Vaccinations discussed Letters to the Editor Skeptics Inc slams anti-vaccination group after 'Bent Spoon' Award

Vaccination group under investigation Measles outbreak ho-hum to some Anti-vaccine network wins dubious award Sceptics take aim at vaccination doubters Meeting to discuss vaccines Whooping cough epidemic reignites immunisation debate Whooping cough epidemic reignites immunisation debate Whooping cough epidemic... Dick Smith vaccine Vaccine fear campaign investigated • NOVEMBER 21 will be Coraki’s last country music day for 2009 and all proceeds... Lobby group urges more swine flu vaccine tests The national vaccination program will start at the end of the month. Swine flu vaccine gets... SOS – bring in the ETS ASAP Moves to silence anti-vaccine group Outbreak sparks a jab fight TALKING POINT To immunise or not to immunise Sure shot? What do a meat pie, chips and a slice of cake get you? Good health, apparently YOUR SAY Deadly danger of dismissing shots --- State of poor health --- EXCLUSIVE eye of the needle Immunisation boost to battle whooping cough LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

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A prickly debate Ladies Probus Club of Coolangatta and Tweed Heads’ next monthly meeting will be... Fears of MS link to vaccine

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Vaccinations discussed 73 words 15 October 2009 Ballina Shire Advocate APNBSA Main 5 English Copyright 2009 APN Newspapers Pty Ltd. All Rights Reserved. ANTI-vaccination campaigners will hold a public seminar in Ballina on October 20. Meryl Dorey, president of the Australian Vaccination Network, will speak about the group’s concerns with the swine flu vaccination and whooping cough vaccination. The seminar will be held at the Ballina RSL Club from 7pm. Cost is $10. To pre-book, phone 6687 2436. Document APNBSA0020091013e5af00007

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Features Letters to the Editor 1,133 words 13 May 2009 Central Coast Express CENTCE 1 - Main Book 46 English Copyright 2009 News Ltd. All Rights Reserved Immunisation is vital for children I CANNOT understand the audacity of Meryl Dorey to claim that the pertussis (whooping cough) vaccine does not work. It is claimed that the fact Stephen Clark's son was five months old when he contracted the disease was proof of glossing over the fact that, at five months, this child would not have had the full course of shots, which are delivered at two, four and six months of age. What probably saved this poor child from far more serious and potentially fatal complications was the fact that he had had his first two rounds of immunisation, so his body had some ability to fight it off. It is well known that no vaccine is 100 per cent effective in preventing disease, but having our children immunised greatly reduces the risk of either contracting the disease or, failing that, developing the serious side effects of them. When we see high rates of herd immunity, we see a vast reduction in the number of outbreaks, hospitalisations and deaths from vaccine preventable disease. When vaccine rates are high enough, we even see the eradication of the disease from the global community, as was the case with smallpox, the world's first disease to have a vaccine developed. Sarah Gibbons, Blue Haven I AM writing with such frustration at the uneducated people who condemn parents, like myself, who have actually done extensive research into immunisations and have chosen to either not immunise or, as I have done, homoeopathically immunise. I have a healthy 19-month-old boy and there is no way I would put all those chemicals into his body. I ask everyone, how do you know from whom you caught a cold, or a tummy bug and how would you know from whom you or your child caught whooping cough? It makes me so angry that stupid people believe extremely one-sided television debates when they should get off their bums and do some actual research. Sasha Plante, Gosford Booster dose is recommended IN reply to Meryl Dorey (``Whooping cough vaccine does not work, Express Advocate May 6), the figure for the 1998 epidemic is 5672, not almost 15,000, as she stated. Even so, still a considerable number. But the incidence of whooping cough (pertussis) in 2001 in the 0-5-year group is only 8 per cent, with another 8 per cent in the 5-9-year group. The largest group appears to be those aged 10-14 years, with 27 per cent. This cohort of children was the last cohort not to have received a booster dose of pertussis vaccine at age four. This booster dose is now recommended. Pertussis is popularly considered to be a childhood disease, but cases in people over 40 are not uncommon at all. Page 4 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

Bruce Stafford, Tascott Council should put bins at beaches I READ with wonder about council plans to trial dog poo bag dispensers at off-leash dog areas. That indicates that people will pick up after their dogs. Well, whenever I go to the beaches between The Lakes and Frazer Park, after I have enjoyed the view, fresh air and all the delights the beach offers, I pick up beer bottles/cans, bait bags, fishing line, hooks and lures, plastic bags and drink bottles left by fishermen and others. I realise there are no bins at these beaches mainly because I take those bags home. The council should place bag dispensers and bins at beaches so people can pick up after themselves. Anne Stewart, San Remo Acknowledgement of complaints welcome ONE reason for serial complaining to Gosford Council is that the issues are not dealt with in a satisfactory manner. Often complaints are not recognised, even by a brief note to say the complaint has been received. Pat Garnet, Terrigal We want our own rugby league team WHEN will the NRL get the message ? The Central Coast is more than willing to support an NRL team. We have the best ground, the best club facilities and potentially one of the best sponsors in the competition. What we don't have is a team we can call our own. We don't want the North Sydney Bears (who are looking to protect their heritage) and we don't want the Cronulla Sharks (who are looking to protect their cash flow). We want players who are committed to starting a new club. We don't care what they call themselves because, at the end of the day, they will be our team. Richard Gordon, Narara Praise for support of theatre performers RECENTLY I was privileged to attend the Preview of Rent, the latest Gosford Musical Society's production in the Peninsula Theatre, Woy Woy. It was an amazing and enlightening experience. As a long-time resident on the Central Coast with a comparable interest in theatre as a performer and member of audiences, I just want to say how gratifying it is to see such support as yours for talented young people with a love of theatre and a desire to bring high quality entertainment to the community. Alf Taylor, Page 5 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

Peninsula Mariners fans deserve more THE foray into Asia by the Central Coast Mariners was a disaster from start to finish: no investment in top players was made despite plenty of time to prepare and recruit; the so-called football was embarrassing. Defending was non-existent and body language defeatist. If the owners, the management, the coaching staff and the players are serious about being a real force they should realise that the fans deserve much more. C'mon Mariners, lift your game. Michael Flanagan, Chittaway Point Alcohol not needed to enjoy games I HAVE been reading about the debate that has been going on about serving half-strength alcohol at various rugby league games on the Central Coast. I am gobsmacked by the fact that adults are more concerned about what strength their alcohol should be rather than being there for their children's games. Do they have to have alcohol to enjoy the game? We have binge drinking among teenagers and these so-called adults who are upset about their alcohol strength. What example is this showing to our youth and children? Jessie Manadavadi, Bensville * All letters, including emails, must provide full name, street address and phone number before being considered for publication. An email address alone is not sufficient Mail: The Editor, Central Coast Express Advocate Locked Bag 13, Gosford 2250 Fax: Letters: 4323 5073 E-mail: The Editor at: coastopinions@cumberlandnewspapers.com.au Letters should be kept brief. Name, address and phone number must be supplied. Cumberland Newspapers may edit letters and has the right to reproduce letters in electronic form and communicate them EXG-20090513-1-046-003884 Document CENTCE0020090512e55d0001n

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Skeptics Inc slams anti-vaccination group after 'Bent Spoon' Award 298 words 14 December 2009 The Northern Star APNNOS Main 14 English Copyright 2009 APN Newspapers Pty Ltd. All Rights Reserved THE awarding of the Australian Skeptics’ Bent Spoon award to Meryl Dorey and the Australian Vaccination Network was recently covered in The Northern Star. As the representative of Australian Skeptics quoted in that article, I would like to respond to Ms Dorey’s reply published in The Northern Star. Ms Dorey is being a little disingenuous in various aspects of her response, to say the least. She calls the Bent Spoon award ‘dubious’, even though in her own earlier press release, dated November 29, she said she was ‘very proud to have won the Australian Skeptics bent spoon award’ and that she was ‘very grateful for the recognition’. Ms Dorey obviously changes her argument depending on the circumstances, and her earlier facetiousness is as convincing as her arguments about vaccination. Her organisation is not pro-choice. Her organisation should properly and more honestly be titled the Anti-vaccination Network. She will always quote national figures on vaccination rates, though she knows full well that in her own (and your) region, current childhood vaccination rates are low. In Australia, vaccination rates for many diseases are over 90 per cent; on the North Coast of NSW, they are 88pc; and in Byron Bay they are approximately 67pc. According to the NSW Notifiable Diseases Database, the Northern Rivers area has the highest rate of notifications of Pertussis (whooping cough) of any area in New South Wales – in 2008, 294 cases per 100,000, which is more than twice the state average. The other region within the North Coast Area Health Service, Port Macquarie, only has a notification rate of 74 out of 100,000. TIM MENDHAM, executive officer, Document APNNOS0020091213e5ce00001

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Vaccination group under investigation MEL McMILLAN mel.mcmillan@northernstar.com.au 509 words 18 December 2009 The Northern Star APNNOS Main 16 English Copyright 2009 APN Newspapers Pty Ltd. All Rights Reserved Accused of misleading and deceptive conduct THE Bangalow-based Australian Vaccination Network (AVN) and its founder, Meryl Dorey, are the subjects of an investigation by the NSW Health Care Complaints Commission. The AVN is accused of ‘engaging in misleading and deceptive conduct with the intent of persuading parents not to vaccinate their children,’ by Ken McLeod, a member of a group known as Stop the AVN. When Mr McLeod first filed his 20-page complaint in July it was unclear whether the AVN or Mrs Dorey would fall under the commission’s jurisdiction and complaints process, as neither were registered health-care providers. However, the complaint was referred to the Health Commissioner, who decided an investigation should proceed. Mr McLeod’s complaint lists instances in which he claims the AVN has provided false and misleading information about whooping cough, bacterial meningitis, the Gardasil vaccine and the safety of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine, MMR. And while the commission may take several more months to complete its investigation, the ABC last month released a statement to say that information supplied by Mrs Dorey which was broadcast on ABC Mid-North Coast local radio in September was found to be misleading. The presenter of the morning program, on which Mrs Dorey and Lismore obstetrician Dr Chris Ingall were guests, referred to statistics supplied by Mrs Dorey. The investigation found the use of these statistics, about whooping cough, was misleading as they were ‘drawn from different data sets and related to different groups of children’. The statistics were also presented as vaccination rates for 1991, when they were, in fact, for 2001, the ABC said. The broadcaster received two complaints about the statistics used during the segment. The use of the data was found to be in breach of the ABC’s editorial requirements for accuracy and context in factual content. Professor Peter McIntyre, from the National Centre for Immunisation and Surveillance, said better reporting and diagnosis of whooping cough had lead to an increase in the number of cases reported each year. Prof McIntyre said it was wrong to suggest the prevalence of whooping cough had increased and that vaccination did not work. He said the five per cent of children who were not vaccinated accounted for 30 per cent of all reported cases of whooping cough. “They have around seven to eight times the chance of contracting whooping cough than vaccinated children,” Prof McIntyre said. Mrs Dorey said the network sourced its information directly from the Australian Government and peer reviewed medical journals, and that it was the ABC which got it wrong. Page 8 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

“I believe they have misunderstood what was on the graphs,” she said. Mrs Dorey is currently having her information verified by the editor of a peer-reviewed medical journal in the United States and would be filing her own complaint with the ABC should her interpretation of the data be verified. Document APNNOS0020091217e5ci000mb

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Measles outbreak ho-hum to some JANINE HILL 394 words 5 March 2009 Sunshine Coast Daily APNSCD Main 2 English Copyright 2009 APN Newspapers Pty Ltd. All Rights Reserved VACCINATION opponents have challenged Queensland Health’s push to vaccinate students at Beerwah High after an outbreak of measles. Meryl Dorey, of the Australian Vaccination Network, said she was concerned health authorities were waging “an unbelievable campaign of fear” over parents who had made informed decisions not to vaccinate their children. Just over 800 of Beerwah High’s 1073 students have been cleared to return to school after an outbreak of measles cases late last week prompted Queensland Health to ask students to produce their vaccination records this week. Eighty-nine students are not allowed to return until 14 days after the onset of a rash in the latest case, because they are not vaccinated. The vaccination status of 139 others remains undetermined. Ms Dorey said parents who had made informed choices against vaccination felt pressured to have their children vaccinated so they could return to school. A mother who has conscientiously objected against vaccinating her child said authorities had acted heavy-handedly and the ruling could mean that some children could be off school for months as new cases appeared. “It’s just the measles, not the plague,” she said. Ms Dorey said measles had once been considered part and parcel of growing up. “My grandparents, if they were alive, would be laughing like anything,” she said. “When I was growing up and someone at school had measles, my parents would deliberately send us in the hope that we’d catch it, and then we’d be able to say that we’d had it.” Australian Medical Association Queensland president-elect Doctor Mason Stevenson said, however, measles was not a harmless disease and could have serious long-term consequences, such as a progressive and fatal “hardening” of the brain, a condition called subacute sclerosing panencephalitis. Dr Stevenson said the outbreak at Beerwah High should be taken seriously. “The best treatment is prevention, and the best prevention is vaccination,” he said. Six cases of measles – about half the average number reported in Queensland annually – have been confirmed at Beerwah High. No further information was available yesterday on nine other possible cases, and a Caloundra High student is awaiting test results after displaying measles-like symptoms, including a rash over his chest and arms. Document APNSCD0020090304e5350011g

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Anti-vaccine network wins dubious award MEL MCMILLAN mel.mcmillan@northernstar.com.au 305 words 1 December 2009 The Northern Star APNNOS Main 6 English Copyright 2009 APN Newspapers Pty Ltd. All Rights Reserved Skeptics hand out the Bent Spoon THE Australian Skeptics’ Bent Spoon Award has this year gone to Australian Vaccination Network president Meryl Dorey, of Bangalow. Mrs Dorey was awarded the spoon at the annual Australian Skeptics National Convention at the University of Queensland on Saturday. “Winning the award from the Skeptics means we are on the right track,” Mrs Dorey said yesterday. The Skeptics said she earned the award through her ‘scaremongering and misinformation’ about childhood vaccination. Mrs Dorey and the network were responsible for low vaccination rates in Northern NSW and the subsequent loss of herd immunity, the level required to reduce outbreaks of vaccine-preventable disease, the Skeptics said. While Mrs Dorey was not invited to the awards ceremony, the parents of the Lennox Head baby Dana McCaffery, who died from whooping cough last year at four-weeks-old, were. Toni and David McCaffery were honoured with the Skeptics’ inaugural Thornett Award. The award, named after well-known sceptic Fred Thornett who died this year, was for the ‘promotion of reason’. “We implore people when they want information that they access reputable sources,” Mrs McCaffery said. In giving the McCaffery family the award, Skeptics chief executive Tim Mendham said the organisation had been moved by the family’s efforts to raise awareness about vaccination. “The decision was unanimous,” Mr Mendham said. Earlier this year, a member of the Skeptics, Tim McLeod, filed a complaint against Mrs Dorey and the network with the Health Care Complaints Commission. However, it is unclear whether the commission will investigate the complaint because Mrs Dorey and the network are not health care providers. Yesterday the commission said the matter was confidential. Document APNNOS0020091130e5c1000xh

