Home > In the News > Immunization Budget Cuts Come with Consequences

Immunization Budget Cuts Come with Consequences

Sometimes we have to make tough choices.  Choices that we know will hurt.  Choices that we know may hurt others.  Every choice – every decision – comes with consequences. 

When it comes to budget cuts in this day and age, most everyone agrees we need them.  But that doesn’t mean they’re not going to hurt.  And it doesn’t mean we all agree on what cuts are best to make.

Earlier this week, an article in Mother Jones highlighted the “scary consequences of slashing the CDC’s immunization funding.”  When any organization’s budget is cut, there is bound to be a domino effect.  Since the CDC supports many state and local immunization programs, it is anticipated that the cuts will cause a ripple effect throughout the nation.   

The argument against the cuts is fairly straightforward.   Public health programs supported by the CDC help ensure vaccine education and availability, which in turn help to prevent and contain infectious and often fatal diseases.  Less funding could result in fewer vaccinations, more outbreaks that endanger public health, and ultimately impact the government’s ability to effectively respond to contain a disease when outbreaks do occur.

Take for instance recent measles concerns across the nation.  Just last month news spread of an unvaccinated French consulate employee in Boston who spread measles to others and sparked several  vaccination clinics.   Then there was the New Mexico resident who returned from England with measles and exposed thousands of travelers in 3 different cities and airports.  Most recently, there have been 9 reported measles cases in Minnesota, several tied to a Somali community who were intentionally unvaccinated due to concerns about vaccine safety.  Sadly, 4 of the MN cases were vaccine refusers and 4 were children too young to be vaccinated.   

In each of these instances, public health officials have had to devote costly resources to help contain this contagious, vaccine preventable disease.   With budget cuts and lower vaccination rates, it’s understandable that these needs could very well increase, rather than decrease, in the coming years.  While many of these recent measles cases started with patients who made a choice not to vaccinate, what will happen when people want to be vaccinated, but they are unable to make that choice?  Currently, CDC funds help address concerns of vaccine affordability, accessibility and education among our nation’s growing poor population.  But what will the future hold?        

Right now, politicians are debating this question.  But will pinching pennies today cost taxpayers more down the road?  Given the recent immunization challenges we are facing, I wonder what your thoughts are.  Are you concerned about cuts to immunization programs?  How do you think they will impact you and your community?

  1. Steve Michaels
    March 25, 2011 at 12:39 pm

    Maybe some of the unintended consequences will be welcome. Reductions in GBS, febrile convulsions, anaphylactic shock, and, maybe even autism rates. Who knows? Time will tell.

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  2. Chelsea
    March 25, 2011 at 1:34 pm

    In Bizarro-world, maybe.

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  3. Steve Michaels
    March 25, 2011 at 3:50 pm

    Considering that all of the reactions that I have mentioned, which are only a few of the possible ones, are fully recognized as being adverse reactions to vaccines, the ‘bazzaro’ comment says more about your view of the world than mine. Are you even willing to consider that vaccines can cause harm Chelsea? I am willing to accept that some vaccines do reduce the incidence of some diseases. Many of which are generally minor in a first world country. The question really is this, is the cure worse than the disease. The jury is out, but an unintended consequence as outlined by Christine could be to shed some light on the subject.

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  4. Chris
    March 25, 2011 at 4:45 pm

    Now how often do those reactions happen with the vaccines versus the actual diseases? Please provide actual evidence, and only on vaccines that are presently in the pediatric schedule. Thank you.

    By the way there are now eleven cases of measles in Minnesota, six are in the hospital. So it would be very interesting for you to tell us the data that up to one out of two children who get the MMR vaccine end up in the hospital.

