Today, the GMC will issue their verdict in the case against Drs Andrew Walkefield, Simon Murch and John Walker-Smith. Dr Wakefield has issued the following statement:
Why the vaccine lobby had to silence me
A Statement from Dr Andrew Wakefield MB,BS., FRCS., FRCPath
The General Medical Council versus Dr Wakefield, Professor Walker-Smith, and Professor Murch.
In a further effort to silence my concerns over vaccine safety, the UK’s General Medical Council [GMC] will erase me
from the UK’s Medical Register on Monday May 24. My colleagues face the possibility of similar sanctions.
In reporting their findings the GMC panel sought to deny that the case against me and my colleagues is related to issues
of MMR vaccine safety and specifically, the role of this vaccine in causing autism. This is not in fact the case. Efforts to
discredit and silence me through the GMC process have provided a screen to shield the government from exposure on
the Pluserix MMR vaccine scandal.
Early in the course of the proceedings, GMC officials removed the appointed chairman Dr Kumar, a general practitioner
from Merseyside. They appointed instead Professor Angus McDevitt from Dundee who had serious conflicts of interest
in his role in the Pluserix MMR vaccine scandal. McDevitt was chosen even though he could not be considered an
impartial, independent or objective GMC panel chairman.
Pluserix MMR was introduced to the UK in October 1988 even though exactly the same vaccine supplied as “Trivirix”
had already been withdrawn as unsafe from Canada in November 1987. It was later also withdrawn from the UK on
seven days notice in September 1992 by Smith Kline Pharmaceuticals acting on legal advice. It was unsafe and caused
high levels of adverse reactions in children.
It has emerged through a government whistleblower and secret documents that the government, knowing of the
vaccine’s risks, protected the vaccine manufacturers from liability for damage. Pluserix MMR was rushed through the
licensing process without adequate safety testing. It appears to be the government that is now liable for compensation
claims from parents of Pluserix-damaged children. Freedom of Information documents confirm the first claims for legal
aid were being made by parents as early as 1991, seven years before I published in The Lancet and raised public
concerns about harm to children.
This matter, which sparked the real MMR scare in the UK – in contrast with my response to parental fears – must be
forced out into the open through a public inquiry
In 1988, McDevitt was part of a committee – the Committee on Adverse Reactions to Vaccination and Immunisation
(ARVI). It was responsible for assessing the safety of MMR prior to its introduction in the UK. The ARVI committee
failed to adequately heed warnings from Canada about the dangers of the Pluserix MMR vaccine.
McDevitt took part in ARVI meetings that discussed warnings about the dangerous Trivirix MMR vaccine, made by
Smith Kline Beecham, that was withdrawn in Canada for causing meningitis. At the same time, exactly the same
vaccine was rebranded as Pluserix and licensed in the UK. The vaccine then had to be withdrawn in a dramatic volte
face four years later when the rate of MMR-associated meningitis was found to be far higher than previously claimed.
The full extent of other serious adverse reactions is not known publicly although attempts were made to ascertain this
by Jack Ashley MP in 1992.
McDevitt was specifically brought in by the GMC to replace Kumar because of his vaccine expertise. When challenged
on McDevitt’s appointment by my lawyers, the GMC initially resisted removing him from the panel despite the fact that
he had not disclosed his obvious conflict of interest. McDevitt has also received research grants from a large number of
drug companies including manufacturers of the MMR vaccine.
Media inquiries caused the GMC sufficient embarrassment that they were forced to remove McDevitt, and re-insert
Kumar. Kumar also had undisclosed conflicts, sitting on two medicine licensing authority committees and owning
shares in GSK, manufacturers of Pluserix. Their current denial that the issue has anything to do with MMR vaccine
safety, should be viewed in the light of these facts.
My book Callous Disregard, available on Amazon.com and at Callous-Disregard.com, exposes the scandal. The book
is not currently available in the UK. Press copies are available through Skyhorse Publishing, NY.
Skyhorsepublshing.com Tel: 001 212 6436816 ext 236