Transcript: Statement from Andrew Wakefield
Below is the transcript from Dr. Andrew Wakefield's video statement (with special thanks to Jeannette Bishop for correcting the text).
Good morning. The first thing that I want to say is that I did not
seek out this latest media maelstrom. It came about because of an
outbreak of measles in South Wales in the United Kingdom for which I
have been blamed by her Majesty's government. So I did not seek this
out but now it seems I have been denied the opportunity to redress the
allegations that have been made against me by members of the government;
by members of public health and that is clearly unacceptable.
So legitimate debate about the safety of MMR vaccine and the origin of the measles epidemic in Wales have now been effectively blocked by the government insisting that the British media do not give me air time; do not allow me to respond. And that is the purpose of this. So I did not start this current fight.
The important thing to say is that back in 1996 -- 1997 I was made aware of children developing autism, regressive autism, following exposure in many cases to the measles mumps rubella vaccine. Such was my concern about the safety of that vaccine that I went back and reviewed every safety study, every pre-licensing study of the MMR vaccine and other measles containing vaccines before they were put into children and after. And I was appalled with the quality of that science. It really was totally below par and that has been reiterated by other authoritative sources since.
All I could do as a parent was to say what would I do for my child. That was the only honest answer I could give. My position on that has not changed.
So, what happened subsequently. At that time the single measles vaccine, the single vaccines were available freely on the National Health Service. Otherwise, I would not have suggested that option. So parents, if they were legitimately concerned about the safety of MMR could go and get the single vaccines. Six months later the British government unilaterally withdrew the importation licence for the single vaccines therefore depriving parents of having these on the NHS; depriving parents who had legitimate concerns about the safety of MMR from a choice; denying them the opportunity to protect their children in the way that they saw fit.
And I was astonished by this and I said to Dr Elizabeth Miller of the Health Protection Agency why would you do this, if your principal concern is to protect children from serious infectious disease. Why would you remove an option from parents who are legitimately concerned about the safety of MMR. And her answer was extraordinary. She said to me if we allow parents the option of single vaccines it would destroy our MMR programme. In other words her concern, her principal concern seemed to be for protection of the MMR programme and not for protection of children.
Now, were parents concerns about the safety of MMR legitimate? Did they have a reason to be concerned? The answer is unequivocably yes.
When the MMR was introduced in the UK in the late 1980s there were three brands that were introduced. Two of those three brands had to be withdrawn hurriedly four years later because they were causing meningitis in children at an unacceptable rate. In other words two thirds of the licensed vaccines in the UK had to be removed from circulation because they were dangerous.
And what is very disturbing about this and this was brought to my attention by a government whistleblower, Dr Alistair Thores, who was working at that time for the Joint Committee On Vaccination And Immunisation, the regulatory body in the UK. He made it clear to the British government that they should not use those dangerous vaccines. He made it clear to the committee prior to the licensing of the MMR in 1987. Why? Because he was brought in from Canada where they were already having problems with this vaccine under the name Trivirix, the identical vaccine to the vaccine which was introduced into the UK under the name Pluserix. And there they had noticed that there were cases of meningitis which were far in excess of those which they had previously seen. This meningitis was being caused by the mumps strain; Urabe AM-9.
And so he advised the Joint Committee not to touch this vaccine: it was dangerous. They ignored his pleas and they went ahead and introduced it anyway. Four years later it had to be hurriedly withdrawn because it was causing precisely the complication that he had warned them of. Moreover, they were asked, David Salisbury specifically, was asked to allocate funds to active surveillance of adverse events. For the government to go out there and to look and ask doctors if they had seen cases of this meningitis. He said no. That was denied and they relied on passive surveillance: in other words the spontaneous reports coming in from doctors and hospitals. That is known to pick up perhaps 1 to 2% of true adverse reactions. In other words it was going to inevitably underestimate the true numbers of this reaction. Hence, the delay of four years for the removal of a vaccine that should never have been licensed in the first place.
It was with that background and with that insight into the practices of the Joint Committee of Vaccination and Immunisation that I took the stand that I did on MMR. I was deeply and justifiably concerned. So the next question is beyond the fact that MMR vaccine is not safe and has not been adequately tested; not just my opinion but the opinion of many; is does MMR vaccine cause autism?
Now this question has been answered not by me but by the courts, by the vaccine courts in Italy and in the United States of America where it appears that many children over the last 30 years have been awarded millions of dollars for the fact that they have been brain-damaged by MMR vaccine and other vaccines and that brain-damage has led to autism. That is a fact.
