Wednesday, October 20, 2021

‘Stop the BS’: Anti-vaccine advocate with Twitter account attacks FDA panel members over HPV vaccine

Conservative criticism of a Sunday meeting of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) is based on an incident that broke Thursday night on Twitter. There, after a member of the committee said vaccination for HPV is no longer recommended for young adolescents, a proponent for Moderna Inc. vaccines delivered a tirade. “Stop the BS! It is WAY higher than your rates!

EVERY 14-17YEAR-OLD SHOULD BE TOEING THE LINE ON THE CDC PAPER!!! Quit trying to push us up the chart because you see your competitors turning their backs on the chart – even while being massively over-advertised! #StopTheBS!” the activist, identified as Jason Newby, wrote. Realizing his comment, he doubled down. “Stop trying to scare the vaccine like this. HPV is a dangerous disease & natural history is you can get

an STD from someone who got it & passed it on. WHO GAVE YOU THE RIGHT TO LET YOUR PRESENTATIONS DIFFER FROM THE AGENCY AND THE DATA THAT CAME OUT?” he continued. When another member interrupted, Newby responded, “If you didn’t want such a hand-picked committee I would know your bullshit. I don’t wanna change nothing about ACIP because I see it is a good thing.” Newby, who co-hosts a small-business network show called

“Workplace Innovation,” has tweeted a year-long series of anonymous messages after shifting his focus from technology news to healthcare during his 30-year tenure in the PR field. The inappropriate outburst is but one example of the unprecedented Trump administration interference into regulatory agency deliberations and the aggressive comments it has stoked among vaccine activists. But may people seeking to advance

anti-vaccine advocates’ agenda at the expense of health-care decisions were unable to settle on a stand in the last public review of the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine options available in 2018, according to critics. “The ACIP brought in presenters to cite reasons why it doesn’t make sense for kids to get this vaccine. There were even third party council members who tried to argue that children need to get

vaccinated against HPV, even at this young age,” executive director of the Guttmacher Institute Barbara Loe Fisher said, adding that “children should not be vaccinated even though science says they’re getting vaccinated, based on third party doctors.” Critics also claim the ACIP discussion was orchestrated to push the cervical cancer prevention program, which protects pre-teens against the cancer-causing HPV virus.

The comments were made against a backdrop of incentives allowing Johnson & Johnson vaccine program, Prevenar 13, to appear on TV ad campaigns, even though the ACIP voted to recommend the vaccine not be offered for all pre-teens. Critics argue the 20 ACIP members who voted to vote in favor of the vaccine for all pre-teens were handed edited information. Early reviews of Vaccine Alliance meeting are not unexpected,

given that most opinions expressed ahead of this panel’s recommendations for the first time hinged on emerging scientific and medical field information and not necessarily those presented during actual meetings. Last December, at the national Vaccine Advisory Committee (VAC) meeting in December, that scientific field question dominated discussions. The VAC meeting got off to a tense start after a group of anti-

vaccine advocates protested, bringing sharp criticism of the disjointed dialogue. Both events happen before and follow meetings of ACIP, which meets on the second and fourth Saturdays of each month and is supported by the National Institutes of Health and the National Vaccine Program. The battle over vaccine policy has now shifted into the federal government, which will control vaccine funding from October 2016. The

CDC requested a boost to the $3.3 billion vaccine budget last December, and four House Republicans opposed the increase. The White House does not object to a higher dollar amount, but would like a unified approach to vaccine research as well as White House funding. “The ACIP gave an un-medically flawed response to groups like the Toxia Project, and the comments during that meeting were just un-scientific. By casting

a vote today, ACIP betrayed the public trust and improperly advanced the anti-vaccine agenda,” Dr. Josephine Briggs, director of the CDC’s

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