of earlier or more numerous booster doses of acellular pertussis vaccine either as part of routine immunization or for outbreak control should be entertained.

Divider 1

This is not a peer-reviewed study, but it speaks to the fact that drug companies control the information governments rely upon to make policy decisions. It is written in plain English.

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/lawrence-solomon/merck-whistleblowers_b_5881914.html

Merck Has Some Explaining To Do Over Its MMR Vaccine Claims

Merck, the pharmaceutical giant, is facing a slew of controversies over its Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR) vaccine following numerous allegations of wrongdoing from different parties in the medical field, including two former Merck scientists-turned-whistleblowers. A third whistleblower, this one a scientist at the Centers for Disease Control, also promises to bring Merck grief following his confession of misconduct involving the same MMR vaccine.

The controversies will find Merck defending itself and its vaccine in at least two federal court cases after a U.S. District judge earlier this month threw out Merck’s attempts at dismissal. Merck now faces federal charges of fraud from the whistleblowers, a vaccine competitor and doctors in New Jersey and New York. Merck could also need to defend itself in Congress: The staff of representative Bill Posey (R-Fla) — a longstanding critic of the CDC interested in an alleged link between vaccines and autism — is now reviewing some 1,000 documents that the CDC whistleblower turned over to them.

The first court case, United States v. Merck & Co., stems from claims by two former Merck scientists that Merck “fraudulently misled the government and omitted, concealed, and adulterated material information regarding the efficacy of its mumps vaccine in violation of the FCA [False Claims Act].”

According to the whistleblowers’ court documents, Merck’s misconduct was far-ranging: It “failed to disclose that its mumps vaccine was not as effective as Merck represented, (ii) used improper testing techniques, (iii) manipulated testing methodology, (iv) abandoned undesirable test results, (v) falsified test data, (vi) failed to adequately investigate and report the diminished efficacy of its mumps vaccine, (vii) falsely verified that each manufacturing lot of mumps vaccine would be as effective as identified in the labeling, (viii) falsely certified the accuracy of applications filed with the FDA, (ix) falsely certified compliance with the terms of the CDC purchase contract, (x) engaged in the fraud and concealment describe herein for the purpose of illegally monopolizing the U.S. market for mumps vaccine, (xi) mislabeled, misbranded, and falsely certified its mumps vaccine, and (xii) engaged in the other acts described herein to conceal the diminished efficacy of the vaccine the government was purchasing.” (Click the above link to read the rest of this article).

Divider 1

And here, a release from that rabidly anti-vaccine body, the American College of Pediatrics:

http://www.acpeds.org/the-college-speaks/position-statements/health-issues/new-concerns-about-the-human-papillomavirus-vaccine

New Concerns about the Human Papillomavirus Vaccine

American College of Pediatricians – January 2016

The American College of Pediatricians (The College) is committed to the health and well-being of children, including prevention of disease by vaccines. It has recently come to the attention of the College that one of the recommended vaccines could possibly be associated with the very rare but serious condition of premature ovarian failure (POF), also known as premature menopause. There have been two case report series (3 cases each) published since 2013 in which post-menarcheal adolescent girls developed laboratory documented POF within weeks to several years of receiving Gardasil, a four-strain human papillomavirus vaccine (HPV4).1,2 Adverse events that occur after vaccines are frequently not caused by the vaccine and there has not been a noticeable rise in POF cases in the last 9 years since HPV4 vaccine has been widely used.

Nevertheless there are legitimate concerns that should be addressed: (1) long-term ovarian function was not assessed in either the original rat safety studies3,4 or in the human vaccine trials, (2) most primary care physicians are probably unaware of a possible association between HPV4 and POF and may not consider reporting POF cases or prolonged amenorrhea (missing menstrual periods) to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), (3) potential mechanisms of action have been postulated based on autoimmune associations with the aluminum adjuvant used1 and previously documented ovarian toxicity in rats from another component, polysorbate 80,2 and (4) since licensure of Gardasil® in 2006, there have been about 213 VAERS reports (per the publicly available CDC WONDER VAERS database) involving amenorrhea, POF or premature menopause, 88% of which have been associated with Gardasil®.5 The two-strain HPV2, CervarixTM, was licensed late in 2009 and accounts for 4.7 % of VAERS amenorrhea reports since 2006, and 8.5% of those reports from February 2010 through May 2015. This compares to the pre-HPV vaccine period from 1990 to 2006 during which no cases of POF or premature menopause and 32 cases of amenorrhea were reported to VAERS.

Many adolescent females are vaccinated with influenza, meningococcal, and tetanus vaccines without getting Gardasil®, and yet only 5.6% of reports related to ovarian dysfunction since 2006 are associated with such vaccines in the absence of simultaneous Gardasil® administration. The overwhelming majority (76%) of VAERS reports since 2006 with ovarian failure, premature menopause, and/or amenorrhea are associated solely with Gardasil®. When VAERS reports since 2006 are restricted to cases in which amenorrhea occurred for at least 4 months and is not associated with other known causes like polycystic ovary syndrome or pregnancy, 86/89 cases are associated with Gardasil®, 3/89 with CervarixTM, and 0/89 with other vaccines administered independently of an HPV vaccine.5 Using the same criteria, there are only 7 reports of amenorrhea from 1990 through 2005 and no more than 2 of those associated with any one vaccine type.

Few other vaccines besides Gardasil® that are administered in adolescence contain polysorbate 80.6 Pre-licensure safety trials for Gardasil® used placebo that contained polysorbate 80 as well as aluminum adjuvant.2,7 Therefore, if such ingredients could cause ovarian dysfunction, an increase in amenorrhea probably would not have been detected in the placebo controlled trials. Furthermore, a large number of girls in the original trials were taking hormonal contraceptives which can mask ovarian dysfunction including amenorrhea and ovarian failure.2 Thus a causal relationship between human papillomavirus vaccines (if not Gardasil® specifically) and ovarian dysfunction cannot be ruled out at this time.

