Posted 23 November 2004 - 02:50 PM
'Bad blood' victim angry over compo delays 27 May 2003
A Bay of Plenty "bad blood" victim is angry at the Government over delays to compensation claims haemophiliacs infected with hepatitis C through blood transfusions have made.
He says as legal action drags on, victims are becoming increasingly frustrated at the "bureaucratic brick walls" that keep emerging.
Martyn Ilsley, 30, of Galatea, 82km east of Rotorua, is one of about 150 claimants who are fighting for compensation after being infected with the potentially fatal liver disease in the late-1980s and early 1990s.
The Government has offered $44,000 each to 77 claimants who were infected during surgery between February 1990 and July 1992.
In 1990, advisers told the then government that a blood screening programme should be implemented but that was not done until two years later.
More than half of those eligible for government compensation rejected the offer, arguing it was well short of that which governments in other countries have paid to bad blood victims.
Unlike people who received blood infected with hepatitis C during surgery, haemophiliac claimants received infected blood products.
Because blood products come from several sources, it is harder for haemophiliacs to determine the source of infection.
Mr Ilsley was told he had hepatitis C during a routine blood test in Whakatane seven years ago.
However, he believes the infection occurred several years earlier, around 1990, during a transfusion at Napier Hospital.
Without documents to prove he was given a transfusion then, Mr Ilsley stands no chance of winning his claim for compensation.
He admitted the process was making him increasingly bitter towards the Government and health officials.
"I think the medical records have conveniently disappeared."
Posted 23 November 2004 - 02:51 PM
Justice NZ style.... 27 Aug 2003
5. Rt Hon WINSTON PETERS (Leader—NZ First) to the Prime Minister: Does she have confidence in the ability of all her Ministers to be responsive to the needs of all New Zealanders?<o:p></o:p>
Rt Hon HELEN CLARK (Prime Minister): Yes, but that does not mean that Ministers are expected to agree with everybody all the time.<o:p></o:p>
Rt Hon Winston Peters: Given that answer, does she herself hold herself in the same regard as she holds her Ministers; will she admit being the first culprit responsible for the hundreds and hundreds of victims who were infected by hepatitis C and HIV from getting unclean, unscreened bad blood when she was the Minister of Health between 1988 and 1990, or is she just washing her hands of that, as well? <o:p></o:p>
Rt Hon HELEN CLARK: Certainly not. The member will be aware that the police have just concluded a lengthy investigation following complaints being raised against two former Ministers of Health, and found that there was no case to answer.<o:p></o:p>
Rt Hon Winston Peters: Does the Prime Minister think that that is an adequate standard of public responsiveness and duty of care, which she did owe as Minister of Health from 1988 to 1990, when hundreds of people had either truncated or miserable lives or lost their lives, and given, for example, that in Germany two people who were responsible went to prison in identical circumstances, and that the Minister of France, in identical circumstances, went before the high court; is that her idea of public responsiveness?<o:p></o:p>
Rt Hon HELEN CLARK: There are a number of unsubstantiated allegations in that question. The only thing I have ever been guilty of with regard to duty of care is caring rather too much, being too conscientious, and working too hard.
Posted 23 November 2004 - 02:52 PM
22 August 2003
By MARIANNE BETTS
Haemophiliac and hepatitis C sufferer Steve Waring says he will keep battling on despite police deciding there are no grounds to prosecute anyone over the bad blood scandal.
Mr Waring was one of 45 people to lay a complaint against former health ministers Helen Clark and Simon Upton in 2000, claiming they failed to act quickly enough in introducing hepatitis C screening of blood donations.
Mr Waring, 39, of Lower Hutt, who contracted hepatitis C in the 1980s from contaminated blood products, was disappointed but not surprised at the police decision.
Victims wanted a Government apology, compensation and access to cutting-edge health care, he said. While the criminal prosecution had failed, the civil one would continue.
"People with haemophilia grow up quickly and with determination to succeed, we fight with our lives for things, and this won't go away."
A spokesman for the Prime Minister said Miss Clark would not comment. "It's a police matter and they're handling it."
Haemophiliac recipients of bad blood made allegations of criminal nuisance about delays in introducing comprehensive blood screening.
The government introduced screening in 1992. About 700 New Zealanders contracted the disease through contaminated blood products before screening began. Some have since died.
Hepatitis C is a potentially fatal liver disease caused by a blood-borne virus, spread by contact with the blood of an infected person.
Police were sympathetic to complainants but it had to be established whether there were in fact sound legal grounds for prosecution, acting Police Commissioner Steve Long said.
To successfully prosecute, police would have to prove an unlawful act or an omission to discharge legal duty had taken place.
"The legal advice we have received establishes there has been no unlawful act or breach of legal duty by the ministers, therefore there is no basis for further investigation by police," he said.
Police had conducted extensive consultation with the Health Ministry and sought legal advice from the Crown Law Office before making this decision.
Wellington lawyer Roger Chapman, who is representing 150 people who contracted hepatitis C from bad blood, said the decision did not affect the civil suit. He hoped the case would go to trial next year.