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Sceptics take aim at vaccination doubters 269 words 6 August 2009 Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) News ABCNEW English (c) 2009 Australian Broadcasting Corporation A group known as the Australian Skeptics have stepped their campaign against the New South Wales north coast-based Australian Vaccination Network. The network is run by Bangalow woman Meryl Dorey, and aims to warn parents about the potential side effects of vaccination. The sceptics group placed a quarter-page advertisement in a national newspaper today, with Australian businessman Dick Smith footing the bill. Spokesman Tim Mendham says the AVN is spreading misinformation and putting children's lives at risk. "The campaign aims to just alert parents to this information and pointing them to a number of places where they can find factual information about all these issues and these are very serious issues,' Mr Mendham said. "I mean, the sceptics deal with a whole range of different areas from the fun areas to the serious ones and this one's on the very, very serious end of it, we're talking about children's deaths here," he said. "A lot of people (are) no longer vaccinating their children based often on information that we considered misinformation or misunderstandings," Mr Mendham said. Meanwhile Meryl Dorey says a complaint that has been lodged with the New South Wales Health Care Complaints Commission is just a nuisance tactic. She says that while she is happy to supply information, that does not make her a health service provider. "We are not health professionals and we are not health educators so, at this point in time, we are an information service and I don't believe that the HCCC has jurisdiction under (sic) us," Ms Dorey said. Document ABCNEW0020090806e5860004d

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Meeting to discuss vaccines 196 words 13 March 2009 Sunshine Coast Daily APNSCD Main 11 English Copyright 2009 APN Newspapers Pty Ltd. All Rights Reserved ADVOCATES of free choice in vaccination will hold a public meeting at the Lake Kawana Community Centre on Sunday, March 22. Both sides of the vaccination debate will be presented at the meeting. Australian Vaccination Network president Meryl Dorey said the director of the regional population health unit, Dr Andrew Langley, would be invited to speak at the meeting. Other speakers will be Ms Dorey, a chiropractor, and a general practitioner. The meeting will begin at 1.30pm. Meanwhile, Kawana Waters State College has asked all parents to update their family records following the outbreak of measles at Beerwah State High School. The Daily was unable to obtain confirmation yesterday of a rumoured incidence of measles at the school. If confirmed, it would bring the total number of cases on the Coast to 15. Education Queensland regional director Rob McAlpine said the college merely wanted to update its records so that parents could be contacted during any critical incident. He said a number of schools were carrying out the routine updates and the information was for school use only. Document APNSCD0020090312e53d0012y

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Whooping cough epidemic reignites immunisation debate Whooping cough epidemic reignites immunisation debate Whooping cough epidemic reignites immunisation debate Kirsten Murray 1,562 words 2 September 2009 Australian Broadcasting Corporation Transcripts ABCTRS English (c) 2009 Australian Broadcasting Corporation ALI MOORE, PRESENTER: While the world has focused its attention on swine flu, a different epidemic has been sweeping parts of Australia with deadly consequences. The disease, whooping cough, has struck this year with a vengeance. Three babies have died and close to 19,000 cases have been reported. And doctors warn it could get a lot worse if parents don't vaccinate their children. This warning has reignited a fierce debate. The anti-vaccination group called the Australian Vaccination Network claims the inoculations are dangerous. But health professionals say that campaign is based on fear not facts. Kirstin Murray reports. TONI MCCAFFERY, MOTHER: I just clearly remembers sitting on the lounge after feeding her thinking, we've got everything we've wanted. The feeling could not get better than that. KIRSTIN MURRAY, REPORTER: In February this year the McCaffery family became five. But Toni and David McCaffery could not have predicted the danger their baby faced. When Dana McCaffery developed a runny nose her parents weren't worried. But then they didn't know their child had been born in one of the worst whooping cough epidemics on record. Still, no one suspected she could have the deadly disease. It would take four trips to the local GP before whooping cough was finally diagnosed, and within days this baby was critically ill. TONI MCCAFFERY: It's just pure torture. You just see your precious beautiful little baby; every portion of their body is in pain when they cough like that. Their eyes just get wider and wider, and they're just pleading with you to make it stop. KIRSTIN MURRAY: It is horrible to watch. These babies survived. Dana McCaffery didn't have a chance. Her tiny body couldn't withstand the pneumonia and aggressive bacterial toxins that set in. DAVID MCCAFFERY, FATHER: A priest came and baptised Dana. About five minutes later Dana went into cardiac arrest and the room was just full of people trying to save him. And she passed away and they gave her to us and we held her, and pulled all the wires and tubes out of her and nursed our little girl. KIRSTIN MURRAY: Dana McCaffery is one of three babies who've died across the country this year from whooping cough. And in the same week she passed away in Lismore Base Hospital two other babies had to be airlifted to Brisbane for emergency treatment. DR CHRIS INGALL, PAEDIATRICIAN: That is something I hope I never see again because each of those babies came close to death. There are still four cases a day - four notifications a day still rolling through in this valley alone. So it hasn't gone away. It's protracted and we're not winning. KIRSTIN MURRAY: Five months on, what haunts the McCafferys is that they didn't they were living in a region with one of the lowest vaccination rates in the country. Since their daughter's death they've discovered up to one in three children in their NSW north coast community aren't vaccinated, three times less than the national average. TONI MCCAFFERY: I would never have ever considered asking someone if they'd vaccinated their child, it's completely their business and I guess we've learnt the hard way that actually that choice does affect everybody around you. Page 14 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

KIRSTIN MURRAY: Paediatrician Chris Ingall threatened Dana McCaffery in hospital and sees a clear link between the region's low vaccination rate and Dana McCaffery's death. DR CHRIS INGALL: I mean, we've educated and educated ... and educated, and it seems to have fallen on deaf ears. And part of me, in my mind was, well, Dana was an accident waiting to happen. KIRSTIN MURRAY: Doctors say mass-immunisation has been the most effective public health strategy ever launched in Australia. Polio epidemics once struck with fierce consequences. More than 1000 died and tens of thousands more were paralysed. But when a vaccination was introduced in the 1950s the disease was all but eradicated. The story is the same for many once common children's ailments like measles, mumps and meningitis. But for some there's fear and suspicion of the push to vaccinate, and the internet's provided a global and pervasive forum for debate. MERYL DOREY, AUSTRALIAN VACCINATION NETWORK: There are a huge range of toxins that are in vaccines and many of them have no place in the human body. Mercury has no place ... KIRSTIN MURRAY: The stronghold of the anti-vaccination movement is based in the same neighbourhood as the McCafferys. But tonight the group's president Meryl Dorey has travelled to Adelaide to warn parents of what she sees as the potential dangers from vaccinating. MERYL DOREY: This is Robert, and he was, I think he was 12 when he was given the hepatitis B vaccine and within 24 hours he had that paralysis down his face. KIRSTIN MURRAY: The Australian vaccination network says that boy's case isn't isolated and the group's website has documented death and disability parents blame on vaccination. MERYL DOREY: Everything from just the minimal reactions like swelling at the site and fever, highpitched screaming is very common, shock collapse - which is floppy baby syndrome. There can be autism, ADD and ADHD which are both very common right now, which were almost unheard of 20, 30 years ago. They have been related to vaccinations. KIRSTIN MURRAY: Meryl Dorey says while Dana McCaffery's death was a tragedy, she rejects low vaccination rates played any part. The mother of four has written about her own family's experience with whooping cough, describing it as a storm in a teacup, which was treated with homeopathy. MERYL DOREY: Just because someone is a doctor doesn't necessarily mean they're an expert on every area of medicine, and unless they've actually done some independent research into vaccination they may not know more than the average parent who's read a few articles and a book or two about vaccinations. KIRSTIN MURRAY: According to UNICEF, immunisation averts more than two million deaths a year worldwide. But Dr Chris Ingall says the Australian Vaccination Network ignores this statistic. DR CHRIS INGALL: Their work is negative, destructive and has no scientific basis. I wish they weren't here. Because this is the battle we have that in some sections of the community up here it's almost fashionable not to vaccinate, as if it didn't matter and it does matter. MERYL DOREY: I think most doctors really believe in vaccinations. They've been taught to believe in vaccinations and they haven't done a whole lot of research on their own. KIRSTIN MURRAY: Infectious disease specialist Professor Peter McIntyre says the Australian Vaccination Network manipulates research and statistics to argue its case. PROFESSOR PETER MCINTYRE, IMMUNISATION RESEARCHER: It's been a real characteristic of the anti-vaccine movement in Australia claiming to be looking very extensively at the scientific evidence. If you're someone like me whose job it is to spend their time going through a lot of this evidence then you realise that it really is a complete misinterpretation. Page 15 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

KARA HARDING, MOTHER: It's a really difficult choice. I think there's a lot of information out there. A lot of it conflicts with each other and I feel like I've made the best decision that I can at this point in time. KIRSTIN MURRAY: Kara Harding is a Brisbane mother of three struggling to make sense of the vaccination debate. She started vaccinating her first child but discontinued after questioning its safety. KARA HARDING: It doesn't mean I am not considering vaccinating in the future. When I do, I will do it with a lot of thought and consideration. Yeah, it's a real conundrum to choose which way to go. Like, and I've just ... my choice is to not vaccinate yet. KIRSTIN MURRAY: Doctors concede there can be side effects but argue the health risk of not vaccinating is far more dangerous. PROFESSOR PETER MCINTYRE: Seeing a baby as the McCafferys did, die of whooping cough is a terrible experience. Seeing a child die of measles is also very sad, seeing a child die of tetanus, seeing a child have a bacterial meningitis - all these diseases are very, very nasty. So making people aware of how dangerous these diseases were before vaccines were around, I make no apologies for that. KIRSTIN MURRAY: In an effort to protect the youngest and most vulnerable from catching whooping cough, Professor McIntyre's about to trial vaccinating newborns. For parents and grandparents of newborns, authorities are now offering free booster shots to target those adults whose immunity would have waned since they were vaccinated as children. For the McCafferys, they're left wondering why not one health professional warned them of the whooping cough epidemic. As they await the outcome of a NSW Health Department investigation into their daughter's death, they hope lessons learnt will save others. TONI MCCAFFERY: People need a personal story to be able to associate with and they've got a personal story. They've got ours. And we're just asking the Government to use it. Document ABCTRS0020090902e5920005y

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Local Dick Smith vaccine 72 words 14 August 2009 Daily Telegraph DAITEL 1 - State 16 English Copyright 2009 News Ltd. All Rights Reserved * BUSINESSMAN Dick Smith has been waging a public battle against an anti-vaccination group. The entrepreneur has paid for a newspaper advertisement warning the public not to be duped by the Australian Vaccination Network, which is against immunisation. A complaint has also been lodged with the state's health watchdog against the group and president Mer yl Dor ey for purporting to be health practitioners. DTM-20090814-1-016-066010 Document DAITEL0020090813e58e0000x

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News Vaccine fear campaign investigated By LOUISE HALL HEALTH REPORTER 374 words 16 August 2009 Sun Herald SHD First 27 English © 2009 Copyright John Fairfax Holdings Limited. A GROUP that claims vaccines cause autism, brain damage and cancer has been reported to the healthcare watchdog for allegedly spreading misinformation and endangering children's health. The official complaint to the Health Care Complaints Commission follows a newspaper advertisement paid for by businessman Dick Smith pleading with parents to ignore the Australian Vaccination Network's fear campaign. AVN is run by Meryl Dorey, who publishes a website and newsletter, campaigns against mass public immunisation programs and promotes the use of homeopathy to prevent disease. The Australian Skeptics group supports the complaint that Ms Dorey and the network are breaching the Health Care Complaints Act by making unsubstantiated health claims based on "conspiracy theories", pseudo-scientific evidence and debunked research. Ms Dorey, of Bangalow on the Far North Coast, says her eldest son, now 20, was "vaccine-injured" from the diphtheria-tetanus-polio immunisation when he was two months old and the measles-mumps-rubella shot at 12 months. She attributes his life-long sleep apnoea and allergies to the vaccinations. Ms Dorey said she was not anti-vaccination, just "pro-information and pro-choice". "We never have and never will tell anyone that they should not vaccinate. We simply fill the information void left by government and the mainstream medical community," she said. But Dick Smith, the Skeptics and the author of the complaint, Ken McLeod, say Ms Dorey and AVN do not promote choice because her speeches and publications never mention the proven benefits of immunisation, and the group's motto is: "Love them, protect them, never inject them." "They can have their view but be upfront about it and don't quote dubious scientific evidence that has been debunked," Skeptics executive officer Tim Mendham said. Mr Smith wrote and funded the advertisement because he believed young, vulnerable mothers were being conned by the network's claim to be an independent voice. Complaints commission executive officer Kim Swan said the allegations were being assessed, and AVN had been asked to respond. Ms Dorey said the commission did not have jurisdiction over her or the network because she was not medically qualified and did not provide a health service. Document SHD0000020090816e58g0001b

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• NOVEMBER 21 will be Coraki’s last country music day for 2009 and all proceeds... 410 words 16 October 2009 The Northern Star APNNOS Main 15 English Copyright 2009 APN Newspapers Pty Ltd. All Rights Reserved • NOVEMBER 21 will be Coraki’s last country music day for 2009 and all proceeds will go to the Salvation Army Rural Ministries, Jean and Peter, to be used for vouchers from independent supermarkets in the area to support farming families. They would enjoy the company of all including entertainers and supporters young and younger. We would like everyone to help by sending a message to our friends in the very dry areas that they are not alone. Further inquiries to Patsy on 6683 2257. • LIVING Wisdom AVN are holding swine flu and whooping cough seminars at the Ballina RSL Club on Tuesday and Lismore City Hall on Thursday, with both nights starting at 7pm. The cost is $10 per person and Australian Vaccination Network members can bring a guest for free. These subjects and more will be covered by Meryl Dorey, president of AVN and editor of Living Wisdom magazine. You owe it to your family to become informed. •THE Mid-Richmond Amateur Swimming Club has a sign-on for swimming lessons on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday next week, from 3.30pm-5pm at Woodburn Pool. The fees are $60, or $5 per lesson. Please bring swimmers on the day of sign-on for grading. For more information ring Donna on 0408 080 319. •ST John’s Anglican Church, Wiangaree, is to be deconsecrated on Wednesday at 11.30am. All residents are invited to attend this last service at the church. Should you require further information please contact Betty Phelps on 6632 1744. •THE next meeting of the Byron Bay Breast Cancer Support Group will be on Wednesday, from 12.302pm, in the Senior Citizens Hall, Marvell Street, Byron Bay. The guest will be aroma therapist Jenny from Byron Nature’s Gift, who will pamper with natural skin care and aromatherapy products. Participants are asked to bring a small mirror, bowl for water and hand towel. Afternoon tea by gold coin donation is provided. For more information contact Marian on 6688 4058. •OFFERED for the first time on the Northern Rivers is ‘Dirty Laundry Day’, to be hosted by the Richmond Valley Family Violence Liaison Committee on Wednesday and Thursday to promote awareness of domestic and family violence in the Casino area. For more details contact Niki on 6662 6944. Document APNNOS0020091015e5ag000jl

