‘Stick to talking about activated almonds’: RACGP President slams anti-vax support

Matt Woodley

14/01/2020 2:44:42 PM

Celebrity chef Pete Evans has sparked controversy by promoting the work of a prominent anti-vaccination advocate.

RACGP President Dr Harry Nespolon describes vaccines as ‘one of the great success stories of modern medicine’.

Most famous for his work as a judge on My Kitchen Rules, Pete Evans has regularly run afoul of medical and scientific groups for the advice he gives to fans via documentaries and his social media pages.
His most recent foray into the world of medicine saw him praise the ‘important work’ of Robert F. Kennedy Jr in an Instagram post that also tags Children’s Health Defence, an organisation that distributes anti-vaccination conspiracy theories and actively lobbies against childhood vaccinations.
The post generated a stream of condemnation, including from RACGP President Dr Harry Nespolon, who said ‘vaccines save lives’ and described the situation as ‘intensely frustrating’.
‘Vaccines are one of the great success stories of modern medicine, but the rise of the anti-vaxxer trend has eroded some of these gains and led to needless death and suffering,’ he said.
‘Robert F. Kennedy is not doing “important work” for coming generations; he is perpetuating dangerous, anti-scientific myths which are causing tremendous harm in countries including the United States and Australia.
‘I understand that many people look up to Mr Evans in his roles as a popular chef and television host. I hope that he rethinks the company he keeps and books an appointment with his local GP to learn about the damage he is doing.’

It is not the first time Mr Evans has contradicted doctors on vaccinations, having previously courted controversy by endorsing a podcast that promoted anti-vaccination views.
He has also previously been criticised for telling a person with osteoporosis to avoid dairy, as it can ‘remove the calcium from your bones’; saying the keto diet can assist people with autism, asthma and cancer; and describing fluoride as a ‘neurotoxin’ and a ‘major contributor for [sic] thyroid, brain and degenerative diseases’.
Dr Nespolon has a simple message for anyone potentially persuaded by Mr Evans’ social media activity.
‘This isn’t just about you and your children. We can only achieve herd immunity and stop the re-emergence of diseases that had earlier been eliminated such as measles if all children’s vaccinations are up to date,’ he said.
‘Pete Evans should stick to talking about “activated almonds” and leave vaccinations alone.’
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Dr Peter James Strickland   15/01/2020 1:43:59 PM

Vaccinations are one of the most important developments in the last century, and continuing. Once one sees the results of measles encephalitis and meningococcus etc. on patients and families, one realises how important all that work by vaccine scientists and the medical profession in instituting the safe recommendations of all these modern vaccines, and many hopefully to come for malaria, Ross River virus etc. Anyone not vaccinating their children in Australia against these previously dangerous diseases should NOT be covered by Medicare, nor the NDIS, if they or their children acquire one of these preventable diseases, i.e. for those diseases, and thus carry the risk of full medical costs or being sued if they pass any preventable disease to a child or adult who is unable to be fully vaccinated due to age or immunity problems.

Dr Robert Stewart Richardson   15/01/2020 3:11:23 PM

I will treat any unvaccinated child for anything but I will not see or treat the the anti vaccination parents, except in cases of emergency.

Dr Pearlle Mew Nin Chan   16/01/2020 6:49:53 PM

I have no time for Peter Evans

Dr Oresti Mellios   3/05/2020 6:36:44 PM

The world knows the real truth. Should almost be made a criminal offence. The social media sites need to pull their socks up and refuse presence to such views. If this wasn't a public forum I would be using lots of famous Aussie adjectives to describe such dangerous beliefs . Love to have a one on one conversation with him. I am very good at changing people's minds !