The Government's offer in 2000 of $44,000 to victims who contracted the disease between February 1990 and July 1992 remained open, Health Minister Annette King said.
Posted 23 November 2004 - 02:53 PM
Dominion Post 20th September 2003
Magazine section, pages E1and E2
The death toll on our roads is only half the story.
Those who survive can pay a terrible price.
Bill Bosman lived, but sometimes wishes he hadn’t.
Life was good for Bill Bosman as he thundered toward Otaki on his Harley Davidson on May 10,1992. His Wellington motor repair business was booming, he had money in his pocket and had just spent a weekend in Taupo.
Little did the then 51-year old athletically built Dutchman know, he had just a few kilometres to ride before the good life would be brutally ripped from his grasp.
His sight would be gone forever, his right arm and shoulder amputated, his left one rendered useless. He would never again be able to feed himself or wipe his own backside.
He did not know that he would suffer excruciating migraines almost every day, or that his body would be racked with pain for a lifetime from the damage done to his brain, kidneys and liver.
Nor did he know that the 72 litres of blood waiting to be pumped into his veins in a life-saving operation was contaminated with hepatitis C.
As for his female companion, she would die, ripped apart by the impact of the crash.
The Otaki farmer never saw Bill’s motorcycle coming toward him. On medication for narcolepsy – which causes people to fall asleep in quiet surroundings or during monotonous activity – he had dropped off behind the wheel. He was never prosecuted.
The farmer phoned Bill some time later to apologise.
“I didn’t want to talk to him. He mangled me, he took my life away. I haven’t forgiven him. I’m still extremely angry,” he said.
“ I was a sportsman, I worked very hard, I was successful. Today I have nothing. I’m sitting here waiting to die.”
And die he would have, had it not been for the strength and determination of his ex-wife, Marika Salanki.
Amicably divorced for three years, Marika was told of the crash by a doctor friend, who was on duty at Wellington Hospital when Bill was brought in. The Hungarian-born woman rushed to his bedside, where she found him in a coma that would last a month, and remained by his side throughout his recuperation. Then she took him home to do what nobody else would – look after him day and night, seven days a week, year after year.
“Nobody wanted to take care of him,” she says by way of explanation for her extraordinary act of kindness.
In 1997, five years after the crash, Marika took a one-month break, travelling back to the Netherlands (where she spent much of her childhood) for a family reunion.
Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) paid for four caregivers to step in and take her place during the day, but refused to pay for night care.
One of the care givers quickly discovered Bill could not unlock the outside door in an emergency with his useless one arm and decided he could not stay in the house on his own.
“ I begged her not to tell ACC, because they would have pout me in an old man’s home,” Bill said. “We came to an arrangement that I would sleep with the doors unlocked.”
One night soon after Marika’s departure, Bill woke in a sweat and with a terrible thirst, as he has on many a night since the crash.
With no caregiver to fetch the water for him, or hold the glass to his mouth, Bill stumbled from the bed and into the bathroom.
“I got down on both knees and put my hand in the toilet – to get water to wet my lips.”
The next morning he decided to bring an end to his misery.
“I was still crying, Marika had just gone, I said: ‘What the hell, She’s away, I might as well die’.”
Unable to see, Bill fumbled his way out of the house and felt his way around a parked car, then stepped out on the road, “ I was going to throw myself in front of a bus. I genuinely wanted to die,” he says.
“I would have waited there for a good 20 minutes but the bus never came and no cars came by. It was very early in the morning, I was half naked and it was cold. There was this lady walking her dog. I said: “Excuse me. Can you help me? I wanted to die but I’ve changed my mind. Can you take me home?’ “
Bill couldn’t remember where he lived, but it turned out they were not far from the gate and the woman quickly spotted the handrails Bill uses to guide himself up to his house.
The next day, he employed a night caregiver and paid out of his own pocket the wages the corporation refused to.
Dealing with the Corporation, says Bill, is almost as great a nightmare as the crash.
“They are cruel,” he says
There was the time his caseworker came to “re-assess” his need for lawn mowing services.
Doing it himself, she said, would be good for his rehabilitation.
“ How can I be rehabilitated? I can’t even wipe my own bum.”
To add insult to injury, a doctor calls every six months to confirm Bill’s ongoing need for corporation assistance.
Perhaps the doctor has more faith than Bill in the spiritual healer he once visited in a desperate bid to become whole again.
“He [The healer] took one look at me then moved onto the next person.”
And then there is the long running battle to win compensation for the hours Marika has dedicated to a man who has not been her husband fr almost 15 years. Despite giving up a lucrative career as a chef – which included travelling to 93 countries with several circuses – it took a year before the corporation was willing to recognise Marika as a legitimate caregiver.
When it did, it was to pay her for just four hours per day. It took another 10 years of battling to get her entitlement increased to 15 hours a day – back paid to 1993.
