Measles in West Auckland (2011)

Measles in West Auckland 2011

Update

24/10/11

Since this page was created, there have been cases of measles in many areas of New Zealand.  If you are a parent who is looking for information about measles, treatments for measles and the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella)  vaccine, you may like to visit the site www.naturalmedicine.net.nz/articles and read the article titled “What’s worse? Measles or the Vaccine”.   The letter to the principal of Oratia School (below) also includes information about treatments for measles.

If you are a parent whose child has been barred from school due to his or her having had one dose of MMR vaccine (or none) instead of the two doses on the NZ vaccination schedule, you can contact No Forced Vaccines the site coordinator through the Contact form for  information about your rights.) Adults born after 1969 who are not vaccinated according to Ministry of Health recommendations who may have been advised that they have to quarantine themselves can also contact the site coordinator through the Contact form.

 

Introduction

In June 2011 Oratia School in West Auckland has barred  approximately 100 children from attending school as there have been (according to a member of the school community) four cases of measles among children attending the school.

Parents of affected children were notified that their children were barred from school for twelve days were not notified personally.  Instead, their children were sent home from school on Thursday afternoon with letters in their school bags. Children were allowed to return to school immediately if their parents got them vaccinated – even though they may already have been incubating the disease and infectious.

The way that the school handled the outbreak  meant that it has been difficult parents of the children who have been banned to find out who else is also in the same situation so that they could offer each other mutual support.  I was contacted by a parent who would like to hear from other parents in the same situation. If you are a parent in a sithis situation and would like to be in touch with someone else, please email the No Forced Vaccines  coordinator using the Contact form on this site to request that your contact details are passed along.

Below is a letter that was sent (by email) to the principal and Board of Trustees at the school. No reply (or even acknowledgement) of this letter has yet been received. (The links to research in the letter are live so that readers can check the references.)

 

Katherine Smith, editor
The New Zealand Journal of Natural Medicine
PO Box 44-128
Point Chevalier
Auckland 1246

Dear Ms Swanpoel (and Board of Trustees members),

A member of your school community copied me with the letter that you sent home with pupils regarding the fact that a few children at the school have developed measles.

As some of the information in the letter is inaccurate, I would like to take this opportunity to correct it.  I hope that you will share this letter with parents so that they can become better informed about the measles, its prevention and treatment.

Treatments for measles

Your letter to parents states that paracetamol may be used in the treatment of measles.  Paracetamol is a common treatment for fever, however, generally speaking it is bad practice to give antipyretic drugs for the purpose of reducing a fever to someone suffering from an infection.

This is because reducing the fever can reduce the efficiency of the immune response to the virus. (Aspirin should never be given to children since there is a risk of Reyes syndrome which is potentially fatal.)

A recent review of the use of antipyretics (fever-lowering drugs) stated:

“Antipyretics may be harmful

“Immunity

“Too many parents and health workers think that infection is bad, infection causes fever, and that therefore fever is bad. In fact, fever is often a beneficial host response to infection, and moderate fever improves immunity. Therefore, it may not be a good idea to give drugs that reduce temperature to patients with severe infection. I have recently reviewed the results of 9 controlled trials in mammals of the effect of paracetamol or aspirin on mortality or virus excretion. Four trials found that aspirin increased mortality in bacterial or viral infection. Viral shedding was increased by paracetamol or aspirin in 3 studies, possibly increased in one, and not affected in two (one used only pharyngeal washings, and one had only 9 subjects in the aspirin and placebo groups). One study found that antibody production was impaired by both paracetamol and aspirin, but no effect on antibody production was detected in the study with only 9 subjects in the aspirin and placebo groups. This evidence suggests that aspirin and paracetamol increase mortality in severe infection, and that they may prolong the infection and reduce the antibody response in mild disease.“  [Emphasis added]

http://www.australianprescriber.com/magazine/18/2/33/5/

NB:  It is also important to realise the paracetamol can be fatal in overdose and to keep all products containing paracetamol (especially the attractively flavoured syrups) out of reach of children.  (In the event of accidental overdose, prompt treatment in hospital with the antidote n-acetyl cysteine is usually lifesaving.  The patient requires treatment as soon as possible after the poisoning event – even if s/he does not yet appear to be unwell.)

