Fear mongering versus raising awareness. - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 47 Old 10-29-2016, 12:09 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Fear mongering versus raising awareness.

Place holding for a few hours. I will come back and comment.


http://www.healthnewsreview.org/abou...a/criterion-5/

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#2 of 47 Old 10-29-2016, 01:09 PM
 
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Interesting. I read the article, but didn't watch the videos (does anyone else hate videos?). Now I'm thinking about the millions who suffer (silently) from toenail fungus. :P So much of it applies to vaccine pushing, doesn't it?
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#3 of 47 Old 10-29-2016, 02:31 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Interesting. I read the article, but didn't watch the videos (does anyone else hate videos?). Now I'm thinking about the millions who suffer (silently) from toenail fungus. :P So much of it applies to vaccine pushing, doesn't it?
lol
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#4 of 47 Old 10-29-2016, 03:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Here are my thoughts on fear mongering.

One could say vaccine critics fear-monger when they highlight extreme vaccine reactions. Some might say that these instances are rare and often have no proof, so sharing these stories is fear-mongering. Vaccine critics might rightly respond that we have no idea how common or uncommon severe vaccine reactions are - thus we are not fear mongering but raising awareness.

OTOH, pro-vaxxers might post stories of incredibly rare things - diphtheria, for example, hoping to scare people into vaxxing....or saying that tetanus spores are ubiquitous (true) without saying that it is incredibly rare for anyone to get tetanus, and that there are clear risk factors for tetanus. Stories of worst case scenario - such as horrid chicken pox cases - are disease mongering, according to the article I posted. "Beware of interviews with “worst-case” patients – holding such patients up as examples as if their experiences were representative of all with this condition."

_______

Hcp, when seeking informed consent, are supposed to divulge information that a reasonable person would want to know when making a call.

I am struck by a thread earlier this week on CMV - a condition I have never heard of that can cause issue if the mother gets it in pregnancy...some issues remarkably similar to rubella. We have all heard of rubella ( because a vaccine exists) - but who has heard of CMV? So why do we need to know about SSPE?

Personally, I don't completely agree with the "what a reasonable person would want to know" test as it is too subjective and open to interpretation, but that is not relevant. That is the standard.

The CMV thread:Pre-Marketing in the Works?
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#5 of 47 Old 10-29-2016, 06:35 PM
 
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Good article. And I do have toenail fungus. It makes two of my toenails look funny and they are a bit harder to trim. I might do something about it eventually. But suffering? No.

What bugs me the most about the disease-mongering problem is that it distorts public health, which should be trying to save lives and relieve suffering. When a very severe, but rare condition is touted as super important, it ends up diverting huge amounts of public money from other situations where it could do more good.

Fixing problems is rarely a simple undertaking.

For example, cars have been made a lot more solid, so they are less likely to kill people in accidents. However, as part of this process, various parts of the car have gotten thicker, including areas where the increased thickness interferes with a driver's ability to see hazards and avoid them. Solve one problem, create another.

I think vaccines are particularly prone to generating new problems as they try to resolve old problems.

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#6 of 47 Old 10-31-2016, 09:55 AM
 
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I haven't come up with an operational (i.e. comprehensive, specific, non-dictionary) definition for fear-mongering, although I think that would be an interesting exercise.

One chief characteristic of fear-mongering is taking a vague, unquantifiable threat of what might happen---or what happens with minuscule rarity--and blowing it up into something terrifying. Honestly, researchers could develop a vaccine for ANY illness and market it in this very manner.

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#7 of 47 Old 10-31-2016, 05:36 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Turquesa View Post
I haven't come up with an operational (i.e. comprehensive, specific, non-dictionary) definition for fear-mongering, although I think that would be an interesting exercise.

One chief characteristic of fear-mongering is taking a vague, unquantifiable threat of what might happen---or what happens with minuscule rarity--and blowing it up into something terrifying. Honestly, researchers could develop a vaccine for ANY illness and market it in this very manner.
One way to work with this would be to contrast it with other forms of "information" sharing.

Informed consent. Broad information on a topic. Basic background information. A scientific review of the data.

In contrast, what are the characteristics of fear-mongering?

Narrowly focused information. A goal: which is to make as many people as possible take a particular action or to go along with some directive or demand. Focus on a threat or danger.

One example that just occurred to me is the contrast between the info around the mumps outbreak, which is several times larger than the "terrifying" measles outbreak and the information distributed during the measles outbreak.

Generally, the dangers of mumps are being downplayed (such as they are), general control measures in addition to vaccination are being recommended, such as handwashing and isolation (and, my favorite, at the college level, avoiding kissing) and there just isn't a huge panic being promoted.

True, measles is more easily spread than mumps. But even so...

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#8 of 47 Old 10-31-2016, 05:43 PM
 
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There is also a limit to the volume of fear-mongering which can be done on any given threat. If you keep saying the same stuff year after year, people lose interest. Or the try the intervention, find that they have a nasty reaction or get ill anyway and then they lose interest.

Ideally, the best fear-mongering is around something that people aren't familiar with--i.e. a new or rare condition, something that is very terrifying--fatal is definitely terrifying--but some sort of deformity also works well and preferably a situation that isn't caused by a large corporation. If it is caused by a large corporation the problem will either be declared non-existent or else there will be a concerted attempt to pretend that it is non-existent OR, if at all possible, it will be blamed on a natural virus or toxin. If none of that makes sense, it will turn out to have been here all along, we just didn't notice it before.
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#9 of 47 Old 10-31-2016, 05:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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To summarise a few point:

Fearmonger can be spotted when:

-the article highlights severe cases with little or no discussion on how this is a severe outlying case

-the article discusses a scary disorder/disease/reaction with no mention of its relative rareness.

-blanketting of specific issues

-articles on a disease/reaction that are out of step with how other topics of a similar nature are treated.

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#10 of 47 Old 10-31-2016, 06:10 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kathymuggle View Post
To summarise a few point:

Fearmonger can be spotted when:

-the article highlights severe cases with little or no discussion on how this is a severe outlying case

-the article discusses a scary disorder/disease/reaction with no mention of its relative rareness.

-blanketting of specific issues

What do you mean by that?

-articles on a disease/reaction that are out of step with how other topics of a similar nature are treated.
See query inserted into quote above
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#11 of 47 Old 10-31-2016, 06:48 PM - Thread Starter
 
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See query inserted into quote above

Fear is likely built through repeat messaging.

I do agree you can over do it, though. You do not want your message to be background noise. Saturation, not over saturation, is the key.

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#12 of 47 Old 10-31-2016, 07:02 PM
 
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Fear is likely built through repeat messaging.

I do agree you can over do it, though. You do not want your message to be background noise. Saturation, not over saturation, is the key.
Okay. For some reason I just didn't get it!
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#13 of 47 Old 10-31-2016, 10:39 PM
 
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I haven't read Barry Glassner's Culture of Fear book yet, but I believe this may be an excerpt. http://www.penelopeironstone.com/Gla...rMongering.pdf

Quote:
Fear mongers deploy narrative techniques to normalize what are actually errors in reasoning. Perhaps the most common of these consists in the christening of isolated incidents as trends.
There is no "growing number of unvaccinated children." But if you confront vax-compliance enthusiasts with this irrefutable fact, they will back-pedal and say, "But, but . . . the POCKETS!" Ah, yes. The pockets. Pockets have always been around, but they haven't always been highlighted as data-free media anecdotes using them to claim that there's a "growing trend." Highlight a story about wealthy parents in Chicago, (as is being discussed in the INV forum), and you can monger up the fear by calling it a "trend."

Read the rest of Glassner's chapter, especially about the unrealistic fear-mongering about school shootings, and you'll understand how the media successfully manipulated North America into thinking that 147 cases of non-fatal measles was indeed a terrifying vir-ocolypse.

