DESPITE THESE FACTS, Australian politicians from all parties have been convinced to economically penalise parents who have genuine concerns about the safety of vaccines, and to encourage others to socially ostracise these caring and informed parents.
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The issue of how we protect ourselves and our children against targeted infectious diseases (immunisation) is one of the most controversial in modern medicine. Many orthodox health authorities believe that vaccination is the most successful public health intervention ever undertaken, and it is true that many thousands of lives have been saved by vaccination. It is also true that definitive studies of the long-term safety of vaccination either have never been undertaken or if they have, they have never been published. This means that the number of lives lost and long-term chronic illness caused as a result of vaccination has never been properly quantified.
The purpose of this page is to provide readers with factual information to assist in making an informed decision about the health of your family. I will deliberately not give you opinions, just information. I will not make claims, just provide data. This information is not medical advice. You must of course make up your own minds about which method of immunisation you choose, but at least you know you have choices.
It is important that Australian readers know that the Law does not require parents to vaccinate their children. However if you want to send your child to school, or to receive some parenting payments from the Government, you are required to complete and lodge specified paperwork. Apart from that, you are legally entitled to act as you choose. However from May 2013, campaigns were started in the mass media to prevent unvaccinated children from playing with vaccinated children (apparently vaccines are not able to protect those who are vaccinated??). The NSW government introduced legislation into the State parliament to discriminate against the children of parents who have made a considered and informed decision not to vaccinate their children, and this was duplicated in the Queensland parliament.
Then during the 2013 election campaign the Labour Prime Minister stated that if re-elected all children would have to be fully vaccinated in order to receive the Family Tax Benefit Part A end-of-year supplement. Parents who register as "conscientious objectors" would no longer be eligible to receive the payment. The leader of the opposition spoke positively about the proposal. The Greens health spokesperson supported the proposal. So in just a few months the legal situation in Australia changed, and a level of social and legal discrimination supported by most politicians has appeared, despite the fact that Australia does not have a vaccine damage compensation scheme. In other words, Australian politicians support the economic coercion of low income families to force their children to undergo a potentially damaging invasive health procedure against the wishes of the parents without providing a formal vaccine damage safety net.
In 2015 the Liberal government, with support from Labour and the Greens, introduced legislation to financially penalise parents who do not vaccinate their children, not through ignorance or laziness, but because of genuine concerns about the possible harm vaccines have been shown to cause. The government says “From 1 January 2016, families with children who are not immunised (and do not have an approved exemption) will not receive the FTB Part A end of year supplement (not the FTB Part A itself) and child care subsidies (subject to the passage of legislation)”. The FTB supplement is worth $726.35 annually. The child care subsidies may however be worth significantly more depending on family circumstances.
For information and advice from the Australian and Victorian Governments on vaccinations please visit:
Parents who decide not to vaccinate do need to fill out an Australian Government medical exemption form to qualify for education, benefits and support. This form must be signed by a vaccine provider (usually a GP). Note that this form has changed in 2016 to allow only medical exemptions to be accepted. Religious and conscientious exemptions are no longer allowed federally or in Victoria.
If you collect available information and make a reasoned and logical decision then you are acting in an informed and responsible manner. No parent can do better than that, and no parent who acts responsibly deserves to be criticised by others, especially when such critics are all too often ill-informed.
If you wish to maximise protection against a targeted infectious disease then you need to use disease-specific protection. Whilst living in a way that maximises your general health will help a little and will certainly assist in healing more rapidly if you acquire a disease, we know that even very healthy people contract infectious diseases. To my knowledge there are only two disease-specific methods of immunisation – vaccination and homoeoprophylaxis (homeopathic immunisation). We shall look at information relating to the safety and effectiveness of both methods.
1. THE SAFETY OF VACCINATION
SHORT-TERM: We know that most short-term reactions are fairly mild, including sleeplessness, screaming, tremors, rashes and so on. However we also know that occasionally people are killed or permanently brain damaged by vaccines. Many developed countries (not Australia) have vaccine-damage-compensation schemes. In the USA for example over 2.8 billion dollars has been paid out in vaccine damage compensation payments and hundreds of millions of dollars paid in countries such as the United Kingdom and Japan. Government figures are readily available for those who wish to verify this fact. It is also worth looking at the VAERS website (the USA vaccine adverse event reporting service) as this provides an insight into the short-term safety of most vaccines..
