Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Login with Facebook Sign In with Google Sign In with OpenID Sign In with Twitter

In this Discussion

Autism and Mercury
  • This from 2001...

  • Regarding Wakefield interview

    Oh my Gauwd...  OK here is somebody standing up to Big Pharma and this is "undemocratic"
    What have you learned if anything from these shows?
    Sounds like Arlen Spector saying everything in the Warren Commission was correct, now go back to sleep

    I had the DOCTOR on because I recognized a character assassination.
    This interview must really scare and upset people. 

    >This is a man who admitted to having paid children for DNA samples.  That therein of itself should send off alarm bells.

    This is a gutless comment...  the alarm bells are ringing.  Please READ the book and explain what parents
    begged him to investigate, what birthday party they asked him to come to, what permission parents gave
    what exactly DNA samples.  You make him sound like a mad doctor.

    >I like the show, and I won't cancel my subscription, but frankly it was a poor decision by Len.

    I don't mind a negative letter but really. I expect something like, this doctor has had negative press.
    has upset Big Pharma in UK. but parents are standing by him and DEMANDING he continue.
    The number of Autism are SKYROCKETING...   
    "IF he is only half right we are in big trouble."

    I am the alternative to the media which lies.

    You should be thankful I interviewed him... you get to hear him in his own words and then make up
    your own mind to READ his book and decide if he is correct.  I do not tell you how to think.  In my opinion he is the tip of the iceberg…  Cocktail vaccines should be banned.  How much money was made in the swine flu scare?
    But since you write here, I do not agree with your letter at all. 

    Mandatory vaccines scare me more that Dr. Wakefield’s book
    After the frauds of Big Pharma you should be ashamed of yourself for called Dr Wakefield a crook.
    A crook who has stolen something??? Money?  Robbed people of their lives, their children lives.

    It depends where you are getting your "facts"  if you look at mcadams website you would conclude Jim Garrison and Fletcher Prouty were crooks.  Read with a sceptical view, and at least READ Wakefields book.
    Do not burn it. 

    I would not rely on Big Pharma to tell the truth. I know they lie and hide results, and are in it for the money,
    the real definiton of a CROOK.  Dr. Wakefield deserved an interview.  Listen to him in his own words and you decide if sounds like the problem, or someone investigating the problem.


  • Medical Opinions change with time...
  • Doctors advise...
  • Aceman1Aceman1
    Posts: 34
    First off, Len, I wasn't trying to start a fight.  I'm sorry if you read it that way.


    And secondly, you make a good point, it's entirely fair and right that he gets an interview.  Absolutely.  I retract my statement that it was a bad decision.  My apologies.

    Having said that...

    People don't have to feel the same way about everything which is anti-big business/governmental interference/the man.  Where one person can accept the inherent flaws in, to use your example, Arlen Spector's defence of the Warren Report, that same person can regard the man on the moon conspiracy as being dubious in the extreme.

    So where standing up to big Pharmaceutics (far more of an issue in the USA than the UK, incidentally) is a good thing - people questioning "expert advice" is the sign of an active and intelligent public - that doesn't mean we have to automatically assume everything that seems to back up that is correct.  Sorry, that's clumsily phrased.  I'm kind of agreeing with you to an extent, the principle of questioning established theory is a fine and noble one. My point is, just because he's fighting the good fight doesn't make him right.

    Wakefield can no longer factually call himself a doctor.  That may be semantics, but it's also the crux of the matter.  He was suspended, investigated and eventually disbarred (that might be the wrong word, if so I again apologise) by the British Medical Council - entirely unrelated to, unfunded by and, in theory, impartial to big Pharma.  The reasons for that were precisely as I expressed.  He paid children five pounds a pop for blood samples which were not subject to any regulatory conditions.  Irrespective of what you think of his findings, doesn't that raise the slightest concern?  If, in fifty years time, Wakefield's findings are found to be valid, his way of going about his research will, for me, taint his reputation.  Not, I suppose, he would care.  Fair enough, I'm just not sure at all history will find him correct.

