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Whooping Cough Vaccine Does Not protect Majority

Whooping Cough Vaccine Does Not protect Majority of Children

Press Release
Immunisation Awareness Society

In a startling admission the Institute of Environmental Science and Research have said, in a report commissioned by the Ministry of Health, that the whooping cough (pertussis) vaccine could protect as few as 33% of children and that many children have lost any immunity only four to five years after vaccination (New Zealand Public Health Surveillance Report, December 2004).

The Immunisation Awareness Society (IAS) said today that this tallies with statistics from the 1999 epidemic in which 68 per cent of cases were in the fully vaccinated. Only 16 percent of cases were in completely unvaccinated children. However, research published in the journal Vaccine in 1998 found that the pertussis vaccine used in New Zealand had an efficacy of only 28.5%.

“Given the low vaccination rates claimed by the health authorities, this suggests that, at best, the vaccine just doesn’t work.” said IAS

“At worst, children are not only exposed to the disease through a failed vaccine, but are also exposed to the risks of serious side-effects each of the five times that they receive the shots.”

A Swedish study published in the peer reviewed medical journal Pediatrics found that the rate of serious neurological adverse events caused by the acellular pertussis vaccine to be as high as one in 120 doses.

Over the years the very poor efficacy of the vaccine has been recognised in the increasing number of boosters being administered to children. Immunity from the vaccine is so poor that there is considerable discussion in the medical and research community about giving boosters to older children, adolescents and even adults.

“They have admitted that immunity wanes after four or five years. Are they now suggesting that we should all be getting boosters every five years for the rest of our lives?” asks Sue Claridge, spokesperson for the IAS.

The pertussis component of the diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine given to children at six weeks, three, five and fifteen months, and four years of age, is one of the most reactive vaccines in the childhood schedule. The vaccine has been consistently associated with SIDS, seizures, encephalitis or brain swelling, and other severe neurological events.

In 2003 the United States Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) received 5,396 reports of adverse reactions to the diphtheria-tetanus-acellular pertussis vaccine; 2137 children were admitted to ER of whom 170 were then admitted to hospital. A further 96 were admitted directly to hospital. Eighty-one children died and 50 were left disabled. VAERS is a passive reporting system similar to New Zealand’s, and it is widely recognised that reports to such monitoring systems represent only 10% of the actual number of adverse reactions.

The health authorities in New Zealand continue to blame unvaccinated children for outbreaks of whooping cough. The reality is that it is not the unvaccinated children who are responsible for epidemics in New Zealand but the 70% of vaccinated children who have no immunity despite having had all their shots.

This is compounded by the fact that whooping cough in the vaccinated often goes unrecognised and untreated for many weeks. In a phenomenon known as observer bias, doctors often misdiagnose whooping cough in vaccinated children, believing that their vaccination status protects them against whooping cough. In the last two years there have been media reports of doctors diagnosing whooping cough as asthma and treating children with steroids. Meanwhile, these children are moving around in the community and passing the bacteria on to other unprotected children.

IAS says, “This vaccine has very poor efficacy, it causes a high level of serious adverse reactions and, as noted by ESR, 90%, 95% or even 100% vaccination rates are not going to prevent outbreaks of whooping cough in this country, just as very high vaccination rates have not stopped whooping outbreaks in other countries.”


The Immunisation Awareness Society Inc.

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