Managing Editor's Note: Below is an excerpt from Autism File magazine by Carrmel Wakefield, wife of Dr. Andrew Wakefield. Read Mrs. Wakefield's complete, heartfelt message HERE. Have you subscribed to Autism File yet?
By Carmel Wakefield
...To get us in the mood for Christmas we have just been told that the longest GMC hearing in history is grinding towards a decision on the facts – the GMC’s complaint against my husband Andy Wakefield and his two colleagues Professors Walker Smith and Murch. The sixth anniversary of the complaint being made by the freelance reporter, Brian Deer, will be in February; the GMC hearing itself has lasted over 2 and a half years. At the time of writing, the date for a verdict to be “handed down” has been set for January 29th 2010 but that date has shifted three times in less than 10 days.
It is very sad on so many levels. Obviously on a highly personal level, we have had to live with the shadow of the sword for a ridiculously long time but it goes much further than that. Think of the financial cost of this travesty of an inquiry: three barristers for the GMC, two barristers for each of the three defendants, at least one solicitor per defendant and a couple for the GMC for good measure. Add to the mix the cost of the panel’s remittance and their expenses – six lots of them – and of course the GMC administrative staff assigned to this case, both in Manchester and London; heat, light – the show goes on and on and multiplying that, brings a mind boggling total in the millions of Great British Pounds.
It may console you to know that the dosh is out of the pockets of doctors, rather than
yourselves, which in this context, would make it totally unbearable. Nonetheless it is hard earned money, which has been poured straight down the drain. Money, which if used for research might have delivered critical results that could already be impacting on your children’s lives. What a waste of time, emotion, effort and money.
Whatever the verdict in this case, there will be no winners: not a single one...