LONG-TERM: To assemble relevant information about long-term vaccine safety it is necessary to collect data with the following characteristics: (i) examine the complete health of participants including intellectual, emotional as well as physical aspects; (ii) compare fully vaccinated and fully unvaccinated participants (the inclusion of “partially vaccinated” participants means that people who have received only one or two vaccines will be included and this may well bias results, as will the failure to make comparisons with children who have received no vaccines at all); (iii) consider only age appropriate participants (the inclusion of very young infants will not provide a reliable indication of chronic health – usually ages between 4 and 14 years of age are considered appropriate). I have never seen a significant study published in orthodox medical journals which complies with these three requirements (Note: I always ask orthodox scientists for this evidence and have never had a meaningful reply – however if someone can provide details of complete and appropriate long-term safety studies I will change the statement I have made). Therefore we do not know with scientific certainly the true long-term impact of vaccination on our complete health.
2. THE SAFETY OF HOMOEOPROPHYLAXIS
Homeopathic medicines are prepared using a process of dilution and succussion (the firm striking of the solution against a hard surface (the remedy does not develop medicinal powers without this action at every stage of dilution). Once a remedy is prepared past the 12th centesimal potency there are no molecules of the original substance left according to Avogadro’s Law in science. So there is agreement that homeopathic potencies are not toxic. However this is also why many orthodox scientists believe that they cannot work as they do not contain molecules of the original substance. This becomes a matter of evidence, which we shall discuss shortly. As part of my doctoral studies I examined the long-term health of children who used vaccination and homoeoprophylaxis as well as those who used constitutional methods to improve health and those who did nothing at all to prevent infectious diseases. The homoeoprophylaxis group was the healthiest, as measured by having the lowest long-term incidence of five conditions, suggesting that it is not only non-toxic but energetically safe.
3. THE EFFECTIVENESS OF VACCINATION
The National Health and Medical Research Council produces a book called The Australian Immunisation Handbook which is regarded as the definitive reference regarding vaccination in Australia. Looking at the 10th edition released in 2013 we see that the effectiveness of all vaccines ranges between 44% and 99% depending on the vaccine (or 71% to 99% for the vaccines used in our current schedule). It should be noted that these are best-estimates usually derived from clinical trials, and that even vaccines which are shown to be highly effective vaccines in trials are often shown to be less effective in real-world outbreaks.
4. THE EFFECTIVENESS OF HOMOEOPROPHYLAXIS
We know that homoeoprophylaxis (HP) is non-toxic so the crucial question is “does it work?” Put simply, there is no point in using something which is safe if it doesn’t work. There are four types of evidence now available.
(i) Historical Evidence: Vaccination was first used in 1796 and HP was first used in 1798. There is over 200 years of recorded clinical evidence showing the real-world effectiveness. The founder of Homeopathy, Dr Samuel Hahnemann, was the first to use HP in epidemic situations and it has been used by many masters of homeopathy since then. However much of this information is not collected into statistical studies and does not suggest rates of effectiveness. It has value, but we shall next examine statistical studies.
(ii) Epidemic Studies: There have been a number of studies published in English describing the effectiveness of HP in epidemic conditions. Most have found an effectiveness of around 90%. Other studies from South America and India have yet to be translated. The most thorough study in English undertaken by orthodox practitioners and scientists was from Brazil in 1998.
The Brazilian Experience
In 1998 there was an outbreak of meningococcal meningitis type B in a region of Brazil. Many doctors in that country are also homeopaths. There was no vaccine available at the time there is still no vaccine available for Meningococcal type B in Australia), so a group of doctors who worked in the region used the meningococcal Nosode to immunize 65,826 children. Another 23,539 children in the region were not immunized. The doctors followed the two groups for 12 months. The efficacy of homoeoprophylaxis was 95% after six months and 91% after 12 months. It was a complete and statistically rigorous report and was published in a leading peer reviewed Homeopathic journal, and is available for study (reference:
Mroninski C, Adriano E, Mattos G (2001) Meningococcinum: Its protective effect against meningococcal disease. Homoeopathic Links Winter Vol 14(4); pp. 230-4).
