Need help to ensure free health choice

Meryl meryl1 at
Fri Aug 3 18:43:03 EST 2001

Hello all,
I am writing to you to ask for your help in supporting an AVN
initiative to lobby for changes to federal legislation in regards to
parent's right to not be discriminated against when exercising their
legal right to not vaccinate or to vaccinate selectively. Another very
important issue that we want to raise is the lack of adverse reaction
reporting. To this end, the AVN will be sending representatives to
Canberra to lobby Federal Parliamentarians for the following
changes/additions to legislation:
As you are probably aware, recent moves by the Federal Government have
meant that many families have been discriminated against as a result
of exercising their legal right to not vaccinate their children or
The government linked full vaccination with receipt of certain
government entitlements. In order to get these payments, parents of
unvaccinated or partially vaccinated children must go to an
immunisation provider (doctor or clinic nurse) to be counselled on the
benefits and risks. The doctor should then sign a form to verify that
these people are conscientious objectors to vaccination. Many parents
are finding it impossible to get doctors to sign these forms and have
visited as many as 23 doctors before finding one who was willing.
Aside from the trauma of having to front up to so many doctors, the
cost to the Australian taxpayer from having to fund these visits would
have to be enormous.
In addition, in common with reporting of reactions from all medical
drugs, vaccine reactions are grossly under-reported. On our last
lobbying trip to Canberra, the AVN was told by representatives of both
ADRAC (the Adverse Drug Reactions Advisory Committee) and SAEFVSS (The
Serious Adverse Events Following Vaccination Surveillance Scheme) that
less than 10% of vaccine reactions are ever reported. Despite this
knowledge, the government continues to claim that vaccines are safe
and that the benefits far outweigh the risks.
The AVN feels that on this issue, the court is still out. We need real
statistics, not government spin, to prove the safety and efficacy of
vaccines. The only way to do this is to require doctors, who are
already paid huge bonuses for vaccination ($6 for reporting
vaccinations to the Australian Childhood Immunisation Register {ACIR},
$18.50 on top of their Medicare rebate for administering a vaccination
on time, and a percentage bonus if they get 80% or 90% of their
patient's children vaccinated), to report the reactions recognised by
the NH&MRC (National Health & Medical Research Council) in the 7th
Edition of the Vaccination Handbook.
Neither parents nor complimentary health professionals are allowed to
report vaccine reactions. The AVN has many hundreds of reaction
reports on its database and has been trying to get them added to the
official statistics without success. The Government says that doctors
must report vaccines reactions while doctors will not report.
Legislation needs to be introduced to redress this situation.
For this reason, the AVN is planning a lobbying trip to Canberra in
August of this year. 
Our last lobbying effort 2 years ago was very successful. We managed
to get amendments enacted to allow parents to conscientiously object
to vaccination and to redefine the term conscientious objector. The
government's original definition was so strict that it would have been
nearly impossible for anyone to have been considered a conscientious
We hope that this trip will be at least as successful as the last.
Our goals in going to Canberra this time will be as follows:
1-	To introduce Federal legislation stating that anyone who is
being asked to submit to a vaccination be provided with the
manufacturer's package insert in advance so that they can read,
understand and ask questions of the health care provider in order to
be given their right to fully informed choice.
2-	2-     That Federal legislation be introduced to mandate
reporting of the adverse reactions as required by the N&MRC in the 7th
Edition of the Australian Immunisation Handbook. According to the
handbook, the following adverse events should be reported. There is no
time limit set for these events as according to the handbook, they may
occur many years afterwards:
·	·        Abscess 
·	·        Acute flaccid paralysis 
·	·        Allergic reactions 
·	·        Anaphylactoid reaction (acute hypersensitivity
·	·        Anaphylaxis 
·	·        Arthralgia 
·	·        Arthritis 
·	·        Brachial neuritis 
·	·        Death 
·	·        Disseminated BCG 
·	·        Encephalopathy 
·	·        Encephalitis 
·	·        Fever - over 40.5 C 
·	·        Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS) 
·	·        Hypotensive - hyporesponsive episode (Shock,
·	·        Local reaction (severe) 
·	·        Lymphadenitis (includes suppurative lymphadenitis) 
·	·        Meningitis - diagnosis must be made by a physician 
·	·        Orchitis 
·	·        Osteitis 
·	·        Osteomyelitis 
·	·        Parotitis 
·	·        Rash (severe or unusual) 
·	·        Screaming (persistent) 
·	·        Seizure 
·	·        Sepsis 
·	·        Subacute Sclerosing Panencephalitis 
·	·        Thrombocytopenia 
·	·        Toxic-shock syndrome 
·	·        Vaccine associated paralytic poliomyelitis 
·	·        Other severe or unusual events 
The legislation must state that if doctors fail to report these
events, then there will be penalties.
3-	3-     That parents be allowed to report their own child's
reaction should the doctor refuse to. Currently, only medical
professionals with a provider number are entitled to report reactions,
which has caused a Catch-22 situation whereby the government can
safely state that vaccines cause very few reactions because the
majority of the reactions have never been reported
4-	4-     That the Child Care Payments Act 2000 be amended to
state that parents need not present to a doctor in order to get a
conscientious objector form signed. Parents must be allowed to declare
themselves conscientious objectors by simply signing a statutory
declaration form.
The next email from me will explain how you can help us in our efforts
to get this legislation passed. If you have gone through a lobbying
process previously and have some ideas or information that you think
may be helpful, please write back and let me know. Together we can
move mountains!
All the best,

Meryl W. Dorey,
The Australian Vaccination Network, Inc.
PO Box 177 
Bangalow NSW 2479
02 6687 1699 Phone           02 6687 2032 FAX
meryl at      
"All truth goes through three stages. First it is ridiculed. Then it
is violently opposed. Finally, it is accepted as self-evident."
Any information obtained here is not to be construed as medical OR
legal advice. The decision to vaccinate and how you implement that
decision is yours and yours alone. 

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