JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. — Danielle Goodrich said her children received most of their vaccinations before she stopped trusting them, their manufacturers and the government bodies that regulate them.
Goodrich, a resident of Johnson City, said she followed the vaccination schedule recommended by her doctor, but her children and a friend’s child had experiences that shaped her current beliefs.
First, a friend’s son started showing symptoms of autism shortly after receiving shots, she said.
And, after her own son had his first asthma attack at 22 months old, she continued to vaccinate because she said she still believed they were safe and effective. She now believes the asthma may have been triggered by vaccines.
But when her daughter turned 1 shortly after she received her shots, Goodrich said she noticed a change.
“She started throwing up in her crib at night, and she turned from a happy baby to a fussy baby with a distended stomach,” Goodrich said.
Her daughter also started having migraines and experiencing motor ticks. She said she took her to multiple doctors but only got answers when she saw a specialist in Nashville, who told her that her daughter’s issues were to due to vaccines. Goodrich then decided to stop vaccinating her children. After she started practicing holistic medicine, she said her children started to feel better, and she is now studying to be a doctor of holistic medicine.
She said she isn’t necessarily anti-vaccine, but after spending thousands of hours researching studies, statistics, articles and statements by doctors, she no longer trusts how vaccines are currently researched, manufactured, regulated and administered in the U.S.
The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 requires petitioners who claim they or a family member experienced a vaccine injury to file a case for compensation solely against the Department of Health and Human Services, insulating vaccine manufacturers from liability to ensure a stable childhood vaccine supply and to keep prices affordable. She said this means vaccines and their manufacturers aren’t accountable to the people who receive them.
Goodrich added that because of the amount of lobbying pharmaceutical companies direct at the federal government and donations made to the CDC Foundation, she believes that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration have serious conflicts of interest.
Goodrich also said she is also troubled by the use of fetal embryo cells, acquired from abortions in the 1960s, to grow viruses for certain vaccines. As a Christian, she opposes benefiting from scientific research that involved abortion.
She wants vaccines to be more closely regulated and subjected to more rigorous scientific testing. Individuals should also have the right to refuse vaccinations, she said. She also wants alternate choices for vaccine schedules, improved vaccine-related injury reporting protocols and pharmaceutical companies directly accountable instead of the current no-fault system.
She added she is fearful that parents in Tennessee could lose the ability to decline having their children vaccinated unless they give up the right to public education. In 2016, she said California outlawed personal-belief exemptions, and New York stopped allowing religious exemptions earlier this year, and she doesn’t want that to happen here.
Vaccine skeptics and opponents are often misrepresented, she said, but in reality they are people who have either had a bad experience with vaccines or know someone who has.
“We’ve all seen somebody harmed,” Goodrich said. “This is what causes us to look into this issue deeper.”
firstname.lastname@example.org | 276-645-2412 | Twitter: @Leif_Greiss
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