Did you see the video of the retired hospital worker, an emergency room technician, at the ACIP meeting earlier this year?
Although brief, and emotional, she hit a lot of anti-vaccine talking points and managed to somehow talk about adult autistics walking around the mall with diapers and helmets at least four times.
Retired Hospital Worker’s Flu Shot Speech at the ACIP Meeting
Praised by anti-vaccine folks for being “explosive” and a “bombshell,” all the speech really does is reveal how easily influenced some folks are by the modern anti-vaccine movement.
“I don’t come here with any degree.”
The only true and one of the most important things she says comes at the beginning. Although it certainly isn’t a requirement to have a degree to speak your mind, in a room full of scientists and doctors who study health policy and vaccines as their life’s work, she was there to tell them that they were wrong.
“No one believes in the flu shots. My colleagues. I didn’t. Because the efficacy – and I won’t give you data, you created the data. 10% one year. 18% another year. 40% at best. And the FluMist you gave to our children from 2 to 8 years for almost 4 years – it never worked. 3%. Oh well.”
In most years, the flu vaccine is at about 40 to 50% effective at preventing the flu, but has other benefits, including preventing a severe case of the flu, getting hospitalized, and keeping you from dying with the flu!
The idea that “no one believes in flu shots” is silly. It is certainly possible that no one this speaker knows believes in flu shots, as many anti-vaccine folks exist in an echo chamber and only hear and read negative things about vaccines.
“And then came your mandates. And then came your recommendations. So you know what, for four years before I retired I put a mask on. 12 hour shifts. It wasn’t easy to breath. But that’s how much I didn’t believe in your efficacy.”
Neither the CDC or ACIP mandate that hospital workers get a yearly flu shot.
It is recommended and it is the ethical thing to do, so that we protect our most vulnerable patients, including those who can’t be vaccinated, but the CDC doesn’t issue mandates.
“But the truth. The public’s truth. My observation – which is the first step in scientific theory – they didn’t believe in your shot.”
Making an observation is actually the first step in the scientific method. But you don’t stop there. Why don’t they believe in flu vaccines? Are they scared about all of the anti-vaccine propaganda that they see and read on the Internet or even from anti-vaccine friends or coworkers?
“This year I retired. I’m grateful for that, because my soul was sick about what I saw go on. That flu shot was crazy. First it was 10%. How can you do data? Which 10 got the shot out of a 100?”
How do they know which 10 got the shot?
Believe it or not, when they tell us about flu vaccine effectiveness, they are not basing that number on each and every person who got a flu vaccine. They do a study, enroll patients, see if they get flu, see if they had a flu vaccine, compare them to other patients, etc. It’s actually very easy to tell which ones got the shot…
“I’m looking around, some of you are my age. And if I’m mistaken, I apologize. But I’m in a generation where I got 7 shots. 26 years later, my daughter got 10. Her son got, maybe 60. My new grandson is expected to get maybe 72, and I just watched you add more.”
Yes, a lot has changed from her generation.
Our now vaccinated kids don’t die from Hib meningitis, Hib epiglotittis, pneumococcal disease, rotavirus, chicken pox, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, measles, etc., and they don’t get congenital rubella syndrome!
And for the record, her new grandson won’t need 72 shots or more.
They didn’t add any more at that ACIP meeting she gave her speech at either.
“Robert Kennedy, Jr – do you know what he says? His family started Special Olympics – there were no autistic kids. He says, where are the 40 year olds wearing diapers with helmets on at the mall if you misdiagnosed them. If you missed them, because you say it’s not vaccines, where were the special ed classes for people in my generation – there weren’t any. Because they didn’t exist.”
Special education classes didn’t exist back then, because we didn’t start getting things like that until passage of the Education for All Handicapped Children Act in 1975. Before that, many states actually had laws excluding special needs children from school!
So there weren’t any special ed classes because they weren’t available, not because they weren’t needed.
“I don’t care what you say that the autism and vaccines don’t exist – it does. I watched a perfectly healthy beautiful 2-year-old get those shots and become a severe autistic child. And guess what, he will be 40 and walking around the mall with a diaper on and helmet.”
This is everything that is wrong with the modern anti-vaccine movement.
Continuing to push the idea that vaccines are associated with autism and being locked into a deficit model of thinking about autism, so that when you look at your child, all you see is an adult with a “diaper on and helmet,” instead of beautiful autistic 2-year-old.
Ironically, she ended her speech with this quote by William Wilberforce.
“Having heard all of this you may choose to look the other way but you can never again say you did not know.”William Wilberforce
Nothing she said was true and some of it was actually offensive.
You can’t say you don’t know now.
More on the Retired Hospital Worker’s Flu Shot Speech at the ACIP Meeting
- VAXOPEDIA – Explaining the Correlation of Autism After Vaccines
- Twenty-Five Years of Progress in Educating Children with Disabilities Through IDEA
- Was a “Bombshell Speech” on the Flu Vaccine given at a Federal Vaccine Meeting?
- Busting Anti-Vaccine Myths While Supporting Autistic People
- Vaccine Advocates: Don’t Discriminate Against My Autistic Son
- Vaccines Don’t Cause Autism, But That’s Not The Point. Stop Being Ableist.
- Study – Influenza Vaccine Effectiveness in the United States during the 2015-2016 Season.
- Study – Influenza Vaccine Effectiveness in the United States During 2012–2013: Variable Protection by Age and Virus Type
- Stop attacking us and start listening to us: Autistic adults
- It is About Respect
- The Problems with Functioning Labels
- What is Wrong With Functioning Labels?
- Don’t let your children grow up in a world where society devalues their lives.