Ernesto Contreras

From SourceWatch
Jump to navigation Jump to search

"Contreras was a former Mexican Army pathologist who was in private practice in Tijuana. After he administered the Laetrile, Mrs. Hoffman became convinced that it controlled her cancer and saved her life. She remained a fervent Laetrile supporter until she died of metastatic breast cancer in 1969. Hoffman's convictions led her to form the International Association of Cancer Victims and Friends (IACVF) in 1963. (The word Victims was later changed to Victors.) IACVF's purpose was "to educate the general public to the options available to cancer patients, especially terminal cancer patients." Joining forces with health food industry promoters, the association began holding annual conventions in Los Angeles that drew thousands of people. These meetings provided a forum for virtually anyone who either promised or sold a cancer remedy that was not recognized as effective by the scientific community. The Krebs spoke often at these conferences. IACVF also founded the Cancer Book House, which sold literature promoting unorthodox cancer treatments. In addition, it arranged for room, board and transportation to Contreras' clinic from a California motel near the border.

"Contreras, meanwhile, expanded his clinic and added translators to his staff to accommodate the influx of American patients. Business was so brisk that in 1970 he constructed a new clinic-the Del Mar Medical Center and Hospital—which he promoted as "an oasis of hope." (His facility is now called Oasis Hospital.)

"In 1973, several leaders left IACVF to found the Cancer Control Society, whose activities are similar to those of IACVF. Another group promoting dubious cancer therapies is the National Health Federation (NHF), which supports a broad spectrum of questionable health methods. This group was founded in 1955 by Fred J. Hart, president of the Electronic Medical Foundation, a company that marketed quack devices. NHF sponsors meetings, generates massive letter-writing campaigns, and helps defend questionable methods in court cases. Four people who have served on its board of governors and the husband of its current president have been convicted of laetrile-related crimes." [1]

Resources and articles

Related Sourcewatch