Did the US Government lose a landmark vaccine lawsuit? This has been popping up so, Time to correct the ANTIVAX misinformation (again). Health and Human Services (HSS) in the US was sued by Robert F Kenndy and ICAN, and the anti-vaxxers say they won. So what is going on?
- HSS was mandated with monitoring/improving safety and quality of vaccines.
- HSS produce various reports and has done a great deal of work on vaccine safety
- HSS reported to and appeared before US Congress BUT
- the act stipulated regular reports to Congress on HOW HSS was working to keep improving vaccines.
- HSS didn’t file that kind of report with Congress.
- RFK/ICAN filed an FOIA lawsuit to get the reports (of which there were none), the lawsuit was settled, and then dismissed.
AntiVaxxers now claim that HSS lost the lawsuit that this means there has been NO safety testing done at all, and that various laws about vaccines are now invalidated, that the authority of health authorities is in doubt over this. This is ALL false. There have been many high quality scientific studies finding vaccines safe. A failure to file some government interdepartmental paperwork doesn’t invalidate all the science that has been done in this area. Vaccines are still safe. Antivaxxers still lie about it.
Anti-vax activist charges parents $4000 for ‘expert report: An anti-vaccination activist with no medical training is charging $4000 for an “expert report” to present in court cases to help parents who do not want to have their children vaccinated.”
“However her doctorate was in humanities and was controversially awarded by the University of Wollongong in 2016 amid harsh criticism from the scientific and medical community. Her thesis argued vaccination was a conspiracy.”
Science or Snake Oil: do hangover cures actually work? Sorry folks, there’s still no proven cure for a hangover – though it can, of course, be prevented by drinking in moderation or avoiding alcohol.
Gene-edited babies: China wants to be the world leader, but at what cost? Many scientists in the field were stunned to hear that the world’s first (and second!) CRISPR/Cas9 edited baby had been born – but what does this mean for the field going forward? Is this the opening of the metaphorical can of Pringles, or was this just… Fine?
Abused Health Concept
IgG food intolerance tests continue to mislead consumers into unnecessary dietary restrictions: This generally involves testing for immunoglobulin G (IgG). “IgG antibodies signify exposure to products—not allergy. IgG antibody testing will identify what you ate recently – there is no correlation between an IgG test result and your ability to eat that food without distress. In fact, some research suggests IgG may actually be a marker for food tolerance, not intolerance. Immunoglobulin G tests are completely useless and do dramatic harm because they may compel patients to unnecessarily avoid broad swaths of a healthy diet, Wood said.”
Health Promotion & Disease Prevention
What is meningococcal disease and what are the options for vaccination? The inevitable question parents ask is, “should I pay to get my child vaccinated against MenB and MenACWY?” In an ideal world, the answer would be “give both vaccines”. If you or your child has immune system weaknesses then definitely go for both optional vaccines. Another way to answer would be to state what we know. We know both vaccines are effective against severe disease. We know they can be given on the same day safely. But we also know no vaccine is 100% effective, and a person may still become infected even after immunisation. If you are very worried your child may have meningococcal disease, whether vaccinated or not, seek medical advice immediately.
Great moments in Health and Science
Who invented sunscreen? As we (in Australia, at least) head into the summer months, it is particularly important to remember the role of sunscreen in lowering the carcinogenic damage from the sun’s rays. Best used in conjunction with minimising midday sun exposure and wearing protective coverings.