Sunday, July 29, 2012

The Refusers: Vaccine Protest Music Gone Viral

By Norma Erickson, President

Your Right

The first public performance of a now quite controversial rock band was in July 2010 at the American Rally for Personal Rights. In the tradition of protest songs during civil rights and anti-war movements, The Refusers presented their protest music as a tribute to vaccine-injury victims past, present and future.

Michael Belkin and his band use a unique musical style they have dubbed ‘Innoc-You-Rock’ to focus listeners’ attention on controversial vaccine issues. Their hard-hitting lyrics provide a direct counterpoint to what they see as “government issued vaccine propaganda and the current medical establishment’s policy of vaccinate first, ask questions later.”

The Refusers’ name was chosen in direct response to the American Medical Association’s position on informed consent, which says:

Your patient should have an opportunity to ask questions to elicit a better understanding of the treatment or procedure, so that he or she can make an informed decision to proceed or to refuse a particular course of medical intervention.

Michael Belkin categorically states, “The AMA’s position on informed consent does not say ‘except vaccines.’ Vaccination choice is a fundamental human right. Any doctor who fails to inform you about the risks associated with vaccines, or who contends you do not have the right to refuse vaccination is violating their own medical code of ethics.”

What motivated Mr. Belkin to organize his vaccination protest band?

Flashback fourteen years: Michael is a successful, self-employed quantitative strategist happily married to the woman of his dreams. Lyla Rose was born with no complications – a healthy, happy baby girl. At five weeks of age, she is taken for a check-up and a booster shot of Hepatitis B vaccine. 15 hours later, Michael’s baby girl was gone.

Michael states that although the coroner initially stated Lyla’s brain was swollen (encephalitis), the cause of death ultimately ruled as Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). The swollen brain and the hepatitis B vaccine were not mentioned in the final autopsy report.

Knowing that SIDS is a diagnosis of exclusion and brain inflammation is not SIDS, Michael’s research began. He discovered the following quote from Merck’s Home Health Manual:

Encephalitis can occur in the following ways:
  • A virus directly infects the brain.
  • A virus that caused an infection in the past becomes reactivated and directly damages the brain.
  • A virus or vaccine triggers a reaction that makes the immune system attack brain tissue (an autoimmune reaction).

Michael found himself attending any applicable government meeting he could. He attended a workshop at the National Academy of Sciences, Institute of Medicine on “Neo-Natal Death and the Hepatitis B Vaccine” and an Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices meeting on the safety of the hepatitis B vaccine. He obtained the entire VAERS database on hepatitis B adverse events reports and investigated it thoroughly.

In May of 1999, seven months after the tragic loss of his daughter, Michael Belkin presented the following testimony to Congress:

Michael continues to work within the system to promote vaccine safety and preserve the right to vaccine choice for many years. Although he experiences some small successes, Michael ultimately gets to the point where he feels he is beating his head against a brick wall. Those in charge of vaccination rules, regulations and policy-making just do not seem to care. Tired and wanting to return to a somewhat normal life, Michael takes some time off from vaccine safety and consent issues.

During his respite, he witnesses the development and marketing of several additional vaccines. He watches the autism rate climb to a previously unheard of level. He witnesses a substantial increase in the size of the VAERS database. He witnesses the increase in chronic and debilitating diseases in young people throughout the United States.

Michael went on to have two healthy unvaccinated children. He witnessed apartheid-like exclusionary policies being instituted against children whose parents chose to try and preserve their health and well-being. He witnessed people losing their jobs because they decided one vaccine or another was not in their best interest. He witnessed schools, daycares, and even medical professionals exclude people based on their vaccination status.

Michael Belkin decided enough was enough. The only option left was to take his message to the streets via a medium that might catch the attention of the average American medical consumer. Michael, his 11-year old unvaccinated son Sebastian, Steve Newton and Joey Walbaum decided to use their musical talents organize a protest band that would publicly stand up for everyone’s right to refuse vaccination.

The Refusers take great pride in their young drummer, Sebastian Belkin – a real deal healthy refuser – and visible proof that the unvaccinated are not the threat to public health and safety they are being portrayed as. Sebastian is the epitome of a normal healthy young man, not to mention talented.

Their strategy appears to be working. The Refusers first video, shown below, has officially gone viral with over 280,000 views. First Do No Harm, is also the title cut of the band’s soon to be released CD.

Michael Belkin and The Refusers have obviously found an effective way to get their message to those who need to hear it.

Listen to more music from The Refusers here.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Post-Gardasil Syndrome: Raquel from Spain three years later

Post-Gardasil Syndrome: Raquel from Spain three years later

By Norma Erickson, President

Gardasil: Safe, Affordable, Necessary and Effective is not too much to ask for.

