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Top health official resigns over Italy’s “antiscientific” stance

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matori 发表于 2019-1-4 11:11:46 来自手机 | 显示全部楼层 |阅读模式
The head of Italy’s national health technology body has resigned, accusing the government of ignoring scientific evidence on vaccines and sinking to the type of populist policy that has marked the government of Donald Trump in the US.

Walter Ricciardi, president of the National Institute of Health (Istituto Superiore di Sanita), said that the antivaccine stance of the League and Five Star Movement coalition and its “unfounded” claims that immigrants spread diseases had made his position at the institute untenable.

In an interview with the national daily newspaper Corriere della Sera Ricciardi said that “representatives of the government have endorsed unscientific or frankly antiscientific positions on many issues.” His most pointed criticism was aimed at the far right minister of the interior, Matteo Salvini, who is also the deputy prime minister.

“It’s clear that when the deputy prime minister says that for him, as a father, there are too many vaccines, and that they are useless and dangerous, this is not just an unscientific approach; it’s antiscientific,” Ricciardi said.

The coalition government has tied itself in knots over plans to reverse, then not reverse, then partly reverse the 2017 Lorenzin law that made 10 preschool vaccinations obligatory.1 Confusion currently reigns, and Italy now accounts for roughly a third of all measles cases reported by countries in the European Economic Area.

Coverage of the measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine in Italy fell from 90.5% in 2010 to 87.2% in 2016,2 though there was some evidence of a rise in uptake (of 2.9%) in some regions while the Lorenzin law was enforced.3

Last month the coalition government outraged Italy’s medical and scientific community by dismissing all 30 experts who served as health policy advisers to the government on subjects including vaccination.4

Ricciardi, an internationally recognised expert on vaccination, drew parallels between Italy’s current leadership and Donald Trump in terms of its sceptical attitude towards science. “All this reminds me of Donald Trump’s recommendation that the US National Institutes of Health no longer use the term ‘evidence based,’” Ricciardi said. “It’s an approach taken by populists, who have great difficulty in interacting with science.” In December 2017 the Washington Post reported that the Trump administration had told the NIH’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that a of collection phrases, including “evidence based,” “science based,” and “transgender,” were inappropriate for use in budget reports.5

Ricciardi also claimed that Italy’s government was playing politics with public health by pressuring health officials to adopt policies favourable to antimigrant views. “To say repeatedly that migrants carry diseases is groundless and . . . has produced a form of self censorship in order not to contradict the political line,” he said.

The government has not yet commented on Ricciardi’s remarks.

Ricciardi himself has been the subject of some controversy. Last month Italy’s leading consumer group Codacons claimed that he had failed to be transparent about financial links with vaccine manufacturers.6 Codacons said it was asking Italy’s National Anti-Corruption Authority to investigate the links.

Ricciardi told The BMJ that he had “always declared scientific positions held in collaboration with pharmaceutical companies, in line with the national and international norms.” He denied that his departure from the National Institute of Health was related to the row.
意大利国家卫生技术机构负责人辞职,他指责政府忽视疫苗的科学证据,陷入唐纳德•特朗普(Donald Trump)在美国政府的民粹主义政策。
国家卫生研究院院长沃尔特•里恰尔迪(Walter Ricciardi)表示,联盟和五星运动联盟(Five Star Movement)的反疫苗立场及其“毫无根据”的说法,即移民会传播疾病,使他在研究所的职位难以为继。
在接受国家日报《晚邮报》(Corriere della Sera)采访时,里恰尔迪表示,“政府的代表在许多问题上支持不科学或坦率地说反对科学的立场。”他最尖锐的批评针对的是极右翼内政部长、副总理马泰奥·萨尔维尼(Matteo Salvini)。
“当作为一位父亲的副总理说,过多的疫苗没有用且危险,这很明显不仅仅是一种不科学的做法;而且是反科学的。”里恰尔迪说。
联合政府一直在计划逆转2017年的《洛伦津法》(Lorenzin law),该法律规定必须接种10种学龄前儿童疫苗。目前局面严重混乱,意大利的麻疹病例约占欧洲经济区国家报告的所有麻疹病例的三分之一。
在意大利,麻疹、腮腺炎和风疹疫苗的覆盖率从2010年的90.5%下降到2016年的87.2%,尽管有证据表明,在实施Lorenzin法律的同时,一些地区的接种率上升了2.9%
上个月,联合政府解雇了所有30名曾在政府担任包括疫苗接种在内的健康政策顾问的专家,这激怒了意大利的医学界和科学界。
里恰尔迪是国际公认的疫苗接种专家,他将意大利目前的领导层与唐纳德•特朗普在对待科学的怀疑态度方面相提并论。“所有这些都让我想起唐纳德·特朗普的建议,即美国国立卫生研究院不再使用‘基于证据’这个词,”里恰尔迪说。“这是很难与科学互动的民粹主义者采取的一种方式。”2017年12月,《华盛顿邮报》报道称,特朗普政府曾告诉美国国立卫生研究院疾病控制与预防中心,包括“基于证据”、“基于科学”和“跨性别者”在内的一系列收集短语不适用于预算报告。
里恰尔迪还声称,意大利政府利用公共卫生玩弄政治,向卫生部官员施加压力,要求他们采取有利于反移民观点的政策。“反复说移民携带疾病是没有根据的,而且……”为了不违背政治路线,已经产生了一种自我审查的形式。
政府尚未对里恰尔迪的言论发表评论。
里恰尔迪本人一直有一些争议的话题。上个月,意大利最大的消费者组织Codacons声称,他在与疫苗制造商的财务联系方面没有做到公开。Codacons表示,他们正在要求意大利国家反腐败机构调查这些联系。
里恰尔迪告诉《英国医学杂志》,他“总是根据国家和国际准则,与制药公司合作,公开自己的科学职务”。他否认自己离开美国国家卫生研究院与这起纠纷有关。
https://www.bmj.com/content/364/bmj.l50
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