In yet another blow to the vaccines-cause-autism theory, the vaccine court ruled today in three cases that there was not sufficient evidence to show that vaccines caused autism in three cases.
Parents of the three boys brought the cases alleging that thimerosal, a mercury derivative once commonly used as a vaccine preservative, caused their autism. The Special Masters of the Court of Federal Claims, who heard the cases, concluded that they failed to meet the burden of proof.
The cases were three of thousands filed by parents through the Department of Health and Human Services’ Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. Last year, the court ruled there was no evidence that early childhood vaccines caused autism in three other cases. However, in 2007 the court ruled that vaccines aggravated an underlying illness in the case of Hannah Poling, triggering her autism symptoms.
The Coalition for Vaccine Safety hit back, issuing a statement accusing the court of dening justice to vaccine-injured children.
“The deck is stacked against families in Vaccine Court. Government attorneys defend a government program, using government-funded science, before government judges. Where’s the justice in that?” asked Rebecca Estepp, a CVS steering committee member and mother of a petitioner in the Omnibus Autism Proceeding.
Read Babble’s full timeline of the vaccine-autism debate, from 1998 to now.
Photo: a.drian via flickr