Thursday, February 5, 2015

See, they're safe...

The US Government Has Paid out $3 Billion to Vaccine-Injured Americans Since 1989

Lily Dane

Unless you live in a cave and have NO access to television or the internet, you’ve likely been exposed to the Measles Mania that has swept America.

Facebook, Twitter, online news site comment sections…everywhere you look, people are launching into hysterical tirades and internet battles about vaccines, “evil anti-vaxxers”, and fear-mongering.

Some people are so whipped up into a frenzy over those who don’t vaccinate that they are calling for those people to be sued or jailed. Even more disturbing? Some are saying they hope anti-vaxxers’ children die of a communicable disease.

It’s like a modern-day witch hunt.

The anger is strong, and it is infectious (pardon the pun).

And mainstream news sites and politicians are fueling the fire.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, both potential Republican presidential candidates, have stated publicly that parents should have a say in which vaccines their children receive.

Hillary Clinton and President Obama are both saying that vaccines are safe, and that all children should be vaccinated, which is in stark contrast to comments each made in 2008:

At a 2008 rally, Mr. Obama said, “We’ve seen just a skyrocketing autism rate. Some people are suspicious that it’s connected to the vaccines. This person included. [Points to person in audience.] The science right now is inconclusive, but we have to research it.”

In 2008, Hillary Clinton was asked in a questionnaire from an autism group about whether vaccines should be investigated as a “possible cause” of autism. She answered: “I am committed to make investments to find the causes of autism, including possible environmental causes like vaccines.”

Amidst the hype and hysteria over whether or not people should be forced to vaccinate their children, I have noticed two issues that are causing quite a bit of confusion.

One is autism. Whenever a person says they do not vaccinate their children, a lot (and I mean, A LOT) of people assume that it is because that person is afraid of autism. This assumption inevitably launches that person into a lecture about how the link between autism and vaccines has been “debunked” or “disproven.”

(Autism is far from being the only risk associated with vaccination. More on that later.)

The other is the widespread lack of awareness of the “vaccine court.” People just don’t believe this entity exists. It’s as if I’m telling them that I have a flock of magical unicorns frolicking in my backyard. If I had a dollar for every time a person has accused me of being wrong – or lying – about the existence of the vaccine court, I might actually be able to buy a flock of unicorns.

Anyway…yes, the government does have a vaccine court and fund that serve to compensate people who can show strong evidence that their child’s injury, disability, or death is linked to vaccinations.

Here’s an explanation of the vaccine court from Generation Rescue:

The United States federal court has presided over landmark cases for the autism community, filing official court decisions that have linked vaccinations as an environmental trigger of autism. The court in which all of these decisions are rendered is the Office of Special Masters of the United States Courts of Federal Claims, otherwise known as “Vaccine Court.”

The U.S. government created this specific court in 1986 to protect pharmaceutical companies from the direct lawsuits that were arising due to the preponderance of illnesses and injuries that were stemming from the company’s vaccination products. By establishing the Vaccine Court, the government now protects the pharmaceutical industry by trying the cases and awarding damages from a federal excise tax added to the cost of each dosage of a vaccine.

In the “Vaccine Court,” the burden of proof lays squarely on the claimant. In other words, a family must show a clear causal connection between a vaccination and its adverse effects. For the autism community, this standard is made more challenging because the “Vaccine Court” does not accept “autism” as a legal determination. This is because autism is a clinical diagnosis, labeled on the basis of a collection of clinical features and created by causes that are still unknown. But the autism community has still persevered, and compelled the court to acknowledge the link between their children’s autism diagnoses and vaccinations’ environmental triggers.

Here’s how that system works.

The CDC and FDA co-sponsor a national vaccine safety surveillance program called Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS). It serves to collect information about adverse events (possible side effects) that occur after the administration of vaccines licensed for use in the United States. People can report reactions that may be related to vaccinations there, and the data is open and available for anyone to access.