Supportive Care

Regarding the other information about treatment in the letter sent to parents, rest and plenty of fluids are important for children or adults suffering from any acute infection such as the measles.  However, it is untrue that there are no treatments for measles except for supportive treatment.  Other  treatments for measles include vitamins A and D and vitamin C.

Orthomolecular (Nutritional) Treatments for Measles

It was reported in the British Medical Journal as early as 1932 that a cod liver oil concentrate containing vitamins A and D reduced mortality in children who had been hospitalised due to measles.

http://www.whale.to/a/ellison1.html

Another study in the 1930s found that children hospitalised for measles who given vitamin D or a combination of vitamin A and D did not have a lower death rate than children given the standard treatment.  However, those given vitamin D were less likely to develop pneumonia than the children given both vitamins A and D  or standard treatment.  (Most of the deaths among hospitalised children occurred in those who already had pneumonia at the time of their admission to hospital.)

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1975452/pdf/archdisch01484-0033.pdf

The lower rate of pneumonia among children who were given vitamin D supplements may possibly be able to be explained by new research that shows that vitamin D can increase production in white blood cells of one of the antimicrobial compounds that help to defend the body against viruses and bacteria.

http://web.archive.org/web/20080419071840/http://www.sciencenews.org/articles/20061111/bob9.asp

More recent research has focused on giving large doses of vitamin A. High doses of vitamin A have been shown to reduce the risk of death in children aged less than two years who have this illness.  (Measles is usually a mild-moderate illness in otherwise healthy children in developed countries; however, in countries where children often suffer from malnutrition, measles can be a significant cause of death.)

http://www2.cochrane.org/reviews/en/ab001479.html

Measles is listed in Curing the Incurable by Thomas Levy, MD (ISBN 1-4010-6963-0 ) as being “Curable and Preventable” with vitamin C and includes some of Dr Klenner’s case histories including that of an uneventful recovery of a child suffering from measles encephalitis (inflammation of the brain).  Dr Klenner gave his patients very high doses of vitamin C by injection.  (According to the NZ Ministry of Health encephalitis occurs in one in 1000 people who get measles; however in 1997-8 measles there were over 2000 reported cases of measles and only one case of measles (disease)-related encephalitis.)  Prompt treatment of encephalitis, regardless of the cause is important since the condition may result in death or survivors may be brain damaged.  Giving vitamin C supplements orally is a common home treatment for infections and is very safe – except for people who have certain rare genetic conditions such as glucose-6-dehydrogenase deficiency and sickle cell anaemia who cannot tolerate high doses of vitamin C – and are at risk of serious, potentially fatal side effects. (Blood tests can be used to determine whether or not someone has these or similar conditions.)  High doses of vitamin C in anyone can in some cases cause osmotic diarrhoea which can be managed by reducing the dose until the bowel movements are better formed.

http://orthomolecular.org/library/jom/1999/articles/1999-v14n03-p143.shtml

Parents who are interested in their children being treated with nutritional medicine should consult a health professional such as a naturopath or doctor who has training in nutritional medicine so that doses of nutrients can be tailored to their child’s age and weight.  While vitamin C (with the exceptions mentioned above) is very safe even at very high doses (as any excess can be safely excreted) some vitamin C products may contain excipients such as aspartame (additive 951) which is carcinogenic can cause other adverse reactions in many people.   Moreover vitamins A and D are fat soluble and stored in the liver and excessive dosages have the potential to cause toxicity.

Vaccination

MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccination appears to be reasonably effective in preventing measles infections – at least in the short term.  However, the vaccine has many side effects that are not detailed on the information materials produced by the Ministry of Health or the website www.immune.org.nz which is mostly funded by the Ministry of Health and also acknowledges funding from “private industry” – presumably pharmaceutical companies. http://www.immune.org.nz/?t=1021 )  IMAC’s site used to have a page that displayed the logos of five major vaccine companies that the organisation acknowledged as sponsors, but it was removed after it was publicised.  (The list of side effects acknowledged by the manufacturer of the MMR vaccine usually used in NZ may be read at this link:  http://www.medsafe.govt.nz/profs/Datasheet/m/MMRIIinj.pdf
Currently Priorix is being used in NZ.  Its datasheet is http://www.medsafe.govt.nz/profs/Datasheet/p/Priorixvac.pdf

Christians (and others) who oppose abortion may decide against MMR vaccination for themselves or their children because of the use of cells derived from aborted foetal tissue in the production of the MMR vaccines used in NZ.