Numerous Gardasil safety studies, including one released recently,8 have looked at demyelinating and autoimmune diseases and have not found any significant problems. Unfortunately, none of them except clinical safety pre-licensure studies totaling 11,778 vaccinees9 specifically addressed post-vaccination ovarian dysfunction. While data from those studies do not indicate an increased rate of amenorrhea after vaccination, the essential lack of saline placebos and the majority of participants taking hormonal contraceptives in those studies preclude meaningful data to rule out an effect on ovarian function.

A Vaccine Safety Datalink POF study is planned to address an association between these vaccines and POF, but it may be years before results will be determined. Plus, POF within a few years of vaccination could be the tip of the iceberg since ovarian dysfunction manifested by months of amenorrhea may later progress to POF. Meanwhile, the author of this statement has contacted the maker of Gardasil, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to make known the above concerns and request that (1) more rat studies be done to look at long-term ovarian function after HPV4 injections, (2) the 89 VAERS reports identified with at least 4 months amenorrhea be reviewed by the CDC for further clarification since the publicly available WONDER VAERS database only contains initial reports, and (3) primary care providers be notified of a possible association between HPV and amenorrhea. A U.S. Government Representative responded that they “will continue to conduct studies and monitor the safety of HPV vaccines. Should the weight of the evidence from VAERS or VSD and other sources indicate a likely causal association between POF and HPV vaccines, appropriate action will be taken in terms of communication and public health response.”

The College is posting this statement so that individuals considering the use of human papillomavirus vaccines could be made aware of these concerns pending further action by the regulatory agencies and manufacturers. While there is no strong evidence of a causal relationship between HPV4 and ovarian dysfunction, this information should be public knowledge for physicians and patients considering these vaccines.

Primary author: Scott S. Field, MD

January 2016

The American College of Pediatricians is a national medical association of licensed physicians and healthcare professionals who specialize in the care of infants, children, and adolescents. The mission of the College is to enable all children to reach their optimal, physical and emotional health and well-being.

Divider 1

This handful of studies represents but the tip of the vaccine iceberg, but hopefully you get the idea, Patrick. You say that nothing has been published on the risks and ineffectiveness of vaccines. I say you are wrong and I’ve proved it. Will the fact that I’ve provided you with evidence to back up my claims make you look again at this issue? I doubt it. You are a true believer and your ‘religion’ leaves no room for questioning. You function on faith – not knowledge, evidence or information. I feel sorry for you, but those I feel the sorriest for are your students.

by Meryl Dorey

Please note: Blog posts are opinion pieces which represent the views of the authors. They do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of the nocompulsoryvaccination blog. This blog is a forum, support and information site and outlet for discussion about the relative benefits and risks of vaccinations in particular – and medical procedures in general. We do not provide medical advice but believe that everyone has the opportunity and the obligation to do their own research before making decisions for their families. The information we provide (including your personal review of the references we cite) should be taken in conjunction with a range of other data, including that obtained from government, your health care provider and/or other medical source material to assist you in developing the knowledge required to make informed health choices.

Who’s REALLY picking cherries, Jane?

I got an email from my old ‘friend’, Jane Hansen this morning and really, it’s been far too long since we two have communicated. You know how it is. Life gets busy, kids are growing, places to go, people to see…

cherry cartoon

But Jane took the time to drop me a quick line and for that, I’m very grateful

I had just sent a copy of Dr Brian Martin’s latest article, News with a negative frame: a vaccination case study, to some social networking pages I follow and the email lists I help maintain. And darned if I didn’t forget to include Jane on that email – so sorry! But all’s well because she got the email anyway.

For those who haven’t yet read this article, I highly recommend you do! It concerns negative and biased coverage regarding Dr Judy Wilyman’s PhD from the University of Wollongong by Kylar Loussikian of the Australian newspaper in particular, and the Australian media in general.

You see, there are some journalists out there who apparently believe that those who hold a contrary position on scientific issues (such as vaccination) should not be able to obtain a PhD – nor, it seems, should they be allowed a voice in the public debate. Hard to imagine, I know!

And Jane, bless her little heart, appears to be one of those journalists too. Jane, we really do have to talk…

In her usual spontaneous style, Jane’s email to me was direct and straight to the point:

You’re the queen of twisting truth Meryl

Gardasil is one of the most heavily studies vaccines around and one of the most effective. To ignore the vast body of science on this is pure ignorance.

Now Jane, I really am trying to work with you on this – really! But I have searched Dr Martin’s article for even one mention of Gardasil and it might surprise you (or not) to know that it is not mentioned even once. There is a short mention of HPV – the virus that Gardasil is meant to protect against – but that mention is made, not to discuss the science behind HPV vaccination, but simply to quote a paragraph from the Australian newspaper article in question.

So, trying to be helpful because after all, I really ‘get’ you, I offered the following response:

Did you actually read the article, Jane? If so, what is your objection to what Dr Martin has said? Where has he gone wrong? Please feel free to share your insight on this article with either myself or Dr Martin.

He was most particularly NOT not talking about the science behind vaccination which is what leads me to believe that you did not read the article you are replying to. Dr Martin was speaking about how the media uses language to frame an argument in such a way that the truth of matters is ignored and instead, a particular barrow is pushed based purely on what it is the media wishes to propound.
Please read Dr Martin’s article and if you have any criticisms, I am sure he would be most happy to hear them and to respond to you.
Meryl
PS – why are you bringing up Gardasil? What did that have to do with Dr Martin’s article or Dr Wilyman’s PhD from the UOW? You seem to have strayed very far from the point, Jane.