ACC spokesman FRASER FOLSTER says the needs of each individual case were assessed by an independent health provider and their recommendations weighed by the corporation. While he could not say how much has been paid out to Bill in care and entitlements, he says it was likely to have been hundreds and thousands of dollars.
Those who have cared for Bill throughout the years regard his injuries as “ terrible” and have done their utmost in terms of providing him with rehabilitation and care.
“They recognise his life was clearly changed in a major way….they are profoundly sympathetic to his situation.”
But Bill says the struggle to have Marika paid for the first year she devoted to him will continue.
“Marika does everything for me. If she dies, she goes to heaven.”
As to what happens to Bill should Marika die first………
“ I can’t get a plastic bag over my head but maybe I can con someone into giving me some Rat Poison.”
Posted 23 November 2004 - 02:54 PM
15 November 2003
By FRAN TYLER
"I feel like I want to go to sleep and not wake up. There seems to be no end to the suffering."
The note was made in a personal diary by a former Lower Hutt nurse who contracted hepatitis C from a blood transfusion in 1980.
This week a 19-month battle for compensation from ACC ended in Wellington District Court, when a judge ordered ACC to pay up.
The woman left her job as an occupational health nurse on July 12, 1999, the day she made the diary entry, and 14 months later was granted accident compensation for medical misadventure.
In February 2002, ACC cut off her payments, saying she had failed to show that she had left her job as an occupational health nurse because of the effects of the illness.
In his written decision Judge Paul Barber ordered ACC to pay the woman compensation and any she was owed from the time it was cut off, as well as her costs in taking her case to court and $1750 toward her legal bill.
The woman's lawyer John Miller told the court her symptoms were consistent with the progression of her illness. Two doctors who had examined and treated her agreed that the hepatitis C had made her unable to work.
A report from the woman's GP to the court said she suffered sleep disturbances, night sweats and weight loss. The illness had also caused cirrhosis of the liver.
In another diary entry the woman described her sleepless nights.
"Night sweats are so bad the bedroom smells. My body is burning up so bad. I can't find the thermometer. I will have to go to the doctor."
ACC, however, claimed the reason the woman was not working was depression from the breakup of her marriage and the ending of her employment contract, which she had not renewed.
Judge Barber disagreed.
"When I stand back and look at the evidence overall, I am in no doubt that as at about July 21, 1999 (the woman) was incapacitated due to her hepatitis C so that she was no longer able to work."
Posted 23 November 2004 - 02:55 PM
21 January 2004
By PHIL MCCARTHY
Omaui hepatitis sufferer Gwyn Edwards was breathing a big sigh of relief yesterday – but said he was still angry with the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) for a three-month delay in his treatment.
Mr Edwards received a lifeline yesterday, with news ACC would fund a much needed $21,000 a year pegylated interferon treatment.
"It hasn't sunk in yet," he said, before admitting, "I'm rapt." The 47-year-old contracted hepatitis C from a blood transfusion after being stabbed in Blenheim in 1984.
But he was not diagnosed with hepatitis until 1996 after undergoing a hernia operation at Southland Hospital.
Mr Edwards filed a medical misadventure claim with ACC and in October had the claim approved. However, he is angry it took three months for ACC to agree to fund the drug as his health continued to deteriorate.
In an October letter notifying him of the medical misadventure decision, an ACC heamotology adviser found that "it appears Mr Edwards does suffer from chronic Hepatitis C infection which is most likely as a result of a blood transfusion in 1984 ..." Hepatitis C inflames the liver. If the inflammation is not reversed, it becomes chronic and can cause chronic liver disease, which can be serious or even fatal.
Mr Edwards said he was continually plagued by sleepless nights, suffered chronic pain and a low energy levels because of the hepatitis.
He said he suspected ACC held off a decision until government drug agency Pharmac made a decision about subsidising pegylated interferon, a new treatment for hepatitis.
Mr Edwards' claim of medical error relating to the 1984 transfusion was rejected because screening of blood was not routine until 1992. A third claim, medical mishap, was not accepted as "hepatitis C is not severe, because it has not resulted in chronic hospitalisation and has not resulted in a restriction or lack of ability that has significance."
ACC spokesman Fraser Folster said the organisation was sorry about the delay, but added that it had given Mr Edwards a deadline of January 21 for a decision.
The decision on funding the interferon had to be made by ACC's head office in Wellington.
The Christmas and New Year period had caused further delays in the process, he said. "If this was a decision that could have been made quickly, it would have been." Approval had been given on Friday, but Mr Edwards had only been informed yesterday, Mr Folster said.
"Unfortunately in this case there was a bit of a communications hitch." Mr Folster denied Mr Edwards' claim that ACC had been waiting for Pharmac to subsidise the treatment. "No considerations like that have come into it. The considerations have been clinical," he said.
Posted 23 November 2004 - 02:57 PM
17 April 2004
By YVONNE MARTIN
Haemophiliacs who caught the hepatitis C virus through contaminated blood products are getting sicker and dying, without compensation.
