So, what can we do?
If you are thinking "Gosh, you haven't accomplished much trying to convince the AAP", well, you are right.
But I do believe that if enough pediatricians speak out, the AAP will listen. Or, if the AAP still won't, perhaps someone in the media will call them on this, forcing their hand.
So,here is how you can help if you, like me, want the AAP to stop letting anti-vaccinators Sears and Gordon "hide in the herd" of us pediatricians who know how critical vaccination is to keeping our kids healthy:
1. Send a strong letter to the AAP expressing your concern. Feel free to use any/all of the reasons I cite here. I have a pre-written form letter you can copy as a starting template if you'd like. If the AAP doesn't respond to your letter, consider sending them a follow up letter threatening cancellation of or actually cancelling your membership. Again, I received no response for 3 years in a row writing the AAP (but finally did after I stopped paying my AAP dues on year 4), but maybe if a lot of pediatricians wrote in, they might think differently. You should ask yourself if the AAP is worth your hard-earned money if they don't have the courage of their convictions to openly speak out against Sears's and Gordon's anti-vaccine views "for the health of all children"
2. Take up this issue with your local AAP chapter. Maybe they will rally with you. Mine, here in Arizona, simply kicked the can up the road to the national AAP offices (but to their credit, they did get me a call back from AAP leadership). Maybe your chapter will take up this cause.
3. Join me in signing the petition I've created at ipetitions.com . I've set a goal of 1,000 signatures at which point it will be presented to the AAP.
4. Spread word of this web site to your colleagues by email, facebook, twitter, ect.
Whether you do any or all of the above, I thank you for your time and consideration in this important matter
-Chris Hickie, MD, PhD