(iii) Long-term Endemic Studies: My own research into a long-term HP program for use against potentially serious infectious diseases commonly present in the Australian community collected and examined data from 1986 to 2004. The results of the research have been published and are now available. Please click here to visit the publication site. Please click here to see the list of articles written by Dr Golden.
The research which has been completed comprised two parts:
a. A National Health Survey - this research studied 781 children between 5 and 10 years of age. Through a questionnaire completed by parents, measures of each child's general immune competence (using the diseases of asthma, chronic eczema, chronic ear infections, allergies and behavioural problems) were compared to the method of disease prevention which the child used, including vaccination, homoeopathy, general constitutional treatment, no method at all, or a combination of all of these. The relative safety and effectiveness of the different immunisation methods studied was then calculated.
b. A Twenty Year Clinical Study - using responses from parents whose children used my 5 year homoeoprophylactic program for disease prevention from 1985 to 2004. 2,342 responses were collected, each one covering one year of a child's life. The effectiveness and safety of the homoeopathic option to vaccination is fully discussed, and the actual comments by parents are reported. The single figure measure of effectiveness is 90.4% (95% confidence limits 87.6% - 93.2%). Using national attack rates as a control HP efficacy for three diseases was whooping cough – 86.2%; measles – 90.0%; mumps – 91.6%.
The purpose of this research has been threefold:
1. To provide parents with objective data on which to base what is often the most difficult health decision a parent must make - how to safely and effectively immunize their child.
2. To provide data on which health professionals can base their advice to parents.
3. To provide both State and Federal governments with data that shows that vaccination is not the only valid option to prevent targeted infectious diseases. In fact my doctoral thesis submitted concluded that the best possible system would involve a dual system of immunisation, where parents were freely able to choose either vaccination or homoeoprophylaxis. Figures clearly showed that this would increase the national coverage against targeted diseases (increase herd immunity), and lower the national incidence of certain chronic illnesses, such as asthma and eczema, as well as reduce behavioural problems associated with vaccination.
It is important to note that no one piece of research on its own can ever provide sufficient information – but a base of research is made up of individual studies and allows researchers to see if there is consistency in findings from a variety of independent studies. This is where this part of my research is relevant – it shows a consistency of findings over a variety of studies of around 90% effectiveness.
For interested readers, the following article gives a summary of my research - enough to show readers whether they would like to pursue their study of the option further Click here to see the article (PDF, 32k).
Click here to see the choices you have. (PDF, 20k)
It should be noted that the Australian Register of Homeopaths directs homeopaths not to make recommendations against vaccination, and to provide patients with balanced information about HP and sign a statement saying that they have received balanced information from their practitioner
Click here to see the AROH position. I fully support the AROH position. It is not up to any type of practitioner to direct parents, but to support them with objective data.
(iv) Regional and National Experience: Most studies have been in limited numbers of people, but since 2007 we now have evidence involving the use of HP in millions of people in Cuba. Because of the 50 year USA embargo on Cuba it has needed to become self-sufficient in medical education and medical supplies. In fact recent data shows that Cuba now has a lower infant mortality rate than the USA, a real credit for a country which has a per-head GPD (a measure of wealth) of 1/4th of that in the USA. The Finlay Institute in Cuba is a W.H.O. registered vaccine manufacturer and supplies vaccines to South America and Africa. The people who conducted the HP interventions described below were not homeopaths but orthodox scientists and doctors.
The Cuban Experience
In October and November 2007, three provinces of the eastern region of Cuba were affected by strong rainfalls causing widespread floods severe damage to sanitary and health systems. The risk of leptospirosis infection was raised to extremely dangerous levels with about 2 million of people exposed to potentially contaminated water. The Finlay Institute (which manufactures vaccines for South America and Africa) prepared a leptospira nosode 200 CH using 4 circulating strains and following international quality standards. A multidisciplinary team travelled to the affected regions to conduct the massive administration of the nosode. Coordinated action with public health system infrastructures allowed the administration of a preventive treatment. Prevention consisted of two doses (7- 9 days apart) of the nosode to over 2.2 million of people (4.5 million doses). The coverage of the intervention rose up to 95% of total population of the three provinces most at risk.