If a case makes it to vaccine court and an award is granted to a family, the money comes from the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program:

Since the first National Vaccine Injury Compensation (VICP) claims were filed in 1989, 3,887 compensation awards have been made. More than $3.0 billion in compensation awards has been paid to petitioners and more than $120.4 million has been paid to cover attorneys’ fees and other legal costs.

To date, 9,860 claims have been dismissed. Of those, 4,912 claimants were paid more than $64.8 million to cover attorneys’ fees and other legal costs.

For those who are still skeptical that such a thing exists…

The following are cases in which the families of children who suffered from vaccine-related injuries (and in one case, unfortunately, death) were awarded compensation by the vaccine court.

Click on each child’s name to view the actual court documents.

Richelle Oxley: DPT shot reaction: post-pertussis vaccine encephalopathy

“…no evidence to overcome the strong probability that the DPT was the most likely cause. Richelle’s disabilities include autistic-like behavior, hyperactivity, and partially controlled seizures. The court finds further that all other statutory requirements have been met, and concludes that petitioners are entitled to compensation for injuries sustained as a result of the DPT vaccine administered on July 30, 1979.”

Hannah Poling: MMR vaccine

“Court ruled in favor of compensation due to the significant aggravation of child’s pre-existing mitochondrial disorder based on an MMR vaccine Table presumptive injury of encephalopathy, which eventually manifested as chronic encephalopathy with features of autism spectrum disorder and a complex partial seizure disorder as a sequelae.”

Eric Lassiter: DPT vaccine

Eric was completely healthy prior to a DPT booster. His is a “known case of static encephalopathy after DPT immunization.” Based on the court’s own findings of fact and the reasons proffered by Dr. Lichtenfeld, the court concludes that Eric, more likely than not, sustained an encephalopathy and that the first manifestation of onset of the injury occurred within the Table time frame.

*The possibility of autism was discussed in depth during Eric’s court proceedings, but a conclusion was never made. One doctor believed the child had autism…but not as a result of the DTP vaccine.

Bailey Banks: MMR vaccine

“The Court found, supra, that Bailey’s ADEM was both caused-in-fact and proximately caused by his vaccination. It is well-understood that the vaccination at issue can cause ADEM, and the Court found, based upon a full reading and hearing of the pertinent facts in this case, that it did actually cause the ADEM. Furthermore, Bailey’s ADEM was severe enough to cause lasting, residual damage, and retarded his developmental progress, which fits under the generalized heading of Pervasive Developmental Delay, or PDD. The Court found that Bailey would not have suffered this delay but for the administration of the MMR vaccine, and that this chain of causation was not too remote, but was rather a proximate sequence of cause and effect leading inexorably from vaccination to Pervasive Developmental Delay.”

Acute Disseminated Encephalomyelitis (“ADEM”) is “an acute or subacute encephalomyelitis or infiltration and 3 demyelination; it occurs most commonly following an acute viral infection, especially measles, but may occur without a recognizable antecedent….It is believed to be a manifestation of an autoimmune attack on the myelin of the central nervous system. Clinical manifestations include fever, headache, vomiting, and drowsiness progressing to lethargy and coma; tremor, seizures, and paralysis may also occur; mortality ranges from 5 to 20 per cent; many survivors have residual neurological deficits.”

Pervasive Developmental Disorder, Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS) is a ‘subthreshold’ condition in which some – but not all – features of autism or another explicitly identified Pervasive Developmental Disorder are identified. PDD-NOS; also referred to as “atypical personality development,” “atypical PDD,” or “atypical autism”, is included in DSM-IV to encompass cases where there is marked impairment of social interaction, communication, and/or stereotyped behavior patterns or interest, but when full features for autism or another explicitly defined PDD are not met.

As a preliminary matter, even though Respondent conceded during briefing that Bailey suffers from PDD, Respondent’s expert, Dr. MacDonald characterized Bailey’s condition as autism; however, he at one point conflated the two as of one or of like kind. Tr. at 84-86. Despite his comments to that effect, the Court is inclined to view Bailey’s condition as accurately as the medical records will allow; that is, to find that Bailey more likely than not suffers from PDD, and not from autism.

