Disneyland’s measles outbreak killed more than 100

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Or so said PBS’s Gwen Ifill yesterday, in its flagship PBS Newshour show. “State lawmakers in California moved today to impose one of the nation’s strictest vaccination laws,” she reported. “The state assembly voted to require that nearly all public schoolchildren get their shots, or be homeschooled. The bill gained momentum after a measles outbreak […]

Reuters, Wall Street Journal, report on Merck’s mumps fraud case

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“Merck accused of stonewalling in mumps vaccine antitrust lawsuit,” a Reuters article by Brendan Pierson published Thursday, appears to be the first time a mainstream media outlet has covered explosive accusations that Merck falsified test results on its mumps vaccine. Today, the Wall Street Journal followed suit with coverage of its own, “Lawsuit Claims Merck […]

Europe turning against vaccines

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“Europeans are turning away from vaccines, amid rising distrust of immunization for infectious diseases,” begins an article earlier this year in EurActiv, the journal of record for the European Community, published in over a dozen languages and widely read by journalists as a go-to-source for emerging policy debates in Europe. As evidence for its claim, […]

Today’s Parent is misleading parents on vaccine schedules

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In “Are alternative vaccine schedules safe?” an article in this month’s issue of Today’s Parent, freelance writer Dory Cerny tells readers that “vaccination experts agree that tinkering with a schedule that has been painstakingly developed and proven over decades to be both safe and effective is impractical, potentially dangerous and gives parents a false sense of […]

Vaccines: Stenographer disease hits journalists at Wall Street Journal, CNN

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Jeanne Whalen knows how to get to the bottom of a story — until recently she honed her skills getting the scoop on CEOs and politicians alike at The Wall Street Journal’s London and Moscow Bureaus. But now that she’s the Journal’s Deputy Bureau Chief for Health and Science, she sometimes more resembles a stenographer, as […]

Washington Post’s fractured measles history

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“The incredible power of the measles vaccine, in 3 graphics,” a blog by Washington Post’s Ana Swanson, would more accurately be titled “How to mislead readers about measles, in 3 graphics.” Look at Swanson’s first graphic, “Measles incidence over time,” showing a steady incidence of measles prior to the early 1960s, followed by a precipitous […]

Measles vaccine kills six, Pakistan’s press reports

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“Measles vaccine kills 3 more kids,” reports The Nation, a leading Pakistani daily, bringing the number of deaths to six since an anti-measles vaccination campaign began April 13 in Balochistan province. Other children are in critical condition. Parents report that the children, who had been healthy, fell ill shortly after receiving the vaccine. The deaths, […]

CTV News deserves kudos in broadcast over a court ruling that a child be vaccinated

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CTV News and its reporter Nicole Lampa provided fair and balanced coverage yesterday in a story about a Superior Court judge’s ruling in a dispute between separated parents as to whether their 10-year-old daughter should be vaccinated for measles. In reporting that the judge sided with the father’s desire for vaccination, CTV aired statements from both […]

Q: Who exactly is recommending a third MMR dose?

A: Public health authorities near you During a recent Twitter exchange, Andre Picard, the Globe and Mail’s health columnist, asked me “who exactly is recommending a third MMR dose” after I referred to increasing interest in extra shots. One answer: Public Health Agency of Canada. On its website, it now states: “Prevention of infection by […]

High vaccination rates didn’t spare Quebeckers

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In making the case for a national vaccine registry to raise immunizations to as much as 95% — the level deemed necessary to protect the entire community through herd immunity —health reporter Genna Buck unluckily cites the Quebec measles outbreak of 2011 in the current issue of Maclean’s, Canada’s only newsweekly. “During the last Quebec […]