University of California Los Angeles School of Public Health Epidemiology Department Assistant Professor Eric L Horowitz PhD twenty years ago wrote an article published in the Los Angeles Times and reprinted in the International Herald Tribune titled Parents Should Know Both the Benefits and Risks of Vaccination, in which he wrote: “In the United States, vaccine safety has historically taken a backseat to development and rapid deployment. Remarkably, even today, we lack procedures for the systematic collection of valid long-term safety data. Documented cases of abuse of power, unethical studies, and the vaccine-induced injury and death may contribute to parents’ conceptions.
“Evidence of conflicts of interest involving U.S. Food and Drug Administration advisory panel members, the withdrawal of the recently approved vaccine for rotavirus (responsible for severe diarrhea), changes in the hepatitis B vaccine schedule because of possible harm from a mercury-containing preservative, and reports from the Institute of Medicine are also likely reasons for concern. The Institute concluded that (a) the measles-mumps-rubella and hepatitis B vaccines may cause anaphylaxis, a life threatening allergic reaction, and (b) the causes of many other adverse outcomes could not be determined because of insufficient data.
“Moreover, a recent study suggests that the most widely used current vaccines for whooping cough may be linked with anaphylaxis, while surveillance of the chickenpox vaccine revealed anaphylaxis, encephalopathy (a disorder affecting the brain) and other reactions.
“Thus, because of how vaccines are tested and marketed, without large, long-term safety studies before widespread public-school use, lack of confidence in vaccine safety may not be a misconception, but a scientifically justifiable concern.
“In fact, written informed consent may be warranted because there are insufficient data to accurately estimate the risks; current investigatory and systems current investigatory systems are not designed to assess the risks of rare events or adverse outcomes with long latent periods; and post-marketing surveillance is arguably still research.”