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Originally published on NVIC.org.
Vaccines are not safe or effective for everyone because we are not all the same and we do not all respond the same way to pharmaceutical products. Without knowing if the odds are in your favor, almost no medical condition qualifies for exemption.
Vaccine risks for you or your child can range from zero to 100 percent depending upon the genes you were born with; your microbiome DNA; the environment you live in; your age and health at the time of vaccination, and the type and how many vaccines you get. 1 2
Our response to infectious diseases and the risk for complications can also vary, depending upon our genes, environment, and age and health at the time of infection. 5 That is why malnourished, vitamin deficient children living in impoverished environments, for example, are at higher risk for complications from gastrointestinal, respiratory and other childhood infections. 6 7 8
Vaccinators Do Not Know If the Odds Will Be in Your Favor
The doctor or nurse giving vaccines to you or your child does not know whether the odds will be in your favor. You may get vaccinated and have no reaction or your immune system and brain function could be severely compromised. 9 10 The scientific literature is clear about that fact and so is Congress and the U.S. Supreme Court, which have declared vaccines to be "unavoidably unsafe" and shielded the pharmaceutical industry from vaccine injury lawsuits. 11 12 13
Since 1988, there have been thousands of children and adults in America who have suffered brain inflammation and other long recognized vaccine reactions and have been awarded $3 billion dollars in vaccine injury compensation. There are thousands more, who have been unable to secure federal compensation for their vaccine injuries. 14 15
Vaccines Recommended and Given in Vacuum of Scientific Knowledge
But doctors and nurses are not taught about the genetic, biological and environmental high risk factors that could make you or your child more vulnerable to experiencing disabling vaccine complications. Vaccines are being recommended and given in a vacuum of knowledge and vaccine policymakers know it. As many Institute of Medicine committees have repeatedly pointed out in published reports spanning a quarter century, there are huge gaps in vaccine safety science. 16 17 18 19 20
Vaccine safety research is not a priority because long ago public health officials made a calculated decision that the lives of those harmed by vaccines are expendable in order to pursue what they consider to be a more important goal: the eradication of a long list of infectious microorganisms through compulsory vaccine use. 21 22 23 When vaccine risks turn out to be 100 percent for you or your child, you are expected to quietly accept that you are unavoidable collateral damage in the war on microorganisms. 24 25 26
Almost No Medical Condition Qualifies for Medical Vaccine Exemption
This cruel utilitarian rationale, also known as "the ends justifies the means," has been used by public health officials and medical trade groups to narrow the medical vaccine exemption so that, today, almost no medical condition qualifies as an "official" reason (contraindication) for a doctor to grant someone a medical exemption to vaccination. 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 At the same time, there are no good biological mechanism studies or large clinical trials validating the safety of severely restricting the medical vaccine exemption. But, then, there is no independent oversight on the quality and quantity of the science used to make vaccine policies and laws in the U.S. either. 36 37 38
Basically, the Centers for Disease Control now tells doctors that a medical vaccine exemption should only be granted if you are one of the estimated 320,000 children and adults annually receiving chemotherapy; 39 40 or one of the estimated 47,000 Americans who have had a recent organ or blood cell transplant; 41 42 or your child is one of the 40 to 100 children born every year with Severe Combined Immune Deficiency, known as SCID. 43
Once you are done with chemo, no medical vaccine exemption for you. Once you have recovered from your organ or blood cell transplant, no medical vaccine exemption for you. 44 And if you are immunosuppressed but don't have SCID, the rarest and most severe of all immunodeficiency disorders, in most cases no medical exemption for you. 45
No Medical Exemption for Immune and Brain Disorders, Genetic Susceptibility
If you or your child are already suffering with autoimmune or brain disorders, such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, inflammatory bowel syndrome, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy or an immunosuppressive disease like HIV, no medical vaccine exemption for you. 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55
If you or your child have a family history of severe allergies, vaccine reactions, seizures, sudden infant death syndrome or serious autoimmune and neurological disorders, no medical vaccine exemption for you. 56 57 58 59 60 6162 63 64
No Medical Exemption for Sickness, Many Previous Vaccine Reactions
If you or your child are sick at the time of vaccination with a fever or on antibiotics, no medical vaccine exemption for you. 65
If, after vaccination, you or your child ran a 105-degree fever, collapsed or had seizures and symptoms of brain inflammation followed by serious health deterioration and you are still chronically ill but a doctor disagrees that your continuing health problems were caused by vaccination, no medical vaccine exemption for you. 66 67
No Medical Exemption for Pregnancy, Siblings of Vaccine Injured, Premature Infants
Obey Liability Free Doctors' Vaccine Orders Or Be Punished
For all practical purposes, the Centers for Disease Control and medical trade organizations now direct pediatricians and other vaccinators to deny the medical vaccine exemption to 99.99 percent of Americans. Although nobody can predict whether the odds will be in your favor, you are expected to obey doctors' orders and get and give your children every government recommended vaccine – no exceptions and no questions asked - or be subjected to threats, coercion, discrimination and denial of medical care, education, and employment. 75
Like drug companies selling vaccines, doctors giving vaccines are protected from vaccine injury lawsuits. If a doctor vaccinates you or your child against your will and you suffer a catastrophic vaccine reaction, you cannot seek justice in a civil court of law in front of a jury of your peers. 76 Without accountability or liability, there is strong incentive for vaccinators to implement government vaccine policy and deny vaccine harm - but little incentive to prevent vaccine harm.