The Government set aside a $7 million package four years ago to compensate victims who received blood transfusions infected with hepatitis C. But a new report, released on World Haemophilia Day today, reveals how haemophiliacs are struggling to access the fund.
A Weekend Press investigation has shown these haemophiliacs have been treated poorly compared to similar overseas compensation schemes.
The country's 280-strong haemophiliac population was highly vulnerable to contamination from unscreened blood products before 1992, because their lives depended on regular transfusions.
Hepatitis C is a potentially fatal virus that attacks the liver, leading in chronic cases to cirrhosis (scarring) and cancer.
Of an estimated 700 people who contracted the virus in the bad blood scandal, about 122 were severe haemophiliacs.
More than 20 people have since died, including four haemophiliacs in the last three years.
The latest victim, John Milne, 75, died in Christchurch a fortnight ago.
Despite the haemophilia community being decimated by hepatitis C, members had been effectively barred from the settlement offer because they could not prove when they were infected, said Haemophilia Foundation president Mike Carnahan.
"People with haemophilia were probably continuously reinfecting because of the need for regular infusions of untested and unscreened concentrated plasma-derived proteins," he said.
"Who is to say which infusion, on which day, caused their hepatitis C infection?"
The growing hepatitis C crisis and the barriers to compensation are highlighted in a report, Sentenced With No Parole, sent to Health Minister Annette King.
The Government is offering compensation because screening tests to detect hepatitis C in donated blood, commercially available in 1990, were not introduced for another two years.
To qualify for $44,000 compensation, claimants must prove infection between February 1990 and July 1992, when testing began.
That is out of step with similar international compensation schemes like the United Kingdom's, where claimants need only prove infection before a certain date.
Of 100 people who have settled claims in New Zealand, Carnahan knows of only two or three haemophiliacs.
Posted 23 November 2004 - 02:58 PM
12 May 2004
By YVONNE MARTIN
New Zealand and Australia are to standardise their regulations covering blood products, authorities from both countries announced yesterday.
A joint statement issued by Health Minister Annette King and the Australian Parliamentary Secretary for Health, Trish Worth, said agreement had been reached to include the regulation of blood in a new joint therapeutic products agency which will replace both countries' existing agencies.
In New Zealand the new agency will replace the Health Ministry's medicines safety arm, Medsafe.
The new regime will begin next year.
The statement said it would mean more effective monitoring and detection of potential blood safety problems, leading to speedier action.
King and Worth also agreed to the creation of a joint agency establishment group to manage the Australian and New Zealand staff responsible for setting up the joint agency. –NZPA The Health Ministry is resisting renewed calls for a public inquiry into past management of the national blood system.
The Haemophilia Foundation wants an investigation following revelations in The Weekend Press that risky blood products – deemed unfit for American haemophiliacs – were exported around the world, including New Zealand, in the late 1970s and 1980s.
The United States products were sourced from high-risk populations including prisoners, intravenous drug users and urban homosexual communities.
Three New Zealanders are joining 1500 haemophiliacs worldwide in a class action against four US pharmaceutical giants, claiming they were exposed to HIV and hepatitis C.
New Zealand haemophiliacs received potentially contaminated imported blood-clotting agents called Koate and Konyne.
The law suit, filed by Lieff Cabraser Heimann and Bernstein in San Francisco, alleges that the US products resulted in mass infection and deaths of thousands of haemophiliacs globally.
The ministry is not planning an inquiry at this stage. But Deborah Woodley, manager of health services policy, said: "Any new evidence arriving from overseas litigation will be looked into."
Current safety of blood and blood products used in New Zealand was not an issue.
Foundation president Mike Carnahan said the ministry's response failed to address the issues.
"We need a public-based inquiry into the management of the national blood system from the 1970s to the 1990s," he said.
"Is there still a lot we don't know?
"Nothing less than an inquiry is going to see all these issues resolved."
The haemophiliac community has also been battling for justice on a domestic bad blood scandal of the early 1990s.
It is estimated 122 severe haemophiliacs contracted hepatitis C due to the Government's tardiness in introducing screening tests to detect the potentially fatal virus in donated blood.
Tests commercially available in 1990 were not nationally introduced for another two years.
Victims have effectively been barred from a $7 million Government compensation package because of the requirement to prove when they were infected with the virus. Haemophiliacs were stunned to learn last month that blood donations were collected from New Zealand prisoners until the early 1980s.
More than a decade earlier some countries had declared the practice too dangerous.
Posted 23 November 2004 - 02:59 PM
15 May 2004
By YVONNE MARTIN
Haemophiliacs were still being exposed to hepatitis C from unscreened blood products five months after a national screening programme began.
That has led to confusion over entitlement to a $7 million Government compensation package.
Compensation is on offer because screening tests to detect the potentially lethal hepatitis C were commercially available in 1990, but were not introduced nationally for another two years.
To qualify for $44,000, claimants must prove infection occurred between February 1990 and July 1992, when screening began. Most haemophiliacs were made as medically safe as possible that July, but those who relied on Factor 9, a blood-clotting product, were still exposed to unscreened plasma as late as November 1992.