Instead of thanking me for so kindly and politely pointing out the errors of your way, Jane, you instead sent me the following email:

I don’t engage with cherry pickers. Goodbye

Well! May I remind you, Jane, that you were the one who contacted me! So any engagement was totally and absolutely down to you.

Is this any way to carry on a conversation? You start talking and when someone gives a reasoned and civil reply, you attack them and storm off in a virtual huff? That’s neither mature nor is it productive.

These are Australia’s children we are talking about here, Jane. Their health, wellbeing and their very lives. Don’t they deserve better than what you are giving them?

Oh, forgive me! How silly.

I seem to have forgotten that you work for Murdoch.

Forget I said anything.

by Meryl Dorey

Please note: Blog posts are opinion pieces which represent the views of the authors. They do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of the nocompulsoryvaccination blog. This blog is a forum, support and information site and outlet for discussion about the relative benefits and risks of vaccinations in particular – and medical procedures in general. We do not provide medical advice but believe that everyone has the opportunity and the obligation to do their own research before making decisions for their families. The information we provide (including your personal review of the references we cite) should be taken in conjunction with a range of other data, including that obtained from government, your health care provider and/or other medical source material to assist you in developing the knowledge required to make informed health choices.

The Fallacy of False Balance

 

17319874_sAs you probably know, thousands of Australians marched in every capital city in Australia on June 21st to protest against the Abbott government’s planned “No Jab, No Pay” legislation.

The only reason you would know this is because you read about it on Facebook, or on this blog or another website since NONE of the Australian media actually attended or covered these marches. Some independent outlets such as tottnews.com and Fair Dinkum Radio did, but the majority of Australians who will be affected by this new legislation are totally unaware of the potential implications of these tyrannical government moves or of the efforts to oppose them.

The reason for this news blackout is a policy that has government and ‘scientific community’ approval called False Balance.

According to False Balance, there are some issues that are so widely accepted, it would be wrong to report on them except from the point of view of the mainstream.

Climate change is one of these issues and I personally have very little knowledge of those who oppose climate change, but the fact is that those who oppose the government view have had their concerns suppressed and denigrated by mainstream media.

The dangers of fluoride is another such issue and has been for decades, despite mountains of scientific proof that fluoride does not improve the risk of dental caries and can cause significant harm to the health of the population.

Information on vaccination risks and ineffectiveness, however, is the single issue which the media, the government and the medical community have been trying with all their might to completely obliterate. To the point of censorship. To the point of criminalising those who even ask reasonable scientific questions. To the point of destroying the careers of scientists and researchers who have done studies pointing to valid concerns about the harms vaccines can and do cause and the obvious corruption involved in pharmaceutically-sponsored vaccine ‘studies’.

The excuse for this suppression and censorship is False Balance.

Now, I truly believe that the Australian (and world) population is intelligent and discerning enough to view both sides of any scientific issue – as long as they are given information in order to become educated about it. That is what I have always believed but apparently, neither our elected government nor the media agree with that viewpoint.

Because they say that allowing Australians to hear both sides of the vaccination debate is False Balance. That the scientific data proving that – for a percentage of those who receive vaccines – the outcomes can be fatal or life-changing and/or the vaccines themselves may not work to prevent disease or make the person healthy will ‘confuse’ us; that we are not capable of understanding or making our own decisions and as a result, we need the government to tell us what to do with our children’s and our own bodies.

The only excuse for exercising censorship in the name of False Balance is an incorrect assumption that Australians are too stupid to read or view information and understand how that information relates to their own lives.

False Balance is the reason why every single doctor, medical authority, scientist and health minister has said no when challenged to present their information on the safety and effectiveness of vaccines to a live audience. In fact, even when the magazine I used to publish, Informed Choice, asked for an article on the benefits of vaccination, that request was declined by everyone who was asked.

Using False Balance, the government and the medical community can continue to hide behind their lies about vaccination. They can persist in making claims that are completely unsupported by evidence (such as the claims that vaccines don’t cause reactions or deaths; and that vaccines will only work if everyone takes them).

There is no such thing as false balance – there is only freedom of information and the ability to make decisions without fear of bullying, financial penalties or other forms of duress.

 

 

Dr Sherri Tenpenny: Bound for Botany Bay, until…

dr tenpennyMy wonderful late husband, George Maxwell, MD, was the professor of paediatrics at University of Adelaide. As I recall, he had full faith in childhood vaccination. But if he were alive today and saw the new research on vax, I think he would do a turn-around.
He’d be sad that his teachers at Edinburgh did not tip him off to the fact that Edward Jenner, who fired the first ‘shot’ in 1796, was a con artist. All doctors today stand to be embarrassed by this, but let’s just get the embarrassment over quickly.

As for the visit to Oz of a doctor named Sherri Tenpenny, George would certainly approve of her offering her opinion on vax, even if it were diametrically opposed to his. Isn’t that what science is all about? If her message were harmful, George would be licking his chops at the thought of combatting her ideas.

Interview on 2CC Canberra: Ken McLeod and Meryl Dorey

Sherri Tenpennyby Meryl Dorey

As mentioned in the last blog post, Canberra Radio 2CC interviewed both Ken McLeod from Stop the Australian Vaccination-skeptics Network (SAVN) and myself regarding the up-coming vaccination seminars with Dr Sherri Tenpenny.

SAVN admins appear to be a little bit embarrassed by Mr McLeod’s ‘performance’ on the program and the usually resourceful admins were unable to find the audio file for this interview. When a member of the Facebook group asked if Ken McLeod had been interviewed on 2CC, SAVN admin, Katie Brockie Kate Squires (correction by admin) replied:

It did indeed happen. Our own Ken McLeod was on as well, but was hoodwinked by Ms. Dorey’s appearance. Not sure if there’s a copy of audio. 

