Monday, June 21, 2010

Reading "Callous Disregard"

Reading "Callous Disregard" by Andrew Wakefield I come away with disdain for the medical establishment who condemned him. I come away with much greater admiration than I had wanted to bestow him. I had known of Andrew Wakefield for quite a while. I had nearly come to believe that he and his assertion that the MMR vaccine might be of interest as a cause for autism could easily be dismissed as a footnote in medical history.

But as is so often the case, certain people become larger than life through the accusations of others. Dr. Wakefield might have become a tragic figure left boiled in the churning cauldron of the science world and serve as a feast for the medical establishment.

Strangely Dr. Wakefield's forthright, caring demeanor through his ordeal of being accused and then condemned by the GMC, losing his licence to practice medicine because of a "perceived conflict of interest" for authoring a case study of 12 autistic children in The Lancet, makes him a person of integrity and strength.

In his book Wakefield describes a scenario that can only come from a nightmare he himself experienced and worked through to become an enlightened persona for the families and the children wracked with autism. He displays the forthrightness of someone who has gone through the trial by fire and is emerging as a hero to those who needed a caring voice.


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