A Health Department inquiry the following month, prompted by a newspaper article, confirmed a small group of 10 to 15 patients were potentially exposed to the virus after screening started.
In total, about 70 per cent of New Zealand's haemophiliacs were infected with hepatitis C by contaminated blood products. Yet few have qualified for compensation, because of the difficulties proving when they were infected.
Haemophilia Foundation president Mike Carnahan made officials aware of the Factor 9 issue in a letter to the Ministry of Health last week. He asked if the offer could be re-issued, without the restrictive entry and cut-off dates.
"It is hard to see the logic followed by the health minister's advisers," he said.
In response to questions from The Weekend Press, the ministry said it recognised the issue identified by the 1992 inquiry. Settlement offers had been made to a small number of affected people who received Factor 9 products.
"Advice has been given to the Haemophilia Foundation in the past stating that if other people (who used Factor 9) think they had become infected with hepatitis they should contact the Ministry of Health," said its communicable diseases manager, Grant Storey.
Carnahan said he and other long-time members could not recall a special provision for Factor 9 haemophiliacs.
A full version of the 1992 inquiry report, co-written by former Labour Cabinet Minister Stan Rodger, is now available. It catalogues the human toll from contaminated blood products.
A total of 337,500 patients would have had transfusions between February 1990 and July 1992. Of those, 733 (70%) would contract hepatitis C, which attacks the liver and can, in chronic cases, cause cirrhosis (scaring) and cancer.
Of those infected patients, 323 (44%) would probably survive. The remaining 410 would die from other causes within two years.
Of patients regularly using Factor 9 products, 11 were at risk of contracting the virus, five were expected to develop chronic hepatitis and two would progress to chronic disease.
The report shows that the then Health Minister Simon Upton was warned in July 1992 that Factor 9 products were not being high-heat treated to deactivate the virus.
That left some haemophiliacs with the dilemma of leaving haemorrhages untreated or risking hepatitis C infection. Safe products were available internationally, but were expensive to buy.
Upton replied in September 1992 that regional blood transfusion centres were responsible for providing services, funded through area health board grants.
But after a story appeared in The Dominion newspaper that November, health officials swung into action.
Australian imports of Factor 9 products made from unscreened plasma were halted and a high-heat treated product was allowed into the country, even though it was unregistered in Australia.
Posted 23 November 2004 - 02:59 PM
By AINSLEY THOMSON
Health Waikato has investigated serious incidents including the re-use of internal medical equipment and a swab allegedly left inside a patient after surgery.
The organisation's serious-event panel has met twice this year to discuss four cases in the region's hospitals.
They involved the death of a patient; an endoscope - an instrument used to look inside the stomach and the bowel - being re-used on more than one patient; a swab possibly being left inside a patient; and a patient assault on a staff member.
The organisation, which runs Waikato Hospital, would release few details about the incidents, stating that the Medical Practitioners Act expressly prevented it from doing so.
Spokeswoman Karen Bennett said the endoscope incident involved one patient, who was not harmed.
Ms Bennett would not comment on whether the patient had to undergo tests for infectious diseases which can be passed on by internal medical equipment that is not properly sterilised.
In 1999 Canterbury Health recalled more than 1300 patients and advised them to have tests for HIV, hepatitis and tuberculosis after discovering that a machine used to disinfect endoscopes had malfunctioned.
In another case, Health Waikato is unsure if a swab was left inside a patient. An investigation was inconclusive. A standard swab-counting procedure has now been adopted.
As a result of a patient death, which the organisation would not release details of, protocols have been put in place to ensure better communication between Health Waikato and other New Zealand hospitals when handing over acute or complicated cases.
Registrar medical staff must inform consultants when their patients' conditions deteriorate.
Herald Feature: Health system
Posted 23 November 2004 - 03:01 PM
Monday, 23 August 2004, 9:26 am
Press Release: Jon Eisen
Vaccine Maker Admits NZ Meningococcal Vaccine May Not Work, and Could Be Dangerous
The manufacturer of the new meningococcal vaccine currently being introduced into New Zealand has admitted that ”complete protection against infection caused by the New Zealand strain (of the bacteria) cannot be guaranteed.”
In the “package insert” designed to provide guidelines for doctors and nurses administering the vaccine, the CHIRON company also states that the vaccine has a high rate of possible side effects.
Moreover, it says that much crucial data about the performance of the vaccine, as well as data on “contraindications” (where it should not be used) are incomplete.
• While the insert says that “the population at risk should be vaccinated with MeNZB to prevent serious systemic disease” it concedes that “data on concomitant use of other vaccines are not yet available.” This means that if a person gets one or more other vaccines at or around the same time as the MeNZB vaccine, there are no data on possible adverse outcomes.
• The vaccine also “has not been evaluated in persons with thrombocytopenia (low blood platelet count) or bleeding disorders.”