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Lobby group urges more swine flu vaccine tests The national vaccination program will start at the end of the month. Swine flu vaccine gets final approval 340 words 19 September 2009 Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) News ABCNEW English (c) 2009 Australian Broadcasting Corporation The Australian Vaccination Network lobby group says more testing of the swine flu vaccine needs to be done before it is given to the public. The Federal Government has ordered 21 million doses of the vaccine developed by CSL. A national vaccination program - the largest the country has seen - will start at the end of the month , initially targetting frontline health workers, pregnant women, Indigenous people and those with chronic health conditions. The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) yesterday announced the vaccine is safe for those over the age of 10, but a decision has not been made on whether children aged nine or under will be able to receive it. Australian Vaccination Network president Meryl Dorey has previously urged the Government not to make vaccinations compulsory for children. She says the H1N1 vaccine could prove more dangerous than the disease itself. "If we find that swine flu is milder than normal seasonal flu, and we have normal seasonal flu every year, and all the government does is simply offer a vaccine for those who want it, why should this flu be treated any differently," Ms Dorey said. "Why are we spending hundreds of millions of dollars on this vaccine?" The Australian Vaccination Network was last month subject to an advertising campaign by the Australian Skeptics, which argued the network was spreading misinformation. And infectious disease specialist Professor Peter McIntyre has previously said the Australian Vaccination Network manipulates research and statistics to argue its case. "It's been a real characteristic of the anti-vaccine movement in Australia claiming to be looking very extensively at the scientific evidence," he said. "If you're someone like me whose job it is to spend their time going through a lot of this evidence, then you realise that it really is a complete misinterpretation." Swine flu has been associated with thousands of hospitalisations and 172 deaths in Australia. Document ABCNEW0020090919e59j00032

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SOS – bring in the ETS ASAP 459 words 8 December 2009 The Northern Star APNNOS Main 13 English Copyright 2009 APN Newspapers Pty Ltd. All Rights Reserved THE ETS is not a ‘tax’. It’s an investment in the future survival of Australia and Australians (don’t be dishonest, Tony Abbott). The ETS isn’t perfect, but we’ve already waited too long to make a desperately needed start. Last week the Coalition parties, and those of like selfish minds, placed their scientific ignorance and wallets ahead of the future of Australia. No wonder politicians are thought of as liars when the new Liberal Leader tries to dismissively brand the ETS as ‘tax’, just for political advantage. Abbott’s obstruction makes me mad as hell. He wants an election based on climate change, does he? Me too, and the sooner the better. Salvos thank you THE Salvation Army wishes to thank The Northern Star for the publicity and subsequent response to our appeal for players to assist with Christmas carolling. As a result, a sizeable band was able to play carols at St Joseph’s Hospice and Ozanam Villa in Lismore last Sunday and plans to visit Maranoa this Sunday, December 13, and Caroona on December 20. We are sincerely grateful for the helping hand, without which the Salvos would not have been able to take the music of Christmas into the community. Vaccination myths THE letter written by Meryl Dorey (NS, 4/12) manages to neatly obscure the real cause for concern that led to her being honoured with the Australian Skeptics’ Bent Spoon Award. She cites an increasing incidence of pertussis (whooping cough) despite an overall increase in the rate of vaccination in Australia as evidence that vaccination is an ineffective strategy. She appears either unaware or unconcerned that this overall average obscures significant pockets of reduced vaccination to levels below that required for herd immunity; for example on the Northern Rivers, where she and her group campaign. She also praises herself and the AVN for pressuring government to remove mercury from vaccines. To be clear: it was not in fact mercury that was in vaccines, it was thiomersal. This contains mercury – much as table salt contains chlorine. I do not know whether or not AVN truly have the ‘credit’ for Australia removing thiomersal from vaccines, but that is unimportant in any case. The concerns about thiomersal were and remain the result of a belief it was implicated in autism – a belief that has been demonstrated clearly and repeatedly to be false. Ms Dorey and her group campaign against arguably the most successful public health measure in history, responsible for greatly reduced levels of death and disability. They do this based on belief and pseudoscience, not on the basis of any measurable reality. Document APNNOS0020091207e5c80005n

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News Moves to silence anti-vaccine group By Sarah Colyer 323 words 21 August 2009 Australian Doctor OZDR 0 Volume 00, Issue 00 English © Copyright 2009, Australian Doctor, Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. A CHARITY group that allegedly claims pertussis is not fatal and the MMR vaccine causes autism is likely to prove difficult to silence, despite a complaint to the Health Care Complaints Commission. An HCCC spokesman said the commission did not have power to shut down or gag the Australian Vaccination Network, and could only issue a public statement if it found the organisation was threatening public health or safety. However, the commission could stop individuals, such as the group’s directors, from practising if they were causing a risk to the public, he added. The network is based in the Northern Rivers region of NSW, where vaccination rates are notoriously low and where the death of four-week-old Dana McCaffery earlier this year became NSW’s first pertussis fatality in more than a decade. Ken McLeod, a friend of the Australian Skeptics, has brought a complaint about the group to the commission, saying it was “remarkable” the organisation had been allowed to continue as a registered NSW charity since 1994. He provided examples of the network’s “selective, deceptive and untrue” claims in his 23-page complaint, including that the MMR vaccine may cause autism and that the majority of pertussis cases occur in fully vaccinated individuals. The group was “very active in television and radio” and ran seminars “dissuading people from vaccinating themselves and their children”, Mr McLeod wrote. Network director Meryl Dorey said in a recent group newsletter that the organisation was not offering vaccination advice, but trying “to inject some balance into the debate so that people can make informed choices”. Meanwhile, businessman Dick Smith funded an advertisement for the Australian Skeptics in the Australian two weeks ago warning about “the deceptively titled Australian Vaccination Network”. Australian Doctor understands a separate complaint about the network has been made to the NSW Office of Liquor and Gaming, which registers charities. Document OZDR000020090915e58l00018

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News Outbreak sparks a jab fight Janelle Miles, Sophie Elsworth 607 words 7 March 2009 The Courier-Mail COUMAI 1 - First with the news 29 English Copyright 2009 News Ltd. All Rights Reserved ``They need to be aware that . . . their own kids are at risk, but they're also putting others at risk'' Christine Selvey GRAEME and Helen Bentley decided when their daughter Stacey was a baby that immunisation ``wasn't worth the risk''. They wanted to spare their daughter the pain of needles and worried about possible side effects. Stacey, 14, who takes homeopathic drops to ward off disease, is one of dozens of unvaccinated students banned from classes at Beerwah State High School in the Sunshine Coast hinterland until a measles outbreak is under control. Twelve students, plus one relative, have been confirmed as having the highly contagious disease and another six people have measles-like symptoms and are awaiting test results. The outbreak, described as a ``mini epidemic'', has the medical fraternity concerned, but not surprised. Like Kuranda in far north Queensland and the Gold Coast hinterland, the Sunshine Coast fringe is known to have significantly lower immunisation levels compared with Australia as a whole. Health authorities point to the number of conscientious objectors, such as the Bentleys, as a contributing factor. Queensland Health communicable diseases branch senior director Christine Selvey said the antivaccination minority could put vulnerable people in danger during disease outbreaks. ``They need to be aware that their own kids are at risk, but they're also putting others at risk,'' she said. ``If their 13-year-old contracts measles and is wandering around the shopping centre at Maroochydore, they could be infecting a baby, say a nine-month-old who's too young to be vaccinated, and that baby might end up with really serious complications.'' Those at high risk include people with compromised immune systems, such as children with leukemia, unable to be vaccinated for medical reasons. Australian Medical Association infectious diseases spokesman Michael Whitby said the Beerwah State High School outbreak should be treated as a wake-up call for people to get themselves and their children immunised. ``Measles . . . can lead to middle ear and chest infections and there is a rare condition where the virus lies latent in the brain and comes back years later, particularly in girls, and can cause neurological disease which is fatal,'' Associate Professor Whitby said. The Australian Vaccination Network's Meryl Dorey accused health authorities of discriminating against families like the Bentleys for insisting unvaccinated students stay home from school. She said the medical profession was peddling unnecessary fear. ``The whole thing is quite incredible to me,'' Ms Dorey said. ``Measles is not a serious illness . . . not in healthy, well-nourished people.'' Page 23 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

Ms Dorey said the measles, mumps, rubella vaccination, recommended in two doses when a child is 12 months and four years old, was much more dangerous than the diseases it prevented, citing discredited research linking it to autism. ``We also have an adverse reactions database and we have children on that database who suffer from mild to severe brain damage . . . because of the vaccine,'' she said. But Dr Selvey and Professor Whitby insist the anti-vaccination lobby is misinformed. With 10 months of the year to go, 2009 is already Queensland's worst measles year since 2000, when 28 cases were recorded. WHY MEASLES IS SO DANGEROUS Measles can cause swelling of the brain, which can lead to permanent brain damage in some children. Other complications can include ear infections, pneumonia, convulsions and diarrhoea. Notifications in Queensland since 1994 1994: 2345 1995: 199 1996: 90 1997: 267 1998: 35 1999: 33 2000: 28 2001: 11 2002: 8 2003: 11 2004: 0 2005: 1 2006: 2 2007: 4 CML-20090307-1-029-750486 Document COUMAI0020090306e5370000z

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Features TALKING POINT 1,758 words 7 March 2009 The Courier-Mail COUMAI 1 - First with the news 66 English Copyright 2009 News Ltd. All Rights Reserved It is beyond me how anyone can understand the waffle from Kevin Rudd that passes for answers to questions Brian Elliott, of Labrador, watched a TV interview with the Prime Minister this week and was less than impressed Dangers of a protest vote AS Australians it is our nature to want to send a protest message to our politicians and the ballot box is often the only time we can do that. We think the occasional protest vote for a minor party or independent will get that message through without doing any harm. But with the upcoming state election predicted too close to call, I implore every Queensland voter for the sake of our states future to choose between either Labor or the LNP and steer clear of all the minor parties. Either Labor or LNP will form a government after March 21. Let's not tie one or two hands behind their back by giving the balance of power to a small number of people with a small number of policies representing a small percentage of the state. Imagine if the Daylight Saving Party gets the balance of power? On Day One, daylight saving legislation will be passed, fair enough. But this party has no other policies or interests yet will determine the future of our state for the next three years. The same can be said for the myriad other one-interest parties. It's the most important state election for a generation. Let's make sure the state is run by a party that gets the majority vote. Please. H. Harry, New Farm LET us use this golden opportunity to show Anna Bligh and Lawrence Springborg just how little we trust or respect either of them. One or other of them will wind up in charge of Queensland, God help us, but let us not give them the idea that we want them. Vote 1 for one of the no-hope parties, 2 for an independent, 3 for another independent or the Daylight Savings Party or Pauline Hanson, 4 for whichever of the main contender parties you think least awful and 5 for the worst in your opinion. In this way, after several all-night sessions of counting recounting and preference distribution, your choice not theirs as to who gets your ``preference'', we will indeed be stuck with one lot of dishonest sycophants or the other but at least we will have sent them a message loud and clear that they have not fooled us into loving them. Either of them. Colin Burt, Point Vernon I AM one of those voters who feel I am damned if I do, damned if I don't. There are a lot of things wrong with the Bligh Government, but then no Government is perfect. What are the solutions to Mr Springborg's promises of reduced debt or no deficit? Cuts in public services or cuts in public infrastructure spending? Or will they start to sell of Queensland land and public-owned companies such as Energex ? I don't care about Anna Bligh's future, but I do care about Queensland. Simon Evans, Toowong Campaign promises HOW many ``gunnas'' are we going to hear from political parties before the state election? Page 25 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

When will politicians realise the public wants to hear them say ``this is how we will do'' it, ``this is when we will do'' it and ``this is why we will do'' it? Perhaps it is time I ran for public office. I don't have all the answers but I could meet candidates on their level. I could say I could fix problems with the economy, health, law and order, education and employment without any specific strategies and do it better and cheaper than the other parties. Graham Pearce, Aspley Services duplicated AS the owner of a long-daycare centre in Brisbane's inner northern suburbs, it disappoints me that Labor and Premier Anna Bligh fail to recognise the numbers presented to them by Child Care Queensland relating to vacancies in most centres in the ``preschool'' age groups (three to five years). Rather than spending $32 million of taxpayer dollars over two years (C-M, Mar 6) on services that existing private operators can service, the Government should spend the money on teacher aides to increase the support offered to our children in Prep or it should assist existing centres to better service the babies (up to two years) market. The Premier's decision to roll out government kindergartens may just send many excellent private operators to the wall in the already oversupplied three to five-year market. Where will that leave working parents? Peta Pitcher, Upper Kedron PERHAPS the greatest blunder the Premier has made recently is the waste of $32 million to establish kindergartens in areas of over-supply (and marginal Labor seats) in a last-ditch attempt to get a few more votes. The Smart State will soon be the bankrupt state. Peter Price, Mount Ommaney Accounting after fires THE insurance lobby has been telling the Victorian Government it should not approve the use of public donations to rebuild houses for people whose homes were destroyed in the bushfires and who were not insured. The insurers argue that such approval would act as a disincentive for people to take out cover in the future, encouraging owners to be irresponsible in the protection of their properties. They do not acknowledge the fact they would miss out on millions in premiums if this happened. In any event, why should the Government be approached to decide on this matter? Which body is accountable for the money that has been collected? Given that donations were intended for fire victims, how much say do they have about the distribution of the money? Will anyone eventually tell donors where their money went? John Keogh, Jamboree Heights Never answer, stall for time I WATCHED an interview with Prime Minister Kevin Rudd on ABC TV this week. I am a reasonably intelligent person. I have followed the political system for many years and have a degree in government. It is beyond me how anyone is expected to understand the prodigious waffle from Rudd which passes for answers to reasonable questions. Politicians never answer the question that is asked -- they just prevaricate until the time for the interview is up. No wonder the public has little regard for them. Perhaps one day we will see a prime minister answer a question with some semblance of honesty. Brian Elliott, Labrador Coverage incomplete KATHY Williams (Letters, Mar 5) writes in support of private health insurance. Page 26 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