    Here's another analogy, Len.  In Los Angeles, a very famous man kills his wife.  The police know that he did it, but they can't prove it.  So they plant evidence.  The trial comes to court, and the very famous man is quite rightly cleared.  He was guilty, but the court was duty bound to find him innocent. 

    Every parent likes to think their local doctor and medical staff are outstanding.  Of course they do.  I'm quite sure I would feel the same too.  Nobody is saying Wakefield isn't a highly skilled, trained, well meaning and kind man.  That isn't the point at all.  He had an extremely important job and did it well.  Not in question by me, or indeed by the BMC. 

    In fact Len, initially, Wakefield had an extremely positive press.  Extremely.  This is the crux of my problem though.  When Wakefield made his initial case, it was rushed and reactionary.  So what you had, initially, was red top tabloids SCREAMING blue murder.  It was utterly imbalanced.  It was hysterical.  And Wakefield knew it would happen.  It was an extremely irresponsible thing for any medical professional to do.  Peer review and all that.  You can't just do things like that with the British red tops on the scene.

    So here's my point.  Beyond the accuracy of what Wakefield claims, his way of going about researching and presenting his studies were inherently dangerous and, I suspect, slightly egotistically motivated.  And for me, that's inexcusable.  What happens, Len, if history finds general medical theory to be right in this case?  I put it to you that children will have been put at risk by this.

    Anyway, regards.  Good to here from you.  I'm not an agent of disinformation or anything of the sort, I just happen to disagree.

  • PurpleHazePurpleHaze
    Posts: 717
    author said:


    Having said that...



    Penn and Teller: Andrew Wakefield and Jenny McCarthy are Assholes


    Is the anti-vaccine movement extensively tied to right-wing "Christianity?"

    Anti Vaccination Movement - The Atheist Experience #589


    (Just stirring the pot, before I smoke it...)  ;) 
  • barbhbarbh
    Posts: 25

    He was suspended, investigated and eventually disbarred (that might be the wrong word, if so I again apologise) by the British Medical Council -



    And, of course, nobody ever gets their career ruined for political reasons.
  • Aceman1Aceman1
    Posts: 34
    author said:


    He was suspended, investigated and eventually disbarred (that might be the wrong word, if so I again apologise) by the British Medical Council -



    And, of course, nobody ever gets their career ruined for political reasons.


    Not generally by non political organisations, no.

    The egotism of conspiracy theorists beckons again, I see.
  • >>"So here's my point.  Beyond the accuracy of what Wakefield claims, his way of going about researching and presenting his studies were inherently dangerous and, I suspect, slightly egotistically motivated.  And for me, that's inexcusable.  What happens, Len, if history finds general medical theory to be right in this case?  I put it to you that children will have been put at risk by this."


    OK I know someone who has two kids now both normal then autistic after shots...
    I also know someone who went into coma for TWO weeks after flu shot.
    Now your points;
    1. accuracy of what Wakefield claims,  -  What is he wrong about?
    2.his way of going about researching and presenting his studies were inherently dangerous -  Who told you they were dangerous, prove or discuss this.
    3. I suspect, slightly egotistically motivated.  - Again make a case about motivation  you can't make these claims up "out of thin air".
    4. What happens, Len, if history finds general medical theory to be right in this case?  Explain how they can be right with the rise of Autism
    They say no link to autism from shots.  Have you read his book.  Have you read it... ?  The whole point is there is a link like cancer and smoking.
    But they still sell cigarettes because they make money...

    Thats why I posted the doctors smoking and backing tabacco

    Len

    PS.  Penn and teller as a source for anything ????

  • Hi Len.

