Diluted Thinking

in Australian healthcare

Anti-vaccination naturopath, Karen McElroy

Basic Details

Name:
Karen McElroy
Business:
Karen McElroy Naturopath & Medical Herbalist
Location:
Noosaville & Buderim, QLD
Qualifications:
Naturopathy; Herbal Medicine
Professional
  • Guest lecturer at University of the Sunshine Coast for the Masters of Midwifery program
  • Supervisor student clinic Endeavour College (Brisbane)
Member
  • NHAA;
  • AAMA;
  • Weston A Price Foundation

NHAA - Code of Ethics

The following list contains excerpts from In my opinion, the Code does not permit its Registrants to publicly comment on health-related matters when relying on non-valid sources e.g. pseudoscientific and/or conspiracy websites, nor does it permit the use of scare articles and/or images to emotionally manipulate patients and the public.

  • 4.1 Personal Conduct
    The medical herbalist shall:
    • i. Remain aware that personal conduct may reflect upon their own professional reputation, that of the profession, and of the Association.
  • 4.2 Professional Conduct
    • 2. It is the responsibility of all medical herbalists to enhance their reputation and that of the profession by practicing herbal medicien to the best of their ability and within the limits of their expertise, and by continually upgrading and expanding their knowledge base.
    • 7. A medical herbalist shall at no time adversely affect the standing of the profession by taking part in or promoting any activity or product that will reflect improperly on the practice of herbal medicine or on the profession.
  • 4.3 Conduct in Relation to Patients
    • 6. The medical herbalist shall not knowingly undertake any action or treatment that might adversely affect the health of a patient or fellow human being.
  • 4.5 Advertising
    • 3. Practitioners shall not use advertising material that may bring the profession into disrepute by identifying past or present patients; or use material that is ethically or professionally unsuitable.
    • 5. A practitioner shall not advertise secret or exclusive methods of treatment or claim to be able to achieve unexpected cures.
  • 5. Standards of Care
    The relationship between a practitioner and patient is such that the patient places trust in the care, skill and integrity of the practitioner. It is the duty of the practitioner and the practitioner's staff to act with due diligence at all times and not abuse this trust in any way.
  • 7. The Medical Herbalist and Members of the Association and the Profession
    • 1. A practitioner shall at no time take part in or promote any activity, verbal or otherwise, which will reflect improperly or denigrate the standing of herbalism or the Association within the general community or in any professional circles.
    • 6. Should a consultation or investigation find a condition in a patient that requires treatment outside the practitioner's area of qualification, expertise or knowledge, that practitioner bears a duty of care to the patient to make a referral for specialised treatment.
  • 8. The Medical Herbalist and Other Professions
    • 1. Practitioners shall at all times show due respect to practitioners of other disciplines.

Promoting Homeoprophylaxis

screenshottext
description:
Karen McElroy promoting the use of homeoprophylaxis whilst stating it is healthier not to be vaccinated, on the page of a disgraced anti-vaccination conspiracy group.

McElroy [quote]:
''I see this in my clinic every day too! The healthiest kids are the unvaccinated ones. And I still stock the remedies for homeoprophylaxis.''

[linked source] Australian Vaccination-skeptics Network (AVN)

Source: McElroy, K 2012, Facebook post, 13 February, viewed 16 March 2017, <https://www.facebook.com/avn.living.wisdom/posts/10150552232161925>

Anti-vaccination

The evidence presented here shows this practitioner: NOTE: all evidence was available to be viewed by the public at time of capture.

Evidence

From website page, Autism Natural Treatment:
''The exact cause of ASD is unknown, and researchers continue to investigate and come up with new theories. Much of the research has been focussing on looking at genetic factors, however environmental issues are increasingly in the spotlight. Environmental culprits include everything from heavy metals such as mercury and aluminium (found for example in vaccines and some foods) to food additives and electromagnetic radiation from wireless technology.''

From website page, Natural Health for Babies & Toddlers Workshop:

''This half day workshop covers specific principles of holistic health care in babies and toddlers from birth to 2-3 years. Parents will learn how to keep their babies and toddlers healthy through diet & lifestyle and how to manage common childhood issues & ailments at home with confidence using natural methods, such as herbs & homoeopathics. Covering a range of issues from digestion, immunity, the pros and cons of vaccination to sleep issues and infant feeding. The information is comprehensive and up-to-date and the course includes a 50 page digital e-book filled with notes and practical reference material.''

From website page, Listen to Karen's radio interviews, Autism - Exploring Causes & Cures, McElroy claims the increase in autism is partly due to vaccinations.

screenshottext
description:
Karen McElroy providing misinformation that could encourage people not to vaccinate, linking to the disgraced anti-vaccination conspiracy group, the Australian Vaccination-skeptics Network (AVN), on her business website.
Source: McElroy, K 2017, Resources & Links, Karen McElroy Naturopath & Medical Herbalist, viewed 16 March 2017, <http://karenmcelroy.com.au/links/>
description:
Karen McElroy providing misinformation that could encourage people not to vaccinate.

McElroy [quote]:
''and let's not forget the many flaws in efficacy of the vaccines anyway!''

