A Healthy Dose?

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Policy choices
Stein and the great majority of pediatricians corroborate Halsey’s statement that vaccines are safe and necessary, and they encourage their patients to vaccinate. When patients such as R.B. and M.D. assure her they have “done their research,” Stein points out that there is a great deal of misinformation on the Internet. Much of it, she says, is based on opinion rather than science.

And although Stein will work with families who want to spread out the time in between vaccinations in the first several months of a child’s life, she doesn’t recommend doing so.


“The research on vaccine safety is based on having this schedule,” the pediatrician explained. “I’m not going to guess. I want this to be based on science.”

In the end, if parents are unwilling to vaccinate their children, Stein — and many other doctors — ask them to find another pediatrician. She decided on this policy after another doctor she knew was faced with the consequences of having an unvaccinated child with measles in her waiting room, where he exposed several children including a newborn. Two of those children contracted the disease.

Although he encourages parents to vaccinate their children, Dr. Arnold Brenner does not believe that the safety of vaccinations are indisputable. The Randallstown pediatrician said vaccinations are essential when it comes to maintaining public health, but he clarifies that some of the studies that have found no connection between autism and vaccines are flawed, others are “cooked,” and still other studies omit some of their findings.

Brenner, who is been in practice for 49 years and estimates that about 25 percent of his patients have some form of autism, counsels parents to delay their child’s hepatitis B vaccine until the infant is at least 6 months old, unless the baby’s mother has the disease.

082914_cover_chart“When I give the [measles, mumps and rubella vaccine], I give it alone, and when I give any immunizations, I give vitamin C,” he said, noting that autistic children typically are deficient in the vitamin.

Brenner also gives patients ibuprofen rather than Tylenol because in some studies, ingestion of the over-the-counter drug by pregnant women and young children has been linked to autism.

“Tylenol lowers the amount of glutathione in the body, and we know that autistic kids are low in glutathione,” he said.

He says he has treated eight children who stopped talking after receiving their measles vaccines and that the anti-vaccination parents he sees in his practice are well educated and responsible when it comes to the care of their children.

“They are vilified, and they don’t deserve it,” he said.

Many parents fear retribution from schools when they disclose that their children are not vaccinated. In Maryland’s public schools, students are required to be up to date on their vaccinations within the first 20 days of the school year. This applies to all students, except those whose parents claim a medical or religious exemption.

According to Dr. Linda Grossman, bureau director for clinical services at the Baltimore County Department of Health, independent schools that operate under Maryland laws have the same policy. She says that some Jewish day school parents claim religious exemptions to avoid vaccinating their children.

“I’m not aware though of any religious reasons not to vaccinate in Judaism,” she said. Beginning this fall, two additional vaccines are being phased in statewide. Kindergarteners will now be required to receive an additional dose of the chicken pox vaccine, and seventh-grade students must receive the vaccine against diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis as well as one dose of a vaccine against meningitis.

“There are far worse consequences to not vaccinating as compared with vaccinating,” said Grossman, reiterating her hope that parents do not claim religious exemptions to avoid vaccinating their children.

R.B. encountered significant difficulties when she claimed a religious exemption at a local boys’ day school. Before her son began school, she contacted someone at the state Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, as well as the state attorney general’s office, to inquire about Maryland’s laws regarding religious exemptions.

“They said that the school could not refuse to accept a religious exemption,” she related. “But then school started and the nurse called. She said the school didn’t accept religious exemptions. I told her they had to accept them so she said I would have to speak with the principal.”

R.B. reached out to Rabbi Shmuel Kamenetzky, founder and dean of the Talmudical Academy of Philadelphia, whose wife, Temi, speaks out against vaccinating children. The rabbi wrote a letter on R.B.’s behalf, leading to her son’s principal relenting and apologizing.

When reached by phone, both Kamenetzkys confirmed their belief that vaccinations, not the diseases they prevent, are harmful.

“There is a doctor in Chicago who doesn’t vaccinate any of his patients and they have no problem at all,” said the rabbi. “I see vaccinations as the problem. It’s a hoax. Even the Salk vaccine [against polio] is a hoax. It is just big business.”

Kamenetzky says he follows the lead of Israeli Rabbi Shmaryahu Yosef Chaim Kanievsky, who rules that schools “have no right to prevent unvaccinated kids from coming to school.”

