Minister Misled Parliament Over MMR Autism Link

[See end for “What YOU Can Do”]

Dawn Primarolo as UK Government Health Minister misled Parliament in a written answer to Conservative MP Mark Pritchard that Bailey Banks’ successful damages claim in the US Federal Court for an autistic condition caused by the MMR vaccine was “non autistic”, stating Bailey had a “non-autistic development delay”.

Now, health minister Mike O’Brien has agreed in a letter to an MP that the ruling referred to a diagnosis of an Autistic Spectrum Disorder.  “Pervasive Developmental Disorder, Not Otherwise Specified” is a category of Autistic Spectrum Disorders which does not fall into any other autism category”. There is no misunderstanding amongst experts of what it means. The paediatrician advising the court, Dr Lopez, decided against a diagnosis of autism not because Bailey Banks did not have autistic symptoms but because his condition was vaccine induced.

The designation “Pervasive Developmental Disorder” is the US diagnostic term for “Autistic Spectrum Disorder” used in the rest of the world.  “Pervasive Developmental Disorder” is also the term used by The Royal Free Hospital researchers in their 1998 Lancet study which first suggested a possible link between the MMR vaccine and autistic conditions.  Ileal-lymphoid-nodular hyperplasia, non-specific colitis, and pervasive developmental disorder in children Lancet 1998; 351: 637-41

Primarolo told Parliament in April when a health minister:

In 2007 the United States Court of Federal Claims made a ruling in favour of compensation to the father of Bailey Banks for his non-autistic developmental delay as a result of Acute Disseminated Encephalomyelitis (ADEM) following receipt of measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine. ADEM is an extremely rare condition that has been reported after rabies, diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis, smallpox, MMR, Japanese B encephalitis, pertussis, influenza and hepatitis B vaccines. The Bailey Banks case has no implications for MMR vaccine policy.

Special Master Abell’s judgement in the Bailey Banks case states unequivocally (p.27):

Furthermore, Bailey’s ADEM was severe enough to cause lasting, residual damage, and retarded his developmental progress, which fits under the generalized heading of Pervasive Developmental Delay, or PDD. The Court found that Bailey would not have suffered this delay but for the administration of the MMR vaccine, and that this chain of causation was not too remote, but was rather a proximate sequence of cause and effect leading inexorably from vaccination to Pervasive Developmental Delay. .

Master Abell explained (p.7):

Moving on to the alternative hypothesis/diagnosis of autism, Dr. Lopez distinguishes autism as a more generalized condition without a known etiology, and contrasted it to Bailey’s condition, which he says is clearly attributable to demyelination based on neuroimaging evidence. Tr. at 41-42. Dr. Lopez also differentiated Bailey’s condition from autism, because Bailey has been affected in more than one developmental skill area; he clarified by stating that Bailey has “induced pervasive developmental delay…due to ADEM.” Tr. at 32. He noted that the conflation of designations resulted from a medical convention created for the sake of explanation to laymen, but that the two are not properly interchangeable, but actually quite distinct. Id. Speaking more directly, Dr. Lopez stated that “Bailey does not have autism because he has a reason for his deficits.” Tr. at 42.

Now in a letter to an MP, health minister Mike O’Brien agrees that the term ‘PDD’ or ‘PDD-NOS’ (Pervasive Development Delay-Not Otherwise Specified) was that used by the court:

I understand that Mr X… believes that the answer should have referred to pervasive development disorder rather than non-autistic development delay. Relevant information is given on page 2 of the Bailey Banks ruling available at by searching for ‘Bailey Banks’. This specifies the ruling refers to ‘Pervasive Development Disorder, Not Otherwise Specified’ in which full features of autism are not identified’.

O’Brien has, therefore, conceded that there were features of autism, which undermines Dawn Primarolo’s claim that Bailey Banks had a ‘non-autistic development delay’: Bailey would undoubtedly be classified as having an Autistic Spectrum Disorder in the UK, even if he did not have “the full features of autism”, or was “atypical” as in many cases, and/or had additional learning difficulties (not usually grounds for withholding an autism diagnosis). Governments, heath officials and vaccine manufacturers are evading responsibility by exploiting confused terminology for a range of developmental problems, nearly all of which are non-specific diagnoses.


When the Banks decision came to light earlier this year Robert F Kennedy Jr, writing in Huffington Post commented that vaccine court cases were more likely to be awarded if the word “autism” did not appear as consequential on brain-damage from encephalopathy:

Medical records associated with these proceedings clearly tell the tale. In perhaps hundreds of these cases, the children have all the classic symptoms of regressive autism; following vaccination a perfectly healthy child experiences high fever, seizures, and other illnesses, then gradually, over about three months, loses language, the ability to make eye contact, becomes “over-focused” and engages in stereotypical head banging and screaming and then suffers developmental delays characteristic of autism. Many of these children had received the autism diagnosis. Yet the radioactive word “autism” appears nowhere in the decision.

