The Vaccine Court and the Autism Test Case, Written by Lauren L. Haertlei

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Vaccines and Autism: Is There A Link?

Haertlein, Lauren L. “Immunizing Against Bad Science: The Vaccine Court and The Autism Test Case.” Law and Contemporary Problems 72 (2012): 211-32. EconLit. Web. 16 Feb. 2014.

“Immunizing Against Bad Science: The Vaccine Court and the Autism Test Case,” written by Lauren L. Haertlein, deals with one of today’s most popular controversies; vaccinations causing autism in children. Haertlein’s article gives insight into the history of vaccine litigation and the policies that accompany it. Furthermore, she talks immensely about the Vaccine Court, whose job is to work with petitioner’s stating that a vaccine, such as measles-mumps-rubella (MMR), has caused some illness to their child. The article uses real-life Vaccine Court examples such as Michelle Cedillo’s case, whose mother claimed a vaccination gave her daughter autism, as a way to better understand how the Vaccine Court works. This controversial topic is being discussed daily in magazines, journals, and on talk shows. The families that are blaming autism on vaccinations are giving vaccines a bad name and causing other parents to re-think their decision about getting their children vaccinated.

“Ms. Haertlein graduated magna cum laude from Duke Law School, where she was Editor-in-Chief of Law and Contemporary Problems and received the Clinical Practice Award for her work in the Duke AIDS Legal Project on matters related to federal and state AIDS policy and the provision of direct legal assistance to low-income HIV-infected clients.” (Arnold & Porter LLC)

Additionally, Haertlein has her Masters in Philosophy from Duke University and her Bachelor’s in biology and political science from Tufts University. She is currently working as a lawye...

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Throughout the article Haertlein does not cite other scholars who disagree with her claim. Nonetheless, since she uses real-life court cases of families who disagree with her claim, the scholars and other expert opinions are not needed. The scientific evidence alone makes her writing significant enough to state her claim.

Haertlein’s article will be particularly useful for my research because it goes into great detail about the Vaccine Court and provides multiple court cases to use as resources later. Even more, it offers definitions of terms that could be useful. She uses a standard argument, scientific evidence, to back up her statement. Haertlein’s article has made me even more excited to further study the controversy between vaccinations and autism.

Work Cited

Haertlein, Lauren L., Arnold & Porter LLP. Arnold & Porter LLP, 2014. Web. 19 Feb. 2014.

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