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Anti-Vaccine Crusader Says Trump Tapped Him To Lead Vaccination Safety Commission

The meeting between Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and Donald Trump is alarming scientists. “It gives it a quasi-legitimacy that I frankly find frightening,” said William Schaffner, a professor of preventive medicine and infectious diseases at Vanderbilt University. However, Trump's transition team has released a statement saying he is only exploring the option of forming a committee on autism.

The New York Times: Anti-Vaccine Activist Says Trump Wants Him To Lead Panel On Immunization Safety
A prominent anti-vaccine crusader said on Tuesday that President-elect Donald J. Trump had asked him to lead a new government commission on vaccine safety and scientific integrity — a possibility that spread alarm among medical experts that Mr. Trump could be giving credence to debunked conspiracy theories about the dangers of immunizations. The vaccine skeptic, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., a nephew of former President John F. Kennedy, said that Mr. Trump, who has repeatedly embraced discredited links between vaccines and autism, had asked him to lead the commission during a meeting with the president-elect at Trump Tower on Tuesday. (Shear, Haberman and Belluck, 1/10)

In other administration news —

The Associated Press: Trump's HHS Pick Faces Calls For Probe Of Stock Trades
President-elect Donald Trump's nominee to be the nation's top health official is facing calls for investigation of whether his stock picks were guided by insider knowledge gleaned as a senior member of Congress. Rep. Tom Price, R-Ga., was chosen by Trump in part because of his plan to repeal "Obamacare," and his confirmation hearings are expected to be a spirited debate about the future of federal health insurance programs. (1/11)

The Associated Press: Veterans Care Still 'High Risk' As Trump Mulls VA Head
Veterans health care remains a "high risk" issue threatening the federal budget and quality of care for former service members, auditors say in a forthcoming report. The nonpartisan Government Accountability Office will place the Veteran Affairs Department's health system once again on its "high risk" list when it's released next month. (1/11)

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