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Doctor That Linked Autism and Vaccines Accused of Fraud

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The British study that originally linked autism with vaccines has been discredited and retracted, and the lead researcher, Dr. Andrew Wakefield, barred from practicing medicine in Britain. Now comes an even more disturbing chapter in the saga: Wakefield has been accused of knowingly rigging the results of the study, thus creating a public health crisis.

The British medical journal BMJ published a report saying Wakefield “misrepresented or altered the medical histories of all 12 of the patients whose cases formed the basis of the 1998 study,” according to CNN. The study is credited with a drop in immunization rates (and an ensuing increase in the number of measles cases), and taking resources away from research that might actually help cure or prevent autism.

Why would he do it? According to BMJ, Wakefield failed to disclose that he was paid approximately $674,000 dollars by a law firm that intended to sue vaccine manufacturers.

Does this erase any of your lingering doubts about vaccines? What do you think should happen to Wakefield?

Plus: Read a history of the study and its subsequent retraction

Read a pediatrician’s take on the damage Wakefield caused to autism research

Find out more about the MMR (Measles Mumps Rubella) vaccine

Find out more about the preservative thimerosal

Child Health Guide: Vaccines

Child Health Guide: Autism

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