    1.  He's wrong about the link between Autism and MMR.  There is no legitimately proven link.  Autistic kids are "normal", by the way.  Even if there was a link, the number of incidents is so small relative to the number of lives saved that there would be no legitimate reason to stop MMR Vaccines.
    2.  You know how with Oswald, no recordings were made of his Dallas police interview after the shooting?  For me that taints the whole investigation.  That initial error.  Taking blood samples at a party and paying the kids for it taints the whole process for me.  Make no mistake about this, Len, irrespective of the views of the parents.  That is entirely against standard medical practise and ethics.  These exist for a reason.  Just as police not recording their interviews is dangerous,  the danger of renegade doctors is plain.  You can't surely be debating that?
    3. I said I suspect.  You also conveniently ignore everything else I said about his competency.  But appearing left right and centre on UK TV is a strange action for a doctor with no ego, don't you think?  Writing articles for the Daily Mail is not the sign of someone shunning publicity.
    4. The rise of autism is due to medical awareness.  More people are being diagnosed with autism because more study declares the symptoms to be autism.  Think of it like ME, once upon a time people with ME were just called lazy. That doesn't mean more people have ME, just more people are being diagnosed with it.  You can't just read Wakefield's book and say "there you go, there's the link".  You have to also read the responses, the critiques and the peer review.  It's only fair.

    You are happy to use Jesse Ventura's programme as a reference; to me using Penn and Teller - who merely present the opinions of others, incidentally - is no better and no worse.  They are merely an entertaining vehicle for other people's research.

    Cheers Len.

  • MinMMinM
    Posts: 383
    author said:


    author said:


    Having said that...



    Penn and Teller: Andrew Wakefield and Jenny McCarthy are Assholes

    image
    Magicians/"Skeptics" Penn Jillette and James Randi

    A couple things stand out from Penn's video clip there:

    1) PJ certainly took glee in Wakefield losing his medical license. The obvious message there being that if you question big pHARMa, or any part of the Medical Industrial Complex, there will be a heavy price to pay.

    2) PJ claiming to having qualms about siding with "The Man". When has he ever gone against the Powers That Be -- from JFK to 9/11 -- PJ has always sided with the PTB.

    Perhaps the best magic trick that both Penn Jillette and the 'Amazing' Randi have performed is making their skepticism disappear when it comes to theories put forth by the powers that be.

    Edit: to add this alternate theory from another board. Basically positing the notion that this Wakefield flap is a deflection, distraction, or a limited hangout if you will. Intended to divert attention away from more egregious acts perpetrated by the Medical Industrial Complex ie., 'anthrax attacks, Swine Flu, West Nile virus, Lyme disease, AIDS.' ...

    rigorousintuition.ca - View topic - Wakefield Vaccination Flap: Running interference for Merck?

    image

    CIA/Media War Against 9/11 & CIA Assassination “Conspiracy Theorists”: The BBC, Amazing Pederast James Randi and CIA Mind Control
    image
    author said:


    PS.  Penn and teller as a source for anything ????


    More on the exposing of Penn & Teller's 'Bullsh*t' :

    http://careandwashingofthebrain.blogspot.com/2011/07/yes-penn-and-teller-there-is-area-52.html
  • Len Osanic wrote:

    OK I know someone who has two kids now both normal then autistic after shots...

    "...the human brain has a natural tendency to pattern-match — to ignore the old dictum “correlation does not imply causation” and stubbornly persist in associating proximate phenomena. If two things coexist, the brain often tells us, they must be related. Some parents of autistic children noticed that their child’s condition began to appear shortly after a vaccination. The conclusion: “The vaccine must have caused the autism.” Sounds reasonable, even though, as many scientists have noted, it has long been known that autism and other neurological impairments often become evident at or around the age of 18 to 24 months, which just happens to be the same time children receive multiple vaccinations. Correlation, perhaps. But not causation, as studies have shown."
    http://www.wired.com/magazine/2009/10/ff_waronscience/3/

    "...14 studies including millions of children in several countries consistently show no significant difference in autism rates between children who got the MMR vaccine and those who didn't.http://www.webmd.com/brain/autism/searching-for-answers/vaccines-autism

    ...make a case about motivation you can't make these claims up "out of thin air."

