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American Acad of Pediatrics March 2016 issue contains this article, simplistic memes notwithstanding
March 2016, VOLUME 137 / ISSUE 3
Childhood Vaccine Exemption Policy: The Case for a Less Restrictive Alternative
Douglas J. Opel, Matthew P. Kronman, Douglas S. Diekema, Edgar K. Marcuse, Jeffrey S. Duchin, Eric Kodish
Abbreviations: MV — measles vaccine, NME — nonmedical exemption, VPD — vaccine-preventable disease
Efforts to restrict parents’ ability to exempt children from receiving vaccinations required for school entry have recently reached a pinnacle. The American Medical Association voiced support for eliminating nonmedical exemptions (NMEs) from school vaccine requirements,1 and California enacted legislation doing so.2 Although laudable in their objective, policies eliminating NMEs from all vaccines are scientifically and ethically problematic. In the present article, we argue for an exemption policy that eliminates NMEs just for the measles vaccine (MV) and is pursued only after other less restrictive approaches have been implemented and deemed unsuccessful.
Published By American Academy of Pediatrics
Print ISSN 0031-4005
Online ISSN 1098-4275
Copyright © 2016 by the American Academy of Pediatrics
Author Information: Douglas J. Opel, MD, MPHa,b, Matthew P. Kronman, MD, MSCEb, Douglas S. Diekema, MD, MPHa,b,c, Edgar K. Marcuse, MD, MPHb, Jeffrey S. Duchin, MDd,e,f, and Eric Kodish, MDg
aTreuman Katz Center for Pediatric Bioethics, Seattle Children’s Research Institute, and
Dr Opel conceptualized and designed the study and drafted the initial manuscript; and Drs Kronman, Diekema, Marcuse, Duchin, and Kodish reviewed and revised the manuscript. All authors approved the final manuscript as submitted and agree to be accountable for all aspects of the work.
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Thu May 19, 2016, 08:15 AM (0 replies)
For Immediate Release: May 13th, 2016
According to a recent statement (1), an invitation-only group of roughly 150 scientists, lawyers, and entrepreneurs gathered at Harvard on Tuesday May 10 to discuss making a complete synthetic human genome from scratch, and inserting it into a cell line. The event was closed to media.
Knowledge of the Harvard meeting emerged in a critical commentary co-authored by Stanford University bioengineer Drew Endy, who has been deeply involved in developing and promoting synthetic biology for many years, and Northwestern University bioethicist Laurie Zoloth, who has participated in numerous efforts to develop guidelines and public policy about emerging biotechnologies.
Endy and Zoloth report that the meeting “was originally organized to focus on 'deliverables and industry involvement,’” and that one of the topics on the agenda was “changing the human genome itself.” On Twitter, Endy posted part of an invitation to the meeting, which asked participants to refrain from talking with the media about it.
“From what we know so far, it’s hard to tell much about the actual technical purpose, business plan, or public relations agenda of the convenors. If these reports are accurate, the meeting looks like a move to privatize the current conversation about heritable genetic modification,” said Marcy Darnovsky, PhD, Executive Director of the Center for Genetics and Society, referring to the ongoing controversy about the prospect of using new gene editing techniques to alter the genes passed on to future children and generations.
Both in the US and globally, opposition to heritable genetic modification is strong. A “gene editing summit” in December 2015 convened by the national scientific academies of the United States, the United Kingdom, and China concluded with a statement by its organizing committee that “it would be irresponsible to proceed with any clinical use of germline editing unless and until...there is broad societal consensus about the appropriateness of the proposed application.”
Though the December “summit” was widely covered by news and social media, and featured speakers from a range of disciplines, it was criticized by the Center for Genetics and Society and others for being insufficiently inclusive. “A semi-secret meeting of scientists and business people to make plans about synthesizing the human genome is a new low in scientific accountability,” Darnovsky said.
“Fully synthetic humans are not close at hand,” she continued. “But genetically modified humans could be. If the next move from the convenors of the Harvard meeting is a splashy announcement about a privately financed moon-shot project, that would really make a stark contrast to the promise of broad societal consensus.”
(1) Should We Synthesize A Human Genome?, by Drew Endy and Laurie Zoloth, May 10, 2016
The Center for Genetics and Society is a non-profit public affairs and policy advocacy organization working to encourage responsible uses and effective societal governance of human genetic and reproductive biotechnologies.