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  5. Steve Michaels
    March 26, 2011 at 4:14 am

    This thread is not the place to rehash with you Chris, so I won’t. Anyone who follows the comments on this blog will know that you will only accept sources that YOU deem to be credible regardless of demonstrable conflicts of interests by your sources. However, I will comment on your claims about hospitalizatons in this way:

    If someone reports to VAERS a problem after vaccination, you have previously claimed that, as a self reporting system of ALL problems without regard to causality it is not ‘evidence’. Well here is a quote from the report you linked to:

    “Cases have ranged in age from 4 months to 35 years old. Four of the cases were too young to receive vaccine, five were of age but were not vaccinated, and two have unknown vaccine status. There have been six hospitalizations and no deaths.”

    Well as I read this I see two glaring omissions that you are inferring from the report. It can be reasonably assumed that the four who are ‘too young to vaccinate’ are children. Other than that, you are inferring the number of children infected AND that some of those hospitalized are children. On top of that, the cause of hospitalization is not provided. Was it measles? Did some have a heart condition? Was someone hit by a car? These are the questions you would ask about VAERS reports. I am asking them about your ‘evidence’. As you would say, reports without investigation as to causality do not constitute evidence. Try, oh please try to be consistent.

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  6. Chris
    March 26, 2011 at 11:26 am

    Actually, you are the one who keeps repeating the same thing and yet refuse to back them up with real evidence. So stop bringing up your opinions without any real support. Because each time you do we will come back and tell you again and again how you are wrong. Even about the VAERS database (which in a webpage you posted said it could not be used as evidence).

    Yes, any child under the age of one will not be vaccinated. This is why herd immunity is so important.

    I repeat you are not helping, you are hindering.

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  7. Steve Michaels
    March 26, 2011 at 12:01 pm

    You are obfuscating Chris. You never accept my evidence because you don’t wish to believe it. You never give substantive rationale for your objections. I am trying to help people see that what you profess is dogma. I have substantively refuted your sources and conclusions but you are like the ‘blind who will not see’. And again you have side-stepped my main objection to your ‘evidence’ and I even used your own argument to support my objection. I did this specifically to highlight two things about your position. Firstly, you choose subjectively what constitutes evidence. Secondly, you don’t even believe your own arguments or rationale unless it suits you. Your inconsistency is compelling in undermining your entire position.

    An additional point, at no place in the Health Department report does it say exactly WHO has been hospitalized. You assume that it was the children, but that is pure conjecture on your part. It wasn’t all that long ago that doctor’s and parent associations actually recommended measles parties to ensure that children contracted the disease at the age of lowest risk. Outbreaks in vaccinated populations tend to have more complications because the victims are older, meaning in or beyond puberty.

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  8. Chris
    March 26, 2011 at 1:12 pm

    Actually, your evidence is mostly conspiracy theories. The reason it is not acceptable is because it is from unreliable sources, often outdated and cherry picked. You tend to favor supplement sellers, lawyers, journalists and anonymous sources over qualified scientists, and you never did tell me Eileen Dannemann’s educational background. We have told you this time and time again, but you don’t seem to grasp the concept.

    An additional point, at no place in the Health Department report does it say exactly WHO has been hospitalized.

    Ever hear of HIPAA? If you have an issue with the reports from the Minnesota Health Department, then call them up and demand all of the hospital records. I don’t think you will go very far.

    It wasn’t all that long ago that doctor’s and parent associations actually recommended measles parties to ensure that children contracted the disease at the age of lowest risk. Outbreaks in vaccinated populations tend to have more complications because the victims are older, meaning in or beyond puberty.

    Unless you back this up with real verifiable evidence, we will assume you made it up out of thin air. And how long ago? Before or after the incidence of measles fell by over 90% between 1960 and 1970? Oh, and you never did tell why that happened (it was not improved sanitation).

    In the mean time you are still hindering and not helping. Really, do yourself a favor and enroll in some basic biology and statistics classes at your local community college. You may then begin to understand why your “research” and “sources” are inherently flawed.

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  9. Steve Michaels
    March 26, 2011 at 2:28 pm

    “Actually, your evidence is mostly conspiracy theories.”

