WND earlier reported how the company's campaign to promote
its $400-per person vaccine was sweeping the nation.
It was being facilitated by donations from Merck to Women
in Government, whose members are women state lawmakers
across the country, who in turn often were introducing
legislation that would require young girls to be given the
brand new vaccine in order to be enrolled in school.
Judicial Watch said documents it obtained from the U.S.
Food and Drug Administration under the provisions of the
Freedom of Information provided information on
1,637 reports of adverse reactions.
The reports of the deaths cited myocarditis, coronary
artery thrombosis and pulmonary embolism as causes for the
Besides the only hours-long lapse between vaccination and
death, two other reports, on girls 12 and 19, reported
deaths relating to heart problems and/or blood clotting, the
Judicial Watch analysis said.
Jill Farrell, a spokeswoman with Judicial Watch, said its
own tabulation uncovered 371 serious reactions among the
1,637 total reported. She said JW found more cases of
serious situations than did the official government report,
because of the way reactions were classified.
"Stopped breathing later revived.
pain, sought physical therapy, later could not tolerate
therapy due to pain.
Hives, sent home, found unresponsive
by mother, who called 911, revived at ER
" Farrell noted.
"You decide. If these were your children, would you consider
Of the 42 women who got the vaccine while pregnant, 18
experienced side effects ranging from spontaneous abortion
to fetal abnormities, the report said.
"Side effects published by Merck & Co. warn the public
about potential pain, fever, nausea, dizziness and itching
after receiving the vaccine. Indeed, 77 percent of the
adverse reactions reported are typical side effects to
vaccinations. But other more serious side effects reported
include paralysis, Bells Palsy, Guillain-Barre syndrome (a
disorder in which the body's immune system attacks part of
the peripheral nervous system), and seizures," Judicial
Merck declined an opportunity to respond to WND requests
for comment on the report.
WND also reported earlier a researcher who worked on a
vaccine for HPV is warning it hasn't been tested on young
girls, is "silly" for states to mandate, and in a worst-case
scenario even could increase cervical cancer rates.
Researcher Diane M. Harper said giving such a vaccine to
11-year-olds "is a great big public health experiment."
The target of the vaccine is cervical cancer, since
studies show that those who have HPV have a higher chance of
later developing cervical cancer. However, opponents note
that such cancers develop most often in older women, while
the plan is to require girls as young as 11 or 12 years old
to be inoculated. They cite the lack of evidence that the
vaccine would have an impact later in life.
They also question the imposition of a vaccine against a
condition that is spread only by sexual contact.
Merck's vaccine was approved last year by the Food and
Drug Administration, but a doctor at the Centers for Disease
Control's advisory committee on immunizations has reported
that while the vaccine may be helpful, it should not be
Merck has lobbied for its product by contributing
Women in Government, an organization for women state
lawmakers, and at least partly because of that effort,
almost three dozen state legislatures have been given
proposals regarding Gardasil.
Harper noted that the vaccine is not a cancer vaccine or
cure it just is thought to prevent development of a virus
that could lead to cancer.
She earlier had warned that Guillian-Barre syndrome had
been reported among those who got the vaccine.
The National Conference of State Legislatures set up a
special website just to track and update the various
That site confirms that about three dozen states have had
such plans introduced. But it shows slow progress in many
Officials with the
Abstinence Clearinghouse noted in a position paper that
groups including the Texas Medical Association, the American
Academy of Pediatrics, the Association of American
Physicians and Surgeons, and the American Academy of
Environmental Medicine have come out publicly against
"The reasoning of these medical associations is clear.
They are not opposed to medical progress, and certainly
support all efforts to combat life-threatening diseases. The
problem, as these organizations see it, lies in the fact
that the drug only went through three and a half years of
testing, leaving the medical community somewhat in the dark
as to what serious adverse effects might result in the long
term," the group said.
"Along with the potential of serious adverse effects is
the question of efficacy. There is evidence that after
approximately four years, the vaccine's potency
significantly declines. The long-term value of the vaccine
has yet to be determined; if it wears off within six years,
will girls and women need to repeat the battery of
injections they originally received?" the organization
"It is negligent to require any person, especially a
child, to receive a treatment which might in the future
prove to be dangerous," the group said. "It is pertinent to
note that by mandating a vaccine, the state assumes all
liability. If it causes harm to patients, to whatever
extent, Merck is immune to legal retribution. No state ought
to be so ethically or fiscally irresponsible as to mandate
Leslee Unruh, chief of the Abstinence Clearinghouse, told
WND her organization's research shows that such vaccines
actually can increase cervical cancer rates, because women
believe they are "protected" by the vaccine, and fail to
follow up with their physicians for routine exams.
She also said Merck's campaign has extended far beyond
state lawmakers, reaching into school districts and other
organizations that are pressured to advocate for the
"They come in and shame these poor teachers and schools
into sending out letters that make it sound like the best
thing since sliced bread," she said.
The NCSL said federal studies show HPV infects about 20
million people in the U.S. and 10,000 women are diagnosed
with cervical cancer annually.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry in February issued an executive
order requiring those vaccinations, but the state
legislature rescinded it, citing those concerns. Perry's
reaction was to describe the lawmakers' policy as "social
"Banning widespread access to a vaccine that can prevent
cancer is short-sighted policy," he said.
Michigan was the first state to introduce a plan to
require the vaccine to be given to young girls, but the
proposal failed. Ohio also considered a failed plan in 2006.
Then in 2007, after Merck's aggressive lobbying campaign
and contributions to WIG, lawmakers in at least 39 states
and the District of Columbia worked on sponsoring such
The Merck campaign's results so far include New Hampshire
and South Dakota, which have announced they will provide the
vaccine on a voluntary basis, and Virginia's requirement for
the vaccine, although that was heavily marked up with
The NCSL also confirms that Colorado also set up a fund
to provide the vaccine, Indiana set up a plan to require the
vaccinations and New Mexico is requiring that insurance
plans cover the costs. A plan there to require the
inoculations was vetoed.
In Maryland a plan to require the vaccine was withdrawn,
and a similar proposal was killed Mississippi. Utah has
approved an awareness campaign.
In California, the requirement is being set up for girls
as young as 11. Lawmakers, instead of setting the
requirement in the law, decided that an administrator shall
adopt federal recommendations to impose the HPV vaccine.