http://www.medsafe.govt.nz/profs/Datasheet/m/MMRIIinj.pdf
http://www.medsafe.govt.nz/profs/Datasheet/p/Priorixvac.pdf
http://www.rtl.org/prolife_issues/LifeNotes/pdf/Vaccines.pdf

Brain damage and autism are also associated with MMR vaccination, as evidenced by the following study:

“These results show that primary pediatric MMR vaccination in children is associated with a marked Increase in serious neurological disorders in comparison to DTwcP [Diptheria, Tetanus whole cell Pertussis] vaccination.  The increase is statistically significant for cerebellar ataxia, autism, mental retardation and permanent brain damage following primary pediatric MMR vaccination in comparison to DTwcP vaccination.” [emphasis added]

http://image.guardian.co.uk/sys-files/Society/documents/2003/05/20/MMRresearch.pdf

This is not the only study linking MMR vaccination to autism.

http://www.nationalautismassociation.org/press0053106.php

I hope that you will share this letter with parents so that they can be aware that giving paracetamol to a child with measles may increase the duration of their illness and also possibly make them vulnerable to complications.  I hope you will also inform parents about the orthomolecular treatment options that may be helpful if their children develop measles.

Yours sincerely,

Katherine Smith

Edit

“Early protection” measles (MMR) programme

Possible Health Risks from the “Early Protection” Measles (MMR) Vaccination Programme

 

Many parents will be aware that the MMR vaccine is controversial due to research linking it to regressive autism and bowel disease. (See: http://www.ageofautism.com/2010/05/peer-reviewed-papers-support-findings.html  (A chronic infection in the bowel from the attenuated (weakened) live measles viruses from the MMR vaccine appears to be the trigger for the condition in some vaccine recipients.)

After one dose of MMR vaccine over 90% of recipients develop an antibody response consistent with protection from the disease, according to IMAC (See http://www.immune.org.nz/?t=753  )

It therefore appears that a a second dose of MMR vaccine may be unnecessary for most people.

Lowering the age of a baby’s first vaccination with MMR to twelve months and then giving a second dose as soon as 28 days (or one month) later may be more likely to cause side effects than the usual schedule of giving the first dose of MMR vaccine at 15 months and a second dose at age four years.  There is some evidence that being vaccinated with the MMR at a younger age (under the age of three years) is associated with increased risk of regressive autism.  (See: http://legacy.autism.com/triggers/vaccine/wakefielddsouza.htm ) Two doses of MMR vaccine before a baby is  even 14 months old could theoretically put a child at a higher risk of developing this devastating condition.

Secondly, according to the manufacturer of the MMR vaccine most commonly used in NZ some MMR vaccine recipients may still have  the vaccine-strain rubella viruses in their nose and throat as late as 28 days after receiving an MMR vaccination.  It is possible that giving a second dose of the vaccine to a baby who may only just have mounted an effective immune response to the live viruses in the first dose of MMR vaccine could severely stress the baby’s immune system.  It is conceivable that babies vaccinated according to this schedule could  potentially be more vulnerable to developing a chronic infection with the vaccine strain of the  measles virus.

Information about measles and the MMR vaccine

If you are a parent who is looking for information about measles, treatments for measles and the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella)  vaccine, you may like to visit the site www.naturalmedicine.net.nz/articles/ and read the article titled “What’s worse? Measles or the Vaccine?”, as well as reading the datasheet for the vaccine which may be downloaded from this link:  http://www.medsafe.govt.nz/profs/Datasheet/dsform.asp  (The MMR vaccine usually used in NZ is called MMR-II (TM)).

The letter to the principal of Oratia School at this link http://www.noforcedvaccines.org/measles-in-west-auckland/  also includes information about treatments for measles.

Information for people facing discrimination because of their    vaccination status

If you are a parent whose child has been barred from school due to his or her having had one dose of MMR vaccine (or none) instead of the two doses on the NZ vaccination schedule, and want to know your rights in this situation you can contact the site coordinator for No Forced Vaccines through the Contact form.  Adults born after 1969 who are not vaccinated according to MMR recommendations who may have been advised that they cannot attend work may also contact the site coordinator through the Contact form.