The problem with the insurance is not necessarily the above-CPI increases in premiums each year. My wife and I can afford this and have maintained our cover. The problem is ``the gap''. The difference between what hospitals and the medical profession charge and what insurers reimburse should not exist. It discourages people from joining health funds and thereby taking pressure off the public system. There doesn't appear to be a way to insure against having to pay this gap. John Hansen, Little Mountain Informed choice THE worst thing about the hysteria concerning cases of measles at Beerwah High School is that there is very little science involved and a whole lot of fear, not a good basis for commonsense decisions. In Jane Fynes-Clinton's column (Viewpoint, Mar 5), those who have made a conscious decision not to vaccinate are called irresponsible and neglectful and are virtually labelled as child-abusers. According to Fynes-Clinton, not vaccinating is akin to denying children food or education. Nothing could be further from the truth. The average parent who chooses to vaccinate selectively, delay shots or forgo them altogether has only done so after reading mountains of medical information, speaking with health professionals and weighing up the benefits and risks as they pertain to their family situation. Many of them have seen or suffered from a vaccine reaction. It is time to take an open and honest look at the science of this issue and to get rid of the fear. Before pointing the finger of blame at unvaccinated children, perhaps the media should ask what is the overall health status of the vaccinated compared with the unvaccinated? The Australian Childhood Immunisation Register, a national database tracking the vaccination status of children, is linked with the Medicare database. It would be a simple and informative exercise to compare the number of Medicare dollars spent in each group. It is up to the medical community and governments to prove via independent testing that vaccines are safe and effective -- not for parents to show that they are not. Basic science is what we ask; respect for our informed choice is what we demand. We will not be satisfied with anything less. Meryl Dorey, president, Australian Vaccination Network, Bangalow, NSW Go ahead with caution WHILE it appears that the marine terminal plan for Moreton Bay is a commercially and aesthetically sound proposal, a few environmental considerations should not be forgotten in the feasibility study (C-M, Mar 6). Having more people visiting Moreton Bay means that a greater strain will be put on the sensitive marine ecosystems. All the same, we should not throw a wet blanket over any plans to market our prized natural resources so that they can be better accessed. Presently, a lot of petrol has to be used and a lot of traffic navigated to get to the few spots that allow boaties to get their rig anywhere near the water. The marine terminal is a wonderful idea as long that the feasibility study takes into account that human saturation of Moreton Bay could cause irreparable damage to the aspects of it that we want people to see. Tim Badrick, Tamborine Letters CONTACT US Mail: The Courier-Mail GPO Box 130 Brisbane 4001. Fax: 3666 8625 Email: letters@couriermail.com.au Online: couriermail.com.au/letters Letters and email must be dated, carry the full address of the writer and a daytime telephone number for Page 27 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

verification. Letters should be concise and topical. Writers may choose to have their email address published rather than suburb or town. Letters are submitted on condition that Queensland Newspapers as publisher of The Courier-Mail may edit and has the right to and license third parties to reproduce in electronic form and communicate these letters. The winner of Letter of the Month wins a zippered A4 leather compendium, valued at $80, courtesy of The Courier-Mail. CML-20090307-1-066-805955 Document COUMAI0020090306e5370001v

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Features To immunise or not to immunise By RACHEL MOORE 651 words 8 July 2009 Eastern Courier Messenger EACOUM 1 - FIRST 22 English Copyright 2009 News Ltd. All Rights Reserved ''ITS all for a greater good.'' This is the line Ive trotted out each time Ive held either of my two girls on my lap as they get their vaccinations. But its not just to make me feel better about forcing them to stay put while a needle is jabbed into an arm or leg. Its a line I believe. Thinking about writing this column, I realised I hadnt researched the vaccines before my girls had them, and now Im feeling slightly guilty about that. Instead, Id placed trust in our government, which strongly pushes childhood immunisation, starting with a hepatitis B vaccination at birth. Why would I risk my child catching measles, mumps or whooping cough when they can be prevented? Aside from a couple of red marks and being a little sleepy that night, vaccinations have been an easy, relatively pain-free process for my girls. Theyve hardly shed a tear, unlike their mother whose eyes well each time she sits in a waiting room, repeating ''its all for a greater good''. Whether to immunise children or not remains an ongoing debate, that attracts passionate arguments from both sides. Associate Professor Paul Goldwater, senior consultant at the Infectious Diseases unit at the Womens and Childrens Hospital, said it was vital children be immunised to prevent many serious illnesses and, in extreme cases, death. He said since the measles vaccine was introduced in 1963, there had been very few cases of the disease. Thanks to vaccines, he said, rubella and rotavirus had been virtually eliminated. Dr Goldwater said he had seen ''terrible tragedies'' of children who had caught tetanus because their parents refused to have them immunised. ''Its a horrible disease for children to have to get, he said. ''Weeks and weeks of spasms, and a huge impact on the childs psychological and physical development. ''If only you could walk parents who refuse to immunise past the cot or bed of a child who has this they might rethink things.'' Meryl Dorey, president of the Australian Vaccination Network, said it was important parents were given enough information to make informed choices. ''We dont oppose vaccination, we just oppose compulsory vaccination,'' she said. Page 29 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

She said it was important parents knew that if they chose not to vaccinate their child, they would not lose any government entitlements, and their child could still go to preschool, childcare and school. Ms Dorey said most people would be unaware Australia was in the midst of a whooping cough epidemic. She said in 1991, there were 381 cases of whooping cough in Australia. Last year, there were 14,522 cases, despite a 95 per cent vaccination rate. ''What were saying is look at the information,'' she said. ''This has nothing to do with the emotions, its to do with science. ''In every disease that we currently use a vaccine for, the vast majority of people who get the disease are properly vaccinated. Dr Goldwater agreed there had been an outbreak of whooping cough, saying the vaccine, one of the poorest vaccines available, was only 75 to 80 per cent effective. He said other vaccines were approaching 100 per cent effectiveness. ''The benefits certainly outweigh any risks,'' he said. After arming myself with more information on childhood vaccinations, I feel reassured Ive done the right thing. My eldest daughter turns four later this month, and Im dreading her next vaccinations. Im not sure if the bribe of a lollipop at the end is going to be enough to keep her still on my lap as a needle heads for her arm. One for her dad to do, I think. Dr Goldwater referred parents to the Australian Immunisation Handbook, available online at health.gov. au/internet/immunise/publishing.nsf/Content/Handbookhome The Australian Vaccination Network website can be found at avn.org.au MEC-20090708-1-022-179545 Document EACOUM0020090710e5780000i

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Features Sure shot? CLAIR WEAVER 888 words 22 February 2009 Sunday Telegraph SUNTEL M 2 English Copyright 2009 News Ltd. All Rights Reserved Vaccines are regarded as medical breakthroughs, yet there is still some controversy surrounding them. It is considered the most important medical breakthrough of the past century and saves an estimated three million lives every year. Yet mass vaccination is also controversial, with alleged links to autism, allergies, sudden infant death syndrome and even infertility. Deciding whether to have a jab is a decision every Australian will have to make at some point. From birth to early childhood, there is a gamut of vaccinations for diseases ranging from measles and polio to diphtheria and whooping cough. Then there's rubella and the cervical cancer vaccine for young adults, plus tetanus top-ups every 10 years. Prospective mothers may need boosters before falling pregnant, while travellers are advised to have shots before travelling to high-risk countries and flu jabs are recommended for the elderly every year. In Australia, immunisation rates are relatively high and many diseases, such as polio and diphtheria, have been virtually eradicated. But Dr David Thomas, an Adelaide paediatrician and chair of the Australian Medical Association's Child and Youth Health Committee, warns that if we become too complacent about vaccination, diseases can return. "Parents who don't vaccinate their children are putting others at risk," he says. "The haemophilus influenzae vaccine was introduced in 1993. Prior to that, we were getting up to 10,000 cases a year." Haemophilus influenzae is a bacterium that can cause meningitis, pneumonia and middle-ear infections in children. EMOTIVE ISSUE But Meryl Dorey, president of the charity and lobby group Australian Vaccination Network, says there should be more public debate on the merits of vaccines. "It's an emotive issue and there's not a lot of room for discussion as far as many in the medical community are concerned," she says. She believes vaccines can trigger autism, allergies and asthma. Her group, which reports scores of cases of adverse reactions to vaccinations to the government, wants independent testing of vaccines. "There are valid concerns about the side effects," she says. "Almost all the testing is paid for by the companies that make the vaccines." Panic over alleged links between autism and the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine has triggered a drop in child immunisation rates in the UK over the past decade. The controversy arose from a since-retracted 1998 study in the medical journal The Lancet. Doctors are now attributing a measles epidemic that has swept the UK and Europe over the past year to rejection of the vaccine. Dr Andrew Marich, acting director of communicable diseases at NSW Health, says the MMR autism link has been "completely discredited". "The impact has been enormous in the UK - it's driven immunisation rates down and they are paying the price of that now," he says. One possible reason that MMR is still being blamed for autism is because the vaccine is given to children at 12 months, a time when signs of the disorder can usually be diagnosed for the first time. "There's been an enormous amount of research over many years to make sure vaccines are safe and effective," Dr Thomas says. "We are confident there's no link between MMR and autism. If your child doesn't have the vaccine, you are putting them at risk of contracting these diseases." We may not have a measles epidemic in Australia, but outbreaks of whooping cough, which is especially dangerous in babies, have re-emerged in the past six months, and the disease seems to be most prevalent in areas with lower immunisation rates. The whooping cough vaccine is not 100 per cent effective, though, so some vaccinated people can still contract the illness. Page 31 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

"Communities that are worried about the risks of vaccines are particularly vulnerable spots if a disease comes into the area," Dr Marich says. The government and medical industry insist vaccines are safe for the majority of people, unless they have an allergy to an ingredient or certain health conditions. People with egg allergies, for example, shouldn't have influenza or yellow fever vaccines, which are grown in eggs. Many concerns about the effects of vaccines stem from fears about adjuvants such as aluminium and mercury. But the government says aluminium from vaccines is lower than the everyday intake from food or medications, while the mercury-based preservative thiomersal was removed from childhood vaccines in 2000. "In Australia we have very good quality control. If you look back across the last century, one of the biggest impacts [on our health] has been immunisation," says Dr Thomas. PERCENTAGE OF AUSTRALIAN FIVE-YEAR-OLDS WHO ARE FULLY IMMUNISED BY STATE OR TERRITORY* 1. ACT 90.6 per cent 2. VICTORIA 89.9 per cent 3. TASMANIA 89.2 per cent 4. QUEENSLAND 86.4 per cent 5. NORTHERN TERRITORY 86.4 per cent 6. SOUTH AUSTRALIA 85.7 per cent 7. NEW SOUTH WALES 85.7 per cent 8. WESTERN AUSTRALIA 83.4 per cent NATIONAL AVERAGE 86.8 per cent * Australian Childhood Immunisation Register, September 2008 DID YOU KNOW? Parents can still claim the Australian Government's Maternity Immunisation Allowance, even if they choose not to have their children immunised, by registering as a conscientious objector with Medicare.* Australian Department of Health and Ageing STE-20090222-M-002-358282 Document SUNTEL0020090221e52m000bs

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What do a meat pie, chips and a slice of cake get you? Good health, apparently Gail Loader 626 words 14 June 2009 Sunshine Coast Sunday APNSCS Main 6 English Copyright 2009 APN Newspapers Pty Lrd. All Rights Reserved Nutritionist says lsquoreal food' is better for our health than the fad-diet concoctions IF you love to indulge in the Aussie favourites of meat pies and hot chips but feel bad about it – feel guilty no more. It may actually be better for your health. Well-known Sunshine Coast nutritionist and author Cyndi O’Meara, who spoke at an autism and allergy conference on the Coast yesterday, is a firm believer in getting back to what she calls “real food”. She blasted the diet and food industry as a major contributor to the obesity epidemic, saying bacon and eggs, pies and chips would be better for us than fad-diet foods. “The food we ate 30 years ago is nothing like what we eat today,” Ms O’Meara said. She believes food like pies and lamingtons that her parents’ generation ate were better for health as they were made from real, natural ingredients. There was very little obesity and fewer food allergies during that era, she said. The meat pie Ms O’Meara is eating contains real meat and no added chemical flavours and colours. “Once upon a time (meat pies) were made with real food and flavours,” she said. Most modern meat pies contain only 1% meat and are full of fillers and artificial flavours, she said. Even in the ’70s and ’80s, most food was made with few ingredients and lasted just a few days, while modern foods can last for weeks and can contain up to 90 ingredients – many of them made in laboratories. Ms O’Meara said this was typical of modern food, which beared little resemblance to the same food items of 30 years ago. During her many years studying nutrition, Ms O’Meara realised what nature has given us is better than what science can provide. After 30 years of science altering the food we eat, she believes people are less healthy. “People are put on low-fat food, diet drinks and supplements ... people are fatter, sicker and worse off now then when they did eat lard and butter,” she said. Ms O’Meara said she was waiting for scientists to say “we’ve made a mistake – food grown on the land is better than food made in a lab”. She believes diet drinks and food containing artificial sweeteners or those low in fat and nutrition create cravings for more food. She said the additives and flavourings in some diet foods and drinks increased the body’s need for fat, and low-fat foods could cause overeating. Ms O’Meara, who is 48, said she had never taken antibiotics and lived on real foods – including butter and chocolate. Page 33 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

“I don’t get sick or get colds and flus,” she said. She raised her own children as she was raised – drug free and with natural, real foods. “It’s all about creating healthy children,” Ms O’Meara said. She said it was all about education and the message she was getting from conferences was that people wanted to know this information. Ms O’Meara joined leading experts Dr Rosemary Keating, a paediatric chiropractor; Dr Dzung Price, author of Your Allergy Free Child; and Meryl Dorey, editor of Living Wisdom magazine, to discuss the rising incidences of autism and allergies on the Coast. The conference looked at all aspects of children’s lives – physical, chemical and emotional – and aimed to expand the knowledge about treatment, prevention and care of those suffering allergies and autism. “We want to teach parents, teachers and professionals that their children can be healthy,” she said. Document APNSCS0020090613e56e000dx

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Agenda YOUR SAY 2,765 words 22 March 2009 Sunday Mail, The SNDMAL 2 - State - Main Country 62 English Copyright 2009 News Ltd. All Rights Reserved YOURNEWS@THESUNDAYMAIL.COM.AU ONLINE VIEW Should tucker at sports venues be calorie-controlled? Why is junk food allowed to be sold at sporting venues, as described last week in the ``footy season calories''. Sensible people always take their own healthy food and beverages. Only a few days ago I went to a kids' swimming carnival at Chandler and the only food available was the usual assortment of pies and chips. Not the sort of thing young athletes should be exposed to at a place of exercise. Perhaps it's a bit different at the footy because it is a spectator sport for most of the people in the stands who, if they were serious about their health, wouldn't be there but on a bicycle or doing something equally active. Amid Vats Hod of Ferny Hills It's all very well for Diabetes Queensland to want healthier food at the stadiums, but next thing you know all the do-gooders will get on the bandwagon and try to have footy banned because it's too violent or because other fans barrack for the opposing team and might offend somebody. Please, we have been going to the footy for years, let us decide what to eat and drink. Greg Coleman of Forest Lake Maybe we should take up celery sticks at the football, with diet soft drink. Wayne Instead of a pie, you should eat carrot, broccoli and cauliflower with a glass of spring water to follow. You'll live to 120 and be bored your entire life. We're becoming one of the most conservatively benign cultures in the world in an attempt to be super-healthy. Bah, humbug. Live a little, take a risk, have a pie and enjoy yourself. Raz Most of us don't go to the football ``every'' weekend, anyway, as teams play home and away and not all fans travel away. So this is all a waste of time. Billy T of Brisbane Forget counting the 98,000 kilojoules to be burned off on the ``footy season diet''. Count the dollars it will cost you for the chips, nuggets, etc. Alfred of Darra Struggling on a piddly little pension from the age of 65, gimme a beer and a pie any day. As for health, when your time's up, it's up. RJP I don't go to the football very often. But when I do I take my own food and non-alcoholic drinks. I refuse to be ripped off by the venue food-providers. If I want a beer I will wait until I get home. Paddy of Melbourne Bans. Regulations. Rules about what we should eat and drink, and where. Let's move Australia to China . . . that way we don't have to think -- as most organisations assume we can't -- and instead just obe Page 35 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

y government decrees. Ex -Digger of Ipswich Today's topic Should government employee uniforms be manufactured in Australia? thesundaymail.com.au Uniformly disappointed I AM a registered nurse in one of the large Brisbane hospitals. Following the Bonds saga, the posties' made-in-China Hard Yakka article in The Sunday Mail last week prompted me to check where my own uniforms came from. You guessed it: ``Made in Indonesia''. J. Nicholas, Camp HillI WAS a PMG/Telecom/Telstra employee for 34 years. When we changed from the PMG to Telecom (in 1975), we were provided with uniforms made in Australia by Yakka. I still wear some of these uniforms to do the gardening. Two years before I left Telstra I was issued with a new corporate uniform with shirts made in Indonesia. Some buttons fell off when I took the shirt out of the plastic bag, the rest fell off in the first or second wash. The response from management was: ``You can sew them back on.'' Eric Adams, Bongaree Tuckshops show how it's done GOOD on the tuckshops supporting the Buy Queensland campaign. Now, if we can only get governments to use our own companies instead of sending their work to Asia, we might be able to slow the rise in unemployment. Tony Schlenker, Brisbane Watchful neighbours I WOULD like to reiterate the need to have close contact with your neighbours. I received a phone call from one of my neighbours letting me know a fellow was trying to break into my house. As I was unable to return home immediately, I phoned the police on Triple-0, then contacted another neighbour with a view of my yard. That neighbour saw the fellow trying to enter via side windows -- which I passed on to Triple-0 -- and directed police when they arrived and caught the would-be burglar. By maintaining close relationships with neighbours and having their contact numbers for emergencies like this, we can all help in ridding society of low-life scum who are preying on hard-working people. Name supplied, Wishart Plea for prime farm land WE ARE farmers on the Darling Downs, where there are state moves to grant mining leases over prime farming country. As the economic crisis widens, short-sightedness takes precedence and nobody wants to think of the disaster which will occur through destruction of highly productive land. Maybe the Federal Government needs to reconsider its approach to the long-term viability of the Australian economy. Our agricultural products enjoy a good reputation worldwide, so should we not build on this rather than continue to exploit our mineral resources like a Third World nation for short-term gain? I am aware of the many short-lived benefits the mining industry has provided; Australia has managed this severe economic crisis relatively well, thus far, because of it. But we should not sacrifice our very best farming land. It is too precious and can never be replaced. Irene Meyer, Warra It's a fight we cannot win THE Russians couldn't win after decades of war in Afghanistan, the Americans can't win there, so what makes Prime Minister Kevin Rudd think Australia's two-bob defence force can do the job? Dave Preston, Toowoomba Attention paid to national service Page 36 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

NOW is the time for the reintroduction of National Service. With the way the world is going, we will need more defence forces. And from a civilian point of view, most people who do national service will learn something of a trade, which will be useful with jobs at a premium during the global financial mess. W. Scoles, Yamba, NSW Adult stem cell breakthrough WE SEE plenty of publicity on the success of controversial embryonic stem cell research, but we do not see those claims which are disproved. The most promising future for research lies in use of noncontroversial adult stem cells that already have a sound record for success. The latest is a breakthrough in adult stem cells extracted from a person's own skin. In a paper in the journal Nature, an Edinburgh University researcher said: ``We hope these cells will form the basis for treatment for many diseases and conditions that are considered incurable. We have found a highly efficient and safe way to create new cells for the human body which avoids the challenge of immune rejection . . . perhaps even eliminating the need for human embryos as a source.'' Robert Bom, Rockhampton Trade threat to banana crop CANBERRA trade agreements will be the cause of the introduction of the banana diseases that are rife in the Philippines but don't exist in Australia, as well as the fire blight apple disease from New Zealand. Governments' budget cuts have reduced the effectiveness of agencies that could do checks, such as Agriculture and CSIRO. A look at the introduced cane toad in Queensland should be enough to change the trade decision but I won't hold my breath. P. Edwards, Safety Bay, WA Time for a helping hand HAS the Indonesian Government donated any funds to the Victorian bushfire fund, given the Howard Government's post-tsunami donation of millions of dollars to help rebuild that country, and the Rudd Government's subsequent loans? John Barker, Tweed Heads, NSW Tunnel vision for rail commuters SIGNS have gone up in the middle of the Indooroopilly station pedestrian tunnel, showing which trains go from which platform. The signs are between the two sets of stairs to Platforms 1/2 or 3/4, so the poor bloody travellers have a 50-50 chance, whichever end of the tunnel they come from, of being told, in effect: Turn around and go back the way you came, to the stairs behind you. Didn't any genius at Q-Rail think to put signs at each end of the tunnel? R.D. Rowlings, Mount Ommaney GOOD POINT It's an explosive combination AS A former safety officer with the Queensland Fire Service, I have followed the Pacific Adventurer fiasco with professional interest. Considering what it was carrying, plus the considerable amount of spillage of ammonium nitrate and fuel oil, I was surprised to see it had permission to dock in the Brisbane River. I was reminded of an incident which occurred in 1947 at Texas City (near Galveston), US, when the French cargo ship Grandcamp exploded while unloading ammonium nitrate.The blast killed 581 people and destroyed a huge part of the city. Lumps of the ship were found (1.5km) inland. D.M. Parker, Bowen WHY was the Pacific Adventurer allowed to enter dangerous waters? It should have moored in calmer waters until safe to enter the bay. Terry Cunningham, Runcorn DUE process has been followed in this incident. It has been a measured response. Now Queensland should prosecute this offender to the full extent of the law. Shaun Newman, Townsville Page 37 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

THIS breaks my heart. I am used to hearing about spills, especially here on the US west coast, but not Down Under. Having enjoyed the beautiful Moreton region several times, I hope the clean-up proceeds quickly and efficiently so there is as little long-term damage as possible. Hopefully, safeguards can be put in place so spills can be eliminated in the future. Anita Brady, Redding, California, US HOT TOPIC Focus is on Pauline WITH the exception of your partner, who cares who does what with whom, and when? Whether or not it is Pauline Hanson in the now-notorious pictures is anyone's guess. Whether or not you agree with her politics, you can't help but admire her courage for standing up for what she believes in. She's a gutsy woman who deserves better than what is constantly thrown at her. Margaret Guthrie, Bribie Island YOU have to love it: pineapple politics is alive and well in Queensland. I am glad I never stood for Parliament, because I think my mum has a photo of me in a bathtub when I was four years old. Politicians -- you can't live with them but you can live without them. Colin Van Der Heide, Crestmead JUST what is the danger everyone in politics perceives from Pauline Hanson? Given the negatives in the press, she must be a real threat to both sides. I hope she goes from strength to strength. Barry Crews, Oakey THERE should be a law to make it illegal to publish or distribute nude photos without the subject's consent, if they are still living. With digital cameras, email and the internet, people today are even more vulnerable to blackmail or harassment for just trying to create memories of normal human activity. Colin de Ronden, Caloocan, Philippines IF BEING sexy is the secret to political success how the hell to explain John Howard or Kevin Rudd? John Davidson, Chapel Hill HOW come Prime Minister Rudd says ``s--- storm'' and has been to a strip club and he's hailed a hero, but Pauline Hanson's political career is ``over'' because some boyfriend releases purported pictures of her as a young woman? Sounds like male chauvinistic hypocrisy to me. Gillian Lane, Southport HOW low can one go? Shame on Jack Johnson (who took the pictures and released them to the news media). Be proud of yourself, Pauline, and hold your head up high. Wendy Linden, Bribie Island WHAT have sexy looks to do with election votes? Do we want to see Anna in all her glory, or Springborg in his underpants? John Steenbergen, Kybong THE photos should not have been published. Someone should be sued for breach of privacy. Vanessa Muir, Brisbane THOSE photos are such a non-event. Which of us never did anything stupid in our youth? Whoever supplied them is a total grub. I despair of the relevance of our newspapers today. Judge the woman on her political track record, not her private life. Lord knows what lies behind the locked doors of all our pollies. Barbara Ekstrom, Bahrs Scrub I AM not a supporter or fan of Pauline Hanson but in my opinion anyone who kisses and tells is a person with no principles or character, and I would put Jack Johnson in that category. Page 38 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

Henry Smith, Victoria Point JACK Johnson's television appearance still did not explain why he would change the innocent moment of so many years ago to sell the photos to a newspaper. Why not just destroy them? Kenneth Evans, Logan City WHAT a jerk photographer Jack Johnson must be to sell the pictures to a newspaper. What happens in the bedroom, stays in the bedroom. Leslie Braun, Southport PLEASE leave Pauline alone. She has been through enough. Why print this stuff? Many other people have probably done the same or similar things. Tracy Lemke, Burrum Heads IT WAS more than 30 years ago, for goodness' sake, and where is the scandal? Talk about a big deal over nothing. Errol Donovan, Nambour I AM not, and have never been, a fan of Pauline Hanson, because she stands for everything that I loathe, but I do find the controversial photographs an unwarranted intrusion into her privacy. D.J. Fraser, Mudgeeraba GIVEN the chance, Pauline Hanson would kick me out of this country just for being different. However, I still feel sorry for her. She already has so much on her plate right now without her dignity being crucified further. Aida White, Sydney, NSW I'M disgusted at the continued media coverage of the photos. If I lived in the Beaudesert area I'd vote for her to show support. Graham Wallace, Kelvin Grove TAKING SIDES Should children be vaccinated before being allowed to attend childcare? YES: Gavin Beavis Ausvax director IT IS one of the easiest things you can do to prevent your child contracting vaccine-preventable diseases. When you start mixing kids together, you don't know who they are being exposed to or what. For example, there has been this resurgence in whooping cough. It can be deadly. A four-week-old baby died from whooping cough in northern New South Wales. It (vaccination) is one of our primary defences (against disease). One of the things breastmilk can't give immunity for is pertussis, which is whooping cough. You just have to vaccinate your kids. It's crucial. When I was a child we all got vaccinated for tetanus but it didn't cover whooping cough. Now we (as adults) are all susceptible. NO: Meryl Dorey Australian Vaccination Network AFTER reading media reports on the recent outbreaks of measles in Beerwah and whooping cough in NSW, one could be excused for thinking that Australia was a very dangerous place to bring up children. The truth is however, that the majority of those in Australia who get both measles and whooping cough (and every other disease for which we currently vaccinate) have been fully and appropriately vaccinated against them. The vaccination rate for whooping cough is currently 95 per cent in Australia, the highest rate in recorded history. The current number of cases is also the highest on record. So, what we are seeing is Page 39 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

not a failure of parents to vaccinate their children, but a clear case of failure of the vaccine to protect. TALK TO US All correspondence with the Editor, including emails, must include your name, address and telephone number. Letters must be short and may be edited. Queensland Newspapers Pty Ltd, as publisher of The Sunday Mail, may license third parties to reproduce in electronic form and communicate these letters.Address GPO Box 130, Brisbane 4001 Fax (07) 3666 6787 Email yournews@thesundaymail.com.au sms 0421 261 271 Have your say and read more feedback at thesundaymail.com.au SML-20090322-2-062-137081 Document SNDMAL0020090321e53m0004s

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Local Deadly danger of dismissing shots --- State of poor health --- EXCLUSIVE Kate Sikora, Clementine Cuneo 757 words 12 March 2009 Daily Telegraph DAITEL 4 - City Edition 11:30pm 4 English Copyright 2009 News Ltd. All Rights Reserved ANCIENT diseases wiped out by vaccines are festering in pockets across the state where parents continue to refuse to vaccinate their children. Health experts last night warned of the return of potentially deadly illnesses, as a whooping cough epidemic already sweeps across NSW. The National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance has identified four areas in which diseases are incubating because parents do not vaccinate their children. Centre director Peter McIntyre has warned that children living on the North Coast, South Coast, Southern Highlands and in the Blue Mountains were most at risk. ``About 25 to 30 per cent of children on the North Coast aren't getting their whooping cough vaccine,'' Professor McIntyre said. ``Your child is at risk.'' On average, just 3 per cent of children in NSW are not vaccinated. Professor McIntyre warned that if the current level of immunisations drops, it could bring the return of diseases including polio and tuberculosis, effectively wiped out through widespread vaccination. However, he said there is no need for panic as there has not been a recorded case of polio or diphtheria in Australia in decades, with current immunisation levels at 95 per cent -- enough to ward off the diseases. But health officials are already extremely concerned about the spread of whooping cough, with 3356 cases already diagnosed this year. Newborn babies could soon be given whooping cough vaccines following an outbreak that has reached epidemic proportions and this week claimed its first life in a decade. On Monday, a four-week-old baby from the Tweed Heads area died of whooping cough. Following that tragedy, NSW Health announced it would offer free vaccines for new parents, grandparents and those who care for new babies. It also will lower the age at which the vaccine can be given to a baby, from eight weeks to six weeks. However, in the future babies could be given the vaccine from birth. A trial by the National Centre for Immunisation Research Surveillance at Westmead, conducted last year, proved successful and is now being extended to involve hundreds of children this year. ``Anti-vaccination groups say that clean living and good food is [the reason] we have low rates of diseases and that a healthy lifestyle is better protection but there's a lot of things that clean living cannot protect us from,'' he said. ``An outbreak of measles in Queensland can be traced back to areas with low immunisation rates around the Sunshine Coast. That's why the measles outbreak has happened -- and in unvaccinated kids . ``We want to keep immunisation rates really high because some children can't be protected because they have disease or illness or problems with their immune system.'' Page 41 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