There's so much more fun I could have with Glassner's abridgement, but bedtime is calling.

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#14 of 47 Old 11-01-2016, 09:07 AM
 
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You know, it's kind of funny. I do believe in herd immunity but I don't worry about my kids getting sick from lower vaccine rates. I think I've mentioned before that they're a bit lower than the national average in my community due to people being more natural-leaning. But my kids are vaccinated and in general they are extremely healthy so I consider myself lucky on that score and severe illness is something I'm blessed not to have to worry about too much. So I don't consider my feelings towards vaccines to be fear-based as much as I do that it seems to me to come out the winner when I do a cost-benefit analysis for me and also the community. And I think when you reach a conclusion like that, it's hard to understand why others don't come to the same conclusion. I mean, totally understood that past vaccine reactions would lead to a different decision, but for someone just like me who doesn't have that to factor in, it seems like people are actually giving their fear of very very unlikely outcomes too much weight.
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Another characteristic of fear-mongering: Turn a risk, no matter how small, into an imminent occurrence. As a result, the word "endanger" become synonymous with "attack." Forego the MMR vax? Then your child WILL develop measles. A severe case. With fatal encephalitis.

This political cartoon definitely fits that bill.

This man's unvaxxed son WILL die of a vaccine-targeted diseases following school enrollment.

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#16 of 47 Old 11-02-2016, 05:25 AM
 
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You know, it's kind of funny. I do believe in herd immunity but I don't worry about my kids getting sick from lower vaccine rates. I think I've mentioned before that they're a bit lower than the national average in my community due to people being more natural-leaning. But my kids are vaccinated and in general they are extremely healthy so I consider myself lucky on that score and severe illness is something I'm blessed not to have to worry about too much. So I don't consider my feelings towards vaccines to be fear-based as much as I do that it seems to me to come out the winner when I do a cost-benefit analysis for me and also the community. And I think when you reach a conclusion like that, it's hard to understand why others don't come to the same conclusion. I mean, totally understood that past vaccine reactions would lead to a different decision, but for someone just like me who doesn't have that to factor in, it seems like people are actually giving their fear of very very unlikely outcomes too much weight.
Well, maybe you like your community more than I do. (tHIS IS A JOKE, PEOPLE.)

My point of view is very similar to yours, other than the assessment of the cost/benefit ratio.

I grew up with the numbers on a UNICEF box...for just 10 cents, you can provide a child with lifesaving vaccinations. For just 20 cents, you can send a child to school, etc.

It encouraged me (and I'm sure they didn't intend to) to see spending on vaccines as being in competition for the money in my box. How many vaccines did I need to skip to get clean water to the village? How many to build a school? And I still ask myself those questions.

In addition, I became fascinated, as a child, with the topic of genetic diseases, particularly sickle cell. Here was a condition which, ideally, protected familes from Malaria. Nature's vaccination. However, sometimes the combination of genetics was wrong, and you lost that child. Evolutionarily, you still come out ahead...you lose fewer children. But, if millions of years of evolution get you this result, I don't see it as unreasonable that a few years of medical development of vaccine science would get you a similar one. Stands to reason. And I am, by birth and training, American. We are kind of raised to consider the impact on the individual important. So, my sister was military, I figure she volunteered, and getting a ton of vaccinations was part of the deal. But infants can't volunteer, so they can decide their priorities as adults.
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Well, maybe you like your community more than I do. (tHIS IS A JOKE, PEOPLE.)

My point of view is very similar to yours, other than the assessment of the cost/benefit ratio.

I grew up with the numbers on a UNICEF box...for just 10 cents, you can provide a child with lifesaving vaccinations. For just 20 cents, you can send a child to school, etc.

It encouraged me (and I'm sure they didn't intend to) to see spending on vaccines as being in competition for the money in my box. How many vaccines did I need to skip to get clean water to the village? How many to build a school? And I still ask myself those questions.