Well Katie, never fear! We have a copy of that audio and have transcribed it for your reading pleasure! And perhaps, while we’re at it, you can explain how I hoodwinked Mr McLeod when he was interviewed before me and was able to say whatever he wanted to say without interruption?

Freedom of speech? Not in their Australia!

SAVN has been trying their hardest to get Dr Tenpenny’s visa to enter Australia revoked and to bully the venues where she will be speaking to break their contracts to host these talks.

It is obvious, listening to Mr McLeod, that SAVN has no respect for personal rights or freedom of speech. He is also not above bending the truth in order to besmirch the reputation of the good doctor.

Below is a transcript of the interview which took place on January 7, 2015. I have provided a copy of the text to the presenter, Mr Rod Henshaw, and if he provides me with any corrections, I will be sure to update this blog. I do not believe there are any errors in this text however.

Interviewer: Rod Henshaw (R)

Interviewees: Ken McLeod (K), Meryl Dorey (M)

R:              A number of Australian doctors and expats … experts I should say, not expats. Well, maybe they’re expert expats, but a number of Australian doctors and experts are calling on the federal government to stop a prominent anti-vaccine campaigner from entering the country. Sherri Tenpenny is the author of the Saying No to Vaccine and is due to begin an Australian speaking tour in March, but Immigration Minister Peter Dutton is currently receiving advice on the issue, but Ken McLeod is from the Stop the AVN organisation. Ken, thanks for joining us.

K:              Oh, good afternoon Rod.

R:              Why shouldn’t we let Sherri Tenpenny into the country?iStock_000011256677XSmall

K:              She’s a very effective campaigner against vaccines and that’s not a good thing. She claims that vaccines are responsible for mass murders, including the Sandy Hook School massacre, that vaccines cause SIDS, autism, they disconnect the brain from the universe, etc, etc. We’re afraid that the end result of her tour is that some well-meaning parents will be conned. Sherri Tenpenny is not your average ratbag, she’s in a class of her own. We’re frightened that if enough parents are deceived the end result is misery, extra stress on the health department budgets, occasionally death and so on.

R:              But aren’t you underestimating the average intelligence of the average Australian in this case? I mean, aren’t you … there’s two questions I’ve got here, but that’s a first one. Are you … aren’t you assuming that the parents can’t pick and choose for themselves and work out what’s right and what’s wrong?

K:              You’re quite right. Most people, and I’m saying right up there in the 90% of the population can follow good advice, but there is that small number who can be dissuaded and that’s been proven in the statistics and that percentage of it is the number of people that we are worried about.

R:              But we do hear people from other walks of life coming out with totally outrageous things and we’ve heard it with Muslims in this current climate and all that sort of thing. Now, this doesn’t really differ too much from there because we can actually say well you’re an idiot, we don’t believe you, go back home if you want to and all this sort of thing, but at least we give them the right of free speech which you don’t seem to be willing to give … to extend to this person.

K:              That’s right. Yeah, it is a very difficult issue and I would say that your right of free speech ends where it has any effect on … an effect on the health of my children.

R:              Yeah, is that really the answer? You haven’t really answered the question. You’re saying she can’t come because we don’t agree with what she’s saying and you put a few very vibrant examples there, sure, I give you that, but still she’s surely entitled to express those opinions if she so desires and we’re so entitled that we can say bugger off, go home, we don’t want you and we don’t believe you, but let’s hear you first.

K:              Oh well, the problem is of course that in … what you might call an opinion is actually a disproven fact. She shares things that are clearly untrue, disproven by the science, and it wouldn’t matter if no one was hurt. So Australia has a proven track record of barring entry to people who can cause disharmony or endanger public health and I’m referring to Julien Blanc, the chap who ran seminars on how to seduce women and just use them for sex, David Irving, the Holocaust denier. We would say that Miss Tenpenny is up there in that league, but we do recognise that this is an incredibly difficult decision for the minister. We should … we are saying that the minister should, at the very least, deny Tenpenny a working visa, which mean that there would be no speaking fees, no payments, no entry fees, etc, etc.

R:              Okay, I am playing devil’s advocate with this, as you can probably tell (both laughing), but I am serious about the democracy thing, I mean, it reminds me of an old line out of one of those BBC television series, I forget which one, where they say democracy is fine, but why give it to the people? And it comes back to …

K:              (Laughing)

R:              … my original thing is couldn’t … shouldn’t we be …

K:              Yeah.

R:              … trusted enough to make our own minds up on this?

government-lies-truthK:              Yeah and that is the problem. I mean, if we’re discussing the existence of aliens and flying saucers and so on no harm is done, but where someone is using misinformation to persuade parents not to vaccinate their children and being very, very convincing about it, we think, you know, there’s a barrier there. There’s a bar that has to be brought down.

R:              Okay, well we’ll have to leave it there. We do have somebody from the Australian Vaccination-skeptics Network, but I’ll put you on hold just in case you want to have a listen and we’ll go to her and then … but in the meantime I do thank you very much for your time this afternoon.

K:              Yeah, thanks Rod.

R:              Thanks Ken. Ken McLeod is the … from the Stop the AVN organisation and, as I mentioned, we do have somebody from basically the other side of the coin, if you like. Meryl Dorey is founder of the Australian Vaccination-skeptics Network. Meryl, good afternoon.

M:            Good afternoon. Thank you.

R:              I don’t know how much you heard of that. Do you have a comment, a response?

