For many parents having a child with autism is a unique hardship. There has been discussion in the news regarding giving children vaccinations and the link to autism. A 2004 study by the CDC titled “Examining the possibility of a relationship between an MMR vaccine and Autism,” concluded that the vaccination did not cause autism. However, Dr. William Thompson, a senior scientist with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, released a statement attesting that there was, in fact, a link between autism and the measles, mumps, rubella vaccine.
The link is between young black boys who get the vaccine before age 36 months. These boys are at an increased risk for autism.
“Decisions were made regarding which findings to report after the data was collected and I believe that this final study protocol was not followed. My concern has been the decision to omit relevant findings in a particular study for a particular subgroup for a particular vaccine. There have always been recognized risks for vaccinations and I believe it is the responsibility of the CDC to properly convey the risk associated with receipt of those vaccines,” wrote Thompson.
Thompson also indicated that he was unaware when meeting with his supervisor that he was being recorded and he did not have a choice if his name would be made public or if his voice would be put on the Internet. Thompson believes that the CDC decision-making process for this study was flawed and he will not be answering any further questions regarding the study. He has provided information to Congress since his concerns were so strong. In addition, Thompson has also offered to re-analyze the study data or help with development of further studies.
Thompson’s revelation is startling since current data indicates that 1 in 10 black boys will be diagnosed with autism. If there is indeed a link between childhood vaccines and specifically young black boys, then once again health care information that affects the black community has been hidden by a government agency.