The epidemiology surveillance after the intervention showed a dramatic decrease of morbidity two weeks after and a reduction to zero mortality of hospitalized patients. The number of confirmed leptospirosis cases remains at low levels, and below the expected levels according to the trends and rain regimens. A reinforcing application of nearly 4,500,000 doses was given in 2008 after the hit of the hurricane IKE but using the nosode potentized to 10-MCH. Strict epidemiologic surveillance was carried out on the targeted provinces. Published results show that the incidence of the disease was unchanged in the three intervened regions (the 3 regions most at risk due to the greatest level of hurricane damage), but rose significantly in the rest of the country where the HP program was not used. It provided overwhelming evidence of the effectiveness of the HP intervention. As a consequence, the Cuban Government directed the Finlay Institute to homeopathically immunise the entire country over 12 months of age against Swine Flu in 2009/10 (over 9.8 million people).
More data from Cuba will be released in the coming years regarding the leptospirosis and other interventions, such as their new HP immunisation against Dengue Fever (for which there is no vaccine available).
This immunization program undertaken by the Finlay Institute (a W.H.O. registered vaccine manufacturer) cost around $400,000US. It indicates that the entire population of Australia could be homoeopathically immunised for around $10,000,000. This cost applies for homeopathic immunization against any infectious disease. In 2009, the Australian Government spent $200,000,000 to purchase vaccines (mostly unused) to vaccinate the Australian population against Swine Flu. In fact, most of this expenditure could have been saved using homeopathic immunization against Swine Flu, and this calculation can be repeated many times given the large vaccination schedule now current in Australia. But further, the homeopathic option is non-toxic, and would remove the risk of using a little tested vaccine. We know in America when mass swine flu vaccination was last used that people died from the vaccine and hundreds were permanently damaged, costing the American Government billions in compensation.
“See a video interview with Dr Isaac Golden, plus Dr Golden interviewing Dr Gustavo Bracho from Finlay Institute, Cuba”.
NOTE: Changes were made in early 2015 to separate the vaccine production and natural medicine arms of Finlay Institute, which now have reverted to only vaccine production. The HP and natural medicine work is being continued by Dr Campa, ex-President of Finlay.
The Indian Experience
For many years the disease Japanese Encephalitis has been endemic in parts of India. In Andhra Pradesh state in 1999 cases had risen to 1,036, with 203 deaths, principally in children. The Government directed medical homeopaths to immunise children in the province 14 years and under, roughly 20million young people. A three year program was begun in 1999, and by 2003 both notifications and deaths had fallen to zero. Comparing this experience with states surrounding Andhra Pradesh which had not used HP showed that the incidence of Japanese Encephalitis remained high in these other states. The Government directed intervention was once again an unambiguous success, and showed the potential value of HP as a safe, comparably effective, and a cost-effective option to vaccination.
I visited India again in April 2016, in part to discuss with the Government Agency in charge a large Dengue Fever HP program to be run in Kerala State and in Delhi in 2016. I met with many doctors using HP, as well as Government officials directing HP programs. The research being undertaken in India will no doubt be ignored by health officials in Australia, and certainly will be opposed by the pharmaceutical lobby groups active in this country who exert enormous influence on State and Federal governments. But the facts will once again speak for themselves.
You now have a range of published information which hopefully will assist you in making an informed decision regarding the comparison between the safety and effectiveness of vaccination and homoeoprophylaxis. If you want to check the references to the facts noted above they can be found in my book Vaccination & Homoeoprophylaxis: A Review of Risks and Alternatives 7th edition (there are more details on the Publications page of this site).
As I said earlier, no parent can do better than seek out objective information based on appropriate research and analysis, and make an informed and considered decision. I have patients who vaccinate their children and others who use homoeoprophylaxis. They both have my support. My hope is that the above information will assist you in your personal and important journey.
DISCUSSION WITH DR GOLDEN: If you (and your partner) wish to book a 30 minute telephone discussion regarding immunisation options with Dr Golden, please email email@example.com to arrange a time.
TWO NEW WEB-BASED COURSES IN HOMEOPATHIC IMMUNISATION � especially for practitioners and parents who would rather hear and see information presented rather than just read a book.