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Introducing the American Academy of Pediatrics’ new “Two Wrongs Make a Right” policy!

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In a stunning admission, Dr. Louis Z. Cooper, former President of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and current head of its Center for Child Health Research, “voiced concern about the effect on immunization programs in the developing world (if thimerosal was banned in the U.S.). The World Health Organization relies heavily on thimerosal to immunize millions of children in poor nations, and could face cost and logistical problems if forced to abandon it… ‘If we banned mercury-containing vaccines by statute in the United States,’ Cooper said, ‘it would make it a lot harder to explain in other parts of the world’ why they should accept them.” 

Why indeed? 

So let me get this straight, convoluted though it may be: we need to use thimerosal in the U.S. because it wouldn’t look good asking anyone else to use something that we think is bad for our children.  But we apparently must ask others to use it, even if it is bad.  So we must use it too. 

Gee, and here I thought the FDA’s “Ostrich (what you don’t know can’t hurt you) Policy” was a tad lacking. 

Granted, the AAP is not buying any of the evidence against thimerosal.  Given how powerful and extensive that evidence is, for no good reason, I might add.   

It makes you wonder - might their state of denial have something to do with the fact that, as just reported in the LA Times (and before that by me), the AAP has serious conflicts of interest with the very vaccine manufacturers whose products they are recommending we use?  These conflicts like it or not, make any vaccine recommendations the AAP makes highly suspect.  It is high time pediatricians faced up to that fact. 

It would be virtually impossible for pediatricians to keep up with the literature and still have time to practice medicine, so pediatricians rely on the AAP to tell them what to do.   

Regardless, is this a group to whom we want to entrust the care of our children?  More important, is this a group pediatricians should be relying on? 

No more excuses.  It is time for our pediatricians to start questioning their recommendations.

Sandy Gottstein

Date: 4-10-2006

"Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty." - Wendell Phillips (1811-1884), paraphrasing John Philpot Curran (1808)