But Australian Vaccination Network, which is against immunisation, defended parents' rights. President Meryl Dorey said parents who did not vaccinate their child should still be entitled to claim the maternity immunisation allowance. ``A lot of people start vaccinating and then their child has a reaction so they start researching and then stop. ``What we are annoyed at is that parents who get their child vaccinated are getting a payment from the Government,'' she said. ``It's a bribe and we don't support it. It's very hard to get good, objective advice on both sides of the story.'' South Coast mother Karen Nelson started her children on a vaccination program but stopped when one became blind in an eye. She said it was a personal choice for her family. ``I did my own research and my husband was never vaccinated,'' she said. ``I do get a lot of questions and remarks when I tell people. It's an individual choice.'' ---------- A jab in the arm ---------20 NSW areas with the lowest immunisation rates ----- Metro area ----Hawkesbury-Hills: ........... 87% Upper North Shore (Ku-ring-gai): .................. 88.2% Northern Sydney: ............ 85.3% Manly Warringah: ........... 87% Central Sydney: .............. 86.4% Eastern Sydney: ............. 80% South Eastern Sydney: ... 85.5% St George: ..................... 88% South West Sydney: ....... 88% Western Sydney: ............ 87% Macarthur: ..................... 90.1% Bankstown: .................... 87.9% ----- Regional areas ----Northern Rivers (Byron Mullimbimby): ... 81.4% Blue Mountains: .......... 85.9% Mid North Coast .......... 86.4% Tweed Valley: .............. 86.6% NSW Outback: ............ 87.9% Page 42 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

South East NSW: ........ 89% Illawarra: ..................... 90.6% Dubbo Plains: .............. 91% Source: Medicare ______________________________ >> The full immunisation risk list. Is your suburb on it? PLUS Do you have a hospital horror story? Tell us in confidence dailytelegraph.com.au ______________________________ Editorial page 28 DTM-20090312-4-004-920701 Document DAITEL0020090311e53c0005w

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QWeekend eye of the needle Amanda Watt 3,899 words 18 July 2009 Weekend Courier nlpwkc 1 12 English Copyright 2009 News Ltd. All Rights Reserved medicine The death of a four-week-old baby from whooping cough has brought the vaccination debate into sharp focus. Could sparing kids the spike be putting others at risk? And then, suddenly, the room was quiet. The team of doctors and nurses who'd clustered around Dana McCaffery's bed all day were now switching off her lifesupport machines and padding out of the intensive care room at Brisbane's Mater Children's hospital. Toni and David McCaffery somehow found the strength to move towards their precious four-week-old daughter. When Dana had gone into cardiac arrest, Toni, 34, had been in a sitting room with her mum relaying the good news: her baby's tenhour, double blood transfusion - the medics' desperate attempt to expel some of the toxin produced by the pertussis bacteria - finally appeared to be working. Dana was going to pull through. "It's going to be okay," Toni had said as she collapsed into a chair. But then David, who was standing by his daughter's bed, screamed ... Three months on, Toni sits at the kitchen table in her family's home at Lennox Head on the northern NSW coast, still hardly able to believe the story she is telling is her own. Her six-year-old son James is at school, daughter Aisling, 4, is watching TV, and David, 46, is due home from his primary school teaching job. "I heard David scream," Toni says, "then Dana went into cardiac arrest. We were calling out, pleading with her to stay with us. We had to watch the whole countdown from ten minutes until they told us: 'There's nothing more we can do.' " She stands up to search for tissues. "I think I just went into shock. At no point had we expected she would die. And Dana ... someone got me a chair." Huge sobs overwhelm her. "I remember sitting down and she was put in my arms. She was blue." In the end, death was perhaps a blessing for Dana. She was the latest Australian victim of pertussis, known more commonly as whooping cough. The disease had been diagnosed four days earlier, and its assault was swift. Dana had her first major coughing spasm within ten minutes of arriving at Lismore Base Hospital in March - the sharp, barking cough continuing for more than a minute until she went blue in the face and passed out. She was eventually airlifted to Brisbane, where the toxin produced by the disease - notoriously resistant to medication - went on to attack her heart, circulatory system an d kidneys, and quite possibly her brain. As Toni and David sat with their baby's body in the Mater, further news compounded their shock. They learned that Australia was in the grip of a whooping cough epidemic, that until babies had completed their primary course of pertussis vaccinations at six months, they were at greatest risk of dying from the highly infectious disease (one in 200 of the babies in that age group who contract it die from pneumonia or brain damage); that the Northern Rivers district of NSW where they lived had one of the lowest immunisation rates in the country; that all adults in Dana's life should ideally have had a pertussis booster shot as a further link in the chain of protection. If she had been aware of the dangers, Toni would have kept Dana inside more in those first few weeks of her life; she would not have taken her to Aisling's preschool, housed in a childcare centre that authorities later confirmed had six cases of whooping cough. The McCafferys would have got their booster shots and insisted on the same for their extended family and friends. Then there was the Lismore Base Hospital where Dana was born: they shuddered to think how many whooping cough carriers she might have come in contact with there. They made a pact. They would ensure their baby had not died in vain. They would go public to warn other parents, drawing on Toni's 13 years of experience in marketing and communications to lobby the government for advertising campaigns ramming home the need for all children and adults to get vaccinated. But it turned out the pertussis epidemic wasn't the only thing the McCafferys would have to fight. They had waded into the contentious and increasingly caustic debate over the rights and wrongs of childhood immunisation. HEALTH AUTHORITIES are not surprised at the current spike in whooping cough rates - the disease is Page 44 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

notorious for cyclical outbreaks every three to four years - but the size and speed of the epidemic is causing alarm. In 2005, the height of the previous pertussis spike, there were more than 11,000 notifications nationally. The first warning bells sounded last year when the number of cases passed 14,500, but the worst was yet to come. The number of cases diagnosed in the first six months of this year eclipsed the 2008 total and is showing no signs of abating. As of last week the tally for 2009 stood at 15,302 cases nationally, 2778 in Queensland. (The state total for 2008 was 2276.) In NSW, 48 per cent of babies aged under six months infected with the disease this year were admitted to hospital, a figure believed to be reflected nationally. Dana McCaffery is one of three babies who later died. "We should not," said Dr Neil Hearnden of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners in an interview last month, "have deaths from whooping cough in this day and age." Pertussis is not the only potentially fatal childhood disease that could come back. In March there was an outbreak of more than 20 cases of measles at a school at Beerwah in the Sunshine Coast hinterland. Dr Michael Nissen, director of infectious diseases at Brisbane's Royal Children's Hospital, told Qweekend he fears a measles epidemic if that disease takes hold in communities with low vaccination rates. Vaccination programs have seen a reduction in illness and deaths from multiple childhood diseases since the cowpox vaccine was first used against a smallpox outbreak in Australia in the early 1800s. Among the greatest success stories are polio (which killed more than 1000 Australians from 1944 to 1954 and has now been all but eradicated in this country) and Hib, or haemophilus influenzae (there has been a 95 per cent reduction in cases in children under five since the vaccine became widely used in Australia in 1993). The number of cases of measles, meningococcal C and invasive pneumococcal has also fallen sharply. Today, parents are urged to vaccinate their children according to a schedule that stretches from birth to Year 10 and is designed to offer protection from 14 childhood diseases (15 if your child is Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander) including meningococcal C, pneumococcal, diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, measles, mumps, rubella and chickenpox. Most doctors will bulkbill vaccination appointments and councils also offer free vaccination in many parts of Australia. Central to the success of the program is the concept of "herd immunity", which relies on a high percentage of children and adults (typically 95 per cent) being vaccinated to reduce the likelihood of diseases spreading if they are introduced. The theory goes that those who can't be protected - such as babies too young to be fully vaccinated, children with compromised immune systems and the small percentage of children for whom vaccines fail - are still safe. But while childhood immunisation rates remain high and steady in most areas of Australia, hovering at about 92 per cent, strong pockets of resistance exist. According to federal government figures, in the Northern Rivers district of NSW immunisation rates are about 84 per cent, with Byron Bay as low as 64 per cent up to the age of two; the Beerwah measles outbreak was blamed on that area's notoriously low immunisation rate (88.2 per cent on the Sunshine Coast for 12-15-month-olds). The Tablelands district in far north Queensland is also shaping as an area of concern: on latest estimates, only 84.5 per cent of 12-15-month-old children living there were fully immunised. Parents who refuse to immunise their children because of concerns about vaccines' safety are known as "conscientious objectors". They account for just two to three per cent of the population but of concern are the additional estimated 15 per cent of parents who are actively seeking more information on the safety of vaccines. It is this group that most worries infectious disease experts - if some become conscientious objectors, there is a very real danger that herd immunity could be lost. There is a precedent for this. In 1998, after the release of a report in Britain known as the Wakefield study that claimed a link between autism and the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine, rates of vaccination plummeted in some parts of the UK. While the study was later debunked and ten of the 13 authors published a statement retracting the paper's interpretation, the damage was done. Europe is now seeing severe complications from measles for the first time in decades, according to Nissen. The "questioners" comprise the strategically important "swinging voter" group, says Dr Julie Leask, senior research fellow at the National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance of Vaccine Preventable Disease. They tend to be tertiary-educated, older mothers who are "very intentional and proactive about every aspect of their child's development", and any major controversy about vaccines could erode their confidence. Queensland Health's senior director of communicable diseases, Dr Christine Selvey, agrees: "There's nothing we can do to move the conscientious objectors ... but it's the people in the middle who are the concern, the people who are sort of questioning and wavering." She shies away from the term "selfish" to describe parents who opt out but they are, she says, "relying on the goodwill of everyone else". "They say, 'My kid wasn't vaccinated and they are healthy and they've never had any of these diseases so they don't need vaccines.' That isn't a logical argument. The reason why their kid didn't get infected Page 45 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

was that everybody around them had done the right thing." The local medical community doesn't support calls like those in Britain for unvaccinated children to be banned from schools or childcare centres. Neil Hearnden says that instead, "We must protect these children from their parents. Probably through their own fears and insecurities, [they] have made these decisions for their children and we must have things in place to protect them. That is a matter of being aware of their unvaccinated status and then excluding them as soon as there is an outbreak of those diseases." IT'S STANDING ROOM ONLY at the Australian Vaccination Network's "Naturally Healthy Children" seminar at an upmarket conference centre in Buderim, an affluent pocket of Sunshine Coast suburbia. The privately funded organisation has more than 3500 members, and today the room is dotted with women in their twenties and thirties, many nursing babies. Those who aren't members have paid $37 to hear this afternoon's lectures focusing on non-toxic approaches to childhood health, and they now look expectantly to the final speaker, AVN president Mer yl Dorey. Dorey, 51, has dedicated herself full-time to the Bangalow-based lobby group since it began in 1994. "We are labelled as the antivaccination group but that's simply not true," she had entreated when I contacted her for this story. "We don't believe we have the right to tell people whether or not to vaccinate, but neither does the government." However, it only takes a few minutes of listening to Dorey's presentation to realise she is no fence-sitter. She claims vaccines "contain toxic ingredients"; "have never been scientifically tested"; "do not provide guaranteed immunity from infectious disease". She tells the audience of cases reported to the AVN of babies who cried for five days straight after vaccination and then died. An AVN book handed out at the seminar contains chilling anecdotes from parents whose children died or were left with mysterious illnesses following routine inoculations. (Dorey agreed to try to put Qweekend in touch with some of them for this story but nothing eventuated.) Dorey began researching vaccination two decades ago after her baby son had adverse reactions to his jabs; she stopped vaccinating him altogether after he was hospitalised with gastroenteritis following his MMR vaccine at 18 months and "started to develop autistic tendencies". Dorey downplays the seriousness of the diseases vaccines are meant to prevent. In an article titled Pertussis: The Fear Factor, she writes that when her own children came down with whooping cough, it was a "storm in a teacup" resolved with homeopathic remedies. The McCafferys have it in writing from the NSW North Coast Director of Public Health that three days after Dana's death, Dorey called him and claimed he had "misled the public" in attributing the baby's death to pertussis in a media statement, despite lab confirmation of the diagnosis. Dorey now tells the Buderim audience of large-scale conspiracies, saying doctors are paid salesmen for vaccine products and rarely report adverse reactions; that stories in the mainstream media on drugs are "word for word [from] the press release the pharmaceutical company put out". She rejects that the findings of the Wakefield autism report have been overturned. "Make no mistake," she says, "there is a very, very strong effort on the part of the government and on the part of the mainstream medical community to suppress any information that will lead parents to believe that vaccinations are less than perfectly safe or perfectly effective ... You have a responsibility to go out and talk to people. Not to say 'you're a fool if you vaccinate' [but to say] 'hey, I just went to this seminar and I got some information on vaccination and ... I think it would open your eyes a little bit. Are you brave enough to look at it? Do you care about your child enough to look at it?' " The Australian Skeptics' Dr Rachael Dunlop, a working scientist who volunteers four hours a week to investigate the AVN's claims online, vacillates between being bemused and horrified at these tactics. "The AVN will tell you there's mercury in childhood vaccines," she says. "There is no mercury in childhood vaccines [but] if you are a parent trying to decide whether to give your child the [MMR] vaccine and come across websites that say it's got mercury in it and it will give your child autism, of course you will be scared and therefore won't want to go ahead and do it." AFTER NURSE CECILY Johns on, 55, lost her 12-year-old daughter Laine to a rare complication from measles in 1995, she gatecrashed AVN conferences in her former home state of Western Australia and then in northern NSW. Laine had contracted measles at ten-and-a-half months before she could receive the full schedule of measles vaccines; she recovered but at seven was diagnosed with subacute schlerosing panencephalitis (SSPE), a fatal complication affecting one in 100,000 children who contract measles. She went blind within two weeks of diagnosis and eventually couldn't talk or move because of the damage the virus had done to her brain. It took her five years to die. Johnson's attendance at the conferences was part information-gathering, part ambush. She'd take before-and-after photographs of Laine and other children with SSPE with her and when the sessions opened up to questions, jumped to her feet and flashed them around. "People think measles is innocuous but it is not," she says. "I had a photo taken of my daughter in her coffin and I took it to AVN conferences and said, 'This is measles, man.' Another time I took her ashes. I didn't go to the meetings to have a go at Meryl, it was to reach out to parents because I know how convincing it can be sitting there and listening [to the AVN]. They say, 'It's just one child' when they talk about fatalities from these diseases, but that's my child. These diseases are real and the kids who die from these diseases are real people." Given what they Page 46 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