In addition, I became fascinated, as a child, with the topic of genetic diseases, particularly sickle cell. Here was a condition which, ideally, protected familes from Malaria. Nature's vaccination. However, sometimes the combination of genetics was wrong, and you lost that child. Evolutionarily, you still come out ahead...you lose fewer children. But, if millions of years of evolution get you this result, I don't see it as unreasonable that a few years of medical development of vaccine science would get you a similar one. Stands to reason. And I am, by birth and training, American. We are kind of raised to consider the impact on the individual important. So, my sister was military, I figure she volunteered, and getting a ton of vaccinations was part of the deal. But infants can't volunteer, so they can decide their priorities as adults.
Interesting thought process!

The thing about volunteering gets flipped by the pro-vaxers. Your child didn't volunteer to get a dozen dangerous diseases, so the state, not the parents, has to make the decision if you cop out.
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#18 of 47 Old 11-02-2016, 02:23 PM
 
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Another characteristic of fear-mongering: Turn a risk, no matter how small, into an imminent occurrence. As a result, the word "endanger" become synonymous with "attack." Forego the MMR vax? Then your child WILL develop measles. A severe case. With fatal encephalitis.

This political cartoon definitely fits that bill.

This man's unvaxxed son WILL die of a vaccine-targeted diseases following school enrollment.
But how did the kid get to school age, anyway? Think disease spreading play groups? Grocery carts? Swings and other play equipment at the park--coated with deadly germs!

There is a fundamentally irrational element to much of the fear-mongering, which this thread is bringing out.

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#19 of 47 Old 11-14-2016, 07:30 AM
 
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I'm bumping this to share a fascinating link.

Quote:
On average, one American dies each day in a bathtub accident -- and one American dies each year from a shark attack. Bathtubs should be 365 times as frightening as sharks, but it's the reverse. We don't have "Bathtub Week" on the Discovery Channel.
Quote:
In case my point is not clear, we are more comfortable with familiar sensations and risks than unfamiliar ones.
It likely describes why it's so easy to fear-monger about vaccines.

But medical error? Meh. "I see my doctor all the time, and I'm still OK." Driving? "I commute to work every day, and I'm still OK." A 0.3% national non-medical exemption rate for all vaccines? "WE'RE GONNA DIE! POLIO'S COMING BACK!!!!!!"

By the way, I'm sure those bathtub deaths can be attributed to the rise of the anti-bath mat movement.

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#20 of 47 Old 11-14-2016, 10:00 AM
 
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I'm bumping this to share a fascinating link.


It likely describes why it's so easy to fear-monger about vaccines.

But medical error? Meh. "I see my doctor all the time, and I'm still OK." Driving? "I commute to work every day, and I'm still OK." A 0.3% national non-medical exemption rate for all vaccines? "WE'RE GONNA DIE! POLIO'S COMING BACK!!!!!!"

By the way, I'm sure those bathtub deaths can be attributed to the rise of the anti-bath mat movement.
Time for a bit of off-topic historical trivia--which may or may not be true--when the medieval european world rediscovered bathing they used mostly wooden bath tubs--which are prone to splinters--so the first bath mats were designed to be used in the tub, under the bottom of the bather--not next to the tub.

The anti-bath mat movement is mainly opposed to Big Bath...
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#21 of 47 Old 11-16-2016, 09:19 AM
 
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To return to the topic, the Gardasil story is a sort of battle of fears. On one side we have cervical cancer and other cancers: "your teen will die" to which the vaccine critics respond: "eventually" or "most people can clear HPV with no problems" or "all the studies claiming safety were done by industry" and so on.

On the other side we have claims of chronic illness: "your teen will have to quit school, will be sick and miserable and in pain, life will become an endless treadmill of illness" etc., to which the vaccine supporters respond: "coincidence" or "look at the millions of doses compared to the tiny number who have become ill" or "just a few muscle aches and fatigue, don't make a big fuss".