M:            Oh, well I heard much of it. I don’t know how long Mr McLeod was on, but I heard some of the things that he claimed that Doctor Sherri Tenpenny was saying and it reminds me of a statement made by, I think his name is Goebbels, tell a lie long enough and often enough and it becomes the truth because what Mr McLeod was saying was not what Doctor Tenpenny has ever said. She has never claimed that vaccines cause mass murder, she’s never linked them with Sandy Hook, this is all just an attempt to smear her and personally …

R:              But can …

M:            … I think that if …

R:              Just before you go any further, I got to play …

M:            Sure.

R:              … devil’s advocate with this one too. How can you say she hasn’t said them? Can you prove that she hasn’t said those sort of things, those statements … made those statements?

M:            Well I’ve been following Doctor Tenpenny for over 20 years. She is above all an extremely moderate and intelligent person. All of her information comes from peer-reviewed journals. She has done over 20,000 hours of research in mainstream medical journals to gain the information that she shares with people who come to listen to her, so I would be very strongly … I would say very strongly that she’s never said any of those things. You know, if Mr McLeod has any proof of that let him prove it, let him show it.

R:              He seemed pretty …

M:            Until he does that …

R:              … straightforward and pretty strong with his views on that …

M:            He …

R:              … so I don’t think … I think … in fact, I would just suspect that in the court of law the defamation laws might come in if he’s wrong.

M:            Well, I hope they would too. I really do hope they would, because I don’t think that people have a right to tell lies about other people …

R:              That’s what I’m …

M:            … simply because ….

R:              That’s why I’m questioning whether he would actually go so … be so silly as to make those sort of statements if he couldn’t back them up.slander

M:            Oh, he’s done it before, so … I mean I have no doubt that he does not have the information to back that up. Like I said, let him prove it. If he proves it I will apologise and say sorry Ken, I was wrong, but I’m pretty confident that I won’t have to do that and what I want to say about this whole situation is that Australia is a democracy and in a democracy we have the right to disagree with each other, but we should also be defending others’ rights to say things that we disagree with. Australian parents are intelligent, they are very concerned about their children, they have every right and every ability to make these decisions for themselves after looking at both sides and asking appropriate questions from both sides. This …

R:              Meryl, it does come back … it’s incumbent on me to come back to say how can you prove that not vaccinating your children is going to be a good thing when we know so well that there is so many research papers and there has been so much documented evidence that kids do die unless they’re not vacc … unless they’re vaccinated?

M:            Okay, now first of all we have documented evidence as well. There is science on both sides and both sides … we don’t tell anyone that they shouldn’t vaccinate. Nobody tells anyone that. Doctor Tenpenny does not tell anyone that. All the AVN says is that there are risks and benefits to vaccination and it behoves all parents as responsible adults to get both sides of this information before making a choice for their children. The woman who is organising this series of seminars actually lost a child because of vaccination. My eldest child was vaccine-injured. Many parents who have chosen to look into this issue only did so after seeing one of their loved ones either die or suffer a serious reaction to a vaccination. We were not told that these things could happen. All the AVN is saying is that you need to get this information so that if your child has a reaction you know how to respond, you know what to do. You have a choice; vaccination is not compulsory. Everyone has the right to make this decision and it is wrong for any government, any medical community, to suppress, actively suppress, information that is sourced from peer-reviewed, mainstream medical literature that discusses the known risks and side effects …

R:              Well Immigration Minister …

M:            … of vaccination.

R:              Immigration Minister Peter Dutton is currently receiving advice on this issue, as I mentioned. How do you reckon he’ll go? Do you reckon …

M:            I have no idea.

R:              Do you think that there is a weight of evidence on the side perhaps of the people like Ken McLeod? And I will add that he is only one of a number of Australian doctors and experts who are calling on the government to stop her coming over here in the first place; it’s not just him.

M:            Okay. Ken McLeod is neither an expert nor a doctor. Ken McLeod is a member of a hate group called the Australian … Stop the Australian Vaccination-skeptics Network. Their founder had an AVO order against them for making threats against myself for having phone calls coming from their home making threats against myself. This is the sort of organisation that they are dealing with. If the Minister for Immigration is making a judgement based on the law he will allow Sherri Tenpenny … Doctor Sherri Tenpenny to come to Australia. If he is making an emotional decision based on peer-pressure brought about by these people then he probably won’t and if he doesn’t it’s going to be a shameful situation for Australia. We should all have the right to speak our truth and people can listen to it. If they don’t want to … not listen to it if they don’t want to and they can also argue it and discuss it. I have been trying for many years to set up a public debate on this issue with everyone from the health minister on down and they continually refuse to present their information to the general public to let them make a decision. The parents of Australia are capable of doing this, they should be allowed to.

R:              Okay, you make a fairly strong argument. Then again, so does Ken, but as you say Ken has got to back that up and …

M:            Yes.

R:              … it’ll be interesting to see where it goes. So if he’s wrong and you’re right why don’t you serve him with a legal notice?

M:            Well, it’s not my name he’s smeared here, but I certainly think that Doctor Tenpenny would be interested in hearing what he has said, especially since she can prove that it’s not true and he has to prove that it’s true. He can’t just go about saying things like that without the proof to back it up.

R:              Yeah. It’s only one flaw there in Australian law … defamation law, truth is not necessarily a defence, that’s the trouble, but I think …

M:            Yeah.

R:              … you’re on the path there, you could be … it could be a very interesting result in court when both side … where both sides are presented accordingly.

M:            Thank you for the opportunity to speak here.

R:              Thank you Meryl.

M:            I appreciate it. Bye bye.

R:              Bye bye. Meryl Dorey, founder of the Australian Vaccination-skeptics Network. On 2cc. It’s 3:42.