agree is at stake, why do the medical community and governments leave it to individuals and the Australian Skeptics to hit back aggressively against the AVN? I read out to Nissen a document handed out at the seminar that lists ten reasons "why parents question vaccination". He dismisses it as largely inaccurate. But isn't there a concern that firsttime, cautious parents may be swayed? "I agree entirely. I have friends who are extremely well educated and this type of stuff really plays on their mind." But he won't buy into a tit-for-tat. Nissen says people "want to hear good, sound logical advice that's based on scientific evidence" and will make up their own minds. Hearnden points to the fact vaccinations are supported by the overwhelming majority of parents. That's not enough for the McCafferys. Central to their campaign is a call for the federal government to more actively educate parents about the importance of vaccination. A National Immunisation Strategy has been commissioned in a bid to boost immunisation rates, and a separate NSW review is analysing any deficiencies in warning systems at the time of Dana's death. NSW, the ACT, NT and Victoria now offer free pertussis vaccinations to adults who care for young children. There is also a raft of information on the internet, including a lengthy federal government document titled Myths and Realities: Responding to arguments against immunisation, but parents with lingering questions say they find existing resources either inadequate or too technical. Brisbane mother Andrea Dawson, 37, converted from a questioner to a conscientious objector ten years ago and says she took a "considered approach" when opting out of scheduled vaccinations for her son, 11, and daughter, 7. The communications professional and former journalist's suspicions were aroused when her son developed asthma-like symptoms after his third inoculation at six months. She said the emergence of eczema in her baby daughter indicated a compromised immune system and she didn't want to "play with it" by adding vaccinations. Dawson talked at length to her GP and trawled for information but her growing misgivings were not assuaged. The one-sizefitsall inoculation program was at odds with what she saw as a growing body of evidence that humans have distinctly individual immune systems. While she's confident about her decision, it doesn't mean the backlash hasn't stung. "I've had doctors treat me poorly for saying that I haven't vaccinated my children," she says, and knows there are "people who will suggest that what I'm doing is reckless". Dawson says that when her daughter becomes eligible in Grade 8 for the Gardasil cervical cancer vaccine, it will be another hard decision. In the meantime it would be great, she implores, if as a community "we had more conversations about how [vaccination] works, how it doesn't work, how the schedule could be safer. It needs to be investigated in a considered instead of a sensational way." For Nissen, it comes down to a comparison of risks. Vaccinate children against a disease and risk the extremely rare chance of a serious adverse reaction, or don't get them vaccinated and gamble with much greater odds of serious health problems if they contract it. In his 21year career he has never known a child to die or suffer brain damage as a result of a scheduled vaccine. (In the latest published statistics on adverse events following immunisation, covering 2000-2007, two deaths were reported, but government sources say they were both elderly people who died after receiving the'flu vaccine; no direct link with the vaccine was established.) The reality is, says Nissen, that unvaccinated children do suffer serious complications or die, and he's seen the emotional fallout for parents. "They are totally devastated because they feel they've made a grave error in judgement and haven't protected their child. The guilt they feel stays with them for life." But the issue of responsibility extends beyond parenting. Hearnden accuses the federal government of dropping the ball on immunisation by not increasing the financial incentives to parents to vaccinate (an approximate $260 payment to parents who had correctly vaccinated by the time their child was 18 months was recently split into part payments at 18 months and four years, he says, while an $18.50 payment to GPs for each vaccination encounter was scrapped), and by failing to include adult booster shots for whooping cough in the immunisation schedule. He says it is unacceptable that Queensland has not followed the lead of other states and made adult booster shots for pertussis free to parents of newborns, adding that legislation to force healthcare workers to be vaccinated against all communicable illnesses should be introduced as a matter of urgency. "We've got this attitude at the moment that [the spectre of childhood diseases] has been fixed," Hearnden says. "It will never be fixed. It always has to have 100 per cent commitment from the federal and state bodies and at the moment we are seeing a dilution in that, and that is harming our ability to deal with these radical elements." Back at Lennox Head, the cyberspace debate on vaccination is becoming unbearable for the McCafferys. David has warned Toni not to read the more toxic blogs but she finds them hard to ignore. She sometimes Googles Dana's name and finds entries on blogs that perpetuate false rumours that she was premature; that she was sick from birth; that her parents took too long to seek medical treatment. Upsetting letters containing anti-vaccination paraphernalia have been posted to their home, emails sent to a website they have set up in Dana's name in a bid to get the message out about whooping cough. Page 47 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

Toni closes the folder of papers on her kitchen table. Most of the time she's strong. But waging a war against callous opponents is taking its toll. Tears that have been pooling in her eyes fall onto her cheeks. "I get very angry, very distressed," she says. "Dave will say 'don't look at it', but I'll say, 'They are talking about my baby.' " Pictures of Dana are stuck to the fridge behind her. In one, the three-week-old is resting contentedly between David's knees. In another, Toni nurses Dana over her shoulder, their cheeks touching. It's Toni's favourite photograph. She smiles at the memory and wipes away her tears. "We fully anticipated opposition to vaccination," she says quietly, "but we never thought we'd be in a position where we had to prove that pertussis killed Dana." Toni hit back on a recent blog, pleading with people "to leave my beautiful daughter alone and stop this misleading chatter". "And I plead to other parents," she wrote, "please do not expose your child to this dangerous disease." BQW-20090718-1-012-066549 Document nlpwkc0020090717e57i000mi

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News and Features Immunisation boost to battle whooping cough Brian Robins and Louise Hall 420 words 5 September 2009 The Sydney Morning Herald SMHH First 12 English © 2009 Copyright John Fairfax Holdings Limited. THE State Government has won Commonwealth support for a national immunisation strategy to help stem the surge in cases of whooping cough, which has resulted in the death of three infants this year. “This national strategy will help to prevent the spread of the disease and protect vulnerable children, especially those under 12 months old,” the NSW Health Minister, John Hatzistergos, said. “It will also raise awareness about the need for boosters for new parents and childcare workers and counteract misinformation about immunisation.” Medical experts recommend all children be given the combination vaccine, which protects against whooping cough and several other diseases. “The vaccine is normally given at two months, four months and six months of age," Mr Hatzistergos said. "However, parents and GPs are being urged to bring the first dose forward to six weeks of age to provide earlier protection.” Initial symptoms of whooping cough may include runny nose, tiredness and mild fever. Coughing bouts may develop followed by a big, deep gasp, then often vomiting. The renewed vaccination push follows a surge in whooping cough cases, with more than 10,005 in NSW this year, compared with 2099 in 2007. NSW accounts for most of the 19,028 cases reported this year. The latest epidemic has seen almost twice the cases of the previous epidemic in 2005-06, when 11,200 were reported. Between 1993 and 2006, there were 21 deaths from whooping cough, with all but four being infants less than 12 months old. According to NSW Health, large numbers of babies and young children – who are most of risk of dying from the disease – are still falling ill even though monthly notifications of the disease continue to decline from the peak of the outbreak last December. In March, the Government announced a free vaccine for all new parents, grandparents and any other adults who regularly care for infants and asked GPs to bring the first dose forward from two months to six weeks. The move came after the death of four-week-old Dana McCaffery on the state's North Coast, which has one of the nation's lowest childhood vaccination rates. The region is home to the Australian Vaccination Network led by Meryl Dorey, who claims vaccines cause autism, brain damage and cancer. Ms Dorey and her network were reported to the health-care watchdog last month for allegedly spreading misinformation and endangering children's health. Document SMHH000020090904e5950008a

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Features LETTERS TO THE EDITOR 1,060 words 6 May 2009 Central Coast Express CENTCE 1 - Main Book 50 English Copyright 2009 News Ltd. All Rights Reserved Polluting heaters should be banned * All letters, including emails, must provide full name, street address and phone number before being considered for publication. An email address alone is not sufficient BREAKFAST on the back deck in the sunshine on Saturday morning should have been pleasant. Unfortunately the foul-smelling smoke drifting across the yard in the morning breeze sent us inside. The culprit was a wood-burning heater in the neighbourhood. When will we see an end to these polluting dinosaurs whose nighttime smoke hangs like a cloud each morning in our valley. Margaret Marshall, Wyoming Residents happy with Gosford Council WE also live at Mooney Mooney but, unlike Tony Lavidis (``Fed-up residents take on minister'', Express Advocate, April 29), we are quite happy to stay within the Gosford local government area. Besides having no real complaints about Gosford Council, we are incredibly fortunate to have it supply and fund our community library. The article suggests that as ratepayers we would be up to $300 a year better off if we went with Hornsby Council. The tremendous benefit we, as a community, gain from the community library (borrowings, story times, computer and photocopier access) far outweighs this amount. I wonder if Hornsby Council would supply this service? Maybe the grass isn't always greener. Annette Tenkate, Mooney Mooney Property owners question figures MY husband and I own properties at Mooney Mooney and at no time have we been asked our views on this change of council. If this proposal is to be seriously considered by the minister, I believe all property owners in the area should be officially contacted and proper statistics taken to find out how many people really want this. Where did Tony Lavidis get his 91 per cent from, how many submissions were returned and when was this survey conducted? These figures seem a bit rubbery to me. Page 50 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

This group does not represent my views on this issue. Margaret Hickey, Terrigal Police should act on illegally parked cars IT is worth pointing out that it is illegal to park so as to force another vehicle to cross double centre lines. If this is happening around the Ozanam playing fields, the police should take action to prevent this dangerous practice. Bruce Hyland, Daley Point Safe to drive faster on some roads I AGREE with Phillip Cohen that all people want to do is get to their destination as safely and quickly as possible. As an automotive engineer with more than 30 years experience I know that vehicles have all the latest driver aids and safety equipment. Add improved road conditions and we are travelling too slow and generating a lot of revenue from traffic fines. I would also like to point out to Max Horner that I fully support and adhere to the 40km/h school zones, the 50km/h suburban street limits and agree with some of the limits on the F3 and all roads heading north, south and west. I disagree with Mr Horner that the F3 is dangerous. All roads are dangerous when not respected and travelled at the appropriate speed for the conditions of the road, vehicle and driver. Many roads I have travelled that have 90km/h, 100km/h and 110km/h limits should be reassessed and the limits increased. A good example is the Pacific Highway heading north past Karuah. This road is brilliant and would easily support vehicles travelling up to 150km/h limit, but we have 90km/h in most sections. Why? Revenue. Stephen Peat, Bateau Bay Women-led Warriors win their first game THE under-10 Lake Mummorah Warriors rugby league team won their first game of the season on Saturday against Woy Woy, at Rogers Park 22-12, with 11 players and no reserves. The Warriors coach and manager are both women and Woy Woy should be congratulated on the condition of their field. Denis Grieve, Bateau Bay Insensitive comments best left unprinted I AM disgusted by Peter Samuels' comments regarding his ``recent experience'' on the F3. Poor Peter was 2 1/2 hours late for his appointment. Page 51 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

What about the poor parents who lost a son, the poor wife who lost her husband, the poor children who lost their father and the poor soul that lost his life? Peter, what were you thinking? Scott McGrath, Mount White Whooping cough vaccine does not work STEPHEN Clark claims it is ``selfish and irresponsible'' for parents not to vaccinate their children and blames the unvaccinated for the fact his five-month-old child (whom, I would guess, was already vaccinated at the time) contracted whooping cough. Perhaps Mr Clark should be made aware of some facts which can be verified by visiting the website of the Commonwealth Health Department. In 1991, only 71 per cent of Australia's children were vaccinated against whooping cough. That year, there were 381 cases reported across Australia. In 1998, our vaccination rate for this disease went over 95 per cent for the first time on record. In 1998 almost 15,000 cases of whooping cough were reported also a record and an increase in the incidence of pertussis (whooping cough) of almost 40 times. We are seeing a resurgence of this disease not because of people who don't vaccinate but simply because the vaccine does not protect those who are vaccinated. If the vaccine isn't doing its job, it is time to find out why and to determine once and for all that it is the medical community which continues to push this shot in the face of all logic which should be held accountable. Meryl Dorey, national president, Australian Vaccination Network Council's CDO value has been diminished GOSFORD Mayor Chris Holstein keeps reiterating that Gosford Council has not lost money on his council's collateralised debt obligation investment. I too, have not lost money on my share portfolio, but only because I have not sold any shares lately, but the commercial value of these shares is down 30 per cent on the original investment. How does Mr Holstein respond to the question: What is the commercial value of the CDOs that the council owns, if it sold them today? I would expect that a straightforward answer, without the spin, would be considerably less, or ziltch. Clive Manson, Blue Haven EXG-20090506-1-050-025846 Document CENTCE0020090505e5560001r

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Opinion A prickly debate TORY SHEPHERD 845 words 6 November 2009 The Advertiser ADVTSR 1 - State 19 English Copyright 2009 News Ltd. All Rights Reserved Parents' emotions run high when it comes to putting needles in their children, writes Health Reporter TORY SHEPHERD THERE is no debate when it comes to childhood immunisation as far as governments and medical authorities are concerned. Parents should just do it. But some parents see it very, very differently. A whooping cough outbreak has been washing over the country, and small children - too young to be fully immunised - are the most vulnerable to this disease. Whooping cough can cause brain damage, hernias, haemorrhaging - and death. SA Health and the Australian Medical Association - and almost every other expert there is - say the bes t way to protect young ones from whooping cough and other deadly diseases is through immunisation, for the children themselves and the community at large. But a very vocal minority is opposed to vaccines. It claims vaccines don't work, or that they can cause autism, brain damage, a range of reactions. Members of this minority are refusing to vaccinate their own children, which experts say could put other people's children at risk. So what are parents' responsibilities when it comes to vaccinating their children? Australian Medical Association state president Dr Andrew Lavender has no doubt about the benefits of vaccination. He says immunisation is ``one of the biggest advances in health care and improvements in quality of life ever in the history of mankind''. He goes further, saying people who protest against vaccination are both ignorant and arrogant. ``The people who are anti-vaccination are acting on very little information and usually relying on scare tactics. These positions are based on ignorance and are also arrogant because they are posing a risk to others,'' he says. SA Health chief medical officer Professor Paddy Phillips says Australians often don't realise that in countries without vaccination programs, people are still dying from tetanus, diphtheria, polio, measles, and mumps. ``People - children and adults - who are protected can't pass on any infection to other people. This i s especially important to protect very young babies, who are not yet fully immunised,'' he says. All the most respected experts agree, then, that parents should vaccinate. And yet, the Australian Vaccination Network and other ``pro-choice'' (or ``anti-vaccination'') groups are sure vaccines are either not working, or are causing more harm than good. AVN president Meryl Dorey can produce reams of statistics to back up her arguments. She says people need to weigh up the science and make their own decisions. ``There are some people that can't be vaccinated, there are some who shouldn't be vaccinated. It's not like taking a lolly,'' she says. ``It's a medical procedure and all medical procedures have benefits and risks.'' She accuses the medical community of using ``selective evidence'' to prove its point, then sent The Advertiser selected evidence to prove her own. Page 53 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

