The baby was 9 months old, his birth weight was 8 lbs 5 ounces. At six months he weighed just shy of 20 pounds. Today he weighed 15 pounds – he was a skeleton and he was dying.
Mom had brought him in after treatment by his naturopath had failed. Constant coughing had made it impossible for him to take in adequate nutrition and starvation, coupled with a raging bacterial pneumonia were conspiring to shortly end his very short life.
We worked feverishly. Intubation, IV boluses, major antibiotics, vasopressors. All futile.
At 9:03 pm, after 30 minutes of cardiopulmonary resuscitation we pronounced him dead.
This boy had pertussis. His mother choose not to vaccinate him. I won’t enter that debate. Anyone who has ever watched a child die or become permanently disabled from a preventable illness supports vaccination.
The lesson to all this is that “teach the controversy” and “reasonable people can disagree” mantras need only apply to issues that are genuinely controversial or to disagreements that include two camps of people who actually possess reason.