    Actually I have NEVER promoted ‘conspiracy theories’. This can be evidenced by any previous posts I have made that have not yet been censored on the site. Wild accusation and trying to tar my message using emotive language. Not convincing.

    “You tend to favor supplement sellers, lawyers, journalists and anonymous sources over qualified scientists”

    I have quoted university research, hospital research, individual qualified doctors, even pharmaceutical companies’ own documents and findings and the CDC, FDA and WHO on occasion. When those reports cast doubt upon your views, you just pretend the issues weren’t brought up. But you buy into Brian Deer, and insider journalist who was the ONLY complainant against Dr. Andrew Wakefield, who only complained to Lancet after it was taken over by the Murdock family who have huge investments in vaccine manufacturers. Theory? No. Fact.

    “…and you never did tell me Eileen Dannemann’s educational background.”

    Firstly, you never asked. Secondly, I have never quoted her. Her only contribution (to my knowledge) of any discussion on here was the NCOW findings from an in depth study of VAERS reports that showed a significant correlation between H1N1 vaccines and miscarriages when given to pregnant women. The CDC decided that the 700% increase in reported miscarriages was not enough to warrant further investigation.

    “Ever hear of HIPAA?”

    Ever hear of diversionary tactics?? I was not being critical of the Department of Health report. I was being critical of YOU and your arguments by assumption. You have taken the report and surmised conclusions that are not supported by the report. I was only pointing out that you like to read into things ‘facts’ that are not present to make your case.

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  10. Chris
    March 26, 2011 at 4:07 pm

    In the mean time you are still hindering and not helping. Really, do yourself a favor and enroll in some basic biology and statistics classes at your local community college. You may then begin to understand why your “research” and “sources” are inherently flawed.

    Like

  11. Steve Michaels
    March 26, 2011 at 9:07 pm

    Thanks for confirming my original posts about your methodology Chris. Nothing of substance. Just assertion that anything you disagree with (even if it comes from one of your ‘trusted’ sources) is “inherently flawed”.

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  12. Chris
    March 26, 2011 at 10:37 pm

    You ignore all things of substance that we have provided because you do not understand them. Claiming that the public health agencies that conducted and/or paid for the studies are actually “Big Pharma” shows a complete lack of how public agencies work. Here is an interesting treatment of this kind of thinking.

    Even if Wakefield was not committing fraud it was a teeny tiny study of just twelve kids that did not find an association with either MMR vaccine they had received (the one approved in the UK after 1992 was the type that had been used in the USA for since 1971). One does not need to read Brian Deer to know that, and before 2002 many others questioned why Wakefield said what he did at the press conference because it was not in the 1998 Lancet paper. You simply do not understand that.

    It is obvious that you do not understand why the Minnesota Health Department would maintain the family’s privacy. It is not rational for you to expect me to know them, or even demand details.

    Again, you do not understand the science, or what is real evidence. You were given plenty information countering your “Think Twice” propaganda months ago, but choose to ignore it or pretend it was never offered. I see no reason to repeat posting the same papers that you completely ignore. Just because you don’t accept real science, does not mean it is not real. It is because you lack real knowledge.

    Really, do yourself a favor and enroll in some basic biology, science and statistics classes at your local community college. You may then begin to understand why your “research” and “sources” are inherently flawed.

    Because, that lack of knowledge is what is causing you to be hindering and not helping.

    Like

  13. Gary
    March 27, 2011 at 4:48 pm

    Thank you Chris.

    Like

  14. Nathan
    March 27, 2011 at 5:49 pm

    Amen.

    Like

  15. Steve Michaels
    March 27, 2011 at 6:58 pm

    Thank you for your insightful view of the world. I give you rational, specific reasons why your ‘evidence’ is not sound. I provide alternative evidence, and even evidence from your own favored sources, that contradicts your view, and the best you can come up with is to essentially call me stupid. Good to see all the back patting and high fives from your friends on here. “Hey, someone disagrees with us, but I called him uneducated and stupid, that’ll teach him and anyone else who dares to question us…” High fives all around, eh? How about some credible cause for discarding my evidence, many times provided? Not a general “its not reliable” comment. How about some conflict of interest? How about some flaw in the study? You have NEVER done that. “Oh, it was published on a site that sells vitamins” is hardly proof of anything.