Now it has been argued by the government that some poor judge has been forced into making this decision that on balance the vaccine caused the autism in the face and in contradiction to the evidence that is available, the scientific evidence. No. That is grossly misleading. Three of these cases at least least; Poling, the Italian case, and more recently the Mojabi case, have been conceded by the government experts. In other words the government experts, the government themselves have conceded that the vaccine cause the autism. They didn't fight the case. They conceded it based upon the evidence available to them - all of the evidence - that the MMR vaccine caused the child's autism.
So this isn't some poor judge being forced into a position in the absence of the evidence or in contradiction to the evidence. This is the government's own experts conceding that the MMR vaccine caused the autism, or caused brain damage in this case that led to be autism. And what we have are millions of dollars being paid out to these children to fund their autism treatment so when the government says it is not settled cases of autism, please bear in mind that what they're paying for the costs of the autism treatments. The government if it says that is speaking out of both sides of its mouth.
So let me turn now specifically to the measles outbreak in South Wales. The outbreak that the government is alleging is my responsibility, which is clearly in the face of the evidence from Lord Howe in Parliament and for which originally I suggested protection against measles with a single vaccines.
Now it is very important for people to bear in mind that MMR doesn't protect against measles. Measles vaccine protects against measles. The mumps and rubella components are irrelevant. So, if single vaccines were available; if the government had not withdrawn the availability of a vaccine, then there would be no outbreak of measles in Wales, there would be no discussion of measles cases and potential measles deaths. So, the blame for this must lie on the shoulders on those who withdrew the option of the single vaccine from the parents who were legitimately concerned about the safety of the MMR. Not because of me but what had happened because of that vaccine long before I came on the scene.
But there is one problem. There is one contradiction. That is as Lord Howe has said in Parliament, MMR vaccine uptake is at an all-time high. So why are we now seeing measles outbreaks in highly vaccinated populations. It would be very interesting to find out how many of those children in the current outbreak have actually been vaccinated. I suspect many. And this has been seen before.
One of the problems I think we are encountering is that of vaccine failure; primary and secondary vaccine failure. Primary failure - not enough children respond by developing immunity to the vaccine in the first place and secondary vaccine failure - those that do develop immunity that immunity disappears very quickly over time. And this has been seen with mumps vaccine. The mumps vaccine does not work and we are seeing similar outbreaks of measles (mumps) in vaccinated populations. And this is one of the long-term problems of using live viral vaccines over time, taking seed stock virus and repeatedly using it and using it and using it over time that it seems for some reason to lose its potency. And what we're seeing now is what I believe is unintended, unexpected consequence of long-term use of these live viral vaccines; and that is vaccine failure.
And that is something that is really really concerning. It is not theoretical. It has been seen unequivocally with the mumps vaccine. And I believe we are now seeing it with measles. If that is the case then 1) blaming me for the outbreak of this measles case come measles cases in South Wales, is totally inappropriate. It is not addressing the core issue of what you do about live viral vaccine failure, because if the viruses is then infecting people at an older age than the outcome may be more serious and there are no therapeutic interventions for protecting those people from measles.
So the government has in effect put all its eggs in one basket and now we're seeing measles come back. That is my belief.
What we face unambiguously is an epidemc of autism; an environmentally driven epidemic of autism now alarmingly affecting one in 31 boys in the United States of America and I saw data from Yale just the other day from South Korea showing that one in 36 children in South Korea are affected by this lifelong severe neurodevelopmental disorder. There is the true epidemic. Do we see attention being paid to that in anything like the same way that the media are applying attention to the measles outbreak in South Wales. No we do not. That is the true epidemic. And that is the one that we really have to deal with as a matter of urgency.
Now what I would like to do, I have been, Dr David Elliman has said that this was my fault and I understand that this morning he went on the news and he was saying that the media were responsible for the latest sort of debate, the latest argument, by giving me some kind of voice. So he is able to make this very very serious allegation against me and then deprive me of the opportunity of responding in the media. That is an extraordinary situation in what is supposedly a free country.
What I'm suggesting is a formal scientific debate in public in front of an audience that is televised. And specifically Dr David Salisbury I would like to debate you because I believe you are at the heart of this matter. I believe the decisions taken by you and by your committee, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, lie at the heart of this matter.
There are many things to debate with you.
I'd like to debate with you specifically why you have denied repeatedly that there was any form of indemnity for the manufacturer of the Urabe containing vaccine Pluserix when it was originally introduced; why you have denied that.
