Tag Archives: Stat News

STAT News Takes The Fall For Paul Offit Misrepresenting Himself

The below email exchange with STAT speaks for itself:

On Tue, Oct 31, 2017 at 5:37 PM, <info@autisminvestigated.com> wrote:

Dear Stat News,

At least two of your articles including one very recent one by Helen Branswell falsely described Paul Offit as chief of infectious diseases at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.(1)(2) He is not and hasn’t been since 2014.(3)(4)(5) Yet he continues to misrepresent himself in his resume downloadable from his website (attached).(6)(7)

Best,

Jake Crosby, MPH 

1.https://www.statnews.com/2017/08/21/trump-vaccine-commission-robert-kennedy
2.https://www.statnews.com/2016/06/13/donald-trump-hillary-clinton-medical-research/
3.http://www.autisminvestigated.com/paul-offit-misrepresents/

4.http://www.chop.edu/doctors/zaoutis-theoklis 
5.https://web.archive.org/web/20151003024625/http://www.chop.edu/doctors/zaoutis-theoklis
6.http://www.autisminvestigated.com/paul-offit-misrepresents-himself/

7.paul-offit.com 

From: “Branswell, Helen” <helen.branswell@statnews.com>
Date: Wed, Nov 01, 2017 10:48 am
To: info@autisminvestigated.com

Mr. Crosby;

I wrote one of the STAT articles where Paul Offit’s position at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia was incorrectly stated. The error was mine; I had interviewed him in the past and didn’t realize he’d given up the department chairmanship.

We have corrected my story and the other one you pointed out, by David Nather. David no longer works for STAT.

Best regards,
Helen Branswell
Senior Writer, infectious diseases and global health

Autism Investigated will keep readers updated if any other media outlets that have reported the error respond as well.

Paul Offit, Top U.S. Vaccine Doc, Misrepresents His Credentials

Paul-offit.com

CBS News has called vaccine developer Dr. Paul Offit one of “the most trusted voices in the defense of vaccine safety”. Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has called him the vaccine industry’s “principle spokesperson”.

But what about Offit’s official title? His personal website, his Wikipedia page, his linkedin profile, his Autism Science Foundation bio, a new medical textbook he co-edited and an endless array of both mainstream and social media sites state that he is the “Chief of Infectious Diseases” at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). There’s just one problem: he’s not, nor has he been for the last three years.

According to CHOP’s website, Offit has been demoted from “Chief” to “attending physician.” It also clearly shows the role of “Chief” belonging to someone else. Yet Offit’s bio on both the homepage and “About” page of his own website call him “Chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases” at CHOP, as does his resume linked from his homepage. How long has he misrepresented himself? Dig deep enough, and the story comes to light.

Buried in his second resume – a 32-page CV downloadable from his website -Offit is listed as “Chief, Division of Infectious Diseases, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia” for the years 1992-2014. That means Paul Offit knowingly misleads visitors to his site about his current role at CHOP. Few would find the news of his demotion buried in his CV, but virtually everyone visiting his site would see his bios prominently misidentifying him as “Chief of Infectious Diseases at CHOP.”

Even worse, the creation date of his CV is November 21st, 2016. That means that for more than two years after he lost his title, there was absolutely nothing on his site that contradicted his bio falsely stating his CHOP role. Archived webpages show that the title of “Chief” was the very first title listed in Offit’s “About” bio on his website. Then in early-2015, Offit temporarily removed the “Chief” title from his “About” page bio (his homepage bio never changed). But then sometime in late 2016 or early 2017, he added the title “chief” back into his “About” bio where it remains as of this writing.

The implications of Offit’s fabrication are far-reaching. Reports falsely saying Offit is the “Chief” of infectious disease at CHOP continue to be cranked out: CBS NewsNBC NewsCNNThe New YorkerThe Washington PostPBS FRONTLINEThe LA TimesThe Philadelphia InquirerScientific AmericanC-SPANForbesAlterNetThe Daily BeastThe Huffington Post and Politico to name a few of dozens.

Several times, Offit was introduced on video with his former title of “Chief of Infectious Diseases,” yet he did not correct the people introducing him. When the president of the College of Physicians of Philadelphia introduced Offit as “Chief of Infectious Diseases” on C-SPAN2 in 2015, Offit simply said “Thank you for that kind introduction.”

He did not react the same way, however, when he had to sit right next to the moderator for Scientific American who stated Offit’s false credentials, just prior to his talk as part of a videotaped lecture series. That time, he was visibly uncomfortable being introduced as “Chief,” and even struggled to get words out initially when it was his turn to speak. But just as with the C-SPAN video, Offit failed to correct the person who introduced him.

The misrepresentations have continued as recently as last summer. In an article for STAT News dated August 21st, 2017, Offit was described as the “head of infectious diseases at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.” Offit still has not corrected anyone and why would he? He has gotten away with it for three years.

What he has gotten away with for much longer, however, has been his unchallenged misrepresentations about vaccine dangers and the media’s culpability. He relies on studies he privately admitted were garbage to declare the debate on vaccine safety over. To deny that vaccines cause autism, he actually claims that autism diagnoses cause children to be vaccinated. And of course he has infamously stated that an infant can safely handle 10,000 vaccines, later upping the number to “closer to 100,000.”

One of the big ways Offit has been able to lie with such impunity about vaccine dangers has been to flaunt his supposedly impeccable credentials. Perhaps that’s why he lied about being the “Chief” of infectious diseases at CHOP long after he wasn’t.

Credentials, not integrity, are all that matter in Offit’s world. They matter so much that it’s even worth lying to claim credentials he no longer has.