The traditional media seems to overlook the fact that all of the victims of severe adverse reactions after HPV vaccines were originally trusting medical consumers who were simply following their doctor’s advice. They listened to the professionals when told that Gardsil or Cervarix vaccines could save their daughters from being a victim of cervical cancer. They were certainly not anti-vaccine, or they would not be in the position they are in now. This is the story of one of those families.

February 2009, at 14 years of age, Raquel received her second injection of Gardasil. A few hours later she was in a coma battling for her life. See her original story here.

It’s been over three years since Raquel suffered severe adverse effects after the second dose of Gardasil. She and her family suffered for two years wondering if they would ever see an end to her illness.

Now, they would like to let everyone who has been battling similar events that
Raquel is recovered! All of her neurological exams are now normal. She has not yet been discharged from hospital visits, but she leads a normal life.

With great effort she has completed her studies. Much to her credit, she has decided to continue school next year to become a nurse. Raquel wants to dedicate her life to healing others who have suffered like her.

Raquel’s parents have been beside her every step of the way during her long and arduous recovery. They believe all experiences in life, even very harmful, help us to find our way. They believe Raquel’s illness helped her find her vocation.

Raquel realizes that she is a lucky young woman. She could have been confined to a wheelchair indefinitely, but is not. With the assistance of doctors who attended her and the unconditional support of her family, she has overcome her illness.

Perhaps the most difficult thing for her parents to overcome was the helplessness of seeing how Health Authorities and some doctors wanted to dismiss her side effects to the vaccine as psychological, incidental, or coincidence.

Raquel and her family relied on Health Authorities when they decided to take the vaccine. To them, it is incredible and incomprehensible that the Health Authorities did not care about Raquel´s health after she suffered what was obviously an adverse reaction to the vaccine.

They now know their daughter will have a bright and happy future. They also know it could have very easily not turned out so well. They count themselves among the lucky ones.

Are Raquel’s parents vaccine safety advocates? You bet they are! They now dedicate a substantial amount of time and effort in an attempt to make sure what happened to their daughter never happens to another child. They encourage parents to do their research before they decide whether or not a vaccine is right for their children. They do not want anyone else to have to go through the horrors their family did for the last three years.

Raquel’s mother has a personal message to other vaccine-injury victims:

“I would like to tell all young people concerned to be patient. As long as there is life, never give up. If a treatment is not working, try something else. There are medical professionals out there who care about your health. I wish you strength and hope.”

Influenza 2012: Potential Conflicts of Interest and the Role of Media

By Stephen Tunley, Director, SaneVax Inc.

Where is objective journalism?

During the last few weeks in Australia we have seen an increase in the number of news reports (print and broadcast) regarding this seasons Flu outbreak. A number of them have quoted Dr Alan Hampson who has provided his ‘expert’ opinion and encourages all to get the Flu shot as this year’s Flu will be worse than last year’s and so on, and so on…..

What the media fails to explain is that the good Dr Hampson, spent a large part of his career working for Australian vaccine manufacturer CSL, the same manufacturer which recently admitted

“ .. its (flu) vaccine production methods probably triggered seizures in children, in the first results from its two-year investigation into the Fluvax fits.

But … refused to say if it would pay compensation to the families of children hospitalised after being immunised with Fluvax, which has been banned for paediatric use after sending one in 100 children into febrile fits in 2010.

The preliminary results of CSL’s two-year investigation conclude that its manufacturing methods may have failed to fully split the viruses used to make flu vaccines.

As a result, gene fragments and lipids from “inactivated virus” — as well as “residual whole virus or clusters of both” — may have created higher levels of immune-stimulating hormones, known as cytokines.”

Basically they screwed up – and 1 in 100 Aussie kids who received the shots got very ill.

The same Dr Hampson who recommends everyone get vaccinated against the flu this year because of the ‘dire threat’ of a serious flu season was responsible for developing influenza vaccine production processes for part of his time at CSL. He is Chairman of the Influenza Specialist Group an organisation whose financial support comes mainly from sponsorship from Abbot, Baxter, and CSL, pharmaceutical companies involved in the manufacture and sale of flu vaccine in Australia. In addition, he is also Editor in Chief of the International Journal “Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses”, which lists as among its major sponsors two pharmaceutical companies Roche and Sanofi Pasteur. Roche via its Genentech subsidiary manufacture Tamiflu and Sanofi Pasteur the flu vaccine Intanza.

Given the reliance and general trust medical consumers place upon the opinions of these so called ‘medical experts’ the media has a responsibility to point out any potential of conflicts of interest; or find experts who are not conflicted?

Attachment 1:

Dr Alan Hampson, BSc, MSc, M.D. (Hon), FASM, OAM.