    Wakefield had the same motivation as the tobacco companies - money.

    "It seems that Wakefield made quite a bit of money off the vaccine scare. "These hourly fees - revealed in The Sunday Times in December 2006 - gave the doctor a direct, personal, but undeclared, financial interest in his research results: totalling more than eight times his reported annual salary, and creating an incentive not only for him to launch the alarm, but to keep it going for as long as possible."
    http://briandeer.com/mmr/lancet-summary.htm

    Have you read his book. Have you read it... ?

    I'd have to borrow it from a library, because I don't think I'd want to put more money in his pockets. Does he take credit in his book for the return of the measles?

    Thanks, Andrew Wakefield
    "Thanks for bringing the measles back to the U.K. with your shoddy, litigation and profit-driven pseudoscience."
    http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2008/07/thanks_andrew_wakefield.php

    The whole point is there is a link like cancer and smoking. But they still sell cigarettes because they make money...

    Len

    PS. Penn and teller as a source for anything ????


    I know. They're not nearly as intelligent as Jenny McCarthy or John McCain.

    "It’s indisputable that (autism) is on the rise amongst children, the question is what’s causing it. And we go back and forth and there’s strong evidence that indicates that it’s got to do with a preservative in vaccines." - Senator John McCain
    http://blogs.abcnews.com/politicalpunch/2008/02/john-mccain-ent.html

    But what the hell, they're usually entertaining, at least. (And no, MinM, I don't always agree with them. Here, I do.)

    Vaccination - Penn & Teller: Bullshit! (1/2)


    Vaccination - Penn & Teller: Bullshit! (2/2)
  • author said:


    author said:


    author said:


    Having said that...



    Penn and Teller: Andrew Wakefield and Jenny McCarthy are Assholes

    image
    Magicians/"Skeptics" Penn Jillette and James Randi

    A couple things stand out from Penn's video clip there:

    1) PJ certainly took glee in Wakefield losing his medical license. The obvious message there being that if you question big pHARMa, or any part of the Medical Industrial Complex, there will be a heavy price to pay.

    2) PJ claiming to having qualms about siding with "The Man". When has he ever gone against the Powers That Be -- from JFK to 9/11 -- PJ has always sided with the PTB.

    Perhaps the best magic trick that both Penn Jillette and the 'Amazing' Randi have performed is making their skepticism disappear when it comes to theories put forth by the powers that be.



    Hello MinM. 

    1.  Indeed. Nobody here is questioning that.  But big pharmaceutics had nothing to do with Wakefield being struck off.  Genuine question, do you not think that anyone speaking as a doctor but who is not qualified to do so should be questioned?  That is what is happening here.

    2. I'd hope most people side with the PTB with regards 9/11, at least for the most part.  Even the holy Jim De Eugenio, a man I have some time for as it happens, sides with them.  And you know, when people claim the 9/11 planes were holograms, Penn Jillette is probably quite a good reference as to the veracity of that claim.
  • author said:



    Hello MinM. 

    1. Indeed. Nobody here is questioning that.  But big pharmaceutics had nothing to do with Wakefield being struck off.  Genuine question, do you not think that anyone speaking as a doctor but who is not qualified to do so should be questioned?  That is what is happening here.

    2. I'd hope most people side with the PTB with regards 9/11, at least for the most part.  Even the holy Jim De Eugenio, a man I have some time for as it happens, sides with them.  And you know, when people claim the 9/11 planes were holograms, Penn Jillette is probably quite a good reference as to the veracity of that claim.



