MOH Slanders Newly Appointed UNESCO Bioethics Chief
Ron Law & Barbara Sumner Burstyn
The Ministry of Health has slandered three Norwegian pro-vaccine professors of medicine, including the newly appointed
UNESCO Bioethics Chief, Professor Jan Helge Solbakk.
Prior to the New Zealand screening of a Norwegian documentary on TV1’s Sunday program about the unethical behaviour of
the Ministry of Health, the Ministry declared the documentary ‘anti-vaccination.’ Made by Norway’s state TV, the New
Zealand MoH claimed it was made by and featured rabid anti-immunization zealots.
The Ministry press release omitted the following information:
Professor Guldberg is an esteemed clinical pharmacologist and has served as chairman of the National Committee for
Medical Research Ethics in Norway for two periods. He has acted as member of several monitoring committees for clinical
trials, including Norway’s meningococcal B vaccine phase III trial.
Professor Saugstad is considered one of Europe's leading neonatologists. Professor Saugstad raised serious safety
concerns about the MeNZB vaccine with New Zealand officials in 2003… those concerns were ignored.
Professor Jan Helge Solbakk is an MD, cand. theoil, Dr. philos, Professor of Section for Medical Ethics, University of
Oslo, Adjunct Professor, Centre for International Health, University of Bergen. He served as secretary of the National
Committee for Medical Research Ethics in Norway when the phase III trial was conducted.
Professor Solbakk had attempted to raise concerns about safety and informed consent issues in Norway. In the documentary
he expressed very serious concerns about what he called an unethical medical experiment being conducted in New Zealand.
Professor Solbakk has declared in writing that neither he, nor his two academic colleagues, Professor Saugstad and
Professor Guldberg, are 'anti-immunization' people, as claimed by the Ministry of Health.
“On the contrary, we are all three strong defenders of vaccine programs as long as they have gone through rigorous
procedures of safety and efficacy assessment, which, unfortunately is not the case with the NZ vaccine,” said Jan Helge
The Ministry of Health’s insult to Professor Solbakk is at odds with his recent appointment as chief of the Bioethics
Section at the UNESCO headquarters in Paris.
While slandering colleagues is not unheard of in the medical profession, it is extremely unusual and unethical for a
government department to mislead the public as to the qualifications and positions of colleagues, especially those held
in such high international esteem.
The Ministry of Health’s actions are further evidence of the need for a formal inquiry into their rude, embarrassing and
grossly unethical behavior. They also need to issue a public apology forthwith.