Kia Slade was seven months pregnant, unvaccinated, and fighting for breath, her oxygen levels plummeting, when her son came into the world last May. A severe case of covid pneumonia had left Slade delirious. When the intensive care team tried to place an oxygen mask on her face, she snatched it away, she recalled. Her baby’s heart rate began to drop. Slade’s doctor performed an emergency cesarean section at her bedside in the intensive care unit, delivering baby Tristan 10 weeks early. He weighed just 2 pounds, 14 ounces, about half the size of small full-term baby. But Slade wouldn’t…

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Like most other kids with covid, Dante and Michael DeMaino seemed to have no serious symptoms. Infected in mid-February, both lost their senses of taste and smell. Dante, 9, had a low-grade fever for a day or so. Michael, 13, had a “tickle in his throat,” said their mother, Michele DeMaino, of Danvers, Massachusetts. At a follow-up appointment, “the pediatrician checked their hearts, their lungs, and everything sounded perfect,” DeMaino said. Then, in late March, Dante developed another fever. After examining him, Dante’s doctor said his illness was likely “nothing to worry about” but told DeMaino to take him to…

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Anti-vaccine groups are exploiting the suffering and death of people who happen to fall ill after receiving a covid shot, threatening to undermine the largest vaccination campaign in U.S. history. In some cases, anti-vaccine activists are fabricating stories of deaths that never occurred. “This is exactly what anti-vaccine groups do,” said Dr. Peter Hotez, an infectious diseases specialist and author of “Preventing the Next Pandemic: Vaccine Diplomacy in a Time of Anti-Science.” Anti-vaccine groups have falsely claimed for decades that childhood vaccines cause autism, weaving fantastic conspiracy theories involving government, Big Business and the media. Now, the same groups are…

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