“What about the people who clean and sweep in the school?” argued Kamenetzky. “They are mostly Mexican and are unvaccinated. If there was a problem, the children would already have gotten sick.”

Sharon Billing, a Baltimore nurse and mother, said she once challenged Temi Kamenetzky at a lecture.

“How can you advise young mothers to do this?” she asked the rebbetzin. “You’re old enough to remember whopping cough and diphtheria. As Jews, we are required to guard our health.”

Billing has a cousin born just prior to the development of the polio vaccine.

“He was wheelchair bound all of his life and had the use of only one arm,” she said. “I find it distressing that so many are so uninformed about vaccines.”

In her 20 years as a pediatric nurse practitioner, Stacy Schwartz of Pikesville has rarely come across parents who refuse to vaccinate. Schwartz, who works in a private practice in Cross Keys and at Beth Tfiloh Dahan Community School once a week, says she believes in vaccinating all children.

“For us, it’s a public health issue, and there is no credible research to show that vaccines lead to developmental disabilities,” said Schwartz, who added that Beth Tfiloh follows Maryland’s state vaccination policy.

Elsewhere, Talmudical Academy of Baltimore has accepted the use of an exemption on at least one occasion, and Rabbi Eliezer Eisgrau of Torah Institute says the day school follows Maryland law. Ohr Chadash Academy of Baltimore does not accept exemptions, and Krieger Schechter Day School accepts only medical exemptions and requires a letter from a physician.

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36 COMMENTS

  1. It is quite unbelievable how selfish people are. Endangering the lives of others all because they are too stupid to understand basic science. Measles was eradicated from the US by 2000 and it’s back again because of selfish, stupid people who endanger the lives of others. The government should legislate for mandatory vaccination of ALL with no exceptions. That’s why there’s been no resurgence of measles in France – they’re sensible enough to protect their children with science.

  2. There are many doctors who agree with the rabbi on this. There is so much evidence against vaccines it’s overwhelming. Watch Vaccines Revealed and you will learn a lot. All diseases declined throughout the 20th century regardless of whether there was a vaccine or not. It’s not the vaccines that saved people; it’s sewage treatment, so people have clean water to drink, good nutrition, and access to good health care. That’s true with polio as well. In addition, there is a book written about the relationship between the use of persistent pesticides and polio. These pesticides, such as DDT, are now banned. So you can thank the vaccine manufacturers, but it just may be other things which have solved the polio problem. And I forgot to mention that some polio vaccines have been known to cause a worse form of polio than the wild polio.

  3. We are Orthodox jews living overseas, U.S. Citizens. Our oldest daughter was injured at her 2 month vaccinations. Nobody in our family got any more vaccines after that. We have two healthy unvaccinated kids as well. It is every parent’s choice. Vaccines are temporary, hit or miss, and contain VERY harmful ingredients as well as big blood and DNA, DNA from aborted fetal tissue, and other things like Aluminum known to cause neurological harm (motor neurons especially). google NCBI plus aluminum neuron and you will find Dr. Christopher Shaw’s studies out of Vancouver, a neuroscientist.

  4. If Haredim or any other community does not wish to vaccinate, then let them go to Israel or wherever they came from. The USA doesn’t need them spreading disease here.

    • Dovit, that is probably one of the most offensive comments I’ve seen in a long time. I’m “Haredi,” and I come from here. I’m third-generation American, more than probably most of the country can say. I’m not weighing in on the vaccine issue because I haven’t one enough research to comment, but your comments is offensive and shows ignorance and more than a tad bit of racism.