And I have here Dr Salisbury are the unredacted minutes of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation held on 7 May 1993 and here in these minutes it says "once SKB" that is SmithKline Beecham "continued to sell the Urabe strain vaccine without liability". How Dr Salisbury do you explain the term "without liability" in that context. It seems to me that this was something that was disclosed to me by your whistleblower from the government, from your own committee, who said the deal was done with the manufacturer to exempt them from liability for introducing the vaccine that they had concerns about because they were already having problems with it in Canada where it was then withdrawn.
I would also like to put it to you, I would like to ask you why you felt it necessary to contact the General Medical Council and urge them in the strongest terms to prosecute me more vigourously; indeed to admonish them for not prosecuting me more vigourously. Do you feel that was an abuse of your governmental position introducing inevitable bias into the General Medical Council. And since you are at the heart of this matter and have been according to your curriculum vitae from the very beginning, the introduction of MMR into this country, it would seem to me that you are the perfect person to debate this in public with me. And if we can exonerate MMR vaccine from causing the problems which I believe and many parents believe it is causing them that is all well and good. But that will only be resolved in an open scientific debate. And therefore I think that the time has come for you and I to have that discussion.
And did anyone pay for that mistake?
Does that person that made the mistake know what you and your daughter went through - did you ever hear from them again. I bet not.
Did the CDC come to your house to see and show concern. Did the doctors puzzle over the next specialist to send your daughter to that might help. Yes, even sending you to large numbers of them and all of them showing very concern and were very thoughful on what they could do to help fix what was done, or even to show just a smidget of compassion.
I know the answer and I am so sorry.
Posted by: Benedetta | August 12, 2013 at 10:27 PM
My daughter was given the MMR by mistake when she was only 3 months old and from that moment on she screamed with coelic and diahrroe up to 17 times a day, doctors told me she was fine over the years and that i was being a fussy mum! she never slept until she was 10 y old when she was diagnosed as having Ulcerative Colitis which is a bowel disease for life and being treated with steroyds and anti inflamamatorys, shes in pain at all times and sometime soon, since her illness has had no improvement she will have her whole bowel removed. from a healthy baby to a life long of unpleasant heath! shes now 15.
Posted by: Lucia Medeiros | August 12, 2013 at 01:06 PM
Kathlees thanks for the link. I have subscribed but so far don't see how I can comment. Anyhow someone like John would be better equipped to rebut that ridiculous and lengthy reply which I noted was lifted almost entirely from Wikipedia! That's how rubbishy it is and how dangerous too repeating all those lies which they will not retract from their Wakefield page.
Posted by: Patricia | August 06, 2013 at 01:51 PM
I would've written you the normal route but my computer won't let me access your email address.
Posted by: Kathleen | August 06, 2013 at 11:31 AM
There is an excellent article supporting Dr Wakefield which is getting alot of attention with over 115,000 'likes' so far. (www.whiteoutpress.com/timeless/courts-quietly-confirm-mmr-vaccine-causes-autism/ posted 27 July 2013)
But they just added a rebuttal full of falsehoods because they were getting so many emails objecting to it.
PLEASE ADD YOUR VOICE and correct these lies in the updated article!!!
Posted by: Kathleen | August 06, 2013 at 11:30 AM
Garbo I too thank you for this quote.
Good words to remember even if it has a curve of four decades and looks like it is going to make it a good half a century.
Darn most of the Salibury's will be dead of old age and had good life
Posted by: Benedetta | April 19, 2013 at 12:09 AM
Thank you Dr.Wakefield for fighting for our children and
for displaying the highest level of integrity and care for the
future,our children.I wish you great strength and much success. We must have an open debate,the time had come to
STOP AUTISM.The parents must demand an open debate.
What any "vaccination program" worth if important information and adverse effects are withheld and safety of our children are not prioritized???
Posted by: oneVoice | April 18, 2013 at 11:57 PM
Thanks, Garbo. His wiki page was really interesting. And I love his optimism. We should all hope to be as hopeful.
Posted by: Zed | April 18, 2013 at 05:24 PM
The quote was Theodore Parker, American preacher/theologian/abolitionist/transcendentalist, in 1853's "Of Justice & Conscience". It was later paraphrased by Martin Luther King in a 1967 speech to the Southern Leadership Conference. Another of Parker's quotes from an 1850 speech, "a government of all the people, by all the people, and for all the people" was later used by Lincoln in the Gettysburg Address. Parker was an interesting, activist dude.
Posted by: Garbo | April 18, 2013 at 01:50 PM
Thanks everyone who contributed to the posting of this important transcript. If some of you want to read for yourself the minutes of meeting of the JCVI 7th of May 1993, you can find them here (archives were recently replaced)
On Page 5 is mentioned, almost hidden, the issue that Dr. Wakefield underlined and questioned in his video-statement: '.........whilst SKB continued to sell the Urabe strain without liability.'
