YOUR HEALTH » VACCINATIONS
The vaccination debate: Chiropractors
Ted Koren is an American on a mission
to warn people of what he calls the dangers from childhood
vaccinations. He's not a disease specialist or a doctor.
He's a chiropractor.
Koren believes chiropractors should be telling
their patients to stop vaccinating their children.
He took that message to a conference in Quebec
City recently. Koren is so busy on the lecture circuit, he
barely has time to treat people anymore.
"We have a whole generation of neurologically
damaged kids as a result of vaccination; autism, ADD, ADHD,
hyperactivity, all these kids on Ritalin, asthma, allergies
barely known before vaccination," Koren
"It’s an explosion of these diseases
since vaccination. And the more you vaccinate, the more you
get these kids with these problems."
Koren is not alone in proselytizing against
vaccinations. In Kingston, Ontario, we met another chiropractor
who has been active in the anti-vaccination movement. Martha
Collins makes no bones about her stance being controversial.
"I know this sounds wacko. It sounds wacko
from the perspective that for fifty years we’ve vaccinated
our children. For fifty years we’ve relied on this
as our main line of defence. And that’s why we want
to ensure that people make an informed decision about it."
Among Collins' patients are hundreds of children
and some babies - like 18-month-old Ethan McKeown, in for
an adjustment while his mother, Dyan, got a refresher on
the vaccination debate.
"He was four days old when he had his
first adjustment. Dr Martha actually came to our home and
adjusted him here. And I can see the immune boost in him," Dyan
Dyan decided to listen to her chiropractor
and not her family doctor on the topic of vaccination.
The Canadian Medical Establishment says the
risk of serious side effects from vaccinations is tiny compared
to the threat diseases like measles, mumps, and rubella can
Major medical associations are big supporters
of vaccinations. Health Canada calls the anti-vaccination
movement misleading. The Canadian Chiropractic Association
also supports childhood vaccination. It says the issue is
outside the scope of a chiropractor's training.
Jason Busse agrees with the association. He's
a medical researcher who has published studies on chiropractors
and the anti-vaccination movement. He's annoyed by claims
such as increasing rates of autism are linked to childhood
"The reality is there have been very large
comprehensive studies looking at hundreds of thousands of
children that have had vaccines, looking to see if there’s
any higher rates of autism in those groups than in children
that have never had the vaccine and there simply isn’t.
So there’s no evidence to support the view. I don’t
know why certain chiropractors feel compelled to provide
information on this treatment."
Busse is concerned about much of material the
anti-vaccination movement relies on for information, including
videos where parents - but rarely doctors
- talk about serious conditions they believe were caused
"It gives a very, very small part of the
overall picture," Busse said. "It’s like
describing the entire airline industry based on one airplane
Martha Collins told Marketplace there
are more reasons than health care behind movements to vaccinate:
"I think there’s a huge economic
issue here, I really do. And I am not speaking as a chiropractor,
but I am speaking as Martha Collins, that the relationship
between the health care system and the pharmaceutical companies
is so great."
Ted Koren agrees.
"It’s in their interest, to tell
people to vaccinate. The medical edifice is built on vaccination
and medical procedures."
Medical researcher Jason Busse doesn't buy
"To suggest there is a conspiracy involving
every physician, all medical associations, all nursing associations,
every company that’s involved in every stage of vaccine
development or manufacturing is I believe a gigantic leap
of faith. And one that simply is not supported by any information
that has been objectively acquired out there."
movement: A growing concern »