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New Autism Data - No Surprise

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New Autism Data No Surprise

By Nettie Hartsock

The latest data from 14 states has now revealed that 1 in 150 children are affected with autism or an autism spectral disorder. "Autism is an urgent public issue" and a "major public health concern," said Marshalyn Yeargin-Allsop, chief of developmental disabilities branch for CDC.

The latest data reveals that over an estimated 560,000 children are affected with autism. The most surprising thing out of this entire flurry is that it is a surprise at all. While news coverage continues to focus on the data revealed, it still does little to support and investigate what is causing this rise in and how to save these children.

While there is much debate to the causal effect and whether it is indeed a combination of mercury exposure (through thimerosal-based vaccinations), nervous system disorder, brain disorder or genetics, the bigger debate is still missing, which is how are we going to stop this from happening to our children.

As the mother of a son who was diagnosed at three and half with PDD-NOS, the most frustrating issue at hand is not only how to keep my boy in the world with me where he's engaged and can operate independently, but also how to prevent this from happening to one more child. Boys are diagnosed at twice the rate of girls now and that figure will most surely rise as well.

So while the statisticians and researchers continue to push out new and alarming numbers, where is the support for all those people trying to stop this "urgent public issue?"

They're not to be found at the CDC, led by Dr. Julie Gerberding, head of the CDC and ranked as the 12th most powerful woman in the world in 2005 by Forbes magazine.

She's quoted at the CDC foundation web site as saying, " "In a very real sense, I view the CDC Foundation as a venture capitalist - a trusted business advisor that offers CDC ongoing support and flexibility to help us achieve far more than we could possibly do alone."

Ms. Gerberding continues to head off any real research into what causes autism and how to prevent it because there is no "venture capital" in that.

Rather, the CDC continues to push more vaccinations for our children and neglects to make people aware that flu shots have thimerosal in them. In fact, if we in Texas, want to get all thimerosal-free shots we have to travel to Republican led states like California and Florida.

Bill Frist managed to put a rider in the recently passed Homeland Security Bill making it virtually impossible for drug companies to be held accountable if it does indeed turn out that immunizations have been responsible for this rise in autism related disorders.

And now we have a Governor, who not happy with the status quo, is in bed with Merck and forcing the human papillomavirus vaccination before girls 9 through 16 can enter school. Texas is the first state to issue such a requirement.

One can only wonder what will happen ten years from now as those girls begin to show the effects of having been administered yet another pharmaceutical, shareholder driven immunization. My eleven year old daughter for one, will not be a guinea pig of venture capitalism, shareholder profit and political positioning.


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Nettie Hartsock is a 15-year freelance business journalist veteran with an extensive background in editing, writing, and press communications. Nettie has been published in well over 200 outlets including print and online media during her career. (more...)

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