THE SUNDAY POST/ October 26, 2008 9 Angry grandad drags top docs before GMC Bill slams Government experts over MMR jabs By Janet Boyle SCOTS grandad has Bill Welsh suggested, “It’s the A reported 11 of the country’s leading doctors components of the individual vaccines, not just the triple formula. “We believe there is a sub-group of children susceptible to developing to the General Medical autism from the vaccines. We’re not Council because he saying all will.” claims they failed Andrew Wakefield’s report hit front pages and caused panic among children over the MMR parents. Many of those with autistic vaccine. children felt he was the first doctor to take their problems seriously. Bill Welsh, whose grandson Luke Payton (13) is autistic, is Flawed claiming England’s Chief Many boycotted the MMR vaccine ■ Bill and grandson Luke, who at the age of 13 still can’t speak. Medical Officer Liam and a rise in infectious childhood Donaldson, his predecessor, diseases followed. However, Dr Scots Professor Kenneth Wakefield’s fellow authors published a Calman, and others were partial retraction of the article in 2004 and The Lancet described the research negligent in the procedures as “fatally flawed”. introducing and running the Dr Wakefield was reported to the programme. GMC, accused of suppressing data and Sir Liam is principal adviser to acting “dishonestly and irresponsibly” the UK Government on health in failing to disclose how patients were matters. recruited for the study. His case is ongoing and resumes on November 3. Damaged Life for the Welsh family also continues, as they work to provide care Bill also claimed they failed to for Luke. address the medical needs of children “We first noticed a difference in him he believes were damaged by the triple shortly after he was vaccinated as an vaccine. infant,” Bill said. “He became “Not all the safety checks were made withdrawn and the little cheerful boy in running this vaccine,” he said, “and we once knew disappeared. when children developed autism and “It was as though he had totally the bowel problems that accompany it switched off to us and was they were neglected and denied proper concentrating on his own world. treatment. “Bowel problems followed and he “Many were just dismissed as having seemed to be miserable at times. a syndrome and that’s unforgivable Today, at 13, he is still unable to speak apathy.” and attends a school for children with Mr Welsh, from Glasgow, heads the special educational needs. Autism Treatment Trust charity, which offers help to families with autistic “He loves music and we get out to do children. a bit of cycling and try to help achieve his potential, but we firmly believe we “More than 300 Scots parents have lost much of Luke the day he was come forward for help and we employ vaccinated. Sadly, like many families of a doctor and scientist to treat the autistic children, we fear for his future. medical effects of autism. “We’re all shocked and angered that “Some of these parents have had to so little effort has gone into fight for decent medical care for their researching why there has been this children. Some tell us the bowel huge increase in autism. problems are dismissed as autism so they flounder about, desperate for treatment. Risk “We hold our medical leaders to “So many parents report huge account for this.” changes in their infants after Bill believes a rise in autism in vaccination. Should we not be children from one in 2500 in the 1980s identifying children at risk from autism to one in 88 today may be directly from vaccination?” linked to the vaccination. A spokesman for the GMC said, “Autism may be better diagnosed but “We cannot comment on either that alone can’t account for the huge Mr Welsh’s complaint or the ongoing increase,” he said. case of Dr Wakefield.” “Isn’t it time the Government carried The Scottish Government issued a out some research into why so many statement saying, “The combined MMR children now suffer from autism? Both vaccine has been used for nearly candidates in the US election have 30 years, with more than 500 million promised to do this.” doses given in over 100 countries. The controversy was sparked by a “Current evidence shows no proven 1998 report by Dr Andrew Wakefield scientific link between autism and the and some of his colleagues in medical combined MMR vaccine.” journal The Lancet in which he linked Dr Wakefield has relaunched his 12 children suffering from the career in America where he’s opened a developmental disorder to MMR new clinic in Texas funded by the injections. parents of autistic children. Some Scots children who were Supporters include actor Jim Carrey inoculated with separate vaccines and girl country band The Dixie also went on to develop autism but Chicks.