Dachel Media Review: Airport Autism Test Run, Fight for Rights
By Anne Dachel
Read Anne's commentary and view the links after the jump.
Feb 5, 2014, NBC Connecticut: Battle Over Vaccinations Thrives in States With High Exemptions
Feb 4, 2014, Florida Times-Union (Jacksonville): Kids with autism get airport test run: 'Next time the anxiety level will not be so high'
Feb 4, 2014, CNN: Opinion: What we need from our surgeon general
Feb 4, 2014, UK Daily Autism Newscast: Are People with Autism at a Higher Risk for Homelessness?
Feb 4, 2014, McLean VA Sun Gazette: Advertisement Perpetuated Misconceptions About Vaccines
Feb 3, 2014, News 10 Yuba City CA: Mother of autistic student fights for son's right to education
Feb 3, 2014, AZCentral.com: Legislators, advocates building a safety net for runaways with autism
The vast majority of parents follow vaccination recommendations. But a vocal minority of skeptics keeps the debate alive.
Many of these activists believe vaccinations put certain children at higher risk of other serious maladies, such as autism. Public health officials say study after study has shown no connection
Paul Offit, a pediatrician who runs the Division of Infectious Diseases and the Vaccine Education Center at Philadelphia Children’s Hospital, is one of the most outspoken critics of the vaccination backlash. But he also understands why the opposition has gained momentum. . . .
This reporter cites studies from the people who run the vaccine program and the word of millionaire vaccine developer Paul Offit as proof vaccines don't cause autism. (And he failed to mention Offit's conflict of interest.) I posed six comments.
Florida Times-Union (Jacksonville)
Flight 7920, which traveled only a mile or so, was part of Jacksonville International Airport's first Wings for Autism event, an "airport dress rehearsal" for area families with autistic children. Thirty families obtained boarding passes, went through security, ate boxed lunches together, waited, walked down the tunnel, boarded the plane, waited some more and experienced the plane's movement as it was towed from the terminal to the runway and back. . . .
Wings for Autism was created in 2011 by the Charles River Center in Massachusetts and the Massachusetts Port Authority to help alleviate some of the stress that people with sensory and developmental disorders experience when traveling by air. Also, the free program helps airport personnel learn how to accommodate children with special needs.
The Jacksonville program on Jan. 29 was among the first, after Boston, Montreal and Seattle, and will be followed this year by events in Anchorage and Tulsa, with negotiations under way with other airports.
So far, six airlines are participating.
Why didn't airlines have to do this 25 years ago? It must be because of all the better diagnosing going on.
Dr. Vivek Murthy, the Obama administration's nominee for surgeon general, will visit the U.S. Capitol on Tuesday for his Senate confirmation hearing.
Many may not even know we need to appoint someone to the position, but they shouldn't fret. They're not alone. The role of "America's doctor" has declined over the last several decades to near-irrelevance.
At a time when Americans have fallen behind on key health metrics across the board, the nation's leading spokesman for public health has less influence than ever before. The office has endured everything from political interference to undersized budgets, making it impossible to carry out the job effectively. . . .
Stand up for vaccines
Enough is enough. Though dozens of peer-reviewed studies have refuted the extreme claims of the anti-vaccination movement, the idea that vaccines are inherently dangerous somehow persists.
States such as Oregon and Colorado have seen thousands of parents exempt their children from immunizations. Katie Couric ran a national television program stoking fears about the safety of human papillomavirus vaccines. Last year, congressional representatives introduced the Vaccine Safety Study Act to evaluate whether vaccines cause autism -- apparently, it's a bipartisan issue now.
Americans have to understand the science is clear. Vaccines are among the most powerful public health tools in the history of human medicine. Without them, we expose others and ourselves to terrible, needless suffering. The surgeon general should release a report defending the facts and get the message out.
Nathaniel P. Morris is a student at Harvard Medical School and he wrote this op-ed piece.
We need a surgeon general who will "... release a report defending the facts and get the message out."
Oh goody! Another health official saying studies show no link. I'm sure it'll end the controversy overnight if the SURGEON GENERAL SAYS IT TOO.
No comment section.
Over 40% of America’s homeless population are people with disabilities, according to a 2008 annual report on homelessness from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
The research found that 42.8% of adults using homeless shelters had a disability, compared to 37.1% in 2007. According to the report, this increase was “unusually large for a single-year change.” . . .
While the sample size for this study was small, the significantly high rate of individuals with autism suggests that homeless individuals who are “entrenched sleepers” are at a higher risk of being on the autism spectrum.
Why are individuals with autism more likely to be unemployed, and therefore also more likely to become homeless?
Autism Daily Newscast has nice stories designed to make autism sound like something that only requires awareness and services.
This report actually makes no sense. "With the rate of autism rising worldwide, it is clear that the problem will only get bigger in the future. Without the proper supports, many people will fall through the cracks into an uncertain future."
The rate is rising WORLDWIDE. WHY? IF, as we're told adults with autism are among the homeless, FIND THEM. I want to see the 30, 40, and 50 year olds living on the streets. I want to see the nonverbal, hand-flapping, spinning adults out there.
