Sunday, July 5, 2009

Hogging The Headlines #2: Swine Flu Vaccine Update

A Swine Flu vaccine is being fast-tracked, for commercial availability tres soon. Pharmaceutical giant Baxter says it has patented technology that cuts the usual vaccine development time in half, to about 13 weeks instead of 26.
While this may seem great news for those extremely concerned about contracting Swine Flu, we should be quite cautious about this “cure-all”. With such pressure on drug companies to produce a 'magic bullet' within a very tight timeframe, it is surely impossible to test the product to the rigorous levels normally adhered to. So, should compulsory vaccinations be imposed, we may find ourselves being the 'crash test dummies' for an unproven drug.
The last Swine Flu threat was in the mid-70s and, in America, it resulted in a massive vaccine campaign. But within a few months, $US1.3 billion of claims were filed by victims who had suffered paralysis from the experimental vaccine. Several hundred people developed crippling Guillain-Barré Syndrome (GBS) after their injections. Even healthy 20-year-olds ended up as paraplegics. The vaccine was also blamed for 25 deaths. Meanwhile, the deadly Swine Flu pandemic itself NEVER materialised.
When a vaccine is developed in a mere 13 weeks, you can be virtually assured it has not had the time to be tested in clinical trials to determine safety and effectiveness.
You may want to find out what your rights are, should any public health legislation require you and your children to be vaccinated.
And, as mentioned in my previous Swine Flu posting, maintain normal health precautions, and keep your immune system in optimal working order so that you're far less likely to acquire the infection to begin with.
Read my next Swine Flu update: 03 Sept.2009.

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