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  16. Nathan
    March 27, 2011 at 10:01 pm

    Steve, you needn’t get so dramatic; Chris gave you good advice in an eloquent fashion that you should think about heeding.

    No one here called you “stupid” except yourself. But you are indeed uneducated about immunology and vaccine science. That is not an insult, any more than it would be an insult to call me uneducated about aeronautics. I am uneducated on aeronautics, and no amount of internet research would put me on the level with certified experts in that field.

    And, I would look very foolish if I walked in to a group of jet plane designers and started telling them how poorly made and dangerous their products were, even if I had found documents from the internet to show them. It is not about what sources I can produce, it is about demonstrating that I understand those sources and how they apply in the context of the overall picture of aeronautics – undertanding the entirety of the research, not just bits and pieces. I would fail miserably at doing this with regards to aircraft design.

    How about some credible cause for discarding my evidence, many times provided?

    Specifically, what evidence are you referring to? We have had many prolonged conversations, and I do not remember an abundance of “university research, hospital research, individual qualified doctors, even pharmaceutical companies’ own documents and findings and the CDC, FDA and WHO,” in those. What I do remember is repeatedly asking you to back up your claims, and you ignoring me or changing the subject. For example, I have asked you on many threads to back up your claim that “80% of the immune system is in the mucosa” and you have not even acknowledged my question, much less evidence of how such a number is applicable to vaccines.

    “Oh, it was published on a site that sells vitamins” is hardly proof of anything.

    That would be because Naturalnews does not publish studies, they publish one uneducated man’s opinion about studies. That is indeed hardly proof of anything, especially when the one uneducated man wants to sell you an alternative. This is not an example of evidence from “university research, hospital research, individual qualified doctors, even pharmaceutical companies’ own documents and findings and the CDC, FDA and WHO.”

    I also find it interesting that you boast about using those sources (studies, CDC, FDA, etc.) in your arguments, but when given extensive amounts of opposing evidence from those same sources, you dismiss them as unreliable.

    Perhaps you could point us to an example in a previous thread of you using these sources, or just pick your antivaccine argument for which you feel the evidence from the above resources is the strongest. Then we can do our best evaluate the evidence in a manner suitable to you, and describe why we might think that you are using them inappropriately.

    Nobody seems to really want to talk about budget cuts anyway.

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  17. Steve Michaels
    March 28, 2011 at 5:57 am

    I have always been careful to state when something I have quoted is from a site you would or would not consider ‘credible’. In fact, anything I read on Naturalnews has to refer back to original research studies before I give it any weight at all. I have also been very careful to NOT quote Naturalnews as a pillar of argument so the comments about it are really a red herring. As for quoting CDC, FDA and other’s of ‘your’ sources, yet claiming them to be unreliable, I have been trying to point out (in vain) that even the most quoted sources of pro vaccine information have reports that do not see the light of day that contradict their public stance on vaccines. The true point is that vaccine argument tends to be an awful lot like global warming argument. There is a lot of information on BOTH sides of the debate, but one side tends to completely ignore the information that doesn’t support their view, even when that information comes from, shall we say, otherwise friendly sources. If you wish to go through all previous posts to find my sources, you feel free. I have already done that work and am not inclined to repeat it.

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  18. Nathan
    March 29, 2011 at 12:13 am

    Steve,

    I have always been careful to state when something I have quoted is from a site you would or would not consider ‘credible’.

    I don’t see how this is relevant. Warning everyone your source is lousy does not justify using a lousy source.

    In fact, anything I read on Naturalnews has to refer back to original research studies before I give it any weight at all.

    Then it should be no problem for you to link directly to the original research instead of one uneducated salesman’s ramblings. This is literally a life and death issue. The discussion deserves that level of integrity.

