Final Word from Thursday, September 17, 2015

The 2014 documentary "Trace Amounts" is basically a horror film about how U.S. pharmaceutical companies and the Centers for Disease Control denied growing evidence that mercury poisoning from thimerosal in infant vaccinations was causing a sharp rise in cases of autism. Use of the preservative was phased out of most U.S. and European vaccines starting in 1999, but it is still being used in some flu shots administered to pregnant mothers. If you believe "a little mercury is okay," it might not bother you either that the Czech state has essentially indemnified pharma companies for any side effects from vaccines. The doctors who administer them, and not the manufacturer that made them or the state that mandated them, are held liable. As the mass movement of people threatens to bring new diseases and strains to Europe, as hinted at by Health Min. Svatopluk Němeček, this could at some point become a matter of life and death. [Czech Republic FDA United States Minister influenza inoculations inoculate medical]

Glossary of difficult words

liable - responsible by law; legally answerable;

trace amount - a constituent, such as a chemical compound or element, present in quantities less than a standard limit;

thimerosal - a mercury-containing preservative used in some vaccines and other products since the 1930s;

to indemnify - to secure (someone) against legal responsibility for an action;

strain - a variety of something, especially of microorganisms.

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