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Wed May 18, 2016, 11:55 AM (0 replies)
Columbia University to Open a First Amendment War Room
By MIKE McPHATE
MAY 17, 2016
The fight to preserve freedom of the press is getting a $60 million war room.
The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and Columbia University announced on Tuesday that they would team up to create an institute at the university’s Manhattan campus dedicated to expanding in the digital age the freedoms of speech and the press outlined in the First Amendment.
The Knight First Amendment Institute would take on legal battles that newsrooms have found increasingly too costly to pursue on their own, the groups said in a statement.
“While the digital age has opened up new opportunities for accountability journalism, we need to fill the void and continue to champion free expression through litigation, research and education,” said Lee C. Bollinger, a First Amendment scholar and Columbia’s president.
The institute would also seek to influence legal debates over First Amendment protections that have faced new scrutiny through the lens of an Internet-connected society. Among the issues of concern: online privacy rights, free expression on college campuses and whistle-blower protections, an issue that has gained urgency with the prolific filing of criminal charges by the Obama administration.
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Wed May 18, 2016, 12:32 AM (1 replies)
Chairman of the Executive Board and CEO of Merck KGaA Karl-Ludwig Kley elected to Verizon Board of Directors
Nov 05, 2015, 13:00 ET from Verizon Communications Inc.
NEW YORK, Nov. 5, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, Nasdaq: VZ) today announced the election of Dr. Karl-Ludwig Kley, chairman of the executive board and chief executive officer of Merck KGaA, to the Verizon Board of Directors, effective November 5.
"Karl is an accomplished executive who brings to Verizon significant leadership experience as CEO of an innovative, global operation that is navigating a highly competitive, complex and rapidly changing ecosystem. He has extensive expertise in corporate finance and critical capabilities in strategy and operations," said Lowell McAdam, Verizon chairman and chief executive officer. "We are very pleased to have Karl join our board."
The addition of Kley brings Verizon's total board membership to 13.
Kley has been chief executive officer and chairman of the executive board of Merck KGaA in Darmstadt, Germany since 2007. Prior to this, he was appointed vice chairman of the executive board in September 2006. Before joining Merck KGaA, Kley was a member of the executive board of Deutsche Lufthansa AG from 1998 to 2006, where he served as chief financial officer. From 1982 to 1998, Kley worked for Bayer AG in a variety of positions, including as head of corporate finance and investor relations.
Kley holds a J.D. from the University of Munich.
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Tue May 17, 2016, 06:17 PM (0 replies)
Almost a third of children starting (primary) school are not ready for the classroom with many
lacking social skills,
the survey of senior primary school staff has found.
A third of children not primary school ready
While last month saw thousands of families across England find out where their children will be spending their first day at primary school, new data from The Key suggests that at least 194,000 (1) pupils could be starting ill-prepared for the classroom come September.
Almost a third (2) of children who start school are not considered to be ready for the classroom according to primary school leaders in a new report published today by The Key – the organisation providing leadership and management support to schools.
The State of Education report, based on the views of more than 1,100 school leaders, reveals that almost all (99.5%) primary school leaders say a proportion of their pupils are joining school below the level of school-readiness they expect and nearly a third (31%) believe that over 50% of their new starters are arriving underprepared. This means fewer than one in 100 (0.5%) school leaders consider all of their pupils to be at the expected level when they start.
Lack of social skills (79%), delayed speech (78%) and deficient self-help skills/resilience (69%) are believed to be the most common reasons for children not being at the expected level when they enter school. More than half of primary school leaders also say that underprepared pupils are arriving with reading (58%), writing (56%) and numerical levels (55%) below the standard they’d anticipate.
While some heads said that pupils were arriving without toilet training, others commented on the impact of technology on children being ready for the classroom.
One primary school leader said: “We are having more and more children entering our early years stage with delayed speech and a lack of school readiness. I feel much of this is down to challenging family circumstances alongside the rise of mobile phones and other mobile technology, which means parents are more often to be seen on the phone than talking to their children.”
The findings come shortly after baseline tests, intended to measure the abilities and progress of all reception-class pupils in English state schools, were dropped because they were found to be unreliable (3).
Speaking about the findings Fergal Roche, CEO of The Key, said: “It’s predicted that 336,000 more children will enter primary school by 2024 - almost half of whom will be entering in the next couple of years (4). School leaders are already struggling to retain staff and manage their teachers’ workload (5), so add thousands more pupils arriving ill-prepared for the classroom to the equation, and the burden placed on our schools will be huge.