  5. I’m vaccine injured with multiple sclerosis that developed within 19 days of my initial hepatitis b vaccine. I am a pharmacist and was in pursuit of additional medical training when the injury occurred. In my research of vaccine injury and manufacturers here’s what I’ve found:
    The vaccine manufacturers have no incentive to provide uncontaminated product because no liability exists within the USA, people in the USA are being “marketed to” for diseases that do not have epidemiological relevance such as meningococcal meningitis which is a problem in sub-Saharan Africa where antibiotics are not readily available, the statistical data being utilized by the CDC and vaccine manufacturers have small studies that would under normal circumstances be deemed statistically insignificant, studies are skewed to generate bias of safety for vaccines, little to no research is going into vaccine injury “mechanism of action” in the USA, and the wrong populations to receive vaccines are targeted by the CDC such as infants receiving the hepatitis b vaccine when the vast majority of infants have little to no risk of coming in contact with hepatitis b.
    I am Roman Catholic and have a religious exemption for my child to not receive the hepatitis b vaccine. My religious exemption shows that it is against my belief to cause harm to another. Knowing that the hepatitis b vaccine can cause blindness and paralysis like it did to me, I do not believe that this vaccine should be administered to human beings, including my child. You may do what you wish, however, any respectful religious person would respect a parents desire to prevent a readily preventable vaccine injury. Good luck and God Bless.

    • I had a friend who had meningococcal meningitis, the disease you claim is only a problem in sub-Saharan Africa. She nearly lost her legs. Antibiotics do not solve everything. I will forward this article so you can see exactly why we vaccinate.

      As for no incentive to provide uncontaminated product, it is true that the US provides an insurance pool which pays for claims against vaccine makers. This is because the cost of the payout to the US government is much less than the cost of an epidemic. The cost of a lawsuit, groundless or no, is enough to erase a year’s profits from a vaccine. Nonetheless, the CDC and FDA monitor the contents of vaccines very closely, and the FDA shuts down any plants in non-compliance. There are no ingredients present in vaccines that should not be there by design. And every ingredient in the vaccine serves a purpose in making it effective and safe.

    • Tammy, I wish you speedy recovery and consistent improvement and healing. The people on this site are just ignorant – like you were, like I was when I did what I was told and vaccinated my little baby against my gut instincts. You know by now I am sure that the HepB vaccine has loads of aluminium in it. The mass vaccination campaign in France had so many injured that they called a halt to the programme in the midst of a class action lawsuit by many of the recipients. Some of this is covered in the documentary film THE GREATER GOOD. (It is downloadable at Kickass torrent site).

  6. Macia Angell, MD 
    “It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgement of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines. I take no pleasure in this conclusion, which I reached slowly and reluctantly over more than 2 decades as an editor of the New England Journal of Medicine.”

    There is a huge tendency to flat out deny that vaccines could be responsible for causing any issue beyond a fever and irritability, which is ridiculous. Look at the package insert, they all say they can cause encephalitis – brain swelling- which can lead to death, yet when a baby dies shortly after being vaccinated it’s called SIDS. Let’s use our common sense, not buy the lines we are fed by our govt agencies – safe and effective, side effects are very rare. Vaccines are vastly oversimplified by those that push them on the public, do your research, open your eyes, the truth and the proof that vaccines cause harm is freely available for those willing to look beyond the well rehearsed jargon of the public health officials and the media. All the parents whose children have been damaged or died from vaccines KNOW what CAUSED the problems, they saw it happen, yet so many are told there was no relation, couldn’t have been the vaccine, what lies. Correlation doesn’t equal causation is a distraction to keep people from realizing the truth, because if people knew that truth that they were allowing their children to be poisoned, damaged, & killed it would spell disaster for the vaccine industry and program.

  7. Why the authority so interested to apply the imprecated
    vaccines over the innocent children, it is one kind of
    commercial conspiracy & led the children to the slaughter
    field specially for the tuberculous child.

  8. A 6 month old baby “lived off of rice cakes and tuna”?? What?? I actually checked to make sure I wasn’t on The Onion website after that.

  9. Over and over and over we have to hear that Wakefield research has been discredited. Do you know that nearly every report that proves there isn’t a connection between autism and vaccines was in part authored by Paul Tornsen. He had been convicted of grand theft fraud by the federal government. He took millions from the cdc and never did the research. Why is this ok?

    • Dr. Wakefield is an unfortunate scapegoat for a very shaky medico legal system must denounce whoever threatens its foundations. His research was actually replicating someone else’s study, there is other research both before and after showing gut changes in autistic children. Hence, the GAPS diet helping heal up autistic kids from the inside out. (I know, I healed our oldest child from PDD NOS and sensory issues from age 3 to age 5, full time work, could have been MUCH harder if she had had all her vaccines – we stopped after the 2 month round when she got very very ill and had behaviour changes).

