1. What were the perceived conflicts of interest in Wakefield’s research activities?
2. If Wakefield had disclosed the source of the funding of his study and his interest in the experimental vaccine, would that have added credibility to his campaign against MMR? Why or why not?
3. Why did Wakefield lose his license to practice medicine?
4. The GMC found that Wakefield brought his profession into disrepute with his conduct. What could he have done differently to share his concerns about MMR?
At the age of 14 months old, most children in North America and Europe receive a triple vaccination against three diseases: measles, mumps, and rubella (also known as German measles). Abbreviated as MMR, the vaccination has come under increased scrutiny over the last decade for concerns over a potential link between MMR and autism (a neural disorder affecting behavioral and cognitive skills). Concerned parents havebecome vocal advocates on both sides of the argument. On one side, parents of autistic children believe that MMR, or specifically the preservative agent thimerosal(a mercury-containing chemical compound), causes significant intestinal problems and behavioral changes shortly after administration of the vaccination. On the other side of the debate, parents are concerned that a choice not to vaccinate exposes children to diseases that have long been controlled in our population.

  • CreatedDecember 13, 2013
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