Polly Tommey

Web: Autism file

[vid 2011 May] Epidemic of Autistics Going to Jail - Lisa Blakemore Brown Polly Tommey interviews Lisa Blakemore Brown who describes how Autistics are going to prison in epidemic proportions.

[2010 Jan] Polly Tommey of Autism File Magazine on "Discredited Defamation of Dr. Andrew Wakefield"

Quotes
[2010 Jan] Polly Tommey of Autism File Magazine on "Discredited Defamation of Dr. Andrew Wakefield"  
At around the time of World Autism Awareness Day this year, I appeared with a colleague on the Wright Stuff television chat show on Channel 5. Before going on air, the host Matthew Wright joined us in the "green room" and said that he had been told by the show’s lawyers that if Dr. Wakefield’s name was mentioned, he had to say that Wakefield was "discredited." We questioned why, but Matthew said that he had no choice these were his lawyers’ instructions . . . .When I was on GMTV they said pretty much the same thing, and we have all read the same in many newspapers.

[2010 Jan] Polly Tommey of Autism File Magazine on "Discredited Defamation of Dr. Andrew Wakefield"   Specifically, I have been "warned" not to print any more articles written by Dr. Andrew Wakefield (he wrote for the first time in the last issue); I was also warned not to invite him to speak at our conference. Separately, some organizations have warned me that they will not have anything to do with me if I continue to support and publish papers by him. Some advertisers tell me they have to stop working with us as they are "under pressure" to pull out, and a number of celebrities, high earning individuals, journalists, scientists, practitioners, and people who want to contribute to the magazine or to our campaigns say that it’s more than their job’s worth to be associated with the work of this man more than their job’s worth to even listen to what he has to say. All of them say that they can’t support The Autism File if The Autism File appears to support Dr. Wakefield.

....In the days leading up to Deer’s initial "revelations" about Andrew Wakefield and others in The Sunday Times in February 2004, a meeting took place between Deer and Horton in which Deer made a number of claims. These all centered on a paper written by Dr. Wakefield and colleagues, which was published in The Lancet in 1998. In the now notorious paper, Wakefield et al. had reported on a possibly novel form of bowel disease, with autistic-like developmental regression, in 12 children referred to the gastrointestinal department of London’s Royal Free Hospital. Eight of the children, according to their parents or general practitioner, had the onset of developmental regression soon after their MMR vaccine. 
    Despite what is usually inaccurately reported in summary, the paper actually concluded that: "We did not prove an association between measles, mumps and rubella vaccine and the syndrome described … further investigations are needed to examine this syndrome and its possible relation to the vaccine."
    In the February 2004 meeting, the major issues of relevance to Dr. Horton were three specific claims made by Deer. First, he claimed that The Lancet study was funded by Legal Aid money. Second, he claimed that the children reported in The Lancet were sourced by lawyers. Third, and perhaps most crucially, Deer claimed that Dr. Wakefield had hidden his involvement with Dawbarns, the firm of lawyers involved in the MMR litigation, from The Lancet and Dr. Horton. 
    On hearing these claims from Deer, Horton was apparently horrified, and within hours of the meeting he stated publically that the 1998 paper was "fatally flawed." He further claimed that had The Lancet been aware of Wakefield’s involvement with Dawbarns at that time the paper would never have been published. This statement about the "fatally flawed" paper was, therefore, the seed of the "discredited" myth that prevails and is clearly influencing many more people today.
    Let’s fast forward to the GMC hearing, which has been investigating these claims for nearly three years. What do we find? First, it has been demonstrated beyond doubt that The Lancet study was not funded by Legal Aid. Not one penny of Legal Aid money was used for the study. Second, it has been shown that the children in the study were not sourced by lawyers. None of the children reported in The Lancet study were involved in any legal action at the time of their referral to the Royal Free Hospital. Third, we now know that The Lancet had been told, in communications between Dawbarns and Horton, about Dr. Wakefield’s involvement with them in April 1997. So, they knew. A whole year before the paper was published, they knew.  [2010 Jan] Polly Tommey of Autism File Magazine on "Discredited Defamation of Dr. Andrew Wakefield"

At around the time of World Autism Awareness Day this year, I appeared with a colleague on the Wright Stuff television chat show on Channel 5. Before going on air, the host Matthew Wright joined us in the "green room" and said that he had been told by the show’s lawyers that if Dr. Wakefield’s name was mentioned, he had to say that Wakefield was "discredited." We questioned why, but Matthew said that he had no choice these were his lawyers’ instructions . . . .When I was on GMTV they said pretty much the same thing, and we have all read the same in many newspapers.  [2010 Jan] Polly Tommey of Autism File Magazine on "Discredited Defamation of Dr. Andrew Wakefield"