When You Only Read the Abstract, You End Up Thinking That Vaccines Cause Sudden Infant Death Syndrome

Anti-vaxxers are spreading a new rumor, and so, here I am, screaming in the wilderness to see if anyone is paying attention. The new rumor is — as you may have guessed from my clever title to this blog post — that vaccines cause autism SIDS. SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) is a syndrome in […]

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My Rules on Talking About Vaccines

I’m not what I used to be when it comes to debates on the history and science of vaccines… I’m better.

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What if Vaccines Are Harmful?

If vaccines are as bad as anti-vaccine people and groups claim that they are, where is the evidence? We’ve seen other diseases and conditions be identified and dealt with. Why not these bad vaccine outcomes? Could it be that it’s not as bad as antivaxxers say it is?

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Interview on WITF

I had the pleasure of being interviewed for a radio talk show about measles and the resurgence of it and other vaccine-preventable diseases.

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The Villains You’ll Encounter

I’ve been in the presence of supervillains only a handful of times in my life. The latest was a few weeks ago when antivaxxers descended on a talk by a well-known pediatrician and vaccine developer. Their leader cannot be described in any other way than as being a supervillain. He’s good with words. He’s charming. […]

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Who Are, or Should Be, the Vaccine Watchdogs?

It’s that time of the year again, when the influenza vaccine is recommended for the public and both public and private organizations spread the message of the vaccine’s benefits. They tell us that it is needed, why, where we can get one, and some of them even manage to throw in a sad story or […]

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The Parent Ren, Part II: Patience

A friend of mine pointed out to me that I had written a blog post referencing “The Child” back in 2012. In fact, my wife and I talked about The Child as far back as I can remember being with her. (That’s something I didn’t do with other girlfriends, by the way.) We started off […]

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Epidemiological Podcast S0E2: The Weight of the Evidence

On today’s podcast, I talk to you about a recent tragedy in our family and how it helped me understand anti-vaccine parents a little more. Not completely, but just enough to realize that there is very little in the way of a debate that one can have with them.

See, When people who don’t believe that vaccines save lives tell you that there is no evidence that vaccines are safe, they’re either misinformed or lying. On the flip side, when they tell you that there is evidence that vaccines cause autism, they’re either misinformed or lying again. There is plenty of evidence for both arguments out there, but only one set of “studies” pass the biological plausibility test (not to say anything about ethics).

However, because an injury (perceived or real) to a child triggers such a deep-seeded, primal reaction, it’s hard to be logical or reasonable. When parents see autism as death (when it’s not), their search for answers becomes chaotic and full of inferences that are misguided. Anti-vaccine people looking to make a buck take advantage of that, and then we’re off to the races on trying to stop further harm, encourage critical thinking, and have an actual debate based on facts.

In about 33 minutes, I tell you about the different kinds of studies out there, and I explain to you why we cannot do a vaccinated vs. unvaccinated study like the antivaxxers want, but we’ve done plenty of vaccinated vs. unvaccinated studies in an ethical and scientific way.

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Non-Biostatistician, Non-Epidemiologist Tries to Complain About Biostats and Epi

Don’t you love it when people who don’t know better think that they know better, and then they end up making fools of themselves? There is a particularly interesting anti-vaccine man by the name of Brian S. Hooker. He has a doctorate in biochemical engineering, according to his Wikipedia page. Maybe you remember BS Hooker […]

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