Category: Public Health

Texans for Vaccine Choice

Texas: Ground zero for the politicization of school vaccine mandates

Vaccine policies and school vaccine mandates have traditionally been as close to a nonpartisan issue as there can be in the US. Unfortunately, in Texas antivaccine activists and conservative activists threaten to change that. The antivaccine group Texans for Vaccine Choice has formed an unholy alliance with antiregulation conservative activists to attack school vaccine mandates. Antivaxers all over the country are doing...

/ March 5, 2018

Are we all contaminated with chemical toxins?

Are we all being gradually poisoned by environmental toxins? And what is the evidence for detoxification kits and cleanses?

/ February 22, 2018

Gun Violence as a Public Health Issue

Gun violence is a serious public health issue in America but is not getting the research that it deserves. This needs to change.

/ February 21, 2018

Move

For most people, common health goals are best approached with as simple a strategy as possible. This avoids cognitive overload and non-compliance. Get the basics right, as there are diminishing returns from increasingly arcane details.

/ February 14, 2018

Anti-vaccine sentiment associated with belief in conspiracy theories

A recent survey examined the relationship between opposition to vaccines, belief in conspiracy theories, and other factors. The results suggest that we may need to modify how we address concerns about the safety and effectiveness of vaccines.

/ February 8, 2018
Gardasil

Death by Gardasil? Not so fast there…

There is a type of "vaccine injury" story promoted by the antivaccine movement that is particularly pernicious, a narrative I call "death by Gardasil." The stories, which use tenuous connections between vaccination against HPV to prevent cervical cancer and the unexpected death of a teen or young adult, are always tragic, and you can't help but feel incredible empathy for the parents....

/ February 5, 2018

The effort of integrative medicine advocates to co-opt the opioid crisis to claim non pharmacological treatments for pain as solely theirs continues apace

Last week, I wrote about how advocates for quackery were trying, and succeeding, at persuading state Medicaid agencies to pay for acupuncture for pain. This week, I discuss how they are promoting the integration of quackery with medicine. In this case, they are promoting a white paper and trying to influence the AHRQ.

/ January 29, 2018

Georgian College’s Homeopathy Program: Magical Thinking Presented as Fact

Georgian College in Ontario, Canada is now offering a 3-year advanced diploma in the pseudoscience of homeopathy.

/ January 25, 2018
Acupuncture

“Integrative medicine” advocates: Co-opting the opioid crisis to promote funding for acupuncture by Medicaid

The opioid epidemic is a serious public health crisis in the U.S., and new tools and treatments to deal with chronic pain are urgently needed. Unfortunately, where public health officials see a crisis, advocates of "integrating" quackery with science-based medicine see an opportunity. In this case, promoters of pseudomedicine are taking advantage of the opioid crisis to persuade state Medicaid systems to...

/ January 22, 2018

Medical Marijuana: Where is the evidence?

Marijuana is widely touted as an effective medicine for an array of conditions. But what does the evidence actually tell us?

/ January 11, 2018