Tuesday, December 20, 2011
The Fizzle in the Autism Vaccine Litigation - Part 2
In a February 6, 2007 letter from our attorney in Florida, we found out that after a year of argument and debate, the special masters decided to hold a series of hearings on each of the three various potential causes of vaccine related autism. They directed the petitioners' attorneys (us) to designate "test cases" that were representative of the children whose injuries were a direct result of the combined exposure to thimerosol and the MMR vaccine. The test cases would be tried in sequence beginning June 11, 2007. So much for our day in court. Out of 5,300 cases, only six would be heard.
Medical records from each claimant were collected, reviewed, and analyzed by our attorneys to determine which cases best represented the claims that the vaccines had caused our children's autism. It was assumed that if there was a favorable outcome in the test cases, the government would then agree that vaccines had injured our children as well and compensate us accordingly.
In August of 2007, our Florida attorney handed our case off to an attorney in Kentucky. Our new attorney had found in the discovery a Merck inter-office memo dated 1991. Merck manufactured and sold the MMR, DPT, HIB, and Hepatitus B vaccines, with thimerosol, which was removed from all vaccines (except the flu shot, which still contains the preservative).
The problem discussed in the memorandum: "The key issue is whether thimerosol, in the amount given with the vaccine, does or does not constitute a safety hazard."
Merck was aware that the mercury found in thimerosol might constitute a safety hazard in 1991! And here is the conclusion of the Merck memorandum:
"If 8 doses of thimerosol containing vaccine were given in the first 6 months of life (3 DPT, 2 HIB, and 3 Hepatitis B) the 200 ug of mercury given, say to an average size of 12 lbs., would be about 87X the Swedish daily allowance of 2.3 ug of mercury for a baby of that size...It is reasonable to conclude...that thimerosol should be removed from single-dose vials when it can be removed, especially where use in infants and young children is anticipated."
Merck inter-office memorandum, 1991.
They knew. They knew. But the special masters refused to allow our lawyers to present this evidence. Why? By the way - how many vaccines did your children get in their first six months of life? My children all had a lot more than eight.
In 2008, Hannah Poling, a child of about Joey's age, was awarded $1.5 million for the first year (and $150,000 for each year thereafter, up to $20 million) after she received nine vaccines in one doctor's visit that immediately resulted in marked encephalophy and autism symptoms. Her case was severe and clearly related to the vaccinations. Prior to her visit to the doctor, she was a healthy, vibrant, engaged child. Three days after the visit and the nine vaccinations, "she developed high fevers, stopped eating, didn't respond when spoken to, began showing signs of autism, and began having screaming fits. In 2002, Hannah's parents filed an autism claim in federal vaccine court. Five years later, the government settled the case before trial and had it sealed."