Tag: exemptions

Who Is Kenneth Stoller?

It is well known that there are doctors in California writing fake medical exemptions for kids so that they can avoid getting vaccinated and protected.

Tara Zandvliet isn't the only one writing a lot of medical exemptions for vaccines.
Tara Zandvliet isn’t the only one writing a lot of medical exemptions for vaccines.

Just who these doctors are is probabaly a bit of a mystery to a lot of people.

Who Is Kenneth Stoller?

In addition to Tara Zandvliet in San Diego, Kenneth Stoller has been writing a lot of medical exemptions for kids in California.

Did Kenneth Stoller get referrals for medical exemptions through anti-vaccine groups on Facebook?
Did Kenneth Stoller get referrals for medical exemptions through anti-vaccine groups on Facebook?

In fact, he has been writing so many that he got the attention of the City Attorney in San Francisco, who is investigating “whether the San Francisco doctor has been unlawfully providing medical exemptions that allowed parents to avoid vaccinating their children, which would put those children, their playmates, their schoolmates, and the general public at greater risk of contracting a communicable disease.”

In a response to this investigation, which includes a subpoena for his medical records, Ken Stoller admits that he “issues exemptions based on considerations not listed as CDC contraindications and precaution.”

“In conclusion, the invalid interpretation that the determination of the MTFHR variant is an acceptable reason for vaccine exemptions is not based on the precepts of replication and rigorous clinical testing. It is unfortunate that the loose application of our exploratory report has been misinterpreted and used to inappropriately justify exemption of children from medically indicated vaccines.”

David M Reif, Ph.D. on the Inappropriate Citation of Vaccine Article

Since the CDC list of contraindications and precautions is what most people consider the standard of care for a medical exemption, it is a little hard to understand what his defense will be? It isn’t the continued use of MTHFR testing, is it?

“There is no published information as of yet as to how many of the 10 measles cases in children were the wild measles strain, (i.e., unvaccinated children, versus children who contracted symptoms from the vaccine, like the 38% in the Disneyland outbreak), or how many were vaccinated and contracted wild measles due to primary vaccine failure, which may be 10% or more.”

Complaint/verified Petition to Quash an Administrative Subpoena, for Declaratory and Injunctive relief against the Subpoena and in Support of an Alternative Standard of Vaccine Exemptions Recognized Under California Law

Is he going to push the myth that kids in California have vaccine strain measles?

This is not vaccine strain measles, an idea that anti-vaccine folks continue to push to scare parents away from vaccinating and protecting their kids.
This is not vaccine strain measles, an idea that anti-vaccine folks continue to push to scare parents away from vaccinating and protecting their kids.

Although some vaccine strains were detected in 2015, they were not in people who actually had measles.

“During measles outbreaks, it is important to be able to rapidly distinguish between measles cases and vaccine reactions to avoid unnecessary outbreak response measures such as case isolation and contact investigations.”

Roy et al on Rapid Identification of Measles Virus Vaccine Genotype by Real-Time PCR

They are people with a febrile rash illness. The rash and fever is a vaccine side effect. It is not vaccine-associated measles.

And primary vaccine failure is not very common at all, which is why most cases are in those who are unvaccinated.

Kenneth Stoller on Vaccines and Autism

What else does Dr. Stoller believe?

“For many children, the enviornmental illness that we have incorrectly been calling autism, is actually an illness that has been exacerbated by too many toxic vaccines. Contrary to popular belief, there are plenty of people in governmental circles who know that certain vaccine ingredients, such as ethyl mercury, found in the perservative thimerosal, will cause neurobehavioral problems and negatively impact the health of vaccinated children.”

Kenneth Stoller

Autism as encephalopathy, biomarkers, testing urine porphyrins, chelation therapy, detoxification, hyperbaric oxygen therapy – it’s all there. And it is all the type of autism-vaccine misinformation that experts say to avoid.

Many will wonder why the medical board hasn’t paid him a visit before the City Attorney in San Francisco came calling.

Is it a surprise that Kenneth Stoller found 'valid health reasons' for them to skip their daughter's vaccines?
Is it a surprise that Kenneth Stoller found ‘valid health reasons’ for them to skip their daughter’s vaccines?

But few should have any doubt that SB 276 needs to pass.

More on Kenneth Stoller

Who Is Arthur Caplan?

Plenty of folks claim to be experts on vaccines.

Some are experts because they study epidemiology, others because they study immunology or infectious disease.

And then there are the experts in vaccination ethics.

Who Is Arthur Caplan?

With a Ph.D. in the history of philosophy of science, Dr. Art Caplan went on to co-found The Hastings Center, a bioethics research institute.

Arthur Caplan does a good job of calling out folks who push anti-vaccine misinformation.
Arthur Caplan does a good job of calling out folks who push anti-vaccine misinformation.

He has since written dozens of books and nearly a thousand articles in peer-reviewed journals, working most recently at New York University’s Langone Medical Center, where he is the founding head of the Division of Medical Ethics.

“When politicians ignore the evidence, fail to cite appropriate medical authorities, and rely on hearsay and rumor, with the result that people — out of ignorance or error — don’t vaccinate their children, we can and should deny them elective office. When a doctor does so, we should demand that he forfeit his right to use his medical degree to misinform, confuse or lie.”

Arthur L. Caplan on Revoke the license of any doctor who opposes vaccination

It shouldn’t be a surprise that Art Caplan has a lot to say about vaccines.