Eliminating Non-Medical Exemptions to Blackmail Americans
Now public health and medical trade groups are pressuring legislators to pass laws that would not only eliminate non-medical religious and conscientious belief vaccine exemptions for children to attend school, 77 but also would require children to get every one of the 69 doses of 16 federally recommended vaccines - unless a parent can get a medical vaccine exemption from a doctor. 78 This vaccine dragnet, which is already being applied to health care workers, is also pulling in childcare workers and teachers as proposed new vaccine laws threaten them with loss of employment if they cannot find a doctor to write a medical vaccine exemption. 79 80 81 82
Zealously pursuing a 99.99 percent vaccination rate and using very small groups of immune compromised individuals as an excuse to eliminate all non-medical vaccine exemptions, liability free doctors want permission from lawmakers to blackmail virtually every American into playing vaccine roulette. And they want to do this in the absence of sound vaccine safety science, even for those potentially at higher risk for suffering vaccine harm.
Philosopher and human rights advocate Elie Wiesel has said "When you take an idea or a concept and turn it into an abstraction, that opens the way to take human beings and turn them, also, into abstractions. When human beings become abstractions, what is left?" 83
Cruel and Inhuman to Last Degree
In 1905, when the U.S. Supreme Court in Jacobsen v. Massachusetts affirmed the right of states to mandate smallpox vaccination, the Court warned legislatures that it was not condoning vaccination of persons for whom the medical procedure would be "cruel and inhuman to the last degree," adding that "all laws should receive a sensible construction." 84
The inalienable right to autonomy and free exercise of conscience to protect bodily integrity trumps the right of government to use our bodies for any purpose, which is why informed consent to vaccine risk taking and flexible medical, religious and conscientious belief vaccine exemptions must remain a legal right in America. 85
Act Now to Protect Bodily Integrity and Free Exercise of Conscience
If you want the legal right to freely exercise conscience and protect your bodily integrity or that of your child when it comes to vaccine risk-taking, if you do not want to wake up one day and be forced to play vaccine roulette when you have good reason to conclude that you or your child are at high risk for suffering vaccine harm, you need to act now. You can be sure that the odds definitely will not be in your favor when it comes to finding a doctor to grant you a medical vaccine exemption.
Go to NVIC.org and learn more about infectious diseases and vaccines. Sign up for the NVIC Advocacy Portal today and join the thousands of intelligent, concerned and courageous Americans standing up and speaking out in states across this country in defense of the human right to informed consent to medical risk taking. 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98
Please take action now.
It's your health. Your family. Your choice.
1 Institute of Medicine Committee to Review Adverse Effects of Vaccines. Adverse Effects of Vaccines: Evidence and Causality: Evaluating Biological Mechanisms of Adverse Events: Increased Susceptibility. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press 2012.
2 Lemaire D, Barbosa T, Rihet P. Coping with genetic diversity: the contribution of pathogen and human genomics to modern vaccinology. Polymorphisms Affect Gene Responses. Braz J Med Biol Res 2012; 45(5): 376-385.
3 Newport MJ, Goetghebuer T, Weiss HA et al. Genetic regulation of immune responses to vaccines in early life. Genes and Immunity 2004; 5: 122-129.
4 Tang YW, Haijing L, Wu H et al. Host Single-Nucleotide Polymorphisms and Altered Responses to Inactivated Influenza Vaccine. J Infect Dis 2007; 196(7): 1021-1025.