    I'm beginning to regret ever having injected P+T into this discussion. They don't always "side with the PTB," but I do remember them saying that anyone who questioned the official 9-11 story was an asshole. They're far from being alone in that attitude. I'm also a fan of South Park, but it's writer also ridiculed 9-11 skeptics. So too with Bill Mahr and everybody else who has any kind of a high profile in the MSM. It's hard to say if they genuinely believe what they're saying or simply know it's a line they can't cross. It would be much less dangerous to ridicule the Warren Report, I think, because the JFK assassination is such a distant event now. We're still fighting wars that 9-11 was directly responsible for, and I think the PTB would be a lot more sensitive about people digging up 9-11 dirt. The perps are still alive, for one thing, and many are still involved in government or high corporate positions. (Pretty much the same thing)

    When you say that you "hope that most people side with the PTB with regards to 9-11," are you saying that you accept the official story? I don't know what else you could mean, but I guess I'm hoping that I misunderstood you.

    For example, do you accept that Hani Hanjour, who couldn't fly a tiny Cessna, actually pulled this off? Personally, I'd find it easier to believe that Oswald "got lucky" with his shots than to swallow this tall tale.

    "It is doubtful that the best trained fighter pilots could have executed the maneuver that supposedly crashed a 757 into the Pentagon. It required making a tight 320-degree turn while descending seven thousand feet, then leveling out so as to fly low enough over the highway just west of the Pentagon to knock down lamp posts. After crossing the highway the pilot had to take the plane to within inches of the ground so as to crash into the Pentagon at the first-floor level and at such a shallow angle that an engine penetrated three rings of the building, while managing to avoid touching the lawn. And he had to do all of this while flying over 400 mph. Quite a feat for a flight school flunky who had never sat in the cockpit of a jet!"  http://911research.wtc7.net/disinfo/deceptions/badpilots.html

    Not meaning to derail the thread... back to Wakefield and walking a mile for a Camel. Damn, they're good;)

  • From Sept 9 2010

    Family to Receive $1.5M+ in First-Ever Vaccine-Autism Court Award

    The first court award in a vaccine-autism claim is a big one. CBS News has learned the family of Hannah Poling will receive more than $1.5 million dollars for her life care; lost earnings; and pain and suffering for the first year alone.

    Read link for more
    http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-31727_162-20015982-10391695.html
  • Aceman1Aceman1
    Posts: 34
    Len, that case is a comple non-sequitur.  It caused a reaction to an existing and unknown condition.  It's utterly meaningless to the topic at hand.  That case does not even pretend to suggest a link between autism and MMR.
  • author said:


    Len, that case is a comple non-sequitur. It caused a reaction to an existing and unknown condition. It's utterly meaningless to the topic at hand. That case does not even pretend to suggest a link between autism and MMR.



    author said:



    From Sept 9, 2010

    Family to Receive $1.5M+ in First-Ever Vaccine-Autism Court Award

    The first court award in a vaccine-autism claim is a big one. CBS News has learned the family of Hannah Poling will receive more than $1.5 million dollars for her life care; lost earnings; and pain and suffering for the first year alone.

    Read link for more
    http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-31727_162-20015982-10391695.html



    Among the things we taxpayers get to share the lifetime cost of as a result of this decision are hand sanitizer, pill cups, pill crushers, alcohol wipes, disposable cups, Flonase, Singulair, Juice Plus, service dog training, mileage for service dog training, service dog expenses, service dog mileage, horse back riding and aquatic therapy, computer and printer, software updates, laminator, laminator supplies, Buddy bike, and excersize balls. http://www.uscfc.uscourts.gov/sites/default/files/CAMPBELLSMITH. DOE77082710.pdf

    "Service dogs" and horse back riding? Laminators and computers? Athsma medicine? (Singulair) Was it proven that vaccines caused Hannah Poling to develop asthma, too?  

    Jon Poling, Father of Hannah, Explains He's Not 'Anti-Vaccine'
    In deciding the case, which has sparked anew the vaccine-autism debate, the federal government has not said that childhood vaccines cause autism. Rather, federal officials conclude the vaccines, given to Hannah in 2000, aggravated a pre-existing condition that then manifested as autism-like symptoms.

