Adverse Reactions Cover-Up?
2 March 1994
—The National Vaccine Information
Center (NVIC) operated by Dissatisfied Parents
Together (DPT) says that a new Institute of Medicine
(IOM) report on the association between DPT vaccine and
permanent brain damage confirms that the vaccine can cause children
to suffer acute brain inflammation which sometimes leads to death or
permanent neurological damage.
The parent-consumer activist group also
charges that they have obtained evidence through the Freedom of
Information Act that the Department of Health and Human Services
(DHHS) is failing to properly monitor reports of death and
injuries following vaccination and that doctors around the country
are failing to report to DHHS deaths and injuries which occur after
In a year-long investigation of the Vaccine Adverse Reaction
Reporting System (VAERS) operated by the Food and Drug
Administration, NVIC/DPT analyzed VAERS computer discs used by the
FDA to store data on reports of deaths and injuries following DPT
vaccination. A total of 54,072 reports of adverse events following
vaccination were listed in a 39-month period from July 1990 to
November 1993 with 12,504 reports being associated with DPT vaccine,
including 471 deaths.
A wide variation in the numbers of reports associated with different
lots of DPT vaccine were discovered, with some lots listing many
more deaths and injuries than others. In one DPT vaccine lot, there
were 129 adverse events and nine deaths reported between September
1992 and September 1993. Most adverse events occurred within a few
days of vaccination and many reports also contained descriptions of
classic pertussis [whooping cough] vaccine reaction symptoms.
This particular lot met the FDA's
criteria for triggering an "investigation" (i.e., report of one
death or two serious injuries within a seven-day period) 11 times
within a 12-month period.
"There are some lots of vaccine
which are associated with many more deaths and injuries than
other lots. These lots are often referred to as 'hot lots'. Even
though the FDA's criteria for an investigation were triggered 11
times within a 12-month period on just one of the many lots we
looked at, we know for a fact the lot was never recalled.
The FDA has not recalled a
suspicious lot of DPT vaccine because of high numbers of deaths
and injuries associated with it for at least 15 years," said
Kathi Williams, NVIC/DPT Cofounder and Acting Director. "That is
because the position of those who operate VAERS is that the DPT
vaccine does not cause death or injury.
So the death and injury reports are
ignored. It is a shocking example of how little we know about
the true extent of vaccine-associated injuries and deaths."
From the Campaign Against
Fraudulent Medical Research Newsletter, 1994
The NVIC/DPT investigation was featured
on the 2nd March 1994 NBC News "Now with Tom Brokaw and Katie Couric"
show. At the end of February 1994, NVIC/DPT also conducted a survey
of 159 doctors' offices in seven states, including Arkansas,
California, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, New York, and Texas. When
asked the question, "In case of an adverse event after vaccination,
does the doctor report it and, if yes, to whom?" only 28 out of 159,
or 18 percent said they make a report to the FDA, CDC or state
In New York, only one out of 40 doctors'
offices confirmed that they report a death or injury following
"This shameful record of gross
underreporting of adverse events following vaccination by
doctors around the country coupled with the shameful cover-up of
vaccine-associated deaths and injuries by the federal government
is an example of why more and more parents are losing faith in
the mass vaccination system. Many times our organization must
help parents report their children's vaccine-associated death or
injury be-cause their doctor refuses to make a report," said
Barbara Loe Fisher, NVIC/DPT Co-founder and President.
"Parents are legally required to
vaccinate their children. Doctors should be forced to live up to
their legal duty to report, and DHHS should be forced to live up
to its responsibility to seriously investigate every
vaccine-associated death and injury and, especially, to identify
and recall lots of DPT vaccine associated with high numbers of
deaths and injuries."
In November 1991, while Fisher was a
member of the National Vaccine Advisory Committee operated by the DHHS, she presented the Committee with a detailed summary of the
stories of 90 families who had reported vaccine-associated deaths
and injuries to NVIC/DPT. Most of the 90 families with children or
grandchildren who had suffered deaths and injuries following DPT
vaccination, said that their doctors refused to make a vaccine
adverse event report to the DHHS.
NVIC/DPT had to help the families make
the report to DHHS.
Upon analysis of the VAERS computer discs, NVIC/DPT discovered
Suppressed Inventions and Other Discoveries that some of the deaths
and injuries which NVIC/DPT had helped families report to DHHS were
(1) never recorded in the VAERS
computer system, or
(2) recorded but the information
was inaccurate, or
(3) not adequately followed up.
The IOM recently released a report that
"The committee concludes that the
balance of evidence is consistent with a causal relation between
DPT and the forms of chronic nervous system dysfunction
described in the NCES in those children who experience a
serious, acute neurologic illness within seven days after
receiving DPT vaccine."
NVIC/DPT has maintained for more than a
decade that children can suffer permanent damage and die after
suffering a neurological complication following DPT vaccination, and
has always cited the validity of the data from the British
National Childhood Encephalopathy Study (NCES) which was
published in the early 1980s and upheld by IOM in their newest
The National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC)
operated by Dissatisfied Parents Together (DPT) is a
national, nonprofit organization located in Vienna, Virginia, USA.
Founded in 1982, NVIC/DPT represents parents and health care
professionals concerned about childhood diseases and vaccines and is
dedicated to preventing vaccine deaths and injuries through
education, and working to obtain the right of all citizens to make
informed, independent vaccination decisions.
In the mid-1980s DPT worked with Congress, physician organizations,
DHHS and vaccine manufacturers to create the National Childhood
Vaccine Injury Act of 1986, which set up the nation's first vaccine
injury compensation program and also mandated that doctors give
parents information on vaccine benefits and risks, record vaccine
lot numbers, and record and report to DHHS deaths and injuries
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