''Hooray! New research confirms what we already know - that the whooping cough vaccine is mostly ineffective after a couple of years. Only 10% of children remain 'protected' after 8 years… But instead of questioning the vaccine or rethinking how we deal with childhood illness per se, we are just told we need more boosters.''

Source: McElroy, K 2015, Facebook post, 14 April, viewed 16 March 2017, <https://www.facebook.com/KarenMcElroyNaturopath/posts/1114042145288113>
description:
Karen McElroy providing misinformation that could encourage people not to vaccinate.

McElroy [quote]:
''since when does the government have the power to decide what drug/chemical/heavy metal I put in my body or my childrens?
Vaccination is a personal choice, not a moral imperative.
The real debate needs to happen about why we have out of control levels of allergies and autoimmunity since the reduction in childhood infections from vaccination. These modern illnesses are life long issues with major and chronic morbidity.''

''Please have your say on this matter…''

Source: McElroy, K 2015, Facebook post, 14 April, viewed 16 March 2017, <https://www.facebook.com/KarenMcElroyNaturopath/posts/1114010671957927>
description:
Karen McElroy providing misinformation that could encourage people not to vaccinate.

McElroy [quote]:
''Hooray! New research confirms what we already know - that the whooping cough vaccine is mostly ineffective after a couple of years. Only 10% of children remain 'protected' after 8 years… But instead of questioning the vaccine or rethinking how we deal with childhood illness per se, we are just told we need more boosters.''

Source: McElroy, K 2015, Facebook post, 10 January, viewed 16 March 2017, <https://www.facebook.com/KarenMcElroyNaturopath/photos/a.370385362987132.107890.366244633401205/1053186918040303/?type=3>
description:
Karen McElroy providing misinformation that could encourage people not to vaccinate.

McElroy [quote]:
''Oh look… while you do your grocery shopping you can get yourself a vaccine! How convenient…!''

[attached image is a poster listing vaccinations that are available]

Source: McElroy, K 2014, Facebook post, 26 September, viewed 16 March 2017, <https://www.facebook.com/KarenMcElroyNaturopath/photos/a.370385362987132.107890.366244633401205/972665502759112/?type=3>
description:
Karen McElroy providing misinformation that could encourage people not to vaccinate.

McElroy [quote]:
''A senior scientist at the USA Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a public statement last week admitting he and CDC co-authors of a MMR vaccine safety study published in 2004 in Pediatrics "ommitted statistically significant information" and that "the final study protocol was not followed."
Seriously, how can we get unbiased information when the drug companies are hand in hand with the government officials…????''

Source: McElroy, K 2014, Facebook post, 2 September, viewed 16 March 2017, <https://www.facebook.com/KarenMcElroyNaturopath/photos/a.370385362987132.107890.366244633401205/957187964306866/?type=3>
description:
Karen McElroy providing misinformation that could encourage people not to vaccinate.

McElroy [quote]:
''The now restricted Swine flu vaccine was shown to increase the risk of narcolepsy in children. Rates of narcolepsy were between 7 and 13 times higher in children who were immunized with Pandemrix than in those who were not. After getting his study rejected by the prestigious Lancet & New England Medical Journal the researcher finally got it published - amid controversy. Seems that the scientific/medical community aren't too keen for us to hear about the genuine, well documented vaccine side effects.''

Source: McElroy, K 2013, Facebook post, 13 May, viewed 16 March 2017, <https://www.facebook.com/KarenMcElroyNaturopath/posts/651951711497161>
description:
McElroy contributing to the vaccination scare campaign, holding a workshop that includes learning about the cons of vaccination.

McElroy [quote]:
''For pregnant couples and new parents… check out my Natural Health for Babies workshop on Saturday 9th Feb.''

''Come and learn how to keep your baby & toddler super healthy, manage common ailments at home, boost immunity, learn about the pros & cons of vaccination and much more.''

linked material:
[title] ''Courses | Karen McElroy''

[content] ''This workshop covers specific principles of holistic…''

[linked source] Fit for Birth via Karen McElroy

Source: McElroy, K 2013, Facebook post, 24 January, viewed 16 March 2017, <https://www.facebook.com/Fitforbirth/posts/242957489171887>
description:
Karen McElroy providing misinformation that could encourage people not to vaccinate.

McElroy [quote]:
''Whooping cough vaccine has once again been shown to be largely ineffective over time. When analysing data of recent epidemics, it was found that a small proportion of children were susceptible to pertussis due to their unvaccinated status, but waning of immunity following DTaP vaccination resulted in a much larger pool of susceptible individuals. If the vaccine is so effective, then why do they recommend 5 doses followed by regular boosters?''

Source: McElroy, K 2012, Facebook post, 6 December, viewed 16 March 2017, <https://www.facebook.com/KarenMcElroyNaturopath/photos/a.370385362987132.107890.366244633401205/563496250342708/?type=3>

description:
Karen McElroy providing misinformation that could encourage people not to vaccinate, suggesting that it is favourable for children to suffer from whooping cough. Also, don't get emotional about babies that die from whooping cough.

