Though I’m still in just the beginning learning stages about the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, regarding the impact their foundation is having on global health policy, I am going to provide a few webpages / medical lectures / articles / research for you to view on the subject. Keep the various perspectives presented through these sources in mind as you continue learning also. If you are well educated on the impact the Gates Foundation is having, please point me to links that explain the subject in more detail.
As of May 16, 2013, Bill and Melinda have donated $28 billion to their foundation. In 2006 Warren Buffett donated 31 billion to their foundation. The Gates Foundation is the largest private foundation in the world. A significant focus of the Gates Foundation is to provide vaccines throughout the world to eradicate illnesses, including polio. We are currently in the midst of their “Decade of Vaccines” 2010-2020. They’ve pledged 10 billion dollars towards vaccines this decade, a billion dollars dedicated to each year. This money is intended to help research, develop and deliver vaccines for the world’s poorest countries.
International Health Policy:
How Health Policy in Impoverished Nations is Shaped
by the Gates Foundation and Private Industry
Some important quotes made in an article I read recently (link Here):
“The first question concerns accountability. While only around five per cent of the [Gates] Foundation’s annual global health funding goes directly to lobbying and advocacy, this money (over $100 million) talks loudly. Gates funds institutions ranging from US university departments to major international development NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations]. The Foundation is the main player in several global health partnerships and one of the single largest donors to the WHO. This gives it considerable leverage in shaping health policy priorities and intellectual norms…
As Tido von Schoen Angerer, Executive Director of the Access Campaign at Médecins Sans Frontières [Doctors Without Borders], explains, ‘The Foundation wants the private sector to do more on global health, and sets up partnerships with the private sector involved in governance. As these institutions are clearly also trying to influence policymaking, there are huge conflicts of interests… the companies should not play a role in setting the rules of the game.’...
“Research by Devi Sridhar at Oxford University warns that philanthropic interventions are ‘radically skewing public health programmes towards issues of the greatest concern to wealthy donors’. ‘Issues,’ she writes, ‘which are not necessarily top priority for people in the recipient country.’
“The situation is replicated at an international level. With the rise of health partnerships, the proportion of global health funding channelled through the UN fell from 32 to 14 percent between 1990 and 2008, placing major limits on the possibility for poorer nations to influence international health policy.
Speaking on the same subject, Dr. Toni Bark had the following to say when interviewed for The Truth About Vaccines Documentary (Link Here):
I did my MD years ago. Then in 2010, I embarked upon a Masters in Medical Science, specifically with a focus on disaster planning and disaster response. I’d been going back and forth to Haiti…
I had no idea what disaster response and third world funding is like until I went to Haiti. It is corrupted - every level…
I’ve been asked over the years, “Oh, you should join our group. We’re going to get funding to build a big hospital in Africa.” Well, when you talk to people on the ground, they’re like, “People can’t even get to those big hospitals. They need small clinics all over the place.”
But the money goes to contractors. It’s all about the contractors getting the funding. [The big hospitals] stand there empty and people can’t get to them. It’s all about the contractors pocketing money.
Eradication of Wild Polio
The Gates' often speak of working towards eradicating wild polio from the world. To do so, they are focused on providing oral polio vaccine (OPV) in impoverished nations. Polio is a very complex topic. Books have been written to discuss all the complexities and factors that need to be considered when talking about polio. To give you the bare bones basics:
the oral polio vaccine (OPV) is no longer used in developed nations because the vaccine does cause polio outbreaks
OPV continues to be used in poor nations, even though it causes polio, because it’s cheap
Since the advent of the vaccine, polio now has many different “synonyms” with corresponding definitions that are only subtly different from each other:
there is Wild Polio, which previously was just called polio. The reason for specifying today whether the illness is wild polio or not, is because many viruses and toxin exposures can result in “polio type illness.” When it comes to wild polio virus, 95% of the population that is infected with the wild virus never even knows they were infected because their body deals with the virus easily and the person never has ANY symptoms. 4-8% of those infected by the wild virus will have MILD symptoms, fever, fatigue, nausea, headache, flu like symptoms, stiffness of the neck and back, and pain in the limbs which often resolves completely. Fewer than 1% of those infected with wild polio virus, will become sickened with permanent paralysis somewhere within their body. Of those permanently paralyzed, 5-10% die when the paralysis strikes the respiratory muscles. In the 50s, during the “polio” epidemics, they tested those with “polio” and found that only 25% of those people who were said to have “polio” had actually been sickened by the wild polio virus. The other 75% of “polio” cases actually were not polio because the symptoms were not the result of the polio virus. Yet prior to the vaccine those cases were still called “polio,” and those cases remain in the historical records as polio cases. It wasn’t until the vaccine became widely used that polio-like illnesses were distinguished from each other, with different definitions created. All those definition changes are actually responsible for the bulk of the reduction in “polio” cases. (This info is provided in Dr. Suzanne Humphries lecture on polio - 7:20 minute mark. Link Here)
today, there is also what’s called Vaccine Acquired Paralytic Polio which is “polio” caused by the oral polio vaccine strain virus that has regained virulence. This form of polio is transmitted to others because the vaccine virus is shed through the stool. In third world countries, and war torn countries, where they don’t have waste water treatment facilities, vaccine strain virus is spread to others when people drink and wash from water that’s been contaminated with sewage. In a Washington Post article (Link Here), they provide the following information, "cVDPV is a rare, mutated form of the virus that comes from the vaccine itself. Oral polio vaccines contain a weakened form of the virus that activates an immune response in the body so that it builds up antibodies to protect itself. But it takes some time for this to happen, and meanwhile the virus replicates in the intestines and can be excreted by the person immunized and can spread to others in the community."