“Faulty ethical thinking is to blame. We are elevating parents’ rights to make misinformed decisions over the rights of children to get important vaccines. Infants and young children are blocked from receiving their routine childhood immunizations by parents who espouse an aberrant ideology of choice or are being duped by anti-vaccine groups. In so doing, they are violating children’s rights to health, welfare and equal opportunity.”

Arthur L. Caplan and Peter J. Hotez on Anti-vaccine misinformation denies children’s rights

He also has a lot to say about measles, other vaccine-preventable diseases, and how to get control back before these outbreaks turn into true epidemics.

“What should we be doing to protect our communities, our children, and ourselves? We should halt the spread of anti-vaccine misinformation and take steps to stop nonmedical vaccine exemptions. We need to restore vaccines and vaccinations as the “new normal” in America.”

Arthur L Caplan on Let’s Treat Measles Seriously

Are you still thinking about skipping or delaying your child’s vaccines?

After reading some of Dr. Caplan’s work, you should know that it’s not safe, has no benefits, and isn’t the ethical thing to do.

More on Arthur Caplan and Vaccine Ethics

Fact Checking the Truth About Vaccination Rates in California

In general, higher immunization rates should translate into lower rates of disease.

And it is true that in most states, including California, overall immunization rates are up.

So what’s happening?

Fact Checking the Truth About Vaccination Rates in California

Everyone knows what’s happening!

Clusters of unvaccinated kids and adults.

Pockets of susceptibles.

Abuse and overuse of vaccine exemptions.

And folks who continue to scare parents away from vaccinating and protecting their kids.

There are measles outbreaks in this part of northern California...
There are measles outbreaks in this part of northern California…

What’s the truth about California’s immunization rates and the reason they are still having outbreaks of measles and other vaccine-preventable diseases?

“Oh, but wait! What do you mean we have higher vaccination coverage NOW than we did back then? How can that be? I thought rates have been declining steadily for two decades putting us in a terrible position of falling wayyyy below herd immunity levels!?

I thought the reason we are now “in danger of disease outbreaks” is because of the increasing number of children being exempted from vaccines? Hold on, wait. You’re telling me there are LESS kids exempted now than there were in the year 2000 when we were free of outbreaks because of “high vaccination rates”? That can’t be right…can it?”

Melissa Floyd

You aren’t going to get it from anti-vaccine folks

73% is actually pretty good for a Waldorf school!
73% is actually pretty good for a Waldorf school!

But it’s not surprising that you get misinformation about herd immunity from folks who think vaccines don’t actually create herd immunity.

And it shouldn’t be surprising that you can’t hide in the herd when your herd is a cluster of unvaccinated kids at a Waldorf school.

Vaccines are safe, with few risks, and are obviously necessary. Vaccinate your kids and help stop the outbreaks.

More on Fact Checking the Truth About Vaccination Rates in California

Why Should Medical Exemptions Be Based on CDC Contraindications?

Getting a medical exemption for vaccines isn’t controversial.

Or at least it shouldn’t be.

Why Should Medical Exemptions Be Based on CDC Contraindications?

As many people know though, some people have been taking advantage of the fact that medical exemptions weren’t clearly defined in California’s vaccine law.

Who are the doctors handing out fake medical exemptions in California?
Who are the doctors handing out fake medical exemptions in California?

Are there just a few doctors taking advantage of the California law?

“But at 105 schools in the state, 10% or more of kindergartners had a medical exemption in the school year that ended last month, according to a Los Angeles Times analysis of state data.”

Pushback against immunization laws leaves some California schools vulnerable to outbreaks

Is 10% a lot?

In one recent report, Vaccination Coverage for Selected Vaccines, Exemption Rates, and Provisional Enrollment Among Children in Kindergarten — United States, 2016–17 School Year, the median rate of medical exemptions in the US was just 0.2%, with a range of <0.1 to 1.5%.

In West Virginia and Mississippi, states that don’t allow non-medical exemptions and where criteria for medical exemptions are fairly strict, the rates were 0.1 and 0.3% respectively.

And that’s about what you would expect, as there are very few true contraindications or precautions to getting vaccinated.

So yes, 10% is an awful lot and that’s a good sign that it is more than just a few doctors taking advantage of the law.

“If a child has a medical exemption to immunization, a physician licensed to practice medicine in New York State must certify that the immunization is detrimental to the child’s health. The medical exemption should specify which immunization is detrimental to the child’s health, provide information as to why the immunization is contraindicated based on current accepted medical practice, and specify the length of time the immunization is medically contraindicated, if known.”

Dear Colleague letter regarding guidelines for use of immunization exemptions

Why do most other states have so few medical exemptions?

Mostly because there are very few true medical reasons to skip or delay a child’s vaccines!

They include, but aren’t limited to, the contraindications and precautions listed in the package insert for each vaccine (the contraindications and warnings sections…) and by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices.

They don’t include many other things that are “incorrectly perceived as contraindications to vaccination,” such as things in the family medical history of the child, eczema (unless they are getting the smallpox vaccine), colic, sleep apnea, or being a picky eater.

Is everything a vaccine injury?
Is everything a vaccine injury?

It should be obvious.

Medical exemptions for vaccines should be based on CDC criteria because some folks think that everything is a vaccine injury.

More on Medical Exemptions