  10. Your child has a CHANCE of getting over Measles.
    Your child has a CHANCE of getting over Mumps.
    Your child has a CHANCE of getting over Rubella.
    Your child has a CHANCE of getting over Flu.
    Your child has a CHANCE of getting over Chicken Pox.
    Your child has a CHANCE of getting over Shingles.
    Your child has a CHANCE of getting over Pertussis.
    Your child has a CHANCE of getting over Tuberculosis.
    My child will NEVER get over Autism.

    So thanks, but no thanks. He has been a guinea pig for the CDC, FDA, big pharma, and our corrupt government for far too long. I do not wish for him to be injected with neurotoxins after doing 18+ years of research. I am tired of hearing about how SERIOUS these diseases are. What in the world do you think Autism and all the side effects that come along with it are? A walk in the park? We are talking life long devastation here…some which ALSO result in death. Hypocritical much?
    I’m willing to bet you wouldn’t put your child’s quality of life on the line to save mine, so don’t you dare ask me to do the same for you. Mine has already paid a high enough price. Wouldn’t you say?

    • First off, there IS NO EVIDENCE vaccines cause autism. In fact, there is every shred of evidence there is no connection.

      Second, even if they did cause autism, your argument is pure lunacy. You want your child to have a possibility of dying from all those diseases, because there’s also a possibility they’ll recover? We’ll I’ll tell you, some children do not recover. And many that do recover do not recover unscathed. Your child who gets polio has a CHANCE to get over it, but also a CHANCE to spend her life in a iron lung or wheelchair. Your child who gets mumps has a CHANCE to recover and a CHANCE he will never be able to have children. Your child who gets measles has a CHANCE to recover and a CHANCE to be permanently blinded or have serious brain damage which she will NEVER get over. The CHANCE of serious complications from these diseases is 1%-10% per disease. Study after study has found no link between vaccines and autism, but whatever they do cause, it is far less than the permanent injury and death from your list.

    • My kids are all unvaccinated for Measles, Mumps and Rubella. Blood work in feb. 2014 was done, and on a whim the Dr. added in measles titres (trying to talk me into the vaccine no doubt). Well guess what? ALL THREE KIDS age 10, 8 and 5 at the time were POS for having had measles at some point. No rash, no illness that was anything like measles. Maybe a tiny fever for a day, nothing that was serious. I have no idea where or when they might’ve gotten it, either. Anyway, wasn’t a problem at all in our family. No vax, no identifiable rash or illness, and LIFETIME IMMUNITY!!! I suspect this happens more than we “think”. Everyone knows (since a study was done as early as 1938) showing that vitamin A adequate levels prevent complications from measles. Vitamin A is now the treatment for measles too. I guess my kids have good Vit A levels cos it wasn’t any sort of problem in this house. My last MMR was at age 28, I’m 45 now, and I didn’t get sick either even though it’s very unlikely I’m “protected” by those vaccine antibodies anymore. P.S. now I know my tendonitis was NOT a repetitive work injury from too much computer time, it was from the MMR booster I got, which causes joint swelling in 55% of female recipients according to one study.

  11. All this chest beating? In spite of the recent disclosure of a 20 year old CDC coverup that MMR does indeed cause autism?

  12. I vaccinated my child and something happened, she got autism. There is ample documentation to she vaccines cause autism and the CDC recently admitted they lied and omitted research that shows that. Go to the greater good website and see all the medical research that shows the link between vaccines and autism. We spent, borrowed and charged everything we had to get our daughter to functioning recovery. Never again will I vaccinate.

    • If vaccination is universal, them some kids who are vaccinated will also develop autism. The initial symptoms of autism generally manifest themselves at an age when children are getting a lot of vaccines. Correlation does not prove causality. My children also got vaccines and nothing happened; they didn’t develop autism.

      No, there is not ample documentation of any link between vaccines and autism. In fact there are ample studies showing no link.

      I hope your daughter is getting all the help she needs.

    • I’m sorry about your daughter. But you are incorrect about the CDC. You can search their archives and see for yourself they admitted no such coverup. Because there wasn’t one. Research in the US and Europe continues to show the same increase in autism cases whether the parents vaccinated or not and regardless of the components in the vaccine. The only connection is that autism develops around the same age babies get vaccinated. 6 months to 2 years is when they begin to talk and respond to social cues and also happens to be when vaccines are first given. In fact, it is becoming clearer and clearer that this focus on vaccines to the exclusion of all else is detrimental to autism activism.

