Facts, not Fantasy

Friday, May 20, 2011

Just the Vax: Infant Mortality and Vaccines

Sadly, most people can't tell the difference between good science, and bad science.  So when a study shows up that seems to support an idea that has been debunked already, alarm bells should go off.  Catherina at Just the Vax has found one such article and tears it apart.

Sadly, the debunking of this study will not travel anywhere near as fast as the lies this article spreads.  This sort of irresponsible reporting will further lead to many preventable deaths by people who are not armed with a good background in science.  After all, this paper could be used to support the Stork Theory of human reproduction after all!

Infant mortality and vaccines

Oh goodness, here I wanted to go to bed early and then I stumbled over this latest "peer reviewed" paper in a journal "indexed by the National Library of Medicine" (see the anti-vaccine faction gloating at those fantastic quality indicators) and "proving" with an correlation co-efficient of 0.992 and a p of 0.0009 (so "sciencey") that:

Nations requiring the most vaccines tend to have the worst infant mortality rates

Authors of this little gem, in the journal Human & Experimental Toxicology, with the impressive impact factor of 1.307 and a proud ranking of 58th of 77 in the area of Toxicology (yes, that would put them into the bottom quarter) are Think Twice's own Neil Z. Miller and Medical Veritas' Gary S. Goldman. I wonder why Miller and Goldman didn't publish their paper in Medical Veritas (here is the link to the journal, please don't go blind), seeing that item 7 in their mission is: "Create a movement to address the adverse vaccine reactions and vaccine-related injuries afflicting children and adults". I guess that is because parents have clued in that "peer review" and being indexed on PubMed is a quality measure (although very obviously no guarantee for quality).

In any case - Miller and Goldman took a list of countries and looked at the number of vaccines they schedule for infants and they also looked at infant mortality. And then they correlated one with the other, a fail safe way to find causal relationships: Storks deliver babies p=0.008.

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