Friday, June 09, 2006

AN INCONSISTENT VACCINE POLICY

The latest article by Dan Olmsted, entitled The Age of Autism: Gardasil vs. Hep B, highlights how our nation’s health-care policy sometimes is the product more of politics and economics than good sense. This time, Mr. Olmsted writes of last week’s approval of the Gardasil vaccine, designed to prevent the spread of human papillomavirus (“HPV”), a sexually transmitted disease that is believed to cause cervical cancer.

The Food and Drug Administration approved the new vaccine for use in girls who have reached nine years of age, and therein lies the point of the story. As Mr. Olmsted writes, “the decision to wait till the cusp of adolescence to give the shot seems sensible ⎯ and drives home the contrary approach that the CDC has taken with the hepatitis B vaccination mandated for every newborn child.”

Once again, Mr. Olmsted hits the bull’s eye.

If one accepts the need for a vaccine against HPV, there certainly seems to be no pressing reason to use it on children at an age they will not be involved in sexual activity. Likewise, Hep-B is spread primarily through unprotected sex and intravenous drug use. Yet the powers that be seem to believe it’s a good idea to inoculate every single child on day one, regardless of whether their parents have tested positive for the Hep-B virus.

Many observers and researchers believe a rapid increase in the prevalence of autism is noticeable around the time the Hep-B vaccine was introduced onto the schedule. Had we known then what I know now, my wife and I would not have allowed our infant son to receive the thimerosal-containing Hep-B vaccine in his first few hours of life. We would have gladly agreed to keep him away from unprotected sex and IV-drug use for a few years.

Even now when the Hep-B vaccine contains only “trace” amounts of thimerosal, is it really a good idea to inject any vaccine into a child whose immune system is not yet developed? Moreover, if we assume for the sake of discussion that thimerosal and vaccines have nothing whatsoever to do with autism, is there any good reason to risk a possible adverse reaction from a vaccine that isn’t necessary so early in life? Why do we need to immediately vaccinate against a risk a child will not encounter for a decade or more? Is it good sense, or is it politics and economics?

3 Comments:

Anonymous John Johnson said...

Recently, the hospitals and doctors in my area have implemented a schedule where Hep B is given with the first few rounds of shots, rather than 6 hours after birth. The reasoning behind Hep B on the first day of life, so I heard, was the potential to pass it from mother to child during delivery. Although most mothers don't have Hep B, it was public policy to implement the vaccination "just in case." We talked to the doctors with our last newborn and they said that they could wait until month 2. Better, but I'm with you -- I think year 9 would be better.

6/10/06, 1:43 PM  
Anonymous Sue M. said...

On my paperwork at the hospital with my newborn it states that I am hep-B negative. My child was still given the shot on the first day of life (yes, with my approval, sadly I didn't know any better). Completely irrational. The hep-B at birth is an embarrassment to the vaccination policy. Way to go, Dan Olmsted!

6/10/06, 3:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is absolutely criminal to give a Hep B shot to a newborn that is a live virus and loaded with toxins. Babies produce no bile until somewhere between 3-6 months and so they have NO defense. This is similar to the practice of loading kids up with tylenol before they receive their vaccinations which depletes their glutathione again taking away any defense they nad naturally against the toxins injected into them.

It is no coincidence that many ASD kids were slightly jaundiced at birth. Many had much more serious liver problems early on. When are we going to wake up?

6/11/06, 8:49 AM  

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