My Final Exchange with Dan Olmsted: Leaving Progressivism

It is with great sadness that Autism Investigated relays the announcement that Dan Olmsted – Age of Autism’s founding editor – has passed away. While I have had my differences with him and the Age of Autism site, I will be forever grateful to him for his friendship, advice and platform for my views. I’ve always respected him as a journalist and have never forgotten the excellent work he has done over the years, and I just had a very friendly exchange with him on the day of the inauguration. I will never stop missing him, and I offered my sincere condolences to the entire Age of Autism team. Autism Investigated devoted the entire last week to posts honoring Dan Olmsted, which ended with a proper obituary. Since then, Age of Autism has given Autism Investigated permission to post its final exchange with Dan Olmsted. It is now published here in full. May we all honor Dan’s life by ending the autism epidemic to make America great again! – Jake Crosby, MPH
Hello Dan,
 
How are you doing?
 
I’m writing you because the title of Anne’s post is: “Senators on key panel reject Donald Trump’s skepticism about vaccines” [Senators Reject Trump’s Vaccine Panel], even though there is no indication any of them did directly except perhaps Al Franken. She was probably confused by the wording of the title: Senators on key panel reject Trump’s skepticism about vaccineBut that “key panel” is the Senate HELP committee they serve on; the members were not asked to weigh in on Kennedy’s panel – only on their overall opinions of vaccine safety. It doesn’t mean they outright reject Kennedy’s panel. STAT News didn’t provide their exact questions, so we really have no idea what they asked the Senators or if they even mentioned Trump.
Obviously it’s your blog to do whatever you want with, but at this sensitive time I would say it’s best to correct that. 
 
Happy new year and president.
 
Jake
 
——– Original Message ——–
Subject: Re: Senators Didn’t Reject Kennedy Panel Idea
From: Dan Olmsted 
Date: Fri, January 20, 2017 9:46 pm
To: info@autisminvestigated.com
Cc: amdachel@msn.com

Thanks for writing Jake we will check it out and let you know
 
I join you in wishing trump well. My progressive affinities have moderated lately and I am optimistic, as I have to say you were before the election
 
Best
 
Dan
 ——– Original Message ——–
Subject: RE: Senators Didn’t Reject Kennedy Panel Idea
From: <info@autisminvestigated.com>
Date: Mon, January 23, 2017 12:30 pm
To: “Dan Olmsted” 

My pleasure, Dan. Good post on Trump, btw. I don’t know if you saw my Newt Gingrich post, but he now supports RFK’s commission!
I’ll admit, I was much more optimistic about Trump being a good president if he won than I was about whether or not he’d win in the first place! So glad he did! 
And please dump the SJWs; they’re crazy, and you always struck me as a classical liberal guy anyway.
Best,
Jake 

Little did I know at the time that he would never get my final email to him. The following week, SJWs would burn Berkeley to cancel a talk by another gay journalist who had grown fed up with his community’s politics. Whether our opponents are wearing black ski masks or white lab coats, the best we can do to honor Dan’s life is to never shy from saying what needs to be said. It’s what Dan would want.

NEWT GINGRICH ON RFK CHAIRING VACCINE COMMISSION: “I’m very comfortable with him taking the position.”

Newt Gingrich speaks during an American Solutions rally Thursday, Oct. 21, 2010 in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken)

Newt Gingrich speaks during an American Solutions rally Thursday, Oct. 21, 2010 in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken)

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich – who has been a trusted adviser to President Trump – has come out in support of Robert F. Kennedy Jr. chairing a federal commission on vaccine safety and scientific integrity. Autism Investigated would like to thank STAT News for helping make that happen, especially after it previously reported: Medical research’s best hope under President Trump? It’s Newt

Gingrich had also been highly critical of Kennedy for his vaccine positions in the past, but has since backed off from those criticisms. According to STAT News’ article on Kennedy’s newly announced vaccine safety commission:

…Gingrich backed away from his earlier criticism of Kennedy. As long as the panel is “appropriately organized” and has a realistic, scientific basis, he said, “I’m very comfortable with him taking the position.”

In a desperate attempt to try and cancel out the significance of Gingrich’s support, STAT News contacted all 23 Senators who serve on the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (“HELP”) Committee. One of those Senators – Mike Enzi – even produced a sealed report back in 2007 which sought to clear certain federal agencies and private entities like the Institute of Medicine of the misconduct they committed in defending the mercury-based vaccine preservative thimerosal.

STAT News seemed to get what they wanted for their article, Senators on key panel reject Donald Trump’s skepticism about vaccines:

Eighteen senators, including eight of the 12 Republicans in the committee’s majority, expressed confidence in the US vaccination system and recognized the health benefits of vaccination.

Or, maybe not:

Staff for two other Republicans, Mike Enzi of Wyoming and Richard Burr of North Carolina, declined to comment. (boldface mine)

In a comment submitted under that article, Autism Investigated attempted to point out to STAT News how it twice buried the lead: first with Gingrich supporting Kennedy’s commission in STAT News‘ initial article and then with Enzi refusing to call vaccines safe in its follow-up piece. The comment never appeared.

Instead, the comments were closed with this lovely gem from one of the editors:

We have closed comments on this article, due largely to the uncivil and outright nasty direction taken by what should be a civil and instructive conversation.

Never mind that the only real perpetrator was a squatter who had been attacking any commenter critical of STAT News’ dishonest hit-pieces against Kennedy. What a convenient excuse and time for STAT News to shut down comment threads under all those posts: right as it was being reminded of how it inadvertently got both a sitting US Senator and a former House Speaker to back away from their earlier defenses of the vaccine program.

But even better: STAT News got the former House Speaker Newt Gingrich to now openly support Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s commission on vaccine safety and scientific integrity. Thanks STAT News!

Looks like Kennedy and President Trump are already well on their way to ending the autism epidemic and making America great again!