    I have also been very careful to NOT quote Naturalnews as a pillar of argument so the comments about it are really a red herring.

    You brought it up with your “site that sells vitamins” line. I am simply trying to help you understaind why most rational minds dismiss links to Naturalnews. Primarily it is because, even if they contain a link to an actual study, it is a waste of time to sift through the nonsensical drivel of Adams to find the grain of truth.

    I have been trying to point out (in vain) that even the most quoted sources of pro vaccine information have reports that do not see the light of day that contradict their public stance on vaccines.

    You mean, like, secret reports that you have access to? And you have provided evidence (in vain) – where?

    The true point is that vaccine argument tends to be an awful lot like global warming argument. There is a lot of information on BOTH sides of the debate, but one side tends to completely ignore the information that doesn’t support their view, even when that information comes from, shall we say, otherwise friendly sources.

    This is where I most fundamentally disagree. With all areas of science, there are studies/reports/etc. that do not concur with the rest of the available research. This is expected, since any study done has a small percentage that the results are by chance alone – that is why replication of data is needed, and why studies should be viewed in the context of the overall science and the research that has been done to date. There are also studies that are clearly stronger than other studies from a scientific point of view. But studies are not ignored – rather they may be given less weight depending on their reliability and relation to the rest of the research. Again, I ask you for an example of where we ignore “university research, hospital research, individual qualified doctors, even pharmaceutical companies’ own documents and findings and the CDC, FDA and WHO” without just cause.

    If you wish to go through all previous posts to find my sources, you feel free. I have already done that work and am not inclined to repeat it.

    I don’t find your excuse convincing. I have read through many of our conversations and not found a significant amount of use of reliable sources on your part, and I have noted that in almost every one of your assertions, I rebutted with painstaking detail. Not once did I find myself simply dismissing your arguments because someone sells vitamins, but rather, because the assertion was not based on evidence, or the evidence was fundamentally flawed – flaws which I describe to the best of my ability.

    It’s a shame. I simply ask you to put your money where your mouth is, and now you seem to be the one having budget cuts.

    Like

  19. Steve Michaels
    March 29, 2011 at 7:52 am

    Now Nathan, I am not going to entertain your ‘he said/she said’ rubbish. You have on multiple occasions dismissed information which is fully research and linked to that research because the website ‘sells’ something. I read a recent estimate that vaccine profits are set to treble of the next few years (as compared to more ‘traditional’ drugs increasing by some 50%) yet you don’t see any conflicts of interests. It boggles my mind. The below links are not directly related to vaccines, but completely strip bare how accurate my ‘assertions’ about big pharma, professional ‘journals’ and MSM articles are about misleading people like you who refuse to see.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/women_shealth/8410262/Breast-cancer-drugs-for-healthy-women.html

    Article claiming healthy women should take drugs to ‘prevent’ cancer. Reads well and quotes ‘independent’ research led by Prof Jack Cuzick, from Queen Mary, University of London and published in The Lancet Oncology. The article describes the research as “an international panel of experts.”

    So who is Prof Jack Cuzick? Well he is the head of the ‘Centre for Cancer Prevention’ for the Wolfson Institute of Preventative Medicine.

    http://www.wolfson.qmul.ac.uk/

    Now for the unasked question. Who pays Prof Jack Cuzick? Does he have any conflicts of interest that have been omitted? Is there a clear money flow from any ‘interested’ companies that sell cancer treatments to Prof Jack Cuzick? I am sure you realize that the answer is ‘yes’. How much money? More than Mike Adams makes selling vitamins.