    The pre-existing condition was a disorder of the mitochondria, the "power sources" of the cell, according to Poling.

    Court vs. Science
    Proving the link legally is quite different than proving it scientifically, Poling says. "When you are talking about the courtroom vs. science, the burden of proof is different," Poling tells WebMD.

    "We showed there was a plausible mechanism, we showed that an injury occurred shortly after her vaccination. Her growth curve went flat for months."

    In the wake of the decision, Poling, like other experts, says many questions remain about autism, vaccines, and mitochondrial disorders.

    "This mitochondrial issue, is it rare? Is it inherited?" he asks.
    http://www.webmd.com/brain/autism/searching-for-answers/dad-speaks-out

    by RickK101 September 16, 2010 11:53 AM EDT
    http://www.cbsnews.com/8601-31727_162-20015982.html?assetTypeId=41&blogId=10391695&tag=contentBody;commentWrapper

    Do vaccines cause autism? ----------- Some parents claim they do. But there are many many studies that show no link between vaccines and autism: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MMR_vaccine_controversy#Recent_studies Also, many parents have stopped vaccinating, or are vaccinating less over the past 10 years http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-immunization29-2009mar29,0,3148179.story but the rate at which autism is diagnosed is still climbing, unchanged: http://www.fightingautism.org/idea/autism.php

    If autism was caused by vaccines, and if many parents (as many as 40% in some wealthy California districts) are choosing to not vaccinate, shouldn't we see SOME change in the rate of autism diagnosis? Also, there is very strong evidence that autism is genetic: http://www.latimes.com/features/health/la-na-autism29-2009apr29,0,4441598.story Is there an autism epidemic? ----------- It sure seems like it, doesn't it? You never used to hear about it, then came Rain Man, then came Jenny McCarthy, Jim Carrey, Larry King and Oprah, and now everyone knows an autistic kid. So if autism is rising, all things being equal, then we should see more kids applying for special education assistance in school, right? But we don't. We see about the same number (as a % of population) getting special attention in school that we saw 10 years ago. But more of them are diagnosed as having "autism spectrum disorder" and fewer are diagnosed with other disorders. http://www.autismstreet.org/weblog/?p=297

    Also, what constitutes "autism" has changed dramatically as each generation of DSM has been updated. And remember, before the ADA and IDEA acts, schools didn't have an obligation to accommodate kids with severe learning disabilities. So autistic kids would be less visible in the community. When you apply today's diagnostic criteria to adult populations, you find about the same rate of autism that we see in children. In other words, the rate of ACTUAL autism hasn't changed much. http://tinyurl.com/lx8auq Whether the actual rate of autism has changed at all is still a very good and important question. But it is clear that the media has really overblown the "autism epidemic". How did this vaccine-autism thing start? -------------- In 1998 Dr. Andrew Wakefield at the Royal Free Hospital in England concluded, based on a study of 12 kids, that there was a connection between the MMR vaccine and autism. Since then, it has been learned that: what he said about the kids medical histories was not true; http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life_and_style/health/article5683671.ece 10 of the 12 doctors who co-authored the study removed their names from the study and published a retraction saying: "We wish to make it clear that in this paper no causal link was established between MMR vaccine and autism as the data were insufficient."; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Autistic_enterocolitis#.22Retraction_of_an_interpretation.22

