I get it. I really do. Over the last year the Chiropractors’ Association of Australia has been dragged kicking and screaming into the Age of Evidence. The other main chiropractic representative body, the Chiropractic and Osteopathic College of Australasia (COCA), is already there. Of their own accord COCA works industriously to ensure the evidence base for its profession is maintained. The CAA is acting because it doesn’t have a choice. Those high up know they are staring up from inside the S-bend, and they are fighting for the rim, with bloodied fingernails.
Only last year I wrote about the inclusion of anti-vaccine subluxationist Stephen Franson, and his role as the lead speaker at the CAA’s National Development Forum. The CAA president even put out a press release disclaiming Franson’s basic beliefs as not representative of his NDF subject matter.
So here we are again, almost one year later. The CAA NSW is holding its Annual General Meeting Seminar Weekend in one month. The lead speaker is Jeanne Ohm, a US chiropractor who first came to my attention whilst I was reading up on anti-vaccine chiropractors, for my series. In fact, Ohm first came into my field of vision as an anti-vaccine chiropractor.
Ohm is perceived in chiropractic circles as somewhat of an expert in the area of perinatal care: and this is the subject of her presentation at the CAA AGM:
I’m not going to focus too much on this subject, including the Webster Technique – as I believe others may cover that shortly – except to note that one of Ohm’s areas of expertise is the chiropractic/subluxationist invention of “birth trauma”:
It is her understanding that birth trauma is a current chiropractic concern, and therefore it has become her goal to eliminate its damaging effects on the newborn
Of course it is a “chiropractic concern”. It is an invention based on the vitalism inherent in non evidence based chiropractic: it gives a chance for the chiropractor to start laying their hands on babies from birth, for no benefit, apart from the appeasement of the chiropractor’s soul. Subluxations begin before birth, you know. It’s magic. And it’s an income.
[Edit August 22 - this article on Webster Technique and more was published on The Conversation, authored by Dr Mick Vagg: Chiropractic care in pregnancy and childhood – a castle built on a swamp. It is mandatory reading]
What I want to focus on, as is my wont, is the anti-vaccinationism of Jeanne Ohm. I have come to strongly believe that a person’s adherence to an ideology such as anti-vaccinationism is a very good indicator of the merit of anything else that particular person has to say. It’s a red flag. No, it’s more than that. It’s a red banner, daubed in Comic Sans, flying at the forefront of a column of Orcs. When someone can deny, in the face of the overwhelming literature, the benefits of something like immunisation, in lieu of their favourite ideologically driven beliefs, then, that person cannot be perceived to be able to think properly, or honestly. They have no place anywhere near mothers, babies, fathers, or computers.
Jeanne Ohm gives vaccination seminars at her business. Here is one from January 2014:
This is from the blog post linked by Ohm (she is one of the chief editors of Pathways to Family Wellness, the anti-vaccine, chiropractic magazine seen all over Facebook) [my bold]:
In another paper, Parental Fears Over Childhood Vaccination Must Be Addressed, it is clear that the number of parents questioning the medical system is becoming a major concern. This is another whole topic in itself, but very briefly, do not make your choices from “fearing the effects of vaccines” make your choices from a confidence that the body’s immune system out-performs any vaccine. If you are not quite fully assured, boost your confidence by realizing that the scientific literature does not substantiate many rhetorical recommendations for vaccinations. An interesting article published in Prevent Disease titled, “Nine Questions that Stump Every Pro-Vaccine Advocate and Their Claims” is listed below for your access.
You read that right. She cites that tragicomedy, Nine Questions, with a straight face. Ohm also cites the National Vaccine Information Center and Barbara Loe Fisher as if it’s a good thing:
There is another item I didn’t notice on her CAA CV; Ohm’s membership of the Help the Australian Vaccination Network Facebook group. I highly suggest having a look at the members list. There are many familiar chiropractic faces there:
Looking at Ohm’s Facebook page gives a further insight into what makes this anti-vaccine subluxationist tick. I wasn’t really aiming at kicking off with any Godwins, but, look, I wasn’t given any choice:
The ever reliable Gaia Health also amazingly gets a run on this respected practitioner’s page:
And what’s an anti-vaccine propagandist of the highest order without some Dr Paul Offit bashing? Citing The Refusers, again, no less:
Does the CAA NSW have any notion of the term “due diligence”?
Does the CAA NSW realise that clawing its way out of the bowl entails more that just staying above the water line?
I and others really do applaud some CAA boards for doing their best against a tide of vitalistic resentment. But, to be taken seriously means getting all the way out of the toilet.
Update same day
I had not noticed this image earlier. The callous and ignorant Rob Schneider tweet has itself caused internet fury over the last few days. The notoriously delusional anti-vaccine chiropractor, Billy DeMoss, shared it, adding his own insane capslock musings. That’s pretty bad.
Jeanne Ohm ‘liked’ it. She sure is a fine choice for the CAA NSW to headline their event. I don’t even have the energy to swear. The CAA is a joke: