The rear of the horse that measles rode in on

May 23, 2010

Why would people fail to inoculate their kids against measles, and thereby contribute to deadly epidemics?

There was this guy in Britain, Andrew Wakefield, who published a study suggesting a link between measles vaccines and autism.  But it turned out his research didn’t support that claim.  Then it turned out he was under contract to produce a paper that made that claim regardless the science, for a lawsuit.

Darryl Cunningham's graphic account of measles vaccine hysteria, one page

A page from Darryl Cunningham's graphic account of measles vaccine hysteria, "The Facts in the Case of Dr. Andrew Wakefield." TallGuyWrites (Darryl Cunningham)

Darryl Cunningham created a concise, 15-page graphic accounting of the story of how the misdeeds of one physician led to a world-wide, child-killing panic.  If you do not know the story, go read it.  You should be troubled by the story it tells.  Be sure to read it through.  Cunningham is thorough in his debunking of the hysteria the anti-vaxxers promote, and you should know it all.

Darryl Cunningham's graphic story, "The Facts in the Case of Dr. Andrew Wakefield"

Another page from Darryl Cunningham's graphic story, "The Facts in the Case of Dr. Andrew Wakefield" about the motivations behind the hysteria.

Then send a copy to Jenny McCarthy, or anyone else who carries the torch of ignorance-based hysteria against vaccines and in favor of disease.

Dr. Wakefield’s original paper was retracted by the publisher — it’s no longer considered valid science.  It’s a hoax.  No subsequent research confirmed any links to autism.  Serious, large-scale follow-up studies revealed no connection whatsoever between measles vaccine and autism.

Measles is a nasty disease, tough to eradicate, and working hard to come back and get your children and grandchildren.  Don’t be suckered.

Andrew Wakefield created a hoax.  Those who rely on his study rely on bogus science, voodoo science.  History tells us that, if we stop the fight against measles, people will die.

Would you contribute to publishing this comic for distribution in pediatrician’s waiting rooms?

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Tip of the old scrub brush to JD 2718.


Measles ride again

May 23, 2010

Those people who warn against vaccinating kids?  They are laying low today.  They didn’t pick up the New York Times as they usually do on a Sunday — they don’t want to know.

You may want to know, however.

More than 1,100 deaths from measles have been reported among 64,000 known cases in Africa the last year, it said. Chad, Nigeria and Zimbabwe have had the largest outbreaks.

“There is a widespread resurgence of measles with these outbreaks in over 30 African countries, some of which are seeing very high case fatality ratios,” WHO expert Peter Strebel told a news briefing.

Some 8,000 migrant children in Bulgaria also had the highly-contagious disease during the period, he said.

Measles deaths among children under five years old fell to 118,000 in 2008 from 733,000 in 2000, according to the United Nations agency’s latest figures.

But the WHO warned that a lack of funding and political commitment could result in a return to more than 500,000 cases measles deaths per year by 2012, wiping out the gains to date.

Avoiding vaccinations for measles suddenly may not be a great idea.


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