Saturday, 6 March 2010

Herd Immunity from vaccination? A myth

Last year I heard Liam Donaldson, England’s Chief Medical Officer (though, thank goodness, retiring soon) using this phony theory to pressurise the public to have the swine flu vaccine, and he also said it was irresponsible for hospital staff not to volunteer for the vaccine because they were thereby putting the public at risk. Subsequently, I heard a doctor parroting the same herd immunity myth. What happens to these people after medical school? Do they just carry on believing everything they were told by an ancient professor? Don’t they read any books or use the search facilities on their computers?

“The herd immunity theory was originally coined in 1933 by a researcher called Hedrich. He had been studying measles patterns in the US between 1900-1931 (years before any vaccine was ever invented for measles) and he observed that epidemics of the illness only occurred when less than 68% of children had developed a natural immunity to it. This was based upon the principle that children build their own immunity after suffering with or being exposed to the disease. So the herd immunity theory was, in fact, about natural disease processes and nothing to do with vaccination. If 68% of the population were allowed to build their own natural defences, there would be no raging epidemic.

Later on, vaccinologists adopted the phrase and increased the figure from 68% to 95% with no scientific justification as to why, and then stated that there had to be 95% vaccine coverage to achieve immunity. Essentially, they took Hedrich’s study and manipulated it to promote their vaccination programmes.” [I am indebted to this website for that historical detail].

Hedrich found that if enough of a population developed a NATURAL immunity through having had a disease like measles and having recovered from it, then that virus didn’t subsequently return to cause an epidemic. However, this is NOT the case with the supposed immunisation of vaccinated populations.

In fact to use the word “immunisation” in connection with vaccines is totally wrong. There are lists and lists of documented instances in medical literature showing that fully vaccinated populations DO contract the disease they were vaccinated against. And with measles this actually seems to be the result of high vaccination rates (1). In relation to the Hib vaccine a Minnesota state immunologist concluded that the vaccine increases the risk of illness when a study revealed that vaccinated children were five times more likely to contract meningitis than unvaccinated children. Again, if you look at the statistics for flu death, in 1999, before flu vaccines were recommended and administered in the US to small children, just 25 children under 5 years old died that year from influenza. In 2000, 2001 and 2002, there were just 19, 13 and 12 flu deaths in this age group. However, in late 2002 the Centre for Disease Control began advocating that all young children receive flu vaccines and doctors responded to that recommendation. The result:? In 2003 flu deaths in children under 5 years rocketed to 90 cases.

Doctors who are prepared to confront the facts understand that vaccination does not confer lifetime protection from a disease in the comprehensive way that happens when a person contracts the disease and recovers from it naturally after the body’s immune system has dealt with it. [This is not to say that there isn’t a valuable role for the medical profession to play when intervention is warranted to help a patient where their immune system isn’t strong enough to enable them to recover without assistance]. Furthermore, they are bound to admit that if one measures supposed protection by the number of antibodies in a person, many vaccinations only confer a degree of protection for a short period which may be 1 to 5 years or even less. This is the reason why vaccine manufacturers advocate booster vaccines for many of their products.

Without the mantra of “herd immunity”, public-health officials would not be able to justify forced mass vaccinations. As one website (2) states, “I usually give the physicians who question my statement that herd immunity is a myth a simple example. When I was a medical student almost 40 years ago, it was taught that the tetanus vaccine would last a lifetime. Then 30 years after it had been mandated, we discovered that its protection lasted no more than 10 years. Then, I ask my doubting physician if he or she has ever seen a case of tetanus? Most have not. I then tell them to look at the yearly data on tetanus infections – one sees no rise in tetanus cases. The same can be said for measles, mumps, and other childhood infections. It was, and still is, all a myth”.

1 Clinical Immunology and Immunopathology, May 1996; 79(2):163-170. Eg during a 1984 outbreak in an Illinois high school, 100% of the cases occurred in previously vaccinated students.

1 comment:

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