Examiner.com (November 24, 2009)
"GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) pharmaceuticals notified the Canadian Government that a batch of H1N1 vaccine had to be pulled off the market because of six (6) severe allergic reactions to the vaccine. The batch constituted 170,000 doses of the vaccine, and most of them may have already been administered.
"Several anti-vaccine groups have asserted that "big pharma" is constantly in collusion with other agencies (public and private) to cover-up vaccine adverse reactions. This recent move by GSK over only six people with reactions among thousands (perhaps millions) who have received the H1N1 vaccine seems to disprove those assertions.
"Apparently, "big pharma" is unable to cover-up six cases of adverse reactions and stands to lose millions in both stock and from H1N1 vaccine sales. Did the vaccine watchdogs triumph? Not quite. GSK, like other manufacturers, participate in collecting data on adverse reactions through different means. In Canada, the Public Health Agency of Canada is in charge of collecting information on any adverse reactions to H1N1 influenza vaccine or any other vaccine. Worse yet for some anti-vaccine groups, most vaccines in Canada do not contain thimerosal, a mercury-containing preservative (not adjuvant) that some groups continue to assert that it causes neurological damage despite continued evidence to the contrary. (Either that, or all studies are wrong.)..."
Oh, I don't know. Someone who has built a world-view around the assumption that shape-shifting, space-alien lizard people are running the world (August 23, 2009) isn't going to let a few new facts change that assumption.
H1N1 Vaccine Withdrawn: One BatchThe Public Health Agency of Canada's and GSK's actions are in the news:
"Batch of swine flu vaccines studied in Canada"
The Associated Press (November 24, 2009)
"Canadian doctors have been advised not to use a batch of 170,000 doses of swine flu vaccine while authorities investigate reports of allergic reactions among recipients, drug maker GlaxoSmithKline PLC said Tuesday.
"Authorities routinely monitor vaccines for any signals of problems, such as the allergic reactions that do occur, rarely, every year.
"Company spokeswoman Gwenan White said that GlaxoSmithKline advised medical staff in Canada last week to refrain from using one batch of the vaccine while they look into reports that that it might have caused more allergic reactions than normal.
" 'One batch has seen a slightly increased rate of anaphylaxis, she said. Anaphylaxis is life-threatening type of allergic shock...."
That is serious: but six cases among thousands - tens of thousands - hundreds of thousands or more - is not a huge percentage.
As the spokesman for Canada's health minister Tim Vail, said, "..."We're not seeing any thing wild or spooky or crazy about our vaccine at all," Vail said, arguing it may have been a statistical anomaly that the reactions occurred...."
But, of course, if Mr. Vail was one of the shape-shifting, space-alien lizard people: that's just what he would say! And, to a dedicated conspiracy theorist, that would prove that the lizard people were real. Or that the Illuminati were really behind the H1N1 pandemic, or that it was all a plot by Jesuit assassins: Or whatever.
And, let's remember that it's GlaxoSmithKline, or GSK, the pharmaceutical company that's providing the vaccine, that recommended pulling that one batch. I think it's possible that GSK remembers 1976, and don't want a repeat of that panicky response.
Would I Let My Family Get Vaccinated?Yes. My son got an H1N1 vaccination at the local school yesterday. I'd have gotten the shot myself, except that the vaccine is being rationed. The school wouldn't have gotten the doses they did, if they hadn't signed an agreement that they'd only give it to authorized people.
Do I think there's a risk? Of course. Life is risky. Crossing the street is risky. The trick is to figure out when the risk is low enough to justify the gain of, say, getting to the other side of the street.
In the case of getting vaccinated against H1N1 2009, once I looked at the information that's out there, it was a no-brainer.
- "Swine Flu / 2009 H1N1: Vaccines, Conspiracy Theories; and Common Sense"
(August 23, 2009)