National Autism Association Says Institute of Medicine Report on Autism and Vaccines is Derived From Flawed Data

WASHINGTON -- A report released today has parents and researchers shocked at how far the Institute of Medicine (IOM) and Centers for

Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will go to protect the reputation of the vaccination

program. After CDC-funded hearings were held in front of an IOM panel on

Feb. 9, 2004 regarding the connection between vaccines and autism, IOM

released its decision today by stating there is no connection, despite strong

clinical evidence from accredited doctors and researchers that suggests

otherwise.

To reach their decision, the National Autism Association says the IOM relied heavily upon CDC's Vaccine Safety

Database (VSD) study published in the Journal of Pediatrics in November 2003.

Many critics have come forward questioning its validity. The study's author,

Dr. Thomas Verstraeten, works for a leading vaccine manufacturer. He also

authored the first CDC VSD study in 2000, obtained through FOIA, which found a

statistically significant link between thimerosal containing vaccines and

autism, but the study was not released to the public.

The National Autism Association (NAA), supporting families and physicians

looking for effective treatments for autism and other neurodevelopmental

disorders, says the report proves the IOM has not been able to divest itself

from vaccine policies. And tragically, in doing so, they have failed society

by their blindness to the issue at hand. "It appears the IOM's admitted fear

of an undermined vaccination program has led to this decision, not scientific

evidence," says Lori McIlwain, executive director of the National Autism

Association.

The NAA states they are for safe vaccines and stand by the clinical evidence

that was presented to the IOM from highly accredited researchers, along with

medical records of affected children. "Thousands of parents have seen the

regression of skills in their children following thimerosal-containing

vaccines," says Jo Pike, president of the National Autism Association. "Many

of these same children are progressing rapidly with biomedical interventions

addressing mercury poisoning. The cause and effect should not be ignored," she

says.

In their report, the IOM panel dismissed strong clinical and

epidemiological evidence presented during the hearings. These studies include:

- Dr. Mark Geier and David Geier presented epidemiological evidence that

children who received thimerosal-containing vaccines were six times

more likely to have autism than children who did not.

- Mady Hornig, MD, showed mice that had been given thimerosal-containing

vaccines and subsequently developed harmful repetitive behaviors

similar to those of autism.

- David Baskin, MD, showed the neurotoxic affects of ethylmercury and how

such damage can lead to apoptosis of cells.

- Jeff Bradstreet, MD, showed that autistic children had six times more

mercury in their bodies than age and vaccine-matched controls.

- Boyd Haley showed that autistic children have less mercury in

their hair than controls hypothesizing that autistic children can not

detoxify as easily as regular children.

"The IOM took over 10 years to acknowledge Gulf War Syndrome and over 20

years to acknowledge Agent Orange poisoning," says Laura Bono, NAA chairman.

"We are asking the IOM to affirm the mass poisoning of thousands of children

through mercury in their vaccines. We are confident that the truth will

eventually come out and we will not be deterred until it does."

Source: National Autism Association

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