In the news today you will hear the terms acute flaccid paralysis (AFP), acute flaccid myelitis (AFM), and polio-like-illness, all of which look like “polio.” The specific cause of these illnesses is often unknown, but testing shows these illnesses with polio symptoms have not been caused by the wild polio virus.
polio like illnesses can also result from enteroviruses such as coxsackie and ECHO, undiagnosed congential syphilis, and hand foot and mouth disease. In the prevaccine era, polio-like illness from one of these sources would have been labeled “polio.” Today, they are not polio.
toxin exposures, from arsenic, DDT and lead can cause polio-like illness. In the pre-vaccine era, polio-like illness from these sources would have been labeled “polio.” Today illness from these exposures is not polio.
guillain-barre syndrome, transverse myelitis, aseptic meningitis are all illnesses that were labeled as “polio” in the pre-vaccine era. Today, these illnesses are not polio.
Though North America is free of wild polio, children today are experiencing AFM and are spending months in hospital on ventilators (the modern version of the iron lung). Sharyl Attkisson provides news coverage on the situation (Link Here).
In poor nations, there are thousands of cases of vaccine acquired polio and acute flaccid paralysis despite there being zero or nearly zero cases of wild polio.
Again, turning back to the interview with Dr. Toni Bark in The Truth About Vaccines documentary:
Dr. Bark: Well, look at all the polio shots that—the oral polio shot which we don’t give in this country since 2000 because every case of polio since the 60s was from the vaccine. The oral polio vaccine is a live vaccine and was shedding. People shed and get polio from it and give it to other people. We halted the use of it but it’s what they use in third world countries because it’s cheap.
Ty: We were having these polio outbreaks.
Dr. Bark: We were having polio outbreaks and people are like, “Oh we need to vaccinate, we need to vaccinate with more OPV.” The Gates foundation came to the Uttar Pradesh in India in 2010 or 2011 because there was like, on average 9 or 10 cases of wild polio every year out of millions of people. They had this polio campaign with the OPV. Within two years were 47,500 cases of flaccid paralysis or polio. They’re not calling it polio.
Ty: They changed the name, right?
Dr. Bark: They changed the name—it’s basically what you would call polio. These kids are paralyzed or they died from paralysis and Bill Gates, at least it’s said it was Bill Gates and the Huffington Post wrote an article, how, “Oh my God we’ve eradicated wild polio in India in Uttar Pradesh.” Wild, he said “wild.” He couldn’t say “polio” because the vaccine strain is causing outbreaks. You can’t use live viruses in a vaccine in areas where there is no sewage and no clean water…
This is the problem. If we spend money on vaccines there’s no money for sewage treatment and for water treatment.
Ty: Right, which should be number one, shouldn’t it?
Dr. Bark: Of course, it should be, but big contractors—
Ty: No money in that.
In More Recent News – Polio in Syria
Mainstream media has recently been reporting on the polio outbreak in Syria. Headlines read, “Polio Paralyzes 17 Children in Syria, W.H.O. Says.” The article starts off by acknowledging that poor sanitation is a contributing factor, saying, “It is the second outbreak of the crippling disease to hit Syria since the war began, and largely reflected the inability of health workers to immunize all children caught in conflict zones where access is difficult and sanitation is poor.” Later they go on to say, “The risks are especially high in areas where not all children have received the vaccine and where the mutated virus can spread from contaminated sewage or water.”
The article informs the reader that for every 1 case of paralysis, there had been 200 people exposed to the virus. Using the numbers provided in the Syria polio outbreak article, one can quickly calculate for themselves that in Syria with 17 cases of paralysis, there have been at least 3400 cases of exposure. Recognizing that 3400 people have shed the illness through their excrement, passing it to others who wash and drink from contaminated sewage water, it’s reasonable to assume that exposure and illness will continue to spread. Once you get half through the article, the writer acknowledges that this outbreak in Syria is the result of vaccine strain virus, meaning the vaccine is causing this “polio” outbreak. The take away message of this article is that more children must be vaccinated to protect them from the vaccine caused polio outbreak, and that reaching the 400,000 children in this affected area with poor water quality, will be very challenging.