The problems are compounded in the UK by the policy of not monitoring, recording or investigating adverse reactions to vaccines, and then citing absence of data as evidence of safety. National Health Service advice is to ignore reactions to MMR vaccine, and to come back for repeat doses (against the fundamental medical ethics and even manufacturers’ instructions).

From an NHS website:

Q:My son had a sever [sic] reaction to the first MMR jab. Does this mean that he is well protected from these diseases, or is a second dose still necessary?

A: If a child has responded to all the components of the vaccine the first time, he will not have a problem being exposed to the viruses again. It’s like any one of us who is already immune meeting someone with the disease – the infection can’t get established.  If he hasn’t made protection to all three diseases after the first time, then he would still be susceptible to those natural infections, and still needs the 2nd dose.  Reactions after the 2nd dose are essentially the same as after the 1st dose, but if they do occur they are even rarer. There are no new side effects after the 2nd dose that do not occur after the 1st dose. The advice is therefore that it is safe for your child to have the 2nd dose in order that he is properly protected.

The casual dismissal of even “severe reactions” shows that Primarolo’s claim that cases of ADEM (Acute Disseminated Encephalomyelitis) which led to Bailey Banks’ pervasive development delay are “extremely rare” has no foundation. The most that the UK Department of Health could truthfully state about the incidence of ADEM is that they do not know how often it occurs, and that the failure to collect data is a matter of policy. Meanwhile, scientists and officials continue to ignore over-whelming statistical evidence from Japan of the correlation between the vaccine programme and incidence of autism, collated and presented by ChildHealthSafety and Age of Autism:

The failure of candour over these issues by government politicians and officials continues to obstruct public scrutiny of what is going on over MMR, other vaccines and autism. UK citizens should contact their members of parliament to complain about continuing government dissimulation over these matters.


If you are concerned write to your political representative. Don’t complain when politicians  do nothing if you do not write and keep on writing. It is their job to represent you. All our kids deserve proper science to protect their safety.

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Minister Misled Parliament Over MMR Autism Link



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Lies, Damn Lies and Blog Posts


10 Responses

  1. With respect to Dawn Primarolo, she will have no “opinion” on these matters but will be reflecting the line, policies or reasons of the British Government.

    Also with respect to the current Prime Minister, he lost his first child in rather mysterious circumstances where of course the health service was praised for doing all they could to save the child.

    Regrettably the millions of SIDS and neurological harm may well yet turn out to be health care related. Often again the health service does all it can by rushing medics to take the child away before the vaccine links are discovered. Should we praise the health service for killing and maiming our next generation?

    It is sad when health professionals hide behind illness and death of “no known cause” and keep being praised for doing everything humanly possible to save lives. Sadly they would often do better by doing nothing.

    No vaccines until the dozen or so that died in the trials were explained as being unvaccine related by proof rather than hope.

    Charitably there are only 11 out of 12 signs that such deaths are vaccine related in such small trials.

    100 years to discover anaphylaxis.

    And today another 100 years later we defy anaphylaxis by statements above: If the first vaccine didn’t work the second one will…

    According to Charles Richet Nobel Prize Winner this can be completed as:

    … kill the child or make the child permanently neurological harmed.

  2. Hi All.

    You guys do a great job, thank you..

  3. Hi, John. I read your post and I have some disagreements with what you wrote.

    Bailey Banks was given financial compensation for having a PDD (Pervasive Developmental Delay) but NOT for having PDD-NOS, which is part of the autism spectrum. The words that the Special Master wrote are quite clear on that matter.

    To claim that he was given compensation for PDD-NOS is a lie.

    The words of the Special Master (using the terms the family filed under) are:

    “On 26 June 2002, the Petitioner filed a petition for compensation under the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 (Vaccine Act or Act)2 alleging that, as a result of the MMR vaccination received on 14 March 2000, his child, Bailey, suffered a seizure and Acute Disseminated Encephalomyelitis (”ADEM”),3 which led to Pervasive Developmental Delay (”PDD”), a condition from which he continues to suffer (the “Petition”).”

    In fact, the Master was very clear:

    “Pervasive Developmental Disorder, Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS) is a ’subthreshold’ condition in which some – but not all – features of autism or another explicitly identified Pervasive Developmental Disorder are identified. PDD-NOS is often incorrectly referred to as simply “PDD.” The term PDD refers to the class of conditions to which autism belongs. PDD is NOT itself a diagnosis, while PDD-NOS IS a diagnosis. The term Pervasive Developmental Disorder – Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS; also referred to as “atypical personality development,” “atypical PDD,” or “atypical autism”) is included in DSM-IV to encompass cases where there is marked impairment of social interaction, communication, and/or stereotyped behavior patterns or interest, but when full features for autism or another explicitly defined PDD are not met.”

    As one can tell from reading the ruling, the Master agrees that Bailey was probably injured by his MMR injection. However, the Master does NOT agree that it led to an autism disorder.

    Please correct your post as I am sure you will want to be accurate in your information.

    [ED: Thanks for accusing this site of lying. You should read the documents you quote more carefully before making unpleasant and untrue allegations, understand the terms you use before you use them and understand how the US Federal Vaccine Court operates:-

    1) this article nowhere states Bailey Banks was “was given compensation for PDD-NOS”.

