This article gave me a hearty laugh probably heard in the next town over. Unless these experts are asserting that they had foreknowledge that this pandemic would occur, because the virus is an engineered bioweapon and have been researching and testing the vaccine long before anyone had ever heard of swine flu, then I can see where they're coming from. If they've got this down to an exact science, why the need for guinea pigs to experiment on? Why does it need to be tested for "safety" if they know what they're doing? In fact this vaccine was never tested properly. And the dangers of the H1N1 virus are far less than the reactions people are having them, particularly when natural remedies protect you from getting sick far better than any vaccine could.
- Chicago Tribune -
Rushed into production? Not really.
Full of substances that do harm? Hardly, and especially not compared with the dangers of the H1N1 flu virus.
That is the retort of researchers, scientists, federal health authorities and others familiar with how swine flu vaccine is being made, as they listen -- at times with disbelief -- to the debate about it unfolding around kitchen tables and online.
They hear the arguments -- about what's in the vaccine, whether it was made too fast, whether there are side effects -- all the while frustrated that decades of experience in making effective flu vaccines hasn't resulted in more public confidence that they got this one right too.
"We've been baking this bread for 60 years, and we're pretty good at it, buddy," said Kenneth Alexander, an infectious disease expert at the University of Chicago.
For all who will listen, Alexander and other experts at research facilities, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and elsewhere explain that the swine flu vaccine isn't a completely new brew cooked up in a panic.
They argue that it's actually the result of a 60-year-old, tried-and-true process of flu vaccine-making that was tested on thousands of people before being scheduled for distribution -- including on some researchers who volunteered themselves.
"A lot misinformation is being brought up and spread around," said Jesse Goodman, the FDA's acting deputy commissioner for public health. "We think it is important to have the actual facts laid out and let people make their own decisions."
The vaccine "is the absolute best protection and a perfectly safe one," Goodman said, adding that the risks from contracting the flu, which can be deadly, far outweigh any risk of side effects from the vaccine.