Please note: Blog posts are opinion pieces which represent the views of the authors. They do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of the AVN National Committee. The AVN is a forum, support and information organisation and outlet for discussion about the relative benefits and risks of vaccinations in particular – and medical procedures in general. We do not provide medical advice but believe that everyone has the opportunity and the obligation to do their own research before making decisions for their families. The information we provide (including your personal review of the references we cite) should be taken in conjunction with a range of other data, including that obtained from government, your health care provider and/or other medical source material to assist you in developing the knowledge required to make informed health choices.

Strangers to the Truth

By Meryl Dorey

Hi there, and hasn’t it been a long time since I’ve posted anything to this blog? That’s because I’ve been on a sabbatical in the U.S. with my sisters since the middle of August this year. I got back into Australia on December 18th and am settling back in, happy to be home (though not happy about the heat!).

I want to thank Stop the AVN (SAVN) and their mates at the Australian (Pseudo) Skeptics for waiting until my return to stir up trouble – it would have been terrible to have missed all the fun!

Now, I have a front-row seat to view the excitement and am enjoying seeing them lather themselves into a frenzy of terror at the idea that – shock, horror – parents may be able to hear a medical doctor provide referenced, scientific information demonstrating that vaccines don’t always work as expected and may cause harm and even death in an unknown number of those who take them.

The truth is being told”, says Jack Skeptic – “we can’t have that!”

No worries”, replies Jill Skeptic; “I believe in science, so we will pull in our tame pollies and journos and handle this situation quick smart!”

Giving Pinocchio a run for his money

13760385_sBut I have to say that there are a LOT of long noses appearing in SAVN’s camp.

As you probably have already heard, Dr Sherri Tenpenny is coming out from the U.S. to speak to parents about the risks and ineffectiveness of vaccines. (And if you support the right to free and open communication about this issue, I urge you to click this link and book your tickets to the seminar nearest you as well as the dinner with Dr Tenpenny.) These seminars will, according to SAVN, cause the end of the world as we know it and they must be stopped! SAVN have even gone so far as to approach the Minister for Immigration to demand that he cancel the travel visas of Dr Tenpenny and other speakers coming in from overseas. Incredible, I know; but these are the same people who approached the Minister for Immigration to try to get me deported a couple of years back because I question the medical mantra regarding vaccination. Unfortunately for them, I’m an Australian citizen, so things didn’t quite go as well as they had expected.

Bad publicity is good publicity

Publicity like this – even if most of it is negative – can’t be bought. And the constant shrill cries of “Cancel her visa – and off with her head!” from that lovely gang of terrorists has gotten even the most pro-vaccination among us scratching their heads and asking, “Why?”.

The truth hurts

First, I was approached by a producer at The Project – a programme with a long history of not reporting fairly on this subject. His name was James Pattison, and he said that he wanted to interview me regarding Dr Tenpenny’s speaking tour. I explained that neither I nor the AVN were organisers of these events, and that I could not comment on what would be covered at the seminars, but I would be happy to discuss the freedom-of-speech aspects. The only stipulations I had were that they devote more than the 2 minutes planned for the piece (since this is a serious issue and deserves more time to do it justice) and that the interview be live so that they couldn’t quote me or any of the other speakers out of context.

James checked with his higher-ups, and approval was given. In addition, we agreed, that he would get his supervisor to send me the list of questions prior to the crew arriving. A camera crew would be out just after 5:30PM to go live to air at 6:30 PM.

At 4:31 that afternoon, James left a message on my answering machine saying that they couldn’t go ahead with the interview. When I called him back, he said that because I was in regional NSW, they were unable to get a camera crew here. They were, however, able to get a crew out to Allison Gaylard’s house in Mullimbimby, 20 minutes away.  I guess there must be some kind of territory for these things, and that I am right outside of it. So sad!

For those who have never heard of Ms Gaylard, she is a founding member of the Northern Rivers Vaccination Supporter Group – an organisation set up to help increase the vaccination rate on the Far North Coast of NSW because the tens of millions of dollars spent by Federal and State governments on vaccine promotion apparently aren’t working!

Ms Gaylard has two fully vaccinated children who contracted whooping cough several years ago. Despite this evidence of vaccine failure, Ms Gaylard lays the blame for her children’s illness at the door of some imaginary unvaccinated children, stating that the ‘low’ vaccination rate in this area meant that there wasn’t herd immunity and that, according to her, herd immunity would have stopped the bugs, germs and viruses from “penetrating in”.

But back to The Project

Members of SAVN were reporting that The Project had a blanket policy to never interview anyone with an opposing viewpoint on the vaccination issue – freedom of speech at its finest – and that poor James, being new on the show, had been unaware of that policy.

Word to the wise, Jimmy, me boy-o: if you have to compromise your word over this issue, how many more times will you be asked to do so, and how far are you willing to go to keep that job?

But, then again, James may have felt justified if he’d listened to the lying liars at SAVN. Liars like the brave, anonymous Ancient Illyria (cited below) who told him at 1:54 PM on the 7th of January that I was ”…telling people that she [I] refused to go on the show.”

James Pattison

The ridiculous thing is, Illyria linked to the post below where I specifically stated that I had been asked to go on the show but The Project had not followed through.

The Project

Whoopsies, Illyria, I smell something burning! Could it possibly be your pants?

Then, I was interviewed on Canberra Radio, 2CC along with Ken McLeod, one of the founding members of SAVN.

Ken uttered some real corkers! He claims that Dr Tenpenny had stated that vaccinations were the cause of many mass murders in the U.S., including the Sandy Hook shooting.

His ‘evidence’ for this is a Facebook posting Dr Tenpenny made back in 2012:

Sherri Tenpenny

The article Dr Tenpenny referred to can be found at this link. It was written by the mother of a violent child who posed the question – why is my son like this? Why are so many children in America like this and who is going to take care of them and prevent them from committing the tragic mass murders that are becoming so much more common of late?