    Here’s a partial list of financiers of the Wolfsom Institute of Preventative Medicine (I have omitted governmental sponsor’s):

    Aventis
    AstraZeneca
    Genomica SA Sociedad Unipersonal
    Glaxo Smith Kline
    McNeil AB
    NicoNovum AB
    Pfizer
    Wellcome Trust

    http://www.wolfson.qmul.ac.uk/wipm/funders.html

    Now who funds Lancet? Do they have any conflicts of interests that are not being reported? YES

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2213802/

    Now here we go Nathan, I am quoting NIH and their report on advertising influences on ‘peer-reviewed, professional’ medical journals that you love to quote so much. Yes, even the NIH, CDC and FDA sometimes let their guard slip and reveal the truth. However, those slips are never exposed in the MSM. It takes research to find them and prove the duplicity of those organizations who are charged with protecting us from unscrupulous companies who profit from misinformation.

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  20. Steve Michaels
    March 29, 2011 at 8:00 am

    By the way, this quotation from the discussion section is particularly relevant:

    The reason why advertisers want to influence journal content is clear; readers trust the research reports published in professional journals more than other sources of information (12) and advertisers therefore want to get their products endorsed in the article (1). The reason for editors to adjust the content of the journal to suit advertisers or to attract specific advertisements for a thematic issue is also clear; they hope to increase the advertising revenue and please advertisers (13). Editors and owners of journals are not naďve – they just balance the pros and cons – the profit from advertisements and the lost trust (3)

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  21. Nathan
    March 29, 2011 at 9:55 pm

    Steve,

    Now Nathan, I am not going to entertain your ‘he said/she said’ rubbish. You have on multiple occasions dismissed information which is fully research and linked to that research because the website ‘sells’ something.

    We would not have to play he said/she said (which one of us is the ‘she’?) if you would simply link to a conversation where I have actually done this.

    I read a recent estimate that vaccine profits are set to treble of the next few years (as compared to more ‘traditional’ drugs increasing by some 50%) yet you don’t see any conflicts of interests.

    Oh, but I do see conflicts of interest. Pharmaceutical companies have an inherent conflict of interest. But I do not agree that conflict of interest = inherently bad product. All industries have a conflict of interest. Aircraft construction, house contractors, and even organic food producers, for example, are also motivated by profit. However, that does not mean their products are excessively dangerous.

    Now, I asked you to put forth your best evidence-based argument that vaccines are more dangerous than beneficial, and you have responded with a non-vaccine related example. I do not really want to dig into the details of HRT and breast cancer, as it is a distraction from the topic, and it is not an area in which I am well educated. I will try to briefly review some of your basic errors in logic with the HRT and then address the study concerning advertising in medical journals, which is at least somewhat more relevant, and interesting.

    Article claiming healthy women should take drugs to ‘prevent’ cancer. Reads well and quotes ‘independent’ research led by Prof Jack Cuzick, from Queen Mary, University of London and published in The Lancet Oncology.

    Nowhere in the news article does it say “independent.” Neither is it new research. It is the report of an international meeting of 150 experts in breast cancer, who reviewed all the research to date regarding HRT risks and breast cancer. I’m sure other members have some connection to some place that receives some funding from pharmaceutical companies as well. This is not a secret, and does not mean that the research that was reviewed is somehow invalid.

    Here is the actual consensus report. It has eleven other authors. It lists their affiliations.
    http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lanonc/article/PIIS1470-2045(11)70030-4/fulltext

    You then say “Now who funds Lancet? Do they have any conflicts of interests that are not being reported? YES”
    before citing a study that showed that the Lancet did not have the issues with advertising that other journals in the study did. From the article you linked to:

    The only journal in our sample with an odds ratio of less than one – The Lancet – has a specific policy to examine the content of every issue for possible relatedness with advertisements and to prevent coincided publications.

    Did you read the study yourself? If so, what unreported conflict of interest are you referring to?

    Like

  22. Nathan
    March 29, 2011 at 11:49 pm

    I agree that is relevant. It is a very good quote and from a very interesting study. Let’s look at it. I am in no way an expert in statistics or publishing research, but I will do the best I can.