So not only do we have fearmongering, we have an active program of "anti-fearmongering".
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#22 of 47 Old 11-23-2016, 06:41 PM
 
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http://www.fiercepharma.com/marketin...Ewekd1QVFRPSJ9
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#23 of 47 Old 11-23-2016, 06:55 PM
 
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I had just glanced at this thread and was thinking about the topic when that article popped up on a page I watch. Weird!
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#25 of 47 Old 11-25-2016, 08:11 AM
 
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Yes, it sounds like emotional manipulation will increasingly become part of the compliance-pushing agenda. http://www.forbes.com/sites/tarahael.../#5da7d7b95a42

What pisses me off is that the study discussed in this article presented an extremely atypical case of rubella. Very disingenuous. That impels me to think: When it comes to pushing vaccine schedule compliance, do they ends justify the means? Is it OK to play dirty however possible? What would the vaccine schedule supporters find acceptable to achieve the goal of full compliance? Lies? Coercion? Emotional manipulation? Bodily and informed consent violations?

It seems like all of these have been done and justified. Are vaccines more important than ethics? If traffic picks up in here, I may start a new thread about this.

“It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgment of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines.” - Marcia Angell, M.D., former NEJM Editor
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#26 of 47 Old 11-25-2016, 08:54 AM
 
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@Turquesa have you been following the VaxXed periscopes/YouTube videos of Dr Suzanne Humphries' reports of the Offit/Pan/Reiss meeting in NY "Confronting Vaccine Resistance" (see INV thread)? The pro-compliance side is allowed to use vaccine horror anecdotes by the other side are to be slapped down for telling their vaccine injuring stories.

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#27 of 47 Old 11-25-2016, 01:13 PM
 
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Their anecdotes are science...

Anecdotes about vaccine injury are not science.

Hasn't anyone told you?

vaccine injury is preventable
prevent it
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#28 of 47 Old 11-25-2016, 01:50 PM
 
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And their ONE anecdote (science) trumps tens of thousands of parental anecdotes (not science). And their ONE anecdote, the example Dr Humphries said one of the doctors on the panel mentioned was a very severe case of chicken pox and that ONE case is enough to demand everyone in the world be vaccinated for chicken pox. Nevermind the big picture, like why did this child have such a serious case, nevermind that there are things you can do to prevent a severe case? There is a term I learned today, the Intellectual Yet Idiot, I think this is very apt for this bunch.

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#29 of 47 Old 11-25-2016, 09:36 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mirzam View Post
@Turquesa have you been following the VaxXed periscopes/YouTube videos of Dr Suzanne Humphries' reports of the Offit/Pan/Reiss meeting in NY "Confronting Vaccine Resistance" (see INV thread)? The pro-compliance side is allowed to use vaccine horror anecdotes by the other side are to be slapped down for telling their vaccine injuring stories.
I haven't made my way through the entire video yet, (hard to do when playing any online video turns me into an instant kid magnet ), but may make an attempt at it late tonight.

Is this the strategy that Offit and Reiss suggest? If so, then yes, I would consider your example a case of playing dirty to ensure compliance.
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“It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgment of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines.” - Marcia Angell, M.D., former NEJM Editor
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#30 of 47 Old 11-25-2016, 09:36 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mirzam View Post
@Turquesa have you been following the VaxXed periscopes/YouTube videos of Dr Suzanne Humphries' reports of the Offit/Pan/Reiss meeting in NY "Confronting Vaccine Resistance" (see INV thread)? The pro-compliance side is allowed to use vaccine horror anecdotes by the other side are to be slapped down for telling their vaccine injuring stories.
I haven't made my way through the entire video yet, (hard to do when playing any online video turns me into an instant kid magnet ), but may make an attempt at it late tonight.

Is this the strategy that Offit and Reiss suggest? If so, then yes, I would consider your example a case of playing dirty to push vaccine compliance.
applejuice likes this.

“It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgment of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines.” - Marcia Angell, M.D., former NEJM Editor
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