5 Hill AVS. Genetics and Genomics of Infectious Disease Susceptibility. British Medical Bulletin 1999; 55(2): 401-413.
6 Rice Al, Sacco L, Hyder A, Black RE. Malnutrition as an underlying cause of childhood deaths associated with infectious diseases in developing countries. Bulletin of the World Health Organization 2000; 78: 1207-1221.
7 Guerrant RL, Oria RB, Moore SR et al. Malnutrition as an enteric infectious disease with long term effects on childhood development. Nutr Rev 2008; 66(9): 487-505.
8 Hussey GP, Klein M. A Randomized Controlled Trial of Vitamin A in Children with Severe Measles. N Engl J Med 1990; 323: 160-164.
9 Institute of Medicine Committee to Study New Research on Vaccines. DPT Vaccine and Chronic Nervous System Dysfunction: A New Analysis. Executive Summary (pp.1-2) Washington, D.C. The National Academies Press 1994.
10 Weibel RE, Caserta V, Benor DE, Evans G. Acute Encephalopathy Followed by Permanent Brain Injury or Death Associated with Further Attenuated Measles Vaccines: A Review of Cases Submitted to the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. Pediatrics 1998; 101(3): 383-387.
13 NVIC. National Vaccine Information Center Cites "Betrayal" of Consumers by U.S. Supreme Court Giving Total Liability Shield to Big Pharma. Business Wire EON Enhanced News Feb. 23, 2011.
14 Health Resources Services Administration (HRSA). National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program Monthly Statistics Report.
15 Boehm J. Vaccine injury fund tops $3.5 billion, as patients fight for payment. Cronkite News May 8, 2015.
16 Institute of Medicine Vaccine Safety Committee. Adverse Effects of Pertussis and Rubella Vaccines: Executive Summary, Research Needs (p. 8) and Afterword on Research Needs (p. 206-207). Washington, DC. National Academy Press 1991.
17 Institute of Medicine Vaccine Safety Committee. Adverse Events Associated with Childhood Vaccines: Evidence Bearing on Causality: Need for Research and Surveillance(p. 305-308). Washington, D.C. National Academy Press 1994.
18 Institute of Medicine Vaccine Safety Forum. Summaries of Two Workshops: Detecting and Responding to Adverse Events Following Vaccination and Research to Identify Risks for Adverse Events Following Vaccination: Biological Mechanisms and Possible Means of Prevention. National Academies Press 1997.
19 Institute of Medicine Committee to Review Adverse Effects of Vaccines. Adverse Effects of Vaccines: Evidence and Causality: Evaluating Biological Mechanisms of Adverse Events (p. 57-102) and Concluding Comments (p. 629-632). Washington, DC: The National Academies Press 2012.
20 Institute of Medicine Committee on the Assessment of Studies of Health Outcomes Related to the Recommended Childhood Immunization Schedule. The Childhood Immunization Schedule and Safety Stakeholder Concerns, Scientific Evidence and Future Studies: Summary: Health Outcomes (p. 5-6) and Conclusions About Scientific Findings (p. 11) and Review of Scientific Findings (p. 75-98). Washington, D.C. The National Academies Press 2013.
21 Hinman A, Orenstein WA, Schuchat A. Vaccine Preventable Diseases, Immunization and MMWR 1961-2011. MMWR Oct. 7, 2011; 60(04): 49-57.
22 Barrett S. Economic Considerations for the Eradication Endgame. Phil Trans R Soc B 2012; 368.
23 Fisher BL. Vaccination: Defending Your Right to Know and Freedom to Choose. See Jacobsen v. Massachusetts: State Police Powers Affirmed and A Utilitarian Rationale Turned Into Law. US Health Freedom Congress, Hamline University Sept. 27, 2014.
24 Salmon DA, Omer SB. Individual Freedom versus collective responsibility: immunization decision making in the face of competing values. Emerging Themes in Epidemiology2006; 3(13).
25 Omer SB, Salmon DA, Orenstein WA, deHart PM, Halsey N. Vaccine Refusal, Mandatory Immunization and the Risks of Vaccine Preventable Diseases. N Engl J Med 2009; 360(19): 1981-1988.
26 Fisher BL. Doctors Denying Vaccine Risks: An American Tragedy. NVIC Newsletter Apr. 21, 2011.
27 Fisher BL. Find a Compassionate Doctor to Help You Prevent Vaccine Injuries. NVIC Newsletter Aug. 26, 2012.
28 Stadlin S, Bednarczyk RA, Omer SB. Medical Exemptions to School Immunization Requirements in the United States – Association of State Policies with Medical Exemption Rates (2004-2011). J Infect Dis Aug. 29, 2012.