    The first thing I want to make sure you understand is that this is not an NIH study. This is a study done at the Moscow Medical Academy and published in the Croatian Journal of Medicine. Being included in Pubmed central does not in any way mean it is NIH affiliated. Your “slip through” yarn is of your own invention.

    I don’t know what the quality of the peer review in the journal is, but let’s take it at face value. The question is, what do you think this study demonstrates? I assume that you are asserting that the article indicates that pharmaceutical companies pressure journals to not publish studies that are critical of vaccines.

    This study does not support that claim. It is about timing advertising to coincide with a study, and the arrangement of advertising in journals so that advertisements appear in the middle of a related article. This is a no-no in a medical journal, but has nothing to do with pharmaceutical companies suppressing reseach via control of medical journals. Here are the results from the study:

    The strong relatedness between the content of the articles and advertisements placed in 3 of 7 journals and explicit placement of the advertisements face to face or overleaf the related research articles support the hypothesis that journal content is manipulated to place more emphasis on the advertisements.

    It is notable that this problem appeared in the minority of studies examined. The two journals that (from my experience in the US, anyway) are considered the most prestigious or most recognized – The Lancet and the NEJM, had the lowest ratio odds, and only three of the journals had a statistically significant relationship between the content and the advertising.

    This seems to be a good example of why a high-tier peer reviewed journal is considered more reliable. This study indicates they are less prone to arrange their content to increase advertising exposure. But this study does not, in any way, indicate that advertisers are significantly influencing the choice in article, or the peer review process. There are certainly journals where this may be the case, but the more prestigious the journal, the more their reputation would take a hit if they were caught doing such things. That is the essence of what you quoted above.

    So, I agree with the study and the conclusions of the study. I do not ignore it or dismiss it because of any conflict of interest. However, the study does not support your argument, because it concerns the selection and placement of ads, not the selection of journal articles or manipulation of the peer review process.

    I do really appreciate that you linked directly to the study instead of Adams or Tenpenny. It made it much easier to read and evaluate.

    Like

  23. Steve Michaels
    March 30, 2011 at 7:49 am

    “I don’t know what the quality of the peer review in the journal is, but let’s take it at face value. The question is, what do you think this study demonstrates? I assume that you are asserting that the article indicates that pharmaceutical companies pressure journals to not publish studies that are critical of vaccines.”

    My purpose in bringing this up is to point out that it does not require a “conspiracy theory” for corporations to indirectly influence peer-reviewed journals. You have on many occasions try to dismiss what I say as ‘conspiracy theory’. In fact, the entire marketplace is a ‘conspiracy’ of sorts in that everyone who is acting in their own self-interests will collude consciously or not to bring about an end result. This is old school from “The Wealth of Nations”. It does not require an editor to be called by their advertising ‘paymaster’ to realize on which side his bread is buttered. And the fact that an editor may make editorial decisions to protect his revenue stream does NOT constitute a ‘conspiracy’ but does indicate that, in this case, publications who are paid by companies with vested interests in what is published creates a conflict of interest.

    And thank you for the compliment at the end. I shall endeavor to use more first source links in the future.

    Like

  24. Nathan
    March 30, 2011 at 9:17 pm

    Steve, I agree with you for the most part. Advertising can have “indirect” influence over publications, including medical journals. But you seem to think that this indirect influence is so great that we we should not trust research in peer-reviewed journals, and this is simply not the case. Your article, in fact, indicates that we should put more trust in more respected journals than others. And please keep in mind that the bread is buttered on both sides. High-tier journals have a reputation to maintain that would be tarnished (and cause them to lose massive numbers of subscribers) if they conduct themselves with such a level of bias in terms of study selection. Regardless, the HRT example adn the study presented does not demonstrate any good reason to not trust the huge aggregate of research from varied sources that demonstrate the benefits of vaccines.

    We seem to turn this blog into the Steve/Nathan show, and I worry that our persistence tends to discourage others from participating. I’ll bow out for a time (if I can resist) but thanks for the chance to debunk some antivaccine myths, and for committing to an effort to stick to original sources.

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