Dr Alan Hampson is a virologist with over 40 years experience working with influenza. His career includes responsibility for developing influenza vaccine production processes and senior R&D positions (Research & Development Manager) with the Australian biopharmaceutical group CSL Limited, and subsequently as Deputy Director and operational head of the WHO Collaborating Centre for Reference and Research on Influenza, Melbourne, from its designation in 1992 until his retirement in September 2005. Since retirement Alan has maintained an active role both in Australia as a consultant, Chairman of the Australian Influenza Specialist Group (ISG), a member of Australian Government advisory committees on influenza and pandemic preparedness, and internationally with the WHO including membership of its Pandemic Taskforce (now the International Health Regulations Roster of Experts) and Editor in Chief of the international journal ‘Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses’. He also holds an appointment as Honorary Senior Research Fellow, School of Applied Sciences and Engineering, Monash University Gippsland Campus. Alan has received numerous awards and recognition for his contribution to public health, including: recipient of the Asia Pacific Society for Medical Virology Excellence Award (2006); an Honorary Doctorate of Medicine from the University of Melbourne (2006); the Order of Australia Medal for his contributions to public health, particularly with respect to influenza (2007); and was made a Fellow of the Australian Society for Microbiology (FASM) in (2007).

Sunday, July 22, 2012

New Study: HPV Vaccine and Evidence of Herd Immunity or Type Replacement?

By Norma Erickson, President

HPV Vaccine: Herd Immunity?