Elias Tembenis: Death after DTaP vaccination. This little boy had seizures after receiving a DTaP shot…but was still given boosters and other vaccines. In 2002, doctors noted that Elias had features of Pervasive Developmental Disorder (“PDD”), which is an autism spectrum disorder. He died in 2007, at age 7. The immediate cause of death was multisystem organ failure, which was a consequence of cardiac arrest…which was a consequence of Elias’s seizure disorder.

“Petitioners have satisfied the legal requirements for proving that Elias’s December 26, 2000 DTaP vaccination was a legal cause of his epilepsy and death. Respondent has not overcome Petitioners’ evidence by proving an alternative cause. Therefore, I find that Petitioners have established entitlement to compensation under the Vaccine Act.”

Ryan Mojabi: MMR vaccine

Saeid and Parivash Mojabi of San Jose, California had their infant son vaccinated with the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR), among other vaccinations, between 2003 and 2005. Shortly after the MMR vaccinations, their son developed Autism Spectrum Disorder, asthma, and an encephalopathy, which refers to a syndrome of brain dysfunction. The case is ‘unpublished,’ meaning there is little information available to the public.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services conceded that the MMR vaccination caused the boy’s encephalopathy. There is no documentation stating the government recognized that the encephalopathy directly led to his autism. The Mojabi’s were awarded a lump sum of more than $980,0000, and another lump sum, several million dollars more, will be invested in annuities on his behalf to cover annual costs for the rest of his life. (source)

From the same law firm that represented Ryan Mojabi:

A similar case involving a young girl reports an eerily similar timeline. The girl’s mother, Jillian Moller, filed her claim in 2003, alleging that her daughter was severely injured by the vaccines she received at 15 months old.

Almost immediately, the girl developed high fevers, seizure episodes, and a similar measles-type rash. She started staring blankly, having shaking episodes, and was diagnosed with encephalopathy characterized by speech and developmental delay. She was also ultimately diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

More than seven years after filing her claim, the government agreed to settle, and made an offer upwards of $1.1 million. Another $9 million will be granted for annual expenses throughout her life. The Department of Health and Human Services did not officially admit that the vaccines caused her encephalopathy or autism.

Notice that in several of those court cases, terms like “autistic-like,” “features of autism,” “PDD or atypical autism,” and “autistic disorders” are used.

Here’s a recent case from outside of the US.

Valentino Bocca: MMR vaccine (Italy)

Valentino was never the same child after the jab in his arm. He developed autism and, in a landmark judgment, a judge has ruled that his devastating disability was provoked by the inoculation against measles, mumps and rubella (MMR).

Judge Lucio Ardigo, awarding compensation to the family, agreed. He said it was ‘conclusively established’ that Valentino had suffered from an ‘autistic disorder associated with medium cognitive delay’ and his illness, as Dr Barboni stated, was linked to receiving the jab.

Skeptics will say that none of these cases proves there is a link between vaccinations and autism.

Maybe they don’t prove anything. Maybe the definition of “autism” is too broad and confusing (after all, the diagnostic criteria specified by the American Psychiatric Association has changed several times). There isn’t a blood test – or any medical test – that can be used to detect autism spectrum disorders. Diagnosis is challenging.

But it is hard to discount the increasing number of heartbreaking tales of drastic changes (or death) in once-healthy children shortly after receiving vaccinations.

Dr. Jane Orient, the executive director of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS), said that she believes the science behind vaccination risks is far from settled and that hundreds of parents have reported that their children have had severe deficits after an inoculation.

“We have a lot of observations that are not otherwise explainable,” said Dr. Orient, an internist. “I don’t think we can dismiss it out of hand.”

The AAPS has called for an end to government-mandated vaccinations in the past...

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