Posted by: Cisca Buis | April 18, 2013 at 12:50 PM
Good point, Assiemum, abou Salisbury's eventual replacement.
Posted by: Incredible, the stupid it burns! | April 18, 2013 at 10:10 AM
Zed, here is some info on Garbo's quote...I totally recognized it, but thought Garbo misquoted, I thought it was Martin Luther King Jr....well, I was wrong as far as the FULL quote Garbo used, however, Martin Luther King Jr. DID say, “Let us realize the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.”
.... Here is a history of Garbo's quote which does relate to MLK Jr and also a bunch of others too! :
(what a great history of the quote, huh? Never expected to learn so much,,,, I bookmarked the site, seems to have lots of good info!)
Posted by: Angie R | April 18, 2013 at 09:48 AM
With the recent whooping cough "outbreak" (w/in a vaccinated population)out in western U.S., one would think more parents would start realizing that the vaccine (and vaccines in general)loses its protective quality over time-Otherwise why weren't their vaccinated children free of this sickness? Look at the recent history of the various flu strains around the world...each year the viral strains change & adapt to their new "environments." Mere observation and common sense, people. Apply them.
I know that I'mpreaching to the choir, but I'm truly shocked that more parents don't hear our stories, consider the science involved and make rational opinions about what's really going on! 1-50 now and society is walking around with blinders over their eyes. Do they only take notice when it destroys their own kids' lives? I think so but w/ the 1-50 autism rate, everyone should be impacted by now, right?
Sigh....I am truly thankful for Dr. Wakefield and his supporters.
Posted by: Ryan'sMom | April 18, 2013 at 08:29 AM
@Garbo: Awesome quote (and hope it's true.) Do you know who said it?
Posted by: Zed | April 18, 2013 at 08:02 AM
Dr Salisbury would be protecting his position to prevent the truth from being told. If someone replaced him I wonder what their actions would be!
I suppose when you are being paid to suppress the truth I guess your conscience doesn't enter into the equation.
Posted by: AussieMum | April 17, 2013 at 08:06 PM
Dr. Wakefield! I hope someone will take you up on this offer. I am anticipating a no holds barred debate.
The various strains of the vaccine components will be a revelation to all who need to know.
The whole thing about the trivalent vaccine is even more disconcerting when it is known how lacking in quality control the manufacture of vaccines has been in the past. Most people think that the manufacture of vaccine is pure as the driven snow.
Unfortunately I don't believe for a minute that anyone is going to be willing to debate this subject since so much dirty linen will be washed in public. I sure keep my fingers crossed, though. I am so curious what the reaction by the media and the public will be.
Posted by: Birgit Calhoun | April 17, 2013 at 05:35 PM
What is not publicly known is that at least 24 British children who contracted meningitis died between October 1988 and September 1992 - killed by Pluserix and Immravax vaccines.
That is possible to estimate from what were confidential British Government figures which still remain unpublished.
Those figures do not include under-reporting or any other factor.
Add in under-reporting - from those figures - with 199 in 200 conservative estimates, and the whole thing looks very different and much much worse.
The figures given out by the CDC and UK Department of Health comparing vaccine risks to disease risks are completely useless as an indication of relative safety. They are never adjusted for under-reporting.
Salisbury did that with his JCVI - they killed British children.
He claims MMR never killed anyone. Well he would, wouldn't he. No wonder he has stayed in the same job for thirty years and dare not let anyone take over in case they find out all the other stuff.
Posted by: TranscriptEater | April 17, 2013 at 02:59 PM
It is also necessary to point out that Andy's account of JCVI and Pluserix is just the tip of the iceberg as Lucija Tomljenovic's paper 'The vaccination policy of the Code of Practice of Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation: are they at odds?' records. Not a very exciting title for the most devastating critique of British government policy in one area of modern times. Tomljenovic testifies:
'Here I present the documentation which appears to show that the JCVI made continuous efforts to withhold critical data on severe adverse reactions and contraindications to vaccinations to both parents and health practitioners in order to reach overall vaccination rates which they deemed were necessary for “herd immunity”, a concept which with regards to vaccination, and contrary to prevalent beliefs, does not rest on solid scientific evidence as will be explained. As a result of such vaccination policy promoted by the JCVI and the DH, many children have been vaccinated without their parents being disclosed the critical information about demonstrated risks of serious adverse reactions, one that the JCVI appeared to have been fully aware of. It would also appear that, by withholding this information, the JCVI/DH neglected the right of individuals to make an informed consent concerning vaccination. By doing so, the JCVI/DH may have violated not only International Guidelines for Medical Ethics (i.e., Helsinki Declaration and the International Code of Medical Ethics)  but also, their own Code of Practice...
