Andrew Wakefield, whose 1998 Lancet article set off a wave of anti-vaccine hysteria, “changed and misreported reported results in his research” according to a Sunday Times investigation. Put in simpler terms, Andrew Wakefield is a liar and a fraud.
The Lancet article was thoroughly unconvincing even if the data behind it was sound. A study on TWELVE children was used to make broad conclusions regarding the safety of the MMR vaccine. Well, it turns out that the fundamentals of this limited study were not sound – they were exaggerations and complete fabrications.
Thanks to Wakefield and the hysteria he created, measles is a resurgent problem in the U.K. According to the Times, in 1998, when Wakefield’s “study” was published, there were 56 cases of measles in the U.K. In 2008, there were 1348. In 2006, a 13 year old boy in northwest England became the first measles DEATH reported in the U.K. in 14 years. We’re starting to have measles outbreaks here because more & more people are delaying or avoiding vaccines based on “science” from attention-seeking cretins like Wakefield.
I certainly hope that this story serves as a wake-up call, but I fear that Wakefield’s lies and their dangerous consequences will unravel far too slowly.
Hat Tip: the Pundit