• ”As with all injectable vaccines, appropriate medical treatment and supervision should always be readily available in the rare case of an anaphylactic event (life threatening allergic reaction) following administration of a vaccine.”
The company neglects to provide any data on these kinds of events.
• “MeNZB has not been specifically evaluated in the immunocompromised. Individuals with complement deficiencies and individuals with functional or anatomical asplenia (problems with or absence of a spleen) may mount an immune response to MeNZB; however, the degree of protection that would be afforded is unknown.”
• “Any acute infection and febrile illness (an illness with an associated fever) is reason for delaying the use of MeNZB except when, in the opinion of the physician,withholding the vaccine entails a greater risk.” In other words, inasmuch as the manufacturer does not actually have any meaningful data on risks and benefits, it’s up to the doctor’s “educated guess” as to whether or not to vaccinate a sick child or infant. More: “A minor illness such a temperature of less than 38.5 detgrees such as a minor upper respiratory infection, is not usually reason to postpone immunisation.” However, in that such an infection may or may not be an indication of someone who is “immunocompromised” (a contraindication for the vaccine; remember that there is “no data” on this) the reader is left wondering about this apparent contradiction in the directions.
• “There are no adequate data from the use of MeNZB in pregnant women.”
• “Information on the safety of the vaccine during lactation is not available.”
• “The degree and quality of the cellular immune response is not yet established.”
• “Clinical efficacy (whether it works or not): No prospective efficacy trials have been performed with MeNZB.” In other words, the company has no idea as to whether or not the vaccine actually does what they say it should do.
• “Adverse Reactions from Clinical Studies with the Norwegian parent vaccine, Menbvac, an OMV vaccine manufactured with a strain from a different sero-(sub)type (B:15:P1.7,16)
For MenBvac further adverse events were reported including anaphylactic reactions, flu-like symptoms, haematuria (blood in the urine), Guillain-Barre Syndrome (neurological disorder that may include paralysis), myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome(aka ME). All these reactions were very rare (no data supplied) and occured in adolescents and/or adults. Additional information: Although MenBvac is the parent vaccine of MeNZB the above mentioned adverse events of MenBvac may not necessarily be expected to happen with MeNZB (no reason or data specified).
TRANSLATION: These are some of the adverse reactions to the parent strain (Norwegian vaccine) from which the New Zealand vaccine was developed. We don’t know what the reactions to the NZ strain will be, and this is the reason:
“Adverse reactions (to the vaccine in the trial period) were collected on the day of vaccination and each day following for up to 7 days.”
This means is that the NZ vaccine, which is related to the Norwegian vaccine, may or may not have a similar adverse reaction profile nobody knows yet and the Ministry of Health is not waiting to find out before it releases the vaccine for use in New Zealand.
Moreover, the company followed up the trial subjects ) only about 1000 people) for only about a week, even though some “adverse reactions” don’t begin to show up until many weeks or months later (or even years with some vaccines, like the cancer connection to the polio vaccine).
Finally, we come to aluminium hydroxide, an “adjuvant” in the vaccine. This was shown as far back as 1975 to be a possible carcinogen (cancer-causing agent) by US Bureau of Biologics and the US Food and Drug Administration).
The fact is that the MeNZB vaccine is still highly experimental, despite what the Ministry of Health is telling the people of New Zealand, which is that the vaccine will prevent meningoccocal meningitis, is safe and well trialled.
“This vaccine has been safely used in clinical trials in Auckland with a range of age groups, including babies and adults.”
The MoH is not telling the people of New Zealand that we are paying a vaccine company $200 million to experiment on our children with the possibility of long lasting “adverse consequences” like cancer, diabetes and other serious illnesses down the track.
With the bandwagon rolling along on the new meningitis vaccine, it may be instructive to consider the following, which links an earlier vaccine for meningitis to a marked increase in diabetes.
The prestigious peer reviewed journal Autoimmunity (August 2002 Vol. 35 (4), pp. 247-253} recently published an article by Dr. J. Bart Classen, an immunologist at Classen Immunotherapies, and David Carey Classen, an infectious disease specialist at the University of Utah, proving a causal relationship between the hemophilus vaccine and the development of insulin dependent diabetes. The data is particularly disturbing because it indicates the risks of the vaccine exceeds the benefit. The findings are expected to allow many diabetics to receive compensation for their injuries.
The study followed over 100,000 children who had been randomized in a large clinical trial to receive 1 or 4 doses of the hemophilus vaccine and over 100,000 unvaccinated children. After 7 years the group receiving 4 doses of the vaccine had a statistically significant, 26% elevated rate of diabetes, or an extra 54 cases/100,000 children, compared to children who did not receive the vaccine.
By contrast immunization against hemophilus is expected to prevent only 7 deaths and 7 to 26 cases of permanent disability per 100,000 children immunized. The study showed that almost all of the extra cases of diabetes caused by the vaccine occurred between 3-4 years after vaccination. Furthermore the paper provides new data proving the vaccine causes diabetes in mice and reviews data from 3 smaller human studies, which all had similar results to the current study, but were too small to reach statistical significance.