        • Children who receive the entire 3-shot series of Hepatitis B Vaccine have a 9x higher rate of developmental disabilities than unvaccinated children.

          Hepatitis B triple series vaccine and developmental disability in US children aged 1-9 years
          Toxicological and Environmental Chemistry, September 2008
          Carolyn Gallagher* and Melody Goodman

          Excerpt:

          “The odds of receiving EIS [special education services] were approximately nine times as great for vaccinated boys (n¼46) as for unvaccinated boys (n¼7), after adjustment for confounders. This study found statistically significant evidence to suggest that boys in United States who were vaccinated with the triple series Hepatitis B vaccine, during the time period in which vaccines were manufactured with thimerosal, were more susceptible to developmental disability than were unvaccinated boys.”

          Note: This is the only peer reviewed published study I know of in the world that compares vaccinated children to unvaccinated children.

          • Vaccinated children have higher rates of autism and ADHD than unvaccinated children.

            Generation Rescue: Unvaccinated children phone survey
            Survey USA Phone Survey

            Excerpt:

            All vaccinated boys, compared to unvaccinated boys:

            – Vaccinated boys were 155% more likely to have a neurological disorder (RR 2.55)
            – Vaccinated boys were 224% more likely to have ADHD (RR 3.24)
            – Vaccinated boys were 61% more likely to have autism (RR 1.61)

            Older vaccinated boys, ages 11-17 (about half the boys surveyed), compared to older unvaccinated boys:

            – Vaccinated boys were 158% more likely to have a neurological disorder (RR 2.58)
            – Vaccinated boys were 317% more likely to have ADHD (RR 4.17)
            – Vaccinated boys were 112% more likely to have autism (RR 2.12)

            (Note: older children may be a more reliable indicator because many children are not diagnosed until they are 6-8 years old, and we captured data beginning at age 4.)

            Note: This is not a published study, it’s a phone survey.

      • Higher levels of environmental mercury has been shown to produce higher rates of autism.

        We cite one published study that supports this position:

        Environmental mercury release, special education rates, and autism disorder: an ecological study of Texas.
        Health & Place, 2006
        Raymond F. Palmer, University of Texas Health Science Center

        This study demonstrated the correlation between environmental mercury and autism rates in Texas. Excerpt:

        “On average, for each 1,000 lb of environmentally released mercury, there was a 43% increase in the rate of special education services and a 61% increase in the rate of autism. The association between environmentally released mercury and special education rates were fully mediated by increased autism rates. This ecological study suggests the need for further research regarding the association between environmentally released mercury and developmental disorders such as autism.”

  13. So, Rabbi Kamenetzky and his wife believe that vaccinations, not the diseases they prevent, are harmful. Rabbi Kamenetzky is quoted, “There is a doctor in Chicago who doesn’t vaccinate any of his patients and they have no problem at all. I see vaccinations as the problem. It’s a hoax. Even the Salk vaccine [against polio] is a hoax. It is just big business.”

    I won’t question the rabbi’s authority on rabbinical law, but his opinion on vaccines and illness is just his opinion. I give it no more weight than I would someone who believes the earth is flat. On the other hand, stating that vaccines are a hoax steps beyond his rabbinical authority. It is dangerous. I am president of the Polio Survivors Association. I survived polio … just barely …, and work with polio survivors every day. In 1952, nearly 60,000 people in the United States contracted polio, and polio killed more American children than any other communicable disease. Has the rabbi ever seen a hospital filled with children in iron lungs? Probably not. Why? Because we now have a vaccine!

    And, calling vaccines, “just big business” is an illustration of his lack of serious thought. Does the rabbi grow his own food? Does he weave his own cloth or make his own clothing? I hope he understands that these things are sold for profit and are, “just big business.”

    • Mr. Daggett, you have to understand that Rabinnic figures aren’t held accountable for anything they say or do so they can speak foolhardy and dangerous things at whim. In my community, all the big Rabbis came out with a letter to the community a few years back apologizing for the way they handled sexual abuse cases but rest assured, none of them resigned or took responsibility for the matter. 100’s of kids off the derech? Okay – sorry already…

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