In a recent interview (link Here), Dr. Suzanne Humphries weighs in on the situation in Syria. She states:
vaccinating with OPV in a war torn area is extremely dangerous because immune function of the citizens is low due to stress. She says toxin exposure due war and bombings is a concern, the people are drinking contaminated water, and they are malnourished due to poor quality food or lack of food.
It’s not surprising that there is a vaccine strain polio outbreak occurring in Syria. Children are sometimes being given 15 doses of OPV, by age 5. The virus can mutate in the children’s bodies, the virus is excreted in their stool, which makes its way into the water supply (which isn’t treated) and the outbreak spreads as people drink and wash in contaminated water
The WHO website used to have a graph (which they’ve removed) that showed the number of wild polio cases per year in India from 1996 to 2012. From the graph there was a peak incidence of approximately 4000 cases of wild polio in 1998, with all the other years showing significantly less. Since 2004 there have been less than 1000 cases of polio each year. On the other hand, since 1996, with the use of the OPV vaccine the incidence of Acute Flaccid Paralysis has increased dramatically. From 2004 to 2012, AFP rose from 10,000 cases annually to 60,000 cases annually. (You can view a the graph at the 20:25 minute mark.)
so cases of “polio” have actually increased considerably since vaccination programs began
Oral Polio Vaccine in India – Acute Flaccid Paralysis vs Polio
In medical research, an article (link Here) published in the Journal of Pediatrics states:
The incidence of NPAFP [Nonpolio Acute Flaccid Paralysis] was strongly associated with the number of OPV doses delivered to the area. A dose–response relationship with cumulative doses over the years was also observed, which strengthens the hypothetical relationship between polio vaccine and NPAFP. The fall in the NPAFP rate in Bihar and UP [Uttar Pradesh] for the first time in 2012, with a decrease in the number of OPV doses delivered, is evidence of a causative association between OPV doses and the NPAFP rate.
Another medical paper (link Here) published in the indian Journal of Medical Ethics in April 2012 states:
Clinically indistinguishable from polio paralysis but twice as deadly, the incidence of NPAFP was directly proportional to doses of oral polio received. Though this data was collected within the polio surveillance system, it was not investigated. The principle of primum-non-nocere [first, do no harm] was violated.
...in 2005, a fifth of the cases of non-polio AFP in the indian state of Uttar Pradesh (UP) were followed up after 60 days. 35.2% were found to have residual paralysis and 8.5% had died (making the total of residual paralysis or death - 43.7%) . Sathyamala examined data from the following year and showed that children who were identified with non-polio AFP were at more than twice the risk of dying than those with wild polio infection….
Nationally, the non-polio AFP rate is now 12 times higher than expected. In the states of Uttar Pradesh (UP) and Bihar, which have pulse polio rounds [vaccination booths] nearly every month, the non-polio AFP rate is 25- and 35-fold higher than the international norms. The relationship of the non-polio AFP rate is curvilinear with a more steep increase beyond six doses of OPV in one year. The non- polio AFP rate during the year best correlates to the cumulative doses received in the previous three years.
In this same medical paper, they speak about how philanthropic involvement skews national priorities. It states:
it is noteworthy that the Pulse Plus programme was begun in india with a $ 0.02 billion grant from overseas in 1995, at a time when experts in india felt that polio eradication was not the top priority for the country. Four years into the programme of eradication, in 1998, Dr T Jacob John wrote, “Today poliomyelitis is not the number one priority of public health in india. However, we must eradicate it for the sake of the rest of the world.”
Having accepted the grant of $ 0.02 billion, india has spent a hundred times as much. This is a startling reminder of how initial funding and grants from abroad distort local priorities.
From india’s perspective the exercise has been extremely costly both in terms of human suffering and in monetary terms. it is tempting to speculate what could have been achieved if the $2.5 billion spent on attempting to eradicate polio were spent on water and sanitation and routine immunisation.
Gates Foundation (Link Here, Here, and Here)
The Flip side to Bill Gates' Charity Billions (Link Here)
WHO reports on AFP surveillance in India (Link Here)
The CDC reports on polio eradication in India (Link Here)
Wall Street Journal Article - India's Victory Over Polio has Unexpected Consequence (Link Here)
The Washington Post - Polio outbreak caused by the vaccine (Link Here)
The Truth About Vaccines Documentary Series (Link Here)
Dr. Suzanne Humphries - YouTube Lecture on Polio (Link Here)
Dr. Suzanne Humphries - HighWire Interview - Discussion of Polio in Syria (Link Here)
Medical research published in the journal Pediatrics - The research is titled: "Trends in Nonpolio Acute Flaccid Paralysis Incidence in India 2000 to 2013" (Link Here)
Medical research published in the journal Indian Journal of Medical Ethics - The research is titled: "Polio pogramme: Let us declare victory and move on" (Link Here)
Sharyl Attkison - Acute Flaccid Myelitis the polio-like illness in North America (Link Here)