"Our results conclusively prove there is a causal relationship between immunization schedules and diabetes. We believe immunization schedules can be made safer," stated Dr. Bart Classen.
The Classens' research is already becoming widely accepted. An independent group of researchers working at a prestigious Swedish medical center recently published a paper (Annals. N.Y. Acad Sci. 958: 293-296, 2002) supporting their findings. Last year doctors attending a conference of the American College for Advancement in Medicine overwhelmingly agreed that vaccines can cause chronic diseases such as diabetes.
In the December 1994 Medical Post, Canadian author of the best-seller Medical Mafia, Guylaine Lanctot, MD, stated, "The medical authorities keep lying. Vaccination has been a disaster on the immune system. It actually causes a lot of illnesses. We are actually changing our genetic code through vaccination...100 years from now we will know that the biggest crime against humanity was vaccines."
After critically analyzing literally ten's of thousands of pages of the vaccine medical literature, Dr. Viera Scheibner concluded that "there is no evidence whatsoever of the ability of vaccines to prevent any diseases.
To the contrary, there is a great wealth of evidence that they cause serious side effects." Dr. Classen has stated, "My data proves that the studies used to support immunization are so flawed that it is impossible to say if immunization provides a net benefit to anyone or to society in general.
"This question can only be determined by proper studies which have never been performed. The flaw of previous studies is that there was no long-term follow up and chronic toxicity was not looked at.
The continued denial and suppression of the evidence against vaccines only perpetuates the "myths" of their "success" and, more importantly, their negative consequences on our children and society. Aggressive and comprehensive scientific investigation into adverse vaccine events and is clearly warranted, yet immunization programs continue to expand in the absence of such research.
Concerns over vaccine adverse effects and conflicts of interest led the American Society of Physicians and Surgeons to issue a Resolution to Congress calling for a "moratorium on vaccine mandates and for physicians to insist upon truly informed consent for the use of vaccines."
Approved by unanimous vote at the AAPS October 2000 annual meeting, the resolution made references to the "increasing numbers of mandatory childhood vaccines, to which children are subjected without information about potential adverse side effects"; the fact that "safety testing of many vaccines is limited and the data are unavailable for independent scrutiny, so that mass vaccination is equivalent to human experimentation and subject to the Nuremberg Code, which requires voluntary informed consent"; and the fact that "the process of approving and 'recommending' vaccines is tainted with conflicts of interest."
In an October 1999 statement to Congress, Bart Classen, M.D., M.B.A., founder and CEO of Classen Immunotherapies and developer of vaccine technologies, stated, "It is clear that the government's immunization policies are driven by politics and not by science."
FACT: In The New England Journal of Medicine (July 1994) a study found that over 80% of children under 5 years of age who had contracted whooping cough had been fully vaccinated (immunised).
FACT: The death rate from common infectious diseases such as tuberculosis, whooping cough, measles and diptheria had declined by over 90% BEFORE the introduction of vaccination. (1)
FACT: A 1992 study published in The American Journal of Epidemiology shows that children die at a rate 8 times greater than normal within three days after getting a DPT vaccination.
FACT: Many children develop serious conditions as a result of vaccination. How many? Unfortunately, it is impossible to know for sure because only a small fraction (less than 10%) of all "adverse reactions" are ever reported. (2)
Long-term adverse reactions to vaccines may include:
Arthritis: This is a known risk of the rubella portion of the MMR vaccine. The risk is higher in and women and adolescent girls.(3)
Diabetes: According to the NZ Medical Journal (24/05/96), Insulin Dependent Diabetes increased by 60% in NZ children after a mass vaccination campaign using a genetically engineered Hepatitis B vaccine.
Autism: This once rare (but now common) brain disorder has been linked to the MMR vaccine by several independent researchers and doctors and published in peer-reviewed medical journals like The Lancet and The Journal of Adverse Drug Reactions. Dr Mary Megson and others have also linked the DPT vaccine to this distressing condition. Autism can ruin a child’s ability to learn and develop normal relationships.
Asthma:British researcher Dr Michael Odent found that children who were vaccinated with the DPT vaccine were four times more likely to develop asthma than children who were not injected with this vaccine.
Cancer: The polio vaccine has been implicated in some brain cancers where the presence of a cancer-causing virus (SV-40) contaminating the vaccine has been confirmed. (Surprisingly there has never been a study comparing the health of vaccinated vs unvaccinated people, and the medical establishment refuses to conduct one on “ethical” grounds.)
FACT: Some vaccines such as the rubella (MMR) (4), the Hepatitis A vaccine(5) among others, are cultured on cells from aborted human foetuses.
FACT: Many vaccines do not prevent disease very effectively, despite what you’ve been told. In the USA where 98% of children are vaccinated, children (and adults) still develop measles, whooping cough and other "vaccine preventable" diseases. A massive outbreak of whooping cough occurred in Holland in 1998, despite the fact that over 90% of the population had been vaccinated against it.