Welcome

Welcome to the website of No Forced Vaccines an association which aims to maintain New Zealand’s parents’ rights to make the decisions about vaccination they think right for their child/ren without coercion or financial penalty – as well as the rights of adults to choose freely whether or not they are vaccinated.

We welcome new members.  If you would like join No Forced Vaccines, please visit the following link http://www.noforcedvaccines.org/join-us/

The key principles on which No Forced Vaccines were founded may be read at this link: http://www.noforcedvaccines.org/information/key-principles/

Key Principles

Vaccines are medications which have potential risks as well as potential benefits. There is debate in the scientific community about the efficacy and safety of many vaccines.

The decision whether or not to take any medication is one that must be made by the individual concerned.  It is a fundamental human right to be able to choose one’s own medical treatment without coercion.  Adults make decisions about their own medical  treatment.  In the case of children, responsibility for decisions about their medical care rests with their parents or guardians.

Children and young people have a right to education.  Any policy that restricts access to education (at early childhood, primary, secondary, or tertiary level) on the basis of a child or student’s vaccination status is discriminatory and unethical.

Children and young people in the formal education system have the right to the best teachers available.  NZ is currently facing staff shortages in many areas of the education sector.  Any policy that seeks to coerce teachers (or other staff employed in the education sector) to be vaccinated is unethical and will likely lead to an exodus of intelligent and hardworking staff from the education sector.

People who are sick or injured require skilled care from intelligent and caring health professionals.  There are currently staff shortages in many areas in the public health system.  The introduction of any new policy which could worsen this situation (such as policies mandating vaccination for health professionals and health care students seeking practicum placements) must be opposed because it is unethical and infringes the rights of health professionals to choose their own medical treatment without coercion.  Such a policy would also likely be bad for public health since it could result in health professionals leaving their professions (and intelligent young people  choosing alternative career paths) and worsen staff shortages, thus adversely impacting patient care.

In the case of areas of science in which there is significant controversy, such as genetic engineering, nuclear power and vaccination, children and young people have the right to hear both sides of the issue.  The NZ curriculum documents should reflect this.

Joining No Forced Vaccines

No Forced Vaccines is a voluntary association.  Membership is open anyone who wants to help maintain parents’ rights to make healthcare decisions for their children and to uphold the rights of adults to remain free to make their own choices about medication without discrimination or coercion.

What does membership entail?

There is no membership fee involved in joining  No Forced Vaccines.

We hope that members will do what their time and resources permit to defeat any proposals that infringe on human rights by restricting parents ability to make health care choices for their children without coercion or financial penalty as well as those that seek to restrict the educational opportunities available to children and young people, or employment opportunities of adults on the basis of their vaccination status.

How can I join No Forced Vaccines?

Please email using the contact form at this link http://www.noforcedvaccines.org/contact/.

Please include your name, address and contact phone number and you will be added to our email list.

If you would like to volunteer for any helpful tasks, such as translation of information into different languages or writing and/or editing/proofreading submissions, please make a note of the skills you would like volunteer. Thank you.

How Members Can Help

Suggested ways in which members can help include:

  • Email the Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Health and Associate Member of Health (and the relevant opposition party politicians) to let them know that you find any policy that coerces parents into vaccinating their children to be unacceptable.  There is a template letter you can adapt to your own use and email addresses on the Resources page of this site.
  • If you are a union member, please consider raising the issue of the importance of workers being able to make decisions about vaccination without any sort of coercion with your union representative.
  • If you are a teacher, please consider  informing colleagues at your own workplace and other early childhood centres and schools about the issues around vaccination and informed consent, and the importance of ensuring that in staff communications with parents, that parents understand that vaccination in NZ is voluntary and is not a requirement for enrollment in an early childhood service and school in NZ .
  • If you area member of a political party, please consider raising the issue of how coercive vaccination policies violate human rights at local meetings and with party members in positions of authority.
  • Reporting back to the website coordinator (via this site’s Contact form here http://www.noforcedvaccines.org/contact/) about steps taken to prevent discrimination on the basis of vaccination status so that successful strategies can be shared with other members.
  • Emailing the website coordinator with the URL if you see anything relating to the vaccination issue in the media, (such as the on-line version of the NZ Herald, NZ TV station websites etc.) If you see something relevant in the print media, please clip or photocopy the relevant page(s) and email the No Forced Vaccines coordinator through the Contact form here http://www.noforcedvaccines.org/contact/ to get an address to which you can post it.