    While they were criticizing the MMR vaccine, Wakefield and the Royal Free Hospital were filing patent applications for an ALTERNATIVE VACCINE! http://briandeer.com/wakefield/vaccine-patent.htm In addition, Wakefield was paid by lawyers who made their money filing claims of autism damage. The Lancet medical journal has now fully retracted Wakefield, and he now faces professional misconduct charges. Yes, Wakefield is charismatic. But it is impossible to ignore the fact that his results have not been repeated, his data was flawed, and he had multiple personal financial incentives to find the conclusions he published. This is a bad guy. Is it really possible that this is all just hype?? --------------- Over the past 6 years, Americans convinced themselves that (1) it was just fine to give mortgages to people who had no down payment and no income; and (2) these mortgages became valuable assets when repackaged and sold by banks. The entire premise is absurd, yet we ALL fell for it, and our economy fell into shambles. Yes, it's possible for people to get fooled by hype, fooled in MASSIVE numbers. We're in a period where science=unnatural=bad. After all, sticking a needle into a baby seems grossly unnatural, and unnatural is bad, right? So blaming vaccines for SOMETHING just feels right. But that is bad logic. Diseases are all natural, and they are bad. Very bad. http://nielsenhayden.com/makinglight/archives/010978.html If you want a good site to link, try this: http://antiantivax.jottit.com/ Humans realized long ago that they could be fooled, and they started coming up with ways to keep from being fooled. That's where the scientific method, and controlled, blinded studies came from - a desire to not be fooled. Comprehensive list of evidence against vaccine/autism link, including relevant studies: http://sciencebasedmedicine.org/reference/vaccines-and-autism/
    http://www.cbsnews.com/8618-31727_162-20015982.html?

    image
    Jenny McCarthy's son was diagnosed with autism and she believes the MMR vaccine was the cause. Jenny says that she put her son on a strict no-wheat, no-dairy diet and his autism eventually disappeared!
    http://www.dlisted.com/node/28801

    image

    And I'm done with this subject. Jenny is hot, isn't she?  ;)
  • 29 August 2010 Last  MMR campaigner from Warrington wins £90,000 payout

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-merseyside-11125343



    Robert has frequent epileptic fits, is unable to talk, stand unaided or feed himself The mother of a Cheshire teenager who was left severely brain damaged by the MMR vaccine has won a compensation award from the government.

    Robert Fletcher, 18, from Warrington, suffered a fit 10 days after he had the vaccination when he was 13 months old.

    His mother Jackie received the £90,000 payout from a medical assessment panel last week.

    The family successfully appealed after their application for compensation was originally turned down in 1997.

    They had originally applied through the Government's Vaccine Damage Payment Scheme.

    Robert has frequent epileptic fits, is unable to talk, stand unaided or feed himself, but is not autistic.

    'Outstanding safety record'

    Mrs Fletcher always believed that her son's epilepsy was triggered by the combined measles, mumps and rubella vaccine.

    The ruling and compensation award was made by a jury made up of a judge and two doctors.

    It said the ruling had no relevance to the question of a link between the vaccine and autism.

    Dr Andrew Wakefield was the lead author of the controversial study, published in The Lancet in 1998, which suggested there may be a link between MMR and autism and bowel disease.

    His comments and the subsequent media furore led to a sharp drop in the number of children vaccinated against these diseases.


    Robert Fletcher received the vaccine when he was 13 months old The study has since been discredited and The Lancet has said it should not have run it.

    Mrs Fletcher has campaigned for justice for her son for the past 16 years.

    She said: "I feel vindicated by it because over the years I've been labelled anti-vaccine and a scaremonger and all sorts of things, when all I've been trying to do is highlight what's happened to my son, to help safeguard other parents' children.

    "What I'm hoping now is that other parents whose children have suffered a similar reaction to Robert can maybe go down the same route that we've gone down to achieve justice for their children."

    A Department of Health spokesperson said: "This decision reflects the opinion of a tribunal on the specific facts of the case and they were clear that it should not be seen as a precedent for any other case.

    "The safety of MMR has been endorsed through numerous studies in many countries. Thankfully, more parents are having their children vaccinated with MMR and consider it as safe as other childhood vaccines."

    He added: "MMR vaccine has been used extensively and safely around the world for over 30 years. Over 500 million doses have been given in over 100 countries.

    "The World Health Organisation recognises MMR as being a 'highly effective vaccine which has (such) an outstanding safety record'.

    "Parents and carers should continue to get their children immunised when called to do so."

  • MinMMinM
    Posts: 383