New Zealand vaccinations are not compulsory. Children DO NOT have to be vaccinated in order to go to daycare or school. Know your rights. Inform yourself about the pros and cons of any and all vaccines before you decide. It is your decision.
Posted 23 November 2004 - 03:03 PM
Posted 23 November 2004 - 03:04 PM
Canada in talks on hepatitis C compensation
Thousands of Canadians who contracted hepatitis C from tainted blood transfusions have learned the previous government overturned a previous decision not to compensate them.
The tainted blood was provided by the Canadian Red Cross on behalf of the federally financed national healthcare system.
But in a controversial decision, the government of former prime minister Jean Chretien agreed in 1998 to compensate only those infected between January 1, 1986 and July 1, 1990 when a test for hepatitis C was available but was not used.
The new Government of Prime Minister Paul Martin says it will start talks with representatives of victims infected either before or after previous time limits with the aim of compensating them.
Health Minister Ujjal Dosanjh says "it's the right thing to do".
The so-called "forgotten victims" of Canada's tainted blood scandal were shut out of the 1.1 billion compensation package in 1998.
An estimated 5,300 people are expected to qualify from the extension of the benefits.
Posted 16 April 2006 - 08:50 AM
16 April 2006
By DEIDRE MUSSEN
The government is about to make a $10 million backdown in the bad blood scandal.
It will include Prime Minister Helen Clark making a public apology and a payout to 170 people with haemophilia who were infected with hepatitis C from contaminated blood products in the 1980s and 1990s.
An outline of the proposed compensation package was signed a few days before last year's election, after the Haemophilia Foundation threatened an embarrassing leaflet-drop to thousands of voters in key electorates, highlighting the government's broken promises.
It contained a letter by then opposition health spokeswoman Annette King in 1999, promising a "fair and speedy settlement" if Labour was elected.
In 2000, the government set aside $7m in compensation, but the tight criteria meant only three of the 172 affected people with haemophilia were eligible.
A foundation spokesman warned King at a public meeting of the planned leaflet drop targeting her electorate and those of Finance Minister Michael Cullen and Prime Minister Helen Clark.
Urgent meetings ensued and within days, a basic settlement package was hammered out, and the foundation withdrew its threat.
On the eve of World Haemophilia Day tomorrow, the foundation has revealed the proposal's details, which the Ministry of Health said this month would be finalised by October but would then need to be passed by cabinet.
It will include a formal apology from Clark, who was health minister during much of the period of the scandal,, compensation of up to about $60,000 a person, improved treatment and welfare, a one-stop shop at Accident Compensation Corporation for claims, financial help with legal fees and funding for the foundation.
As part of the deal, the 60 people with haemophilia suing the crown for failing to introduce national screening earlier and for failing to warn of the risks of using blood products must drop their case.
A spokesman for Helen Clark yesterday said the matter was with the Crown Law Office and the Ministry of Health "and we have no further comment to make at this stage".
Haemophilia Foundation president Dave McCone said the government had at last acted fairly and compassionately.
The foundation planned to recommend its members accept the settlement.
In 1992, it was revealed that about 700 people, including 172 people with haemophilia, had been infected with hepatitis C from contaminated blood products in the 1980s until 1992.
New Zealand began screening donated blood for hepatitis C in 1992, two years after tests became available. It also did not start super heat-treating all blood products to kill the virus until about 1992. It meant haemophiliacs were repeatedly exposed to the virus because they regularly used blood products to help clotting. Others, such as accident victims, were exposed through blood transfusions.
Steve Waring, one of the foundation's 172 members with hepatitis C and on its hepatitis C working party, said the agreement was broad enough and good enough to address the issues faced by members over a long time.
"Hepatitis C is a horrible disease. It's insidious, it's like the tide - it just keeps coming and coming. You've got people who have one chronic debilitating disease who have now got another one."
Hepatitis C is a potentially fatal virus that attacks the liver, leading in chronic cases to cirrhosis (scarring) and cancer.
The only treatment available took up to 12 months and left people so unwell they were unable to work, stopping some from seeking treatment because of the loss of income. The compensation package would address that, Waring said.
"I can't wait for it to be delivered so people can get on with their lives. It's caused significant personal grief for people."
Those affected are now aged between 17 and more than 70.
At least 12 have died waiting for a settlement. Their families will be eligible for compensation.
Margaret Milne, widow of Rangiora man John Milne, said her husband died two years ago, aged 75. Hepatitis C from blood given as treatment for haemophilia was the cause of death.
He had been no signs of hepatitis C until three weeks before his death, when he was diagnosed with liver cancer.
"He felt there should have been a settlement to help some of the families of those who had died. It will be nice to not have to worry so much financially."
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Posted 17 April 2006 - 04:03 PM
" ACC has now lodged its appeal rights in the 'Robinson case',"so the Goverment
will pay simple interest and all will each have to seek redress through
the court system.
When is it time for a policy change and simply tell the truth. NOW|||
Posted 18 February 2013 - 12:59 AM