Did Dr Tenpenny say that vaccinations caused the Sandy Hook shootings? Of course not! Anyone with a brain (which apparently excludes many of SAVN’s most prominent voices) knows that she didn’t. She posited that vaccinations, antibiotics, fluoride, GMOs, and environmental chemicals – all of which are known to be able to adversely affect the brain – could have contributed to the increase in mental illness and violence in the U.S.

Is this a controversial statement? Not at all – it is based in science. It is simply not considered to be politically correct.

So Ken McLeod – no stranger to quoting things out of context in order to make it appear that vaccine sceptics are wrong or worse – has done that again on the radio. No big surprise there. Just another shameful exaggeration to advance his aim of suppressing our right to discuss health issues in Australia.

A case of mistaken identity

Lastly, and most amusingly, a SAVN member posted on the SAVN’s Facebook page, “Banned from the AVN: Celebrate it Here”.

Joey

He claims to have been right next to me and my family at Sydney Airport this morning whilst I was returning from a trip overseas. Apparently, I am very sick and spreading germs, and he announced who I was at the top of his lungs in the terminal, loudly enough so that I and my family were able to hear it. Unfortunately for him however, I was up in Bangalow at the time and haven’t been at Sydney Airport since December 18th!

My deepest sympathy to that poor woman who must bear some sort of resemblance to me. It can’t be easy to have to go through life being mistaken for someone so hated by so many lunatics!

Speak up or be judged by the company you keep

It is obvious that some SAVN members are complete strangers to the truth. I don’t judge them all on the behaviour of their ‘leaders’, but I do judge them for being members of a hate group that is actively trying to suppress and censor debate on a scientific issue. And I judge them for not speaking up and opposing the hatred being spewed by the group they have joined. Their silence speaks volumes.

Please note: Blog posts are opinion pieces that represent the views of the authors. They do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of the AVN National Committee. The AVN is a forum, support and information organisation, and outlet for discussion about the relative benefits and risks of vaccinations in particular – and medical procedures in general. We do not provide medical advice, but believe that all have the opportunity and the obligation to do their own research before making decisions for their families. The information we provide (including your personal review of the references we cite) should be taken in conjunction with a range of other data, including that obtained from government, your health-care provider, and/or other medical source material, to assist you in developing the knowledge necessary to make informed health choices.

False Balance? You mean, censorship, don’t you?

important_Opinion

by Meryl Dorey

Radio 4BC in Brisbane had the temerity to call me a few days ago to comment on a new QLD government initiative which would send out reminders to everyone who hasn’t vaccinated either their children or themselves and will also allow pharmacists to administer more vaccinations to more people.

As one of the representatives of an organisation supported by thousands of Australians who are skeptical about the medical evidence regarding vaccine safety and effectiveness, this radio station obviously felt that it was important to give a balanced view on the issue. And balanced, for those who don’t understand it, means at least two sides.

The pseudo-skeptics, on the other hand, disagree with the station’s decision to interview someone from the AVN.

Now, it’s OK to disagree – don’t get me wrong. Discussing and even arguing (politely and respectfully) about important issues is the basis of a civil and democratic society. And both I personally and the AVN as an organisation believe strongly in the right to discuss and examine all sides of any issue. This is the reason our organisation was formed 20 years ago and it is our core belief to this day.

But the hate groups, the Australian Skeptics [sic] and their splinter group, Stop the AVN, want the right to call the free and open airing of information on this issue ‘false balance’. They say that because they disagree with questions about vaccination (and other medical issues) and they are self-proclaimed arbiters of all issues scientific, anyone who does not support their point of view should not be given a platform to present their information. And make no mistake – it is their open intention to suppress this information and to harass, abuse and have the government cite anyone who dares to discuss the problems with vaccination publicly.

Below are links to the recordings of that program – I am putting them here in case the radio station gives in to pressure from these groups and takes those recordings down – this has happened before.

Dr Dylan Wilson


 

Meryl Dorey

 

Here are some of the hate-filled posts and tweets from SAVN members, including Rachael DunlopRachael Dunlop, VP of the NSW Skeptics [sic] (see one of her tweets for an idea of how this so-called professional deals with scientific issues). This organisation and SAVN have initiated a campaign to target this radio station to prevent them from ever allowing anyone on air who does not toe the party line on vaccination.

I hope you will take 5 minutes to drop the station a quick line and thank them for their fairness in allowing this information to be aired and to ask them to continue to do so. Here is their Contact Page.

Rachie re 4bc

 

Tierney re 4BCPlease note: Blog posts are opinion pieces which represent the views of the authors. They do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of the AVN National Committee. The AVN is a forum, support and information organisation and outlet for discussion about the relative benefits and risks of vaccinations in particular – and medical procedures in general. We do not provide medical advice but believe that everyone has the opportunity and the obligation to do their own research before making decisions for their families. The information we provide (including your personal review of the references we cite) should be taken in conjunction with a range of other data, including that obtained from government, your health care provider and/or other medical source material to assist you in developing the knowledge required to make informed health choices.

 

Timeline to a Tragedy: Part 2 – The cover-up deepens

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Christine Selvey emailed Dr Jeannette Young, Chief Health Officer (CHO), QLD Health:

Russ (Dr Schedlich) contacted DOHA yesterday to try to find out what has been reported to the TGA. …

 

Dr Young replied to both Christine Selvey and Dr Schedlich:

I assume the death is unrelated to the school clinics but have we heard of any death related to pandemic vaccine?

Monday, April 12, 2010

Dr Russell Schedlich sends the following email to Dr Jeannette Young:

Have not yet heard back from DOHA (Commonwealth Department of Health) and will follow up with them today, but they were certainly not aware of any Australian deaths. I understand that WHO (the World Health Organisation) is saying that there have been a few reported deaths temporally associated with vaccination.