    2) But if you read the decision of the Court, you will see he was awarded compensation for his autistic condition caused by the administration of the MMR vaccine.

    The Special Master stated “The Court found that Bailey would not have suffered this delay but for the administration of the MMR vaccine, and that this chain of causation was not too remote, but was rather a proximate sequence of cause and effect leading inexorably from vaccination to Pervasive Developmental Delay. ….. Petitioner’s theory of PDD caused by vaccine-related ADEM causally connects the vaccination and the ultimate injury, and does so by explaining a logical sequence of cause and effect showing that the vaccination was the ultimate reason for the injury …… Therefore, in light of the foregoing, the Court rules in favor of entitlement in this matter.”

    Who is the liar now? Certainly not this site but the British government does not look too good for claiming Bailey Banks did not have an autistic condition and then had to backtrack when challenged.]

  4. The most significant fact is that the US court clearly did not accept Banks’ “PDD” as a form of autism. If you wish to argue that it is, you are welcome to do so. But pouncing on disagreement or misunderstandings as “lies” does not contribute anything to constructive discussion.

    [ED: You seem to be confused over your terminology. You also seem not to have read the comments carefully enough. Please allow us to help you below.

    It was another poster [Dawn, on December 7th, 2009 at 2:53 am ] who “pounced” and stated “To claim that he [Bailey Banks] was given compensation for PDD-NOS is a lie.” And we dealt with that effectively and conclusively above.

    Allow us to assist further please.

    A British government Health Minister in an official answer in the English Parliament claimed a child the US Court confirmed had an autistic condition caused by a vaccine had a “non autistic” condition. That is not and never was true.

    The US Court confirmed Bailey Banks’ autistic condition was caused by the MMR vaccine.

    In the US the official diagnostic definition of what are called internationally “Autism Spectrum Disorders” or ASDs is instead called “Pervasive Development Disorders” or PDD for short. That is under the “Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (4th edn)” or “DSM IV” for short.

    “Autistic Spectrum Disorder” is the term applied internationally under the “ICD” or “International Classification of Disease”.

    Many refer to ASD and PDD as “autism”. The term “autism” refers to a subset of the spectrum and is often referred to also as “childhood autism”, “typical autism” and “Kanner autism”. [The common behaviours like hand flapping, loss of eye contact and suchlike in young children can often be unmistakable, whereas other spectrum disorders like mild Aspergers Syndrome can be more difficult to diagnose.]

    Autistic conditions include Aspergers Syndrome. That is not a “form of autism” if by “autism” you use that term to mean the band of autistic conditions referred to as “childhood” or “typical” or “classic” or “Kanner” autism”.

    We trust the above assists you to see where your errors lie.

    We also trust you can agree that if a child is diagnosed as being on the Autistic Spectrum with an autistic condition caused by the MMR vaccine it is not a great deal of consolation to claim the child does not have “autism” when the child has an autistic condition as medically defined.]

  5. I wouldn’t say the court “confirmed” anything. The Master rendered an opinion on whether a condition, accepted to exist, was a form of autism. As far as I know, the Master has no professional qualifications related to autism.

    I don’t know all the ins and outs of PDD/PDD-NOS, but I have never previously seen PDD and autism treated as synonymous. In some cases (including my own diagnostic history), the term “pervasive developmental disorder” has been superseded by autism. I personally don’t care to rely too much on fine taxonomic distinctions. That road strikes my as like a joke I came up with as a paleontology student: “We don’t know what it is, but we can name it!”

    [ED: With respect – it is what the Court said which is relevant. It was not an “opinion”. It was a finding of fact after due enquiry based on expert evidence. No Court decision is unchallengable but in this case the defendant – the US government – chose not to contest it.

    Does it reassure parents their child has autistic symptoms caused by a vaccine and called “Pervasive Developmental Disorder – Not Otherwise Specified”?

    “Dear Mr and Mrs Joe Plumber, your child is a bit autistic caused by the vaccine s/he was given.”

    And is that any reassurance to other parents whose children have Asperger Syndrome or childhood autism which occurred when their child received a vaccine that it was not also caused by the vaccine?

    Of course not. And more especially so when their normally developing child just like so many others with near identical stories regressed right after getting the vaccine, losing speech and skills and engaging in distressing behaviours and developing serious bowel disorders and all the rest?

    There are many alive today who know this was not happening on anything like this scale thirty years and more ago in the pre-multiple vaccine era.

    Occam’s razor is a way of choosing between two alternative potential explanations in science. Here there is only one explanation – the other explanation is “no one knows what is causing this”.]

  6. and in Australia we can’t even turn to the greens… Eugenics is alive and well down under!

  7. Jarrah,

    The civil liberties situation has not deteriorated to this degree in the UK so far, but my dealings with our environmental lobby have been very unsatisfactory. Mercury is still jolly good stuff when injected into babies apparently.

    John S

  8. […] Minister Misled Parliament Over MMR Autism Link Also, the HRSA told Sharryl Attkisson of CBS: […]

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