Medical professionals rely on studies published in medical journals to keep abreast of new developments in their field. What happens when published studies raise more questions than answers? Where does that leave trusting medical consumers?
On July 12, 2012, Australia became the first country in the world to formally offer taxpayer sponsored HPV vaccines to their young men. HPV vaccines have been advertised as ‘cervical cancer’ vaccines. Boys obviously do not have a cervix, so how do you ‘sell’ males on the idea of a three shot series of the most expensive vaccine on the market?
Miracle of miracles – almost immediately press reports begin to come in from around the world about a new study that supposedly demonstrates evidence of HPV vaccinations providing protection to the unvaccinated population. What an outstanding way to convince boys it is their duty to protect those around them.
Unfortunately, none of the articles reporting this ‘miraculous’ development provide a link to the actual study so a person can check for themselves. So much for responsible journalism!
Vaccine-Type Human Papillomavirus and Evidence of Herd Protection After Vaccine Introduction,” by Jessica A. Kahn, MD, MPH, et al., was accepted for publication in April 2012 by the medical journal Pediatrics, but will not be formally published until August.1
Historically, academic ‘experts’ paid directly or indirectly by the industry have cherry-picked populations with a high prevalence rate of HPV infections or cervical cancer to generate a set of data. They extrapolate the ‘scientific’ data obtained from irrelevant populations to promote a vaccine with questionable value or an analytically inaccurate HPV test for use in the general population.
In 2001, a group of employees of the National Cancer Institute, a major patent holder and financial beneficiary of HPV vaccines, did just that when they used a population with an extremely high cervical cancer rate in a subpopulation of Costa Rica during development of the HPV ‘cancer’ vaccine and an HPV test for cervical cancer screening.2 Then they helped expedite approval of HPV vaccines and an inaccurate HPV test through the Food and Drug Administration to be used in populations with little threat of cervical cancer progression.
In their most recent study, Jessica A. Kahn and her coauthors have done the same thing by using a cherry-picked subset of African American women with an extremely high rate (68.3%) of HPV infection for a statistical analysis to justify wide spread implementation of the HPV vaccination policy through so called “herd protection.” The authors conveniently ignore the fact that most American women under the care of gynecologists in private practice have a less than 10% HPV infection rate even when the most sensitive nested PCR amplification is used for detection. They also ignore the fact that African American women usually carry different strains of HPV viruses than women from other ethnic backgrounds.3
It is well known that test results obtained in a population with high disease prevalence rates cannot be extrapolated to a population with a low prevalence of the disease. These authors knowingly misapply their statistical data to support this “herd protection” hypothesis as if HPV infection had become a contagious disease like influenza in the classrooms of all high schools throughout the world.
It is unfortunate that their opinion, supported by public funding, is published in the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics as a continued medical education material to influence the practice of the pediatricians, policy-makers and health authorities.
This is particularly true when a careful reading of Khan et al.’s article reveals the following points:
  1. Vaccine-type HPV infections reportedly decreased by 21.9% in vaccinated participants; but vaccine-type HPV infections also showed a decrease of 14.8% in the unvaccinated group when compared to the data from 2006-07. These changes are especially remarkable given that many participants were sexually experienced, presumably exposed to HPV, and only 1 HPV vaccine dose was required to be considered “vaccinated” in this analysis.
  2. The authors should know there are 3 subtypes of HPV-18, namely the European, the Asian-American and the African subtypes.4 In the U.S., 91% of the HPV-18 isolates from white women are reported to be of the European and Asian-American variants, and 64% of the HPV-18 isolates from African American women belong to the African variants.5 The production of the Gardasil® HPV-18 VLPs uses the HPV L1 gene from the SW756 cell line6 which carries an African subtype of HPV-18.4 Therefore, any “herd protection,” even if conveyed to a subset of African American women by Gardasil® vaccination, cannot be automatically extrapolated to other races or ethnicities.
  3. Why do the authors of the study consider one shot of Gardasil® to give the participants vaccinated status when the recommended dose is a series of three injections? If one shot is enough, is three too many?
  4. The study utilized the Roche Linear Array for HPV typing. According to World Health Organization documentation, only 8 of 17 datasets in a worldwide survey using the Roche Linear Array assay reported a 100% proficiency result in HPV genotyping.7 (table 2) In 7 of the 17 testing sets, false positive HPV types were detected by the Roche Linear Array assay.7 (table 3) This information brings the entire study into question.
  5. The authors of the study state, “the overall HPV prevalence increased “modestly” between the two studies.” How can this happen if the vaccine provides herd immunity?
Consider the following data taken from the soon to be published article regarding this ‘modest’ overall increase in HPV infections. This chart is a representation of HPV prevalence changes discovered when the post-vaccination surveillance group of 2009-10 was compared to the pre-vaccination surveillance data from 2006-07:
Vaccinated Non-vaccinated
Any Type 8.5% increase 9.0% increase 1.8% increase
High Risk Type 1.1% increase 5.2% increase 7.5% reduction
Vaccine Type (16/18/11/6) 18.3% reduction 21.9% reduction 14.8% reduction
High Risk Vaccine Type 14.2% reduction 17.8% reduction 12.0% reduction
Non-Vaccine Type 14.0% increase 15.2% increase 7.6% increase
Non-Vaccine High Risk Type 7.6% increase 13.6% increase 2.7% reduction
Why was there no statistically significant change in HPV infection rates among the unvaccinated participants? Does this mean that other types of HPV are taking over the role of the vaccine-suppressed HPV types in the vaccinated? If so, will the other types become more dangerous than the suppressed ones?
Does this mean the manufacturer targeted the wrong types of HPV for this population? Or, does it simply mean the vaccine doesn’t work?
Does this article provide evidence of herd immunity or potentially dangerous HPV mutation/type replacement?
Is this simply another example of the quality one can expect from industry sponsored ‘scientific studies’ destined to be blindly accepted and widely quoted to influence worldwide health policies?
This study raised far more questions than it answered. Medical consumers deserve better.
  1. Kahn JA, Brown DR, Ding L, Widdice LE, Shew ML, Glynn S, Bernstein DI. Vaccine-Type Human Papillomavirus and Evidence of Herd Protection After Vaccine Introduction. Pediatrics. 2012 Jul 9. [Epub ahead of print]
  2. HPV co-factors related to the development of cervical cancer: results from a population-based study in Costa Rica. Hildesheim A, Herrero R, Castle PE, Wacholder S, Bratti MC, Sherman ME, Lorincz AT, Burk RD, Morales J, Rodriguez AC, Helgesen K, Alfaro M, Hutchinson M, Balmaceda I, Greenberg M, Schiffman M. Br J Cancer. 2001 May 4;84(9):1219-26.PMID: 11336474 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE] Free PMC Article Free textRelated citations
  3. Dunne EF, Unger ER, Sternberg M, McQuillan G, Swan DC, Patel SS, et al. Prevalence of HPV infection among females in the United States. JAMA 2007; 297: 813-9.
  4. Lurchachaiwong W, Junyangdikul P, Termrungruanglert W, Payungporn S, Sampatanukul P, Tresukosol D, Niruthisard S, Trivijitsilp P, Karalak A, Swangvaree S, Poovorawan Y.: Whole-genome sequence analysis of human papillomavirus type 18 from infected Thai women. Intervirology 2010, 53:161-166
  5. Xi LF, Kiviat NB, Hildesheim A, Galloway DA, Wheeler CM, Ho J, Koutsky LA. Human papillomavirus type 16 and 18 variants: race-related distribution and persistence. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2006 Aug 2;98(15):1045-52.
  6. Hofmann KJ, Neeper MP, Markus HZ, Brown DR, Müller M, Jansen KU. Sequence conservation within the major capsid protein of human papillomavirus (HPV) type 18 and formation of HPV-18 virus-like particles in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. J Gen Virol. 1996 Mar;77 ( Pt 3):465-8