Friday, October 15, 2004

Yahoo! News - No Chance of Chiron Vaccine, U.S. Says

Yahoo! News - No Chance of Chiron Vaccine, U.S. Says:

" "None of Chiron Corp.'s flu vaccine made at a British plant is safe, which means the U.S. flu vaccine supply will be half of what was expected, U.S. health officials said on Friday." "

Serratia contamination.

Yahoo! News - Fines, Jail Used to Enforce Flu Shot Rules

Yahoo! News - Fines, Jail Used to Enforce Flu Shot Rules:

" "As the vaccine shortage hits home and long lines queue around the supermarket, a handful of states and the nation's capital are threatening doctors and nurses with fines or even jail if they give flu shots to healthy, low-risk people.

Health care violators in Michigan face a misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in jail and a $200 fine if convicted, the health director said.

At least four other states %u2014 Massachusetts, New Mexico, Oregon and Wisconsin %u2014 and Washington, D.C., have issued similar orders with varying penalties." "

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Vaccines: The Short Run

From a new weblog I discovered today:

Vaccines: The Short Run:

""President Bush was correct when he said that liability risk is one factor in the recurrent shortage of vaccines...
Liability is not the only issue, however. Costly FDA regulations and requirements, for example to remove thimerosal from vaccines despite no evidence of safety problems, have pushed firms out of the industry.

A further problem is that the federal government is the major purchaser of vaccines, although not the flu vaccine, and it uses its monopsony powers and the law to require companies to sell at low prices. Firms have left the industry because they are squeezed on one end by regulation and on the other by low prices and, for vaccines like the flu vaccine not covered by VICP, potential liability. Note that even if the prices are high enough to earn the company a modest profit the point is that they are not high enough to make it worthwhile to make a surplus of vaccine that can be sold in the event of a contamination problem, as has happened this year. If the firms can't price high during a shortage then there is no incentive to plan for a shortage.""

[Via Marginal Revolution]

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

CDC Posts Interim Guidelines for Influenza Vaccination

CDC Posts Interim Guidelines for Influenza Vaccination

[Via Medscape Headlines]

U.S. Health Officials Release National Flu Pandemic Plan

U.S. Health Officials Release National Flu Pandemic Plan:

""The Dept of Health and Human Services recently released its plan to respond to and prepare for an influenza pandemic, detailing domestic actions as well as its role in the global health community.
The Nation's Health""

[Via Medscape Headlines]

Sunday, October 10, 2004

Can We Learn Something From The Flu Vaccine Shortage?

I hadn't thought of this until Michelle Malkin pointed it out in her excellent weblog:

""Why on earth does the U.S. get virtually all of its flu vaccine supply from just two manufacturers? Because federal bulk purchase of vaccines at government-controlled prices has made the vaccine market a market that few drug companies want to be in.


...the flawed approach used by the CDC--that is, using its buying clout to extract deep discounts from manufacturers--is exactly the same approach that John Kerry thinks the Medicare program should use for all prescription drugs, not just vaccines. More on our flawed vaccine policy here and here.""

[Via Michelle Malkin]

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