Wednesday’s well publicized debate unfortunately discussed vaccination. Perhaps it is not surprising that a businessman/entertainer, Donald Trump, reiterated misinformation. Yet, the two former physicians (Ben Carson and Rand Paul) on the stage also provided misleading information. A good write-up of this issue from the NY Times: Not Up for Debate: The Science Behind Vaccination
Here’s an excerpt:
Here are the facts:
- Vaccines aren’t linked to autism.
- The number of vaccines children receive is not more concerning than it used to be.
- Delaying their administration provides no benefit, while leaving children at risk.
- All the childhood vaccines are important.
It’s also not correct to call autism an “epidemic,” as Mr. Trump often seems to do. Autism is more prevalent as a diagnosis than it used to be. But much of that in recent years is because we’ve changed the definition of what it means to have “autism spectrum disorder.” For instance, 10 years ago, two-thirds of children diagnosed with autism had below-average intelligence. But today only about a third of those diagnosed with A.S.D. do. The fastest-growing group of children with autism have average or above average intelligence. We’re being more inclusive in the diagnosis…
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