...Deliberately concealing information from parents for the sole purpose of getting them to comply with an “official” vaccination schedule could be considered as a form of ethical violation or misconduct. Official documents obtained from the UK Department of Health (DH) and the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) reveal that the British health authorities have been engaging in such practice for the last 30 years, apparently for the sole purpose of protecting the national vaccination program..."
Posted by: John Stone | April 17, 2013 at 02:22 PM
So ironic for the British Government to blame anything on Dr. Wakefield. Think of how different the world would be now if Dr. Wakefield had been supported in and allowed to continue his research. So much suffering would have been alleviated and avoided.
Posted by: Linda | April 17, 2013 at 02:00 PM
Bravo Dr. Wakefield. They are craven cowards and of course will never admit the truth that you so eloquently lay out before the canny public. But the lies cannot hold forever.
"I do not pretend to understand the moral universe; the arc is a long one, my eye reaches but little ways; I cannot calculate the curve and complete the figure by the experience of sight; I can divine it by conscience. And from what I see I am sure it bends towards justice."
Posted by: Garbo | April 17, 2013 at 12:36 PM
The British government wants desperately to silence any discussion about the safety of the MMR.
In Wakefield's book, Callous Disregard, http://www.amazon.com/Callous-Disregard-Autisms-Vaccines-Tragedy/dp/1616083239
we learn just how culpable British health authorities are:
The government knowingly licensed an unsafe vaccine.
They failed to warn parents about possible life-threatening side effects.
They intentionally had only passive surveillance for adverse events.
They secretly indemnified the vaccine maker.
They used false and misleading information to promote the vaccine.
Corruption, collusion, and cover-up, three things we usually assign to the actions of our Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, are also true for the British government. Dr. Wakefield wrote, “Children were the experimental marketplace.”
Anne Dachel, Media
Posted by: Anne Dachel | April 17, 2013 at 12:09 PM
Puppets like Dr. Salisbury and the Joint Committee are obviously taking their direction from puppermaster Pharma who is heavily invested in the MMR. (heavily invested in mass genocide morelike). Thank you for calling him Dr. Wakefield
Posted by: Sarah | April 17, 2013 at 11:45 AM
The figures speak for themselves in a recent UK 2012 outbreak.
Infants under 13 months represented a significant population (to young to vaccinate) and persons aged 15 years and above
Compulsory vaccination of adults and infants under 13 months ?
"Given that the uptake of the first dose of MMR vaccine locally in recent years has been relatively high, this large number of cases can partially be explained by the lower levels of immunity in older children and teenagers, and by lower levels of maternal antibodies passed on to babies from vaccinated mothers . Therefore a priority in the control of community outbreaks like this should be to target older children and young adults who missed vaccination in childhood"
That would be a systems failure.
Posted by: Objective Commentary | April 17, 2013 at 10:40 AM
Thank you for this, John. What is extremely troubling are the actions of David Salisbury with the General Medical Council and the liability exemption given to SKB over the MMR. The fact that these things are never talked about by the media is more proof that the government controls what the public is hearing.
Anne Dachel, Media
Posted by: Anne Dachel | April 17, 2013 at 10:33 AM
MMR coverage in Wales is 96% for dose 1 and 89.9% for second.
Posted by: Objective Commentary | April 17, 2013 at 10:24 AM
Thanks - the original video is of course available down the homepage. If anyone spots a mis-transcription and can give a correct version these can be duly incorporated.
Posted by: John Stone | April 17, 2013 at 10:11 AM
Totally rationale and fact based response from Dr. Wakefield. A fair and honest public debate is of course what is needed and what has been needed for some time. Unfortunately this depends on Salisbury having the balls to partake and it is clear that the money and influence of Big Pharma neutered him long ago. Keep up the fight Dr. Wakefield and thank you.
Posted by: Mike | April 17, 2013 at 08:39 AM
No, there were no juries but more important they were conceded by governments who were worried about further attention if they didn't concede, and particularly in the US cases about having to reveal further details in regard to causation.
Posted by: For Fièvre | April 17, 2013 at 08:28 AM
Concerning the Poling, the Italian case, and the Mojabi case : were jurys present at these courts ? [ You know it is said that jurys are too compassionate to the injuries suffered by other people whereas professionals are supposed to be less subjectives]
Posted by: Fièvre | April 17, 2013 at 08:15 AM