In Ohio, forces clash as court weighs vaccine-vax resistance

The case has proven to be a clarion call for vaccine skepticism The case has proven to be a clarion call for vaccine skepticism The U.S. Freedom from Religion Foundation took a case opposing…

In Ohio, forces clash as court weighs vaccine-vax resistance

The case has proven to be a clarion call for vaccine skepticism

The case has proven to be a clarion call for vaccine skepticism

The U.S. Freedom from Religion Foundation took a case opposing Cincinnati’s mandatory vaccination requirements to the Cincinnati federal appeals court on Tuesday. The court schedule suggests the case will be heard in September.

Filed in May 2017, the lawsuit marks a crossroads in the ongoing fight against anti-vaccination sentiment in the country. Among those questioned at trial was Laura Wichman, the director of the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. According to U.S. Fifth district judge Michael Barrett’s decision in May, Wichman did not remember whether Cincinnati allowed healthcare professionals to opt out of vaccines.

The case is also creating ripples for Ohio politics. Last month in state Senate race in Cincinnati, Republican Representative Warren Davidson made the personal plea that the current vaccine-skepticism-fueled majority isn’t going to win the day any time soon.

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“When I was a little boy and I asked my mom for a vaccine, I was told it would kill my mother,” he said. “This school board believes they have the right to kill my child just because her philosophy is anti-vaccine. That’s not right. It’s as simple as that. The way I look at it is, we are not going to defeat this movement in political measures, we are going to defeat it in the courts.”

Davidson’s stance, still unconventional in some circles for public office, is neither a new nor a completely isolated idea.

Joining the lawsuit were three individuals who were personally harmed by city leaders’ vaccine refusal. Just days after the school district’s 2014 announcement, one of the people litigated, Gino, was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. He said the need for Crohn’s – which affects the intestines and is usually present for more than a decade – could have been reduced through a vaccine.

Among the plaintiffs is Sam White, who was nine when he contracted meningitis, which affected his spinal cord and left him paralyzed. His mother, Doris White, sees the lawsuit as a way to prevent a similar future for her son.

“I was a little girl when I was diagnosed with meningitis,” said White, who attended a meeting with the court’s argument as part of their oral argument. “I was just celebrating. I couldn’t play with other kids, and I had a challenge that I just couldn’t overcome.

“I don’t want my son to have to have that – just having to deal with … what he’s dealt with. I can do this, I know I can do this.”

Elsewhere, the differences in when to add a test to the Hepatitis A vaccine and how to test for Autentic Quadriplegic Syndrome (AQS) combined to create a new definition of autism. Long considered an autoimmune disorder, the two current autism diagnoses involve frontotemporal degeneration (FTD) and autism spectrum disorder (ASD). New treatments aim to add MND to the list. A study has also linked to the virus as a cause of autism.

On Tuesday, the GDA Institute added MND to the list.

“The family of a six-year-old girl who has gone in and out of hospital departments over the past six years, and who is now just ‘going through the motions’ … deserves a full and comprehensive evaluation of her genetic and environmental history, including the possibility of an ASD diagnosis,” said Dr. Chyi Jiang, co-director of the GDA institute.

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