McElroy [quote]:
''Ok… so the USA is in the midst of a whooping cough "epidemic" with predictions that it could be the worst season in 50 years. The incidence is effecting all age groups, but one spike has occurred in 10-13 year old kids - who are vaccinated, suggesting that despite calls for everyone to get booster shots, the vaccine is not very effective. The old DTP vaccine was replaced in the late 90's due to high reactions, but it appears that the new acellular type is much less effective.
From another perspective on this, whooping cough is considered an essential disease of childhood in Chinese Medicine, due to its favourable impact on the developing immune system. Both my kids have had whooping cough and while it wasn't much fun - they definitely have stronger constitutions since then. All interesting food for thought…''

[comment from reader] ''I'm always a little wary of statistics, as they can be skewed to benefit either side. I do feel a lot more needs to be done by our medical professionals to find out what's going on, and how best we can continue to protect the babies, children, ourselves & the elderly in our society. But I don't think it's a matter of just stopping immunization. It's hard to tell someone who's lost a baby to whooping cough it was a disease they had to have.''

[McElroy] '' Hi [redacted] - I thought this might open a can of worms and I totally agree that it is a difficult area to assess and statistics are always fraught with bias. When we bring emotions into the argument too - either regarding deaths/harm attributable to a disease or a vaccination - it is a no-win situation. I just like to keep the debate broad, accurate and informative and each person needs to make up their own mind about what is right - and I always respect informed choice whichever way it falls.''

[comment from reader] ''Sophie and several others got whooping cough within 2 weeks of last vaccine in year 10 at st Clare's. We were contacted by dept of health who after accusing me of not vaccinted demanded to see her baby book! They then advised me that the book was wrong and she shouldn't have had so many…? Bega hospital told me she had asthma - I demanded "the swab" & when they asked why? I would be just my luck? I had to force them to do it. They said they'd let me know in 3 days. Dept health contacted me 10 days later? She also had reactions to the HPV which they're now saying has NOT been properly tested regarding long term effects… it's not good!''

[McElroy] ''Thanks [redacted] for your comments… the HPV gardisal [sic] vaccination appears to have the highest reaction rate of nearly any of them. Weirdly the vaccine only covers the particular HP virus that is attributable to around 30% of cases. Many of the reactions were written off as "hysterical girls" making it up - which is insulting to say the least. Now they are bringing in the HPV vaccine for boys, it will be interesting how many reactions they report and what the reason will be - because as we all know teenage boys are not hysterical. LOL.''

Source: McElroy, K 2012, Facebook post, 28 July, viewed 16 March 2017, <https://www.facebook.com/KarenMcElroyNaturopath/photos/a.370385362987132.107890.366244633401205/499336110092056/?type=3>
description:
Karen McElroy providing misinformation that could encourage people not to vaccinate, posting an article from a health conspiracy website.

McElroy [quote]:
''Have you heard about the lawsuit against pharmaceutical giant Merck in relation to its mumps vaccine? The lengths the drug companies go to are incredible. For instance, two former Merck virologists, claim they witnessed first-hand the improper testing and falsification of data that was done to hide the fact that the vaccine has significantly declined in effectiveness. And this is just a small part of the story, read more here at…''

linked material:
[title] ''Did the Wall Street Journal Bury the Merck Fraud Story?''

[content] ''Merck faces a lawsuit against their mumps vaccine effectiveness after their two previous virologists filed…''

[linked source] Mercola

Source: McElroy, K 2012, Facebook post, 23 July, viewed 16 March 2017, <https://www.facebook.com/KarenMcElroyNaturopath/posts/369401236465824>

description:
Karen McElroy providing misinformation that could encourage people not to vaccinate, posting to the disgraced anti-vaccination conspiracy group, AVSN.

McElroy [quote]:
''Just came across a Medscape report on the increase in measles. 'The 222 cases and 17 outbreaks seen in 2011 are nearly four times the median of 60 cases and four outbreaks per year seen over the last decade. A third of patients were hospitalized. The surge in cases is largely due to people who have not been vaccinated with the measles/mumps/rubella (MMR) vaccine, the CDC says. A significant percentage of these people are children and teens whose parents exempted them from school vaccination requirements.' ''

''Interesting take on it - I would like to know the exact percentage of vaccinated v unvaccinated children that caught measles and which ones ended up in hospital!''

[comment from reader] ''Vaccinated child with a rash - diagnosis roseola. Unvaccinated child with rash - diagnosis measles. This is a simplification of course but it essentially tells the tale. The figures are meaningless because many (probably most) doctors take into account vaccination status when they make their notifications/diagnoses.''

[McElroy] ''I actually think confirmed cases are via serology - not just the doctor's guesstimate. Antibody detection is the most versatile and commonly used method for measles diagnosis because of the high incidence of viral illnesses with rashes. IgM assay is the test of choice for rapid diagnosis of measles cases. I have had patients who have had doctors diagnose measles based on clinical presentation - but in my opinion most of these probably weren't. Without blood tests, we cannot be sure what virus it is.''

Source: McElroy, K 2012, Facebook post, 28 April, viewed 16 March 2017, <https://www.facebook.com/avn.living.wisdom/posts/10150719543651925>