A University of Kentucky psychiatrist is encouraging parents to get their children vaccinated for measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) now that scientists have found no connection between the vaccine and autism. “I really want the word out there that vaccines do not cause autism,” Dr. Paul Glaser, right, told the Lexington Herald-Leader‘s Mary Meehan.
Glaser’s message comes after the British Medical Journal published a report debunking Dr. Andrew Wakefield’s 12-year-old assertion of a link between vaccinations and autism. Investigators found that Wakefield “misrepresented or altered the medical histories of all 12 of the patients whose cases formed the basis of the 1998 study,” Meehan reports. Wakefield’s assertions led to a substantial decrease in the number of children who got the MMR shot. In the United Kingdom, vaccination rates decreased to below 80 percent from 92 percent.
The first dose of the MMR vaccine is generally given to children when they are toddlers. The second dose is administered before children start kindergarten. (Read more)