It’s hard to talk about vaccines or autism without mentioning the sometime gastroenterologist, Andrew Wakefield. Almost everyone has at least a passing familiarity with Wakefield, even if it is just as “the guy who wrote that fraudulent paper claiming vaccines cause autism.” And everyone has a deep familiarity with the needless controversy he sparked concerning the false but persistent myth that vaccines are at the root of the cause of autism.
But few people know all Wakefield’s full story, and fewer realize that he is still out in the world, trying to vindicate his retracted study and his life’s work. Because Wakefield looms large in the anti-vaccine landscape, because (despite feeling no responsibility) has is at the root of some measles outbreaks, and because we had ready access to incredibly knowledgeable autism advocates, Dr. Boonstra and I decided to tackle the issue of Wakefield in our latest podcast.
In episode 6, we discuss Wakefield with autism advocates and parents of autistic sons, Ken Reibel and Matt Carey. Stay tuned through the end for the “Did Andy Say It?” quiz!
Some of the links discussed in the podcast:
- Brian Deer’s research
- Curtis Brainard’s CMJ article
- The Vaxxed prequel
- Anderson Cooper’s interview
- The Jamaica conference