Sunday, February 14, 2010

England drowning in swine flu vaccine; Poland has none and explains why/ BBC

From Fergus Walsh, BBC Medical correspondent:
By my reckoning (and this is an estimate only) around 5.25 million people have been vaccinated in Britain. That means there is an awful lot of vaccine - tens of millions of doses - going spare. I'm told an announcement is likely in around 10 days regarding what will be done with the remaining stocks. As yet we don't have figures for how much the vaccine cost - due to commercial confidentiality...

One option being discussed with GSK, which was described as "innovative" by the Chief Medical Officer Sir Liam Donaldson, would involve keeping a stockpile of adjuvant, the booster chemical which is produced separately from the vaccine and mixed later.
Poland's Health Ministry spokesman, Piotr Olechno, said

"the government had decided not to buy the vaccines because it could not guarantee there were no side effects and it did not want to take responsibility for those.

"We don't think that the vaccine is dangerous but we cannot agree with the pharmaceutical companies not taking responsibility for the potential side effects," said Mr Olechno.

"The companies wanted the government to take responsibility for any potential side effects and that contravenes Polish law."

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