“To lessen this load more should to be done to ensure children are arriving at school with the skills they need to learn. An agreed definition of what ‘school-readiness’ means, could be the first step to helping schools, parents and early years practitioners identify what national or localised support is required to meet this growing issue.”
At secondary school level, the majority of school leaders cited low reading levels (chosen by 76%) as one of the most common reasons for children arriving underprepared, along with lower than expected standards of writing (63%) and numeracy (56%). However, fewer pupils joining secondary schools are thought to be below the expected standard than those joining primary schools. One in 10 (10%) secondary school leaders believe that more than half of their new pupils are ill-prepared, while three in 10 (30%) think that 1-10% of pupils are below expected standards.
School leaders at both primary and secondary levels across the country paint a similar picture, though the problem appears more prevalent in the north. Over a third of leaders in schools in the north west, Yorkshire and the Humber, and the north east (39%, 37% and 34%, respectively) say more than half of their new pupils are not ready for school. London was close behind, with 32% of school leaders believing this, followed by the south west (26%) and south east (21%).
The annual State of Education report attempts to unpick some of the big questions about challenges, concerns and priorities in the education sector today. How is population growth affecting demand for school places? Is there really a shortage of teachers?
Find out more by downloading The Key’s State of Education report and accompanying infographics: www.thekeysupport.com/state-of-education-2016
(1) At least 194,003 children are not considered to be ready for primary school. Primary school leaders were asked to select the proportion of their pupils starting school below the level of school-readiness they would expect. The lower limit of each range of pupils and the % of school leaders/schools were applied to the latest reception class pupil figures to arrive at the total estimated figure. (2015 -https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/schools-pupils-and-their-characteristics-january-2015) See table at bottom of press release for more information.
(2) Latest census data on size of reception classes: 636,761 pupils (https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/schools-pupils-and-their-characteristics-january-2015)
(3) On 7th April, The DfE announced that reception baseline assessment will not be used as a starting point to measure pupil progress following a comparability study: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/reception-baseline-comparability-study-published
(4) The DfE statistical release, National Pupil Projections - Future Trends in Pupil Numbers: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/478185/SFR24_2015_Projections_Text.pdf
(5) 84% of school leaders found teacher workload difficult to manage over the past year and it is expected to be the third biggest challenge in the year ahead, behind budget pressures/lack of funding and teacher recruitment and retention. The Key's State of Education report 2016: www.thekeysupport.com/state-of-education-2016 http://www.joomag.com/magazine/state-of-education-survey-report-2016/0604114001462451154
About the survey
The Key surveyed a sample of its members in January 2016. The questionnaire for this study was designed by The Key and conducted online using Survey Monkey. 1,188 school leaders completed the full survey. The data has been weighted to match the population profile of schools in The Key’s database in terms of region, school phase and school type The data described in this summary can therefore be taken to represent the views of school leaders on The Key’s database, which in turn provides an indication of the opinions of school leaders in mainstream schools across England.
No, IMO, the article is spin framed around quotes by "one primary school leader" and "a headteacher at another primary." In fact, as Olmsted caustically remarks, "school-readiness deficit syndrome in a third of children, not otherwise seen before (SRDSIATOC-NOSB)" demands urgent concern, and, as highlighted by John Stone, AOA UK editor, education lobbyists at The Key should seek input by both parents and experts in neurodevelopmental disorders.
GOOGLE: Neurodevelopmental disabilities (NDD)
Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (NDD) is a new pediatric medical subspecialty...
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Sat May 14, 2016, 05:39 PM (0 replies)
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Fri Apr 29, 2016, 06:29 PM (0 replies)
POISONED FOR PROFIT
How Toxins Are Making Our Children Chronically Ill
(not even counting pesticides, drugs, food additives or polymers).
With indisputable data, the Shabecoffs reveal that the children of baby boomers—the first to be raised in a truly "toxified" world—have higher rates of birth defects, asthma, cancer, autism and a frightening range of other neurological illnesses from ADHD to mental retardation, and other serious chronic illnesses, than previous generations.
Poisoned for Profit, based on more than five years of investigative research and reporting, reveals the cumulative scientific evidence connecting the massive increase in environmental poisons to the epidemic of disability, disease, and dysfunction among our nation´s children. More.
The manufacturers and their defense team
The authors conclude that the poisoning of the environment is as grave a threat to the future as any problem confronting our nation.