29 Salmon DA, Halsey NA. Keeping the M in Medical Exemptions: Protecting Our Most Vulnerable Children. J Infect Dis Aug. 29, 2012.
30 Moyer C. Medical vaccine exemptions for children not always justified. American Medical News Sept. 10, 2012.
31 CDC. Conditions Commonly Misperceived as Contraindications to Vaccination: Recommendations and Guidelines. Centers for Disease Control October 2013.
32 Rubin LG, Levin MJ, Ljungman P et al. 2013 IDSA Clinical Practice Guidelines for Vaccination of the Immunocompromised Host. Clin Infect Dis Dec. 4, 2013.
33 CDC. Chart of Contraindications and Precautions to Commonly Used Vaccines for Childhood Vaccines. Centers for Disease Control Mar. 6, 2014.
34 CDC. Vaccine Contraindications and Precautions for Adults Only. Centers for Disease Control Mar. 6, 2014.
35 American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Infectious Diseases. Recommended Childhood and Adolescent Immunization Schedule – United States 2015. Pediatrics2015; 135(2): 396-397.
36 Fisher BL, Wrangham TK. NVIC Public Comment on Vaccine Safety Working Group Draft Report and Recommendations on the Federal Vaccine Safety System. National Vaccine Information Center June 6, 2011.
37 Fisher BL. A Public Perspective on Priorities for Vaccine Safety Health Outcome Research. Institute of Medicine Committee on Assessment of Studies on Health Outcomes Related to the Recommended Childhood Immunization Schedule Meeting Feb. 9, 2012.
38 Fisher BL, Wrangham TK. NVIC Statement on Draft NVAC Maternal Immunization Working Group Recommendations on Maternal Immunizations. National Vaccine Information Center Apr. 25, 2014.
40 Chemoth.com. Types of Chemotherapy Agents and Regimens: The Chemotherapy Drug Industry. 2010.
43 National Human Genome Institute. Learning About Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (SCID): How Common is SCID? June 2, 2014.
44 Shetty AK, Winter MA. Immunization of Children Receiving Immunosuppressive Therapy for Cancer or Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation. The Ochesner Journal 2012; 12: 228-243.
45 See References #31-35.
46 Wraith DC, Goldman M, Lambert PH. Vaccination and autoimmune disease: what is the evidence? The Lancet June 3, 2003.
47 Rahier JF, Mutschen M, Van Campel A et al. Vaccines in patients with immune-mediated inflammatory diseases. Rheumatology 2010; 49(10): 1815-1827.
48 Heijstek MW, Ott de Bruin LM, Borrow R et al. Vaccination in paediatric patients with auto-immune rheumatic disease: A systemic literature review for the European League against Rheumatism evidence-based recommendations. Autoimmunity Reviews 2011; 112-122.
49 Dell'Era L, Esposito S, Corona F, Principi N. Vaccination of children and adolescents with rheumatic disorders. Rheumatology 2011; 50(8): 1358-1365.
50 Duchet-Niedziolka P, Launay O, Coutsinos Z et al. Vaccination in adults with autoimmune disease and/or drug-related immune deficiency: results of the GEVACCIM Delphi survey. Vaccine 2009; 27(10): 1523-1529.
51 Agmon-Levin N, Zafrir Y, Paz Z. Ten cases of systemic lupus erythematosus related to hepatitis B vaccine. Lupus 2009; 18(130: 1192-1197.
52 Lu Y, Bousvarus A. Immunizations in Children with Inflammatory Bowel Disease Treated with Immunosuppressive Therapy. Gastroenterol Hepatol (NY) 2014; 10(6): 355-363.
53 Le Houezec D. Evolution of multiple sclerosis in France since the beginning of hepatitis B vaccination. Immunol Res 2014; 60: 219-225.
54 Kraus GL. Ask the Experts: Are Routine Immunizations Safe in People with Epilepsy? Medscape Sept. 19, 2000.
55 NIH. AIDS Info: Guidelines for the Prevention and Treatment of Opportunistic Infections in HIV-Exposed and HIV-Infected Children. National Institutes of Health Nov. 6, 2013.
56 Stetler HC, Orenstein WA. History of Convulsions and Use of Pertussis Vaccine. J Pediatr 1985; 107(2): 175-179.
57 Livengood JR, Mullen JR, White JR et al. Family history of convulsions and use of pertussis vaccine. J Pediatr 1989; 115(4): 527-531.
