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What We Really Lack Here Is a Consensus Reality

Rebecca A. Jessee, MD
Am J Dis Child. 1987;141(6):602. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1987.04460060020010.
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Sir.—Although my dossier of correspondence about the current "diphtheria-pertussis-tetanus vaccine controversy" is almost 1 in thick, I feel compelled to write about it one more time after reading the letters by Hinman1 and Somervill2 in the December 1986 issue of AJDC. It is obvious that the medical and legal professions do not share anything resembling a consensus reality, but I think it is important for both of the professions to be aware of just how skewed their thinking has become by their respective educations and experiences, and not to become too defensive.

Although I quite frankly think this issue is a disagreement where no disagreement should exist, this is a real problem for the medical profession. A cornerstone of preventive medicine, vaccination, has been eroded by people who we think do not have the expertise to accurately judge the situation. I think the legal profession does not


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