Poisoned for Profit, cast as a crime story, relates what happens to the victims—the families and communities polluted by different toxic substances—by chemicals, heavy metals, industrial manufacturing, and nuclear waste. Here are the stories of Dickson, Tennessee, where an extraordinary number of babies were born with cleft lips and palates after landfill chemicals seeped into the water; and Port Neches, Texas, where so many graduates of a high school near a petrochemical plant contracted cancer that it was nicknamed “Leukemia High”; and a small brother and sister in Indiana who, exposed to pesticides, slipped into severe retardation. More.
Instead of fighting against disability and disease with cures, a never–ending struggle, the authors affirm that we now have the knowledge to prevent harm and they describe the solutions...
"Brilliant... Every parent in America owes a debt of gratitude to Philip and Alice Shabecoff. (Poisoned for Profit) should be high on the ...President's reading list."
"Powerful reporting backing powerful conclusions---it will make those of us with kids shudder, but hopefully it will also make us get out of our chairs and engage in the politics necessary to protect the future."
---Bill McKibben, author of Deep Economy and The End of Nature
"Painstakingly researched and incontrovertible ... This should become an elemental text for all of us who wish to protect ourselves, and should be required reading for those who claim to be public servants."
---Peter Matthiessen, author of the Snow Leopard
"Into an arena filled with confusing claims and counterclaims, Philip and Alice Shabecoff have now brought their remarkable journalistic skills, providing us with clear-headed, accurate assessment of the toxic threat to America's children ... A highly readable indictment so powerful it may finally force action. We have needed this book..."
---James Gustave Speth, author of the Bridge at the End of the World
In a groundbreaking investigation, two veteran journalists definitively show how, why, and where industrial toxins are causing an explosion of birth defects, cancer, asthma, and other serious illnesses in American children. Philip and Alice Shabecoff follow the trail from corporate coffers through highly paid Washington lobbyists, into the laboratories of scientists-for-hire, to the offices of politicians responsible for regulation, and right back to our homes and schools---which are built, stocked, and "cleaned" with deadly toxics. Poisoned for Profit not only brings readers into the lives of children, families, and communities beset by environmental poisons, it also poses solutions to eradicate this crime, and offers parents a practical guide to protecting their children from harm.
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Fri Apr 29, 2016, 04:03 PM (0 replies)
Shocking independent statistic, as posted at the Seattle Children's Hospital website:
ASD is estimated to affect more than 2 million individuals in the U.S.
Studies also show that autism is four to five times more common among boys than girls.
An estimated 1 out of 42 boys and 1 in 189 girls are diagnosed with autism in the United States.
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Thu Apr 28, 2016, 09:09 PM (0 replies)
Arianna Huffington: Studio 1.0 (Full Show 04/17)
3:54 PM PDT
April 17, 2016
This week on Studio 1.0: Emily Chang sits down with Arianna Huffington, editor-in-chief of the Huffington Post, one time candidate for California Governor, and author of 15 books, including her latest, "The Sleep Revolution." (Source: Bloomberg)
...and Verizon is bidding for Yahoo.
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Wed Apr 27, 2016, 09:42 PM (2 replies)
MUST READ: http://www.truth-out.org/author/itemlist/user/49028
About the Author
Anne Elizabeth Moore is an internationally renowned and bestselling cultural critic and comics journalist. Moore is a Fulbright scholar, UN Press Fellow, and USC Annenberg/Getty Arts Journalism Fellow, and teaches in the Visual & Critical Studies department at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She is a New York Times bestselling author and the founder of the Best American Comics series.
The Ladydrawers Comics Collective publishes accessible comics, texts, and films about how economics, race, sexuality, and gender impact the comics industry, other media, and our culture at large. Collective members who contributed to Threadbare include Leela Corman, Melissa Gira Grant, Julia Gfrörer, Sarah Jaffe, Delia Jean, Ellen Lindner, Melissa Mendes, and Anne Elizabeth Moore.
Praise for Threadbare
"Threadbare takes us down the rabbit hole of the global fashion and textile industry, connecting the dots between the lives of the women who work at Forever 21 and the women who sew the clothes that hang on the racks there. With vivid storytelling and deep investigation. Anne Elizabeth Moore and her team of talented cartoonists prove the strength of comics as tool for translating impossible complexity to our everyday experience." —Jessica Abel, Out on the Wire and Drawing Words & Writing Pictures
Posted by proverbialwisdom | Wed Apr 27, 2016, 02:52 PM (0 replies)