58 Szakacs A, Darin N, Hallbook T. Increased childhood incidence of narcolepsy in western Sweden after H1N1 influenza vaccinations. Neurology 2013; 80(14): 1315-1321.
59 Partinen M, Kornum BR, Plazzi G et al. Narcolepsy as an autoimmune disease: the role of H1N1 infection and vaccination. Lancet Neurol 2014; 13(6): 600-613.
60 Crowe JE. Genetic predisposition for adverse events after vaccination. J Infect Dis 2007; 196(2): 176-177.
62 Bennermo M, Heid C, Stemme S et al. Genetic predisposition of the interlukin-6 response to inflammation: implication for a variety of major diseases? Clin Chem 2004; 50(11): 2136-2140.
63 Soriano A, Nesher G, Schoenfeld Y. Predicting post-vaccination autoimmunity: who might be at risk? Pharmacological Research 2015; 92: 18-22.
64 CDC. Conditions Commonly Misperceived as Contraindications to Vaccination: Recommendations and Guidelines. Centers for Disease Control October 2013.
66 CDC. Conditions Commonly Misperceived as Contraindications to Vaccination: Recommendations and Guidelines. Centers for Disease Control October 2013.
67 Salmon DA, Halsey NA. Keeping the M in Medical Exemptions: Protecting Our Most Vulnerable Children. J Infect Dis Aug. 29, 2012
68 Malloy A. Pregnant nurse: I was fired for refusing flu vaccine. CNN Dec. 29, 2013.
70 CDC. Conditions Commonly Misperceived as Contraindications to Vaccination: Recommendations and Guidelines. Centers for Disease Control October 2013.
71 See References
73 D'Angio CT. Active immunization of premature and low birth-weight infants: a review of the immunogenicity, efficacy and tolerability. Paediatr Drugs 2007; 9(11): 17-32.
75 Fisher BL. The Vaccine Culture War in America: Are You Ready? NVIC Newsletter Mar. 8, 2015.
76 Evans G. National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act: Revision of Vaccine Injury Table. Pediatrics 1996; 98(6): 1179-1181.
79 California Senate. SB792. Amendment to Health and Safety Code. A person shall not be employed at a daycare center if that person has not been immunized against influenza, pertussis and measles. Introduced 2015.
80 Texas Senate. SB 1114. An Act relating to a policy on vaccine-preventable diseases for public schools (mandatory vaccination of all school employees with federally recommended vaccines). Introduced 2015.
81 Vermont Assembly. H266. An Act related to evidence of immunization at primary and secondary schools (requires students, teachers, administrators and staff members of schools to provide evidence of all required immunizations or be re-immunized). Introduced 2015
83 Annas GJ, Grodin MA. The Nazi Doctors and the Nuremberg Code: Preface by Elie Wiesel. Oxford University Press 1992.
85 Fisher BL. The Vaccine Culture War in America: Are You Ready? NVIC Newsletter Mar. 8, 2015.
86 Associated Press. Washington state panel mulls bill to trim vaccine exemptions. Feb. 17, 2015.
87 Kumar S. Bills banning most vaccine exemptions fail in Northwest. Associated Press Mar. 11, 2015.
NC Health News Mar. 25, 2015.
89 Hope M. A Glut of Texas 'Pro-Vax' Bills Threaten Vaccination Exemptions. Breitbart Mar. 28, 2015.
91 Seipel T. Vaccine exemptions: California SB277 against opt-outs advances in 6-2 Senate Health Committee vote. San Jose Mercury News Apr. 8, 2015.
92 Yoo S. Hearing revives vaccine debate in Oregon Legislature. Statesman Journal Apr. 9, 2015.
93 Texas Senate. Testimony of NVIC Advocacy Director Dawn Richardson opposing bill to mandate vaccines for all teachers and school employees. (Hearing begins at 39:00 and ends at 1:28 with Dawn's testimony beginning at 48:00. Senate Education Committee Hearing Apr. 23, 2015.
95 Durkin A. Debate over vaccine exemptions to come roaring through Maine. Associated Press May 10, 2015.
97 Kinzel B. Vermont House Votes To Remove Philosophical Vaccine Exemption. Vermont NPR May 12, 2015.
98 Shilhavy B. Pediatrician Specializing in Special Needs Children Speaks out Against Mandatory Vaccines in California. Health Impact News May 17, 2015.