Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Big Pharma Strikes Again?

I personally have suspected that vaccines are in fact one (if not the only) cause of Autism. I further believe that it was "ruled out" by doctors and scientists who were rewarded for their findings by big pharma. Apparently a new tv show is going to make this suggestion also. I'll be very curious to see what kind of backlash comes from it. From the internet...

ABC show fuels autism debate; doctors concerned

The premiere episode of ABC’s new legal drama, Eli Stone, may lead parents to believe there is a connection between autism and immunizations, doctors say.

by Leslie K. Tamura Published February 5, 2008 ⋅


Dr. Alan Rosenblatt has given all the recommended vaccines to his own children and urges other parents to do likewise.

Rosenblatt’s recommendations may fall on deaf ears, however, if the premiere episode of ABC’s new legal drama, “Eli Stone,” leads parents to believe there is a connection between autism and immunizations.

“I think that [ABC] is using a very sensitive issue to raise interest in their product,” said Rosenblatt, a North Park neurodevelopmental pediatrician.
During the show’s first episode, a jury awards in favor of the plaintiff who accuses a pharmaceutical company of being responsible for her child’s autism.

“It implies that there is a cause and effect relationship between a mercury preservative in vaccines and the emergence of autism in children that is not consistent with the overwhelming evidence that is accepted by the scientific and medical community,” Rosenblatt said.

Last week the American Academy of Pediatrics argued there is no scientific data supporting a relationship between vaccines and autism and urged ABC to cancel the show’s Thursday premiere.

Dr. Renee R. Jenkins, the American Academy of Pediatrics president, wrote to ABC executives Friday, warning “this program could lead to a tragic decline in immunization rates,” which “could be devastating to the health of our nation’s children.”

ABC said on Monday it would still air the episode but will include a disclaimer about the show’s plot and direct viewers to the Centers for Disease Control’s autism Web site.

Nonetheless, the medical community is still wary about the “Eli Stone” episode.
“There are real health consequences with this drama,” Rosenblatt said.
“What has led to our present state of the public health, compared to one or two centuries ago, [was] the introduction of vaccines,” he said.

The Pediatrics Academy’s Jenkins worries that the episode’s content will influence parents to not immunize, causing “needless suffering and potential deaths of children.”

It is generally accepted by the medical community that there is not a causal relationship between vaccines and autism. Mercury was removed from vaccines in 2000 but the numbers are still going up.

Autism is one of a group of neurological brain disorders affecting child development. Many children with autism have unusual behaviors and interests and have difficulty with social interaction and communication.

Autism is the fastest growing developmental disability, now affecting 22,000 children in Illinois, according to the Illinois Department of Human Services.
Because there is no cure for autism and no causal connection with vaccines, people are looking for easy answers, Rosenblatt said.

This has pediatricians concerned about the influence of fictional shows on health care decisions.

Jenkins said in a news release that “a television show that perpetuates the myth that vaccines cause autism is the height of reckless irresponsibility on the part of ABC and its parent company, The Walt Disney Co.”

The show is already stirring debate on the show’s message board.

“I am terribly concerned about a TV show like this espousing the vaccine-autism theory,” one person wrote Tuesday. “If the creators think this won’t lead to people not vaccinating their kids, they are either purposely ignorant, or downright negligent.”

Another person wrote, “The parents of autistic children have enough to deal with, without having to combat idiotic autism mumbo-jumbo in the media.”
“Eli Stone” was created by Greg Berlanti and Marc Guggenheim and stars British actor Jonny Lee Miller. The new drama airs on ABC, Thursdays at 9 p.m.CST.

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