Divider 1

Six cases of suspected flu vaccine reactions reported by nurses at the emergency department at PMH.

Divider 1

Parent in Geraldton calls CDCD after seeing several children at the Geraldton hospital reacting to flu vaccine. CDCD called the hospital to ask them to report any reactions to them and to the TGA.

Divider 1

Mother calls CIC to report that her daughter had an adverse reaction to the flu vaccine. She had called PMH and was told that they were experiencing an increase in admissions at their emergency department. The CIC rang the CDCD to express concern after receiving calls from 3 parents advising them of flu vaccine reactions.

Divider 1

PMH reports that three children had presented to the emergency department experiencing seizures within 24-48 hours of flu vaccination.

Divider 1

CDCD called the TGA to ask if other states have been reporting reactions to the flu shot.

Divider 1
A nurse at PMH contacted the director of the emergency department at that hospital to advise them that there were currently 6 children being treated in emergency after suffering reactions 24-48 hours after flu vaccination.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Craig Davis sends an email to Christine Selvey:

NOCS (ed note: Notifiable diseases unit in QLD) has nothing recorded about a death following vaccination. I’ve checked with Kay Campbell in NOCS data-entry and she has confirmed that she has seen nothing either.

Divider 1

Ten patients presented to PMH emergency department reported as experiencing adverse reactions to flu vaccines. Hospital requests a check back through the EDIS (Emergency Department Information System).

Divider 1
The CDCD emailed the TGA to follow up from their phone call the previous week. Again, they notified the TGA about seizures, febrile convulsions and other reactions being experienced and asked whether other states were experiencing similar. The TGA advised that a medical officer would be back in touch.

Divider 1

Samantha Keegan sends the following email to the QLD Minister for Health’s office, cc’ing several other QLD Health employees:

Channel 9 is asking about a link between the Sudden Unexpected Death of a 2-yr-old girl on Friday and the child’s vaccination against swine flu 24 hours before her death.

Channel 10’s News Editor gave me his word he would not run anything on Fri-then ran a short 3 par ‘live read’ (no vision or interviews).

ABC and Courier Mail agreed not to run anything after I discussed the public health ramifications of children not being vaccinated with them.

An autopsy has been done on the child, but the cause of death is unknown. …

Divider 1

The following media response is sent to Channel 9. In the footer, it says it was written by Kerry White and approved by Jeannette Young and Christine Selvey:

PR

In relation to the above press statement, Dr Jeannette Young responded to Kerry White as follows:

Assuming Christine [Selvey] is ok with it then I am fine.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

 

CDCD emails the TGA because there has been no return phone call re-reactions. TGA sends a return email to the CDCD advising that there have been a number of reactions reported to Panvax (adult flu vaccine) and Panvax Junior (the vaccine for infants and children). TGA says there were four reactions notified nationwide at that time.

Divider 1

CDCD emails summary of reactions being experienced in WA to that point and requests information from other states.

Divider 1

Public Health nurse gives verbal report of 3 or 4 children with high temperatures for 12 hours following vaccination.

Divider 1

SA Nursing Director Immunisation Section calls CDCD asking if there have been any adverse events reported in WA as SA was seeing them after flu vaccination.

Divider 1

CDCD emails regional public health units informing them that they may be seeing flu vaccine reactions and requesting that these be reported.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

PMH reports that there were more reactions presenting overnight. A database is established and reports are sent to the TGA. The TGA states that these reports are not received until April 20th, 2010.

Divider 1

A microbiology registrar calls a paediatric immunologist at PMH to report that his own child had a febrile convulsion after receiving flu vaccine.

Divider 1

PMH emails the CDCD and confirms that 27 patients have presented – 5 with confirmed febrile convulsions following vaccination.

Divider 1

SA Nursing Direction Immunisation Section emails TGA, DoHA and all State Health Departments to inform them that SA is seeing increased numbers of children with high fever and vomiting after flu vaccine.

Divider 1

CDCD emails all public health units informing them that all reactions must be promptly reported – “not in a month’s time”.

Friday, April 16, 2010

The AVN is contacted by a QLD mother who sent the following email:

I contacted Channel  10  Brisbane on Monday to confirm the details stated here (Please see news report quoted on 9th April, 2010). All correct and the newsroom guy said that a Post Mortem was going to be done on Monday.

No press release from the Health Minister  appears to have  been released yet and no other TV or radio station  or Queensland  newspaper appears to have reported on this.

I have today, Friday 16th April about 11.30 am  contacted Janelle Miles the medical reporter for the Courier Mail, who said she was aware of the story but they (the Courier Mail) chose not to report it.

I asked why, she said there was no proof it was due to vaccination. I asked her if she knew about the Post Mortem , she said she knew a little .

I will go through the Courier Mail for the last week and see if any death or funeral notices for the toddler.

Don’t know if you guys can find out anymore….. or how you find  out if there will be a Coroners report.

 

PMH emails CDCD to report that there have been 90 possible presentations following flu vaccination – 22 of which were notifiable (seizures, temperatures over 40℃.

Divider 1
CDCD calls parents of children reacting to flu vaccine to find out what brand of vaccine had been administered and where it was given.

Divider 1
The TGA emails SA Nursing Director Immunisation Section to inform them that there had been 62 reactions reported so far – 22 of which were in people 18 years of age or younger. They requested all unsubmitted reaction reports from all states.

Divider 1
The Victorian Health Department emails TGA, DoHA and all State Health Departments to say that they have been receiving reports of high fevers and vomiting after flu vaccination.

Last part of timeline will be uploaded tomorrow