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Have these parents have been reading Dr. Bob?

As I said in my previous post, Dr. Robert Sears has something of a fixation about aluminum in vaccines. Given that the father of the child mentioned in the article below is an antivax loon (as my dear friend Stacy likes to put it ;) ), I don’t know that Dr. Sears is directly responsible for this particular scared Chinese-Australian mommy, but his comments on the subject of aluminum in his Vaccine Book (which are not essentially different from what he writes in Mothering Ragazine) probably gives people like this that much more faux legitimacy:

A SYDNEY couple was on the run with their two-day-old baby last night after the Department of Community Services took out a Supreme Court order to have the boy vaccinated against hepatitis B.

The parents, from Croydon Park, fled their home on Thursday to avoid police and DOCS officers after they refused to have their son vaccinated at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital. They told the Herald yesterday that they believed aluminium in the vaccine could cause him more damage than contracting hepatitis B.

The child’s mother, from China, was diagnosed with hepatitis B several years ago, but both parents believe the illness, which can cause liver cancer and cirrhosis, can be managed more effectively than any potential neurological damage from the vaccine.

Vaccinations are not compulsory in Australia but it is NSW Health policy that parents of all babies born to hepatitis-B-positive mothers are offered immunoglobulin for the child within 12 hours of birth and four doses of the vaccine over six months…

…The court order, obtained late on Thursday after a DOCS officer found the house deserted, states the baby needed to be vaccinated by midnight that day, but the father is adamant he will stay on the run indefinitely.

“I don’t agree with the one-size-fits-all policy. He is a small baby [2.49kg] and they give the same dose to babies twice his size. I just wanted time to get more information about the vaccine.”

But he admitted he had also refused to have his daughter vaccinated for hepatitis B after her birth in 2005 and has not had her screened for the illness since. His father, who is a member of the Australian Vaccination Network, which lobbies against compulsory vaccinations for children, said humans were incapable of breaking down aluminium and the vaccinations presented “a lot of dangers and lot of big questions marks”.

Keep in mind that this is a woman who has known positive hepatitis B status. Depending on her immunological profile (whether or not she also is hepatitis e antigen positive, indicative of active replication of the virus – which some 30% of Far Asian hepatitis B carriers are), her child has between 5-90% chance of acquiring hepatitis B perinatally and becoming a chronic carrier himself. Any risk from aluminum is very much hypothetical (and in the next post, we’ll see just how hypothetical). But that’s OK, right? I mean, Bob Sears and his buddies like telling us that hepatitis B is merely an STD that a newborn can’t possibly catch…though to be honest, I doubt even he would consider this wise. I hope.

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5 Responses

  1. If they catch this family, they should remove BOTH children from the home and test them for Hepatitis. If either has contracted it, they should be removed from the home permanently and the parents should be charged with reckless endangerment, neglect, something. This is horrible.

  2. It would be farce if it wasn’t so tragic. The thing that gets me is how defensive the anti-vax crowd are. As each thesis is discredited they find ever more esoteric toxins on which to pin their hopes. What next?

  3. Reading items like that one really makes me think there should be a test before you can become a parent. Any and all references to Mothering as a source of vaccine information would result in the necessity of turning over certain body parts to more responsible parties.

  4. Thanks for the update, Ticktock. Not that much can be done now, other than vaccinate, monitor the child to see if he hasn’t already contracted hepatitis B, and hope for the best. :(

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