What makes it difficult for parents is that it is true that vaccinations sometimes do not work. And sometimes they cause adverse reactions. No one is saying vaccines are perfect. What they are saying is that serious adverse reactions are extremely rare, and that vaccines' benefits far outweigh their risks. And they are saying that those who choose not to vaccinate, based on a fear of a very remote possibility, are endangering their child's life. Frighteningly, they are also endangering the life of other children, and other vulnerable people who do not have their own immune system to defend them. AMA's immunisation expert Dr Rod Pearce says doctors need to talk about vaccinations ``warts and all'', and have an honest debate in the community about the pros of immunisation, and the concerns. But overall, he says more education is needed to convince confused parents that all the evidence shows immunisation works - and it is the best choice they can make. ``We sit down and look at the evidence and give governments the best advice about what that is,'' Dr Pearce says. ``We're not saying everything's perfect with immunisation. But if there's evidence that vaccination does more harm than good, I'd be the first to turn around.'' READERS responded strongly to yesterday's Advertiser story on AdelaideNow. ``Non vaccinator'' of Adelaide wrote: ``I am against vaccinations and (would) rather take the risk. All the other kids he plays with have been vaccinated so the chances of him catching it from them are going to be low anyway'', while Helen of NQ wrote that vaccines don't work. Their comments unleashed fury from other readers, who say the anti-vaccination lobby is endangering their own children. In a heartfelt plea, Lisa of Adelaide wrote: ``Thanks to parents who choose not to immunise their children, endangering not only their child's life but also everyone else's children, my young baby almost died from this preventable disease. It is heartwrenching watching a newborn baby suffering and I mean really suffering from disease like whooping cough and measles, there is no need for it in this day and age.'' ADV-20091106-1-019-045020 Document ADVTSR0020091105e5b60004l

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Ladies Probus Club of Coolangatta and Tweed Heads’ next monthly meeting will be... 1,762 words 15 October 2009 Tweed/Border Mail APNTBM Main 22 English Copyright 2009 APN Newspapers Pty Ltd. All Rights Reserved Ladies Probus Club of Coolangatta and Tweed Heads’ next monthly meeting will be on Monday, October 19 at 9.30am (Qld) at Twin Towns Services Club. Visitors and prospective members welcome. Call Beryl (07) 5524 2775. Cabarita Beach Women’s Bowls Club holds free bowls coaching at Cabarita Beach Bowls Club with accredited coaches each Saturday at 9.15am. Women’s social bowls Tuesdays at 9.15am. The Murwillumbah Business Women’s Networking breakfast will be on Thursday, October 29 from 8am to 9am at Craig Parnaby’s studio in Murwillumbah. $16. Bookings essential. Phone Olwen Anderson (02) 6672 6255 or email . South Tweed Senior Citizens Club’s next bus trip will be Tuesday, October 20 to the New Tennis Centre Brisbane. Cost is $25. Bring lunch or buy at Wynnum RSL. Visitors welcome. Betty (07) 5524 6365 Jean (07) 5524 7193. Murwillumbah Leukaemia and Cancer research society bookstall will be held next Friday and Saturday at the Red Cross Centre, Knox Park in Murwillumbah. Start selling 8am Friday to 5pm and 8am to 12pm Saturday. Volunteers needed Thursday afternoon to set up and pack up again on Saturday. The winner of the society’s recent raffle was Bill Hibbard. For more information about the book stall phone Margaret (02) 6672 1039. Gold Coast Annual Al-Anon Family Groups with Alateen and Alcoholics Anonymous Participation Weekend held Friday, October 23 8pm to 9.30pm (Qld), Saturday, October 24 9am to 5.30pm (Qld) and Sunday, October 25 9am to 12pm (Qld) at Coolangatta State School Staplton/Miles Streets Kirra. Enquiries (07) 5532 4320. Tumbulgum Hall on Saturday, October 17 at 8pm is hosting a great night of old-time and new vogue dancing. Door prize, raffles, lucky spots and supper, music by Trilogy. Cost adults $18, 13-17 years $4. Brunswick Valley U3A will meet on Tuesday, October 20 from 10am-12pm at the Uniting Church Hall, Fingal Street, Brunswick Heads. Guest speaker Ros McKenzie will speak on “Who would be a dentist” Phone (02) 6684 3126. The Tweed-Gold Coast Curling Club together with the Austrian-Australian Club is celebrating the Austrian National Day on Sunday, October 18 at the clubhouse at Pines Lane, Elanora, (Pacific Highway Exit 92) The music will be provided by Rudi Goldbach and Mo, the Singkreis and Folk Dance Group. Go along and enjoy good Austrian food and fun. Admission free. Lunch $10. Swine Flu and Whooping Cough Seminars will cover topics: Is the Swine flu vaccine safe? Is the Whooping Cough vaccine working? Presented by Meryl Dorey, president of the Australian Vaccination Network and editor of Living Wisdom magazine at Ballina RSL on Tuesday, October 20 Lismore City Hall on Thursday, October 22 at 7pm. Call (02) 6687 1699 for information and bookings. The Akuna Dragon Boat Club will host Rock ’n Roll on Saturday, October 17 at the Palm Beach Currumbin Sports Club, Palm Beach. Ban Plum Loco will perform from 7.30pm to 11.30pm. Entry is $15 and includes door prizes. Raffles drawn throughout the night. Call Allan 0403 193 401 or Cathy 0406 935 385. Tweed Valley Mental Health Carers Network is a support group for families of people with mental illness, offering friendship and sharing experiences and information. The group meets on the first and third Monday each month at the Tweed Heads Library, Brett Street (no public holidays). Call (07) 5524 4556. Please come to meet people who understand because they’ve been there. Twin Towns U3A venues in Coolangatta, Tweed and Tugun have a variety of classes including astrology, French, Japanese, cartooning, art, Scrabble, Mahjong, craft, Australian history, book club, optimal health, writer workshop, card making, computer. Phone the office (07) 5599 2249 between 9.45am and 1pm (DST). Murwillumbah Probus Club meets on Monday, October 19 at 10am at the Murwillumbah Bowls Club. Page 55 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

Members’ guests welcome. Call Ron on (02) 6672 3388. Guest speaker, Kingscliff solicitor Graham Delaney, will talk about legal issues affecting the elderly. Lifeball is an exercise sport similar to netball but at a walking pace played by senior men and women of all abilities. Come and have a try. Sessions are held every Tuesday at 9.30am to 11.30am at Tweed Supersports Centre, Chinderah. Contact Jill on (02) 6674 0636 or George (07) 5524 4558. Friends of the Library Kingscliff will conduct their next book sale on Saturday, October 24, from 9am to 11.45am. Donations may be left at the library. Inquiries to librarian Larry Price (02) 6674 1607. Justices of the Peace are available for witnessing legal documents at the following venues: Tweed Centro each Tuesday from 10am to 2pm. Tweed City Shopping Centre each Thursday from 10am to 2pm and 5pm to 7pm. Phone Margaret (07) 5599 2975. Free food giveaway for struggling pensioners every Wednesday at 12.30pm (DST), at the iBar, Tweed Heads. Food and bread donations very welcome to help give the pensioners a lift. Thank you to all who help. Phone Terri 0414 376 057. Tweed River High School P&C will hold its AGM on Thursday, October 22 at The South Tweed Heads Sports Club. The meeting starts at 6.30pm (DST) in the Boardroom located on the ground floor. All interested parents and citizens are welcome to attend and contribute to the direction of the high school in the year ahead. Inquiries Linda Woodward (07) 5536 5935. The Quota Club of Murwillumbah Inc. meets twice a month at Greenhills on Tweed, Murwillumbah on the first and third Wednesday at 6.15 pm. Further information Sandra Jones (02) 6679 3486. Chillingham Village Markets are held every second Sunday of the month. Next market is Sunday, November 8, 8am to 2pm. Fresh local produce, homemade jams, arts and crafts, plants, jewellery, bric a brac and lots more at Chillingham Community Centre. Visit . The Family Centre is taking bookings now for the following courses. DadSkills: fortnightly on Tuesdays 5pm to 7.30pm from October 20; Being Me!: Eight-week course for 11-13 yr olds starts Monday, October 26 3.30pm to 5pm; P5 Parenting Education Course: Six-week course starts Tuesday, October 27 10am to 12.30pm; Say What You Mean, Mean What You Say: Eight-week course for women starting Tuesday, October 27 from 1pm to 3pm; Family Centre Playgroups: 9.30am to 11.30am. Places available now at Murwillumbah on Wednesdays and Banora Point on Thursdays. Numbers are limited so book early on (07) 5524 8711. Mudgeeraba RSL sponsors the Tuesday Club, which meets 10am to 2pm, at the sub-branch under Mudgeeraba Memorial Hall in Railway Street, Mudgeeraba. Also open for dinner 5pm to 8pm every Friday. Visitors welcome. Sub-branch meetings 10am last Sunday of the month. Phone (07) 5593 1666. Wollumbin Bicycle Users Group’s next ride will be the Crystal Creek Cafe Cruise on Sunday, October 18. Depart from Knox Park at 9am. 35km – easy – mostly flat – all sealed. Murwillumbah to Upper Crystal Creek and return with coffee stop at Crystal Creek. Please register for the ride at Free food giveaway for struggling pensioners on Wednesday at 12.30pm (DST) Tweed Heads at the iBar.Food and bread donations very welcome to help the pensioners with their struggle. Thank you to all who help. Phone Terri 0414 376 057. Tweed Theatre Company’s next production The Last Resort is an Aussie comedy and opens on Friday, October 16 at the Tweed Heads Civic Centre. Six performances only over two weekends – Friday, October 16 and Saturday, October 17 and also October 23 and 24 at 8pm (DST). Sunday afternoon October 18 and 25 at 3pm (DST). Tickets at door or phone Coral (07) 5536 2556. Table seating, BYO drinks and nibbles. More information on . TweedCAN local Climate Action Group will hold its annual general meeting on Thursday, November 19 at the Imperial Hotel Murwillumbah at 6.30pm. Guest speaker will be Greg Reid from the Department of Primary Industries who will speak about Climate Change in the Tweed. Light refreshments will be served. Reunion of Fine Men the 6th Battalion. The Royal Australian Regiment is to hold a national reunion in Brisbane during June 4-6, 2010 to celebrate the 45th anniversary of its formation. The battalion has been deployed and seen service throughout the following periods: Vietnam 1966/67 during which took place the Battle of Long Tan; Vietnam 1969/70; Singapore 1971/73; East Timor 1999/2000, and more recently battalion elements deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. For information contact the Secretary, Arthur Willemse on 07 3369 1895, 0405 693 066 or email . Details on the website The Rhapsody Music Club will present a musical variety concert on Sunday, October 25 from 1.30pm in the Guardian Angels Hall, Edmund Rice Drive, Ashmore. Artists this month are, Norma Horlock (organ), Ashley Ebsworth (accordion) and Anne Sayer (vocal). Admission for members is $3; visitors $5 and under-14 years free. That includes light refreshments. A great afternoon of musical entertainment is Page 56 of 58 © 2012 Factiva, Inc. All rights reserved.

assured. Call Barry (07) 5574 4314 or Roz 0424 181 444. Palm Beach Happy Group’s Friday meeting had such lively music that soon everyone was tapping their feet and singing along. The list of names for the outing to be held on Friday, October 30 is almost full, with only four seats left to be sold. It was sad to hear that our dear member Enid has been taken into palliative care and she is in our prayers. Drivers are urgently needed to transport members each Friday. Anyone able to help please ring Lorraine on (07) 5576 3747. Any other queries to June on 5534 4660. Family Carer Education South Tweed Heads will hold a seminar for sons and daughters of someone who has dementia on Wednesday, October 21 6pm to 8pm, South Tweed Heads Sports Club, 4 Minjungbal Drive, South Tweed Heads. Seminar topics will include understanding dementia; common beliefs about dementia; the impact of caring on sons and daughters and services to support carers. Bookings essential. To register please contact Judy Bartholomew (02) 6659 2082 or 0418 412 127. Kewarra Nursing Home will hold a reunion for ex-staff from on Saturday, November 7 at Tweed Coolangatta Golf Club 12pm (DST). Contact Lynette Frieberg (07) 5535 5330. Tweedlesea mini-fete on Saturday, October 17 from 9am. Bric-a-brac, cakes & craft will be at the Cabarita Beach Sports Club, old clubhouse. Contact Rev.Judith 0411 634 785 . Document APNTBM0020091013e5af00009

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NEWS Fears of MS link to vaccine SHARON LABI 332 words 13 December 2009 Sunday Herald Sun SUHERS 1 - FIRST 33 English Copyright 2009 News Ltd. All Rights Reserved CERVICAL cancer vaccine Gardasil may have triggered multiple sclerosis symptoms in some girls, who later recovered. Doctors said the victims were teenagers or women in their early 20s who could have been predisposed to MS or who had a prior history of symptoms. Sydney's St Vincent's Hospital neurologist Dr Ian Sutton reported five cases in a journal article in January. Another five have since emerged. ``Gardasil vaccination is not the cause of MS; whether or not it was a trigger for episodes of inflammation in the brain in these rare cases is unclear,'' Dr Sutton said. All cases were aged under 26 -- the target group of a vaccination program that began in 2007. Symptoms began within three weeks of vaccination and lasted from weeks to months. ``We have raised the question: has the vaccine modified what may have occurred anyway or just been an additional trigger?'' Dr Sutton said. Dr Sutton stressed all those affected had recovered. The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) last week said six million doses of Gardasil, created by scientist and former Australian of the Year Ian Frazer, had been distributed in Australia and 1476 suspected adverse reactions had been reported. The cases involving neurological symptoms have been investigated by an independent panel. The TGA said the incidence of such reactions were ``not demonstrably higher than would be expected to occur by chance''. The American Neurological Association conference was told in October of a 14-year-old who was given Gardasil, developed auto-immune symptoms and died 21 months later. However, Professor Bill Carroll, chair of MS Research Australia's research management council, said there was no evidence vaccinations led to ongoing or recurrent central nervous system inflammation. Australian Vaccination Network president Meryl Dorey said Gardasil had a dangerous level of aluminium. But a spokeswoman for manufacturer CSL said when neurological symptoms after vaccination had been investigated, no causative relationship had been found. SHS-20091213-1-033-958814 Document SUHERS0020091212e5cd0004o

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