ON THE SITE.... "What are the causes of Autism? Scientists have yet to discover a cause for autism, though there are several theories. Most would agree that there is some genetic component, though the increasing rates of the disorder suggest that there must be some environmental factors as well. Some parents, including actress Jenny McCarthy, have felt that childhood vaccinations triggered their child’s autism, but this theory has been disproved. Studies have suggested links to environmental toxins, but no definitive cause has been discovered yet."
Editor: I was dismayed to see the full-page ad for the National Vaccine Information Center in the Jan. 23 Sun Gazette.
I checked out the Web site, and it is obvious that the purpose of the site is to spread fear, uncertainty and doubt. For example, the site pushed the long discredited idea that vaccines cause autism. . . .
I didn't even address the claim about vaccines not causing autism. This is a call for censorship. This person wants only one side to be heard.
The National Vaccine Information Center asks for informed consent for people receiving vaccinations. Vaccines, like any medical procedure or product, carry risks. Everyone should be able to make an informed and free choice when it comes to immunizations. It's hard to argue with that premise.
The public needs to realize that when it comes to vaccination, neither the doctor nor the vaccine maker have any liability. They're protected by federal law. Instead, injured parties have to appeal to a federal program where they're up against government lawyers defending government approved vaccines using government money. Few people ever get their day in court.
Vaccinations have side effects. This should be an informed choice.
The hearings that will determine whether a severely autistic and diabetic student in Yuba City be allowed to return to school with a private nurse got underway on Monday.
David Swanson, 21, hasn't attended school since February 2013.
"It's not his fault," Swanson's mother Heather Houston said. "But he's the one being punished for it."
It's an part of an ongoing battle with the Yuba City Unified School District and the Sutter County superintendent of schools that includes allegations of discrimination and retaliation. Houston claims district officials are violating her son's right to a free and public education and failed to follow his Individualized Educational Program (IEP).
Children today are sick and disabled. Schools are left to deal with the situation. Imagine when all those like David Swanson age out of school with nowhere to go.
Sarina Ehler, 12, who is autistic, sorts colored rubber bands as her dog, Cashew, looks on. In December, Sarina tried to run away, a behavior that research shows is common among children who have autism. . . .
Half of autistic children wander away. This should not be a surprise. Stories about missing ASD kids, ones who wander away, drowning victims, are common.
We don't ask why. It's autism.
I have one question: Why are there never stories about missing middle aged and elderly people with autism? Do these children outgrow wandering
I can predict that the stories will be changing and soon the missing autistic adult will also be commonplace. I'm sure we'll get used it also.
Bob, interesting points you make about high vaccine compliance and child health statistics. If Offit really wanted to convince people about safety, that would be something you would think someone like himself would really go into. But no...maybe that's what helps him to "understand why the opposition has gained momentum."
Posted by: jen | February 06, 2014 at 11:23 AM
"The state with the highest rate of non-medical exemptions is Oregon, with 6.4 percent. The lowest is in New Mexico, at .4 percent."
How difficult would it be for Offit to publish the rate of autism, allergies, asthma, juvenile type 1 diabetes, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, SIDS, etc .. in the State of Oregon .. to compare with the states that have a much higher rate of vaccination compliance?
If I am not mistaken, New Jersey is among the states with the highest rate of autism .. and .. it also has more recommended and approved vaccinations for children .. such as .. beginning at six months of age .. annual flu each and every year.
So .. where is the evidence that children in New Jersey have healthier autoimmune systems than in states that do not have as many recommended vaccines .. as well as .. states that have lower compliance vaccination rates?
I mean it gets a little tedious to keep reading Dr Offit's comments about "outbreaks" of measles or whooping cough as evidence of the benefits of vaccines .. but .. I suspect he would have far better results if he would address the fears that parents have regarding those chronic autoimmune diseases I already mentioned.
If I were Dr. Offit .. I would have amassed a mountain of "scientific research" clearly showing the children in highly vaccinated states have far better autoimmune health ... than children in those less compliant vaccination states.
That he hasn't done so YEARS AGO .. only makes me suspect he is fearful the results may not be to his benefit.
Posted by: Bob Moffitt | February 06, 2014 at 07:20 AM
"Are People with Autism at a Higher Risk for Homelessness?"
Noooooooo! I do not want to allow that thought into my brain and heart!
Posted by: Twyla | February 05, 2014 at 11:48 PM
Apparently the WHO has just issued a dire prediction that cancer cases will explode worldwide within the next few decades. It's getting wide coverage. The answer? Vaccinations: HPV, Hep B, and maybe you didn't know this, but the flu vaccine will prevent cancer too. Yes, avoiding all that inflammation from having the flu will prevent cancer. The doctor interviewed for this story says so. http://healthyliving.msn.com/health-wellness/cancer-cases-will-rise-to-22-million-a-year?ocid=anshlth11
And he says to stop smoking too and to eat right. Of course, he doesn't go into too much detail about how to eat right.
Posted by: Linda | February 05, 2014 at 07:32 PM