"All humans are members of the same body Created from one essence"

"Human beings are members of a whole in creation of one essence and soul. If one member is afflicted with pain, other members uneasy will remain."

Monday, 16 August 2010

H1N1 Vaccination

The virus, more commonly known as "swine flu," traveled from Mexico to the U.S., Canada and beyond with astonishing speed. By June, more than 13,000 cases had been confirmed in the U.S.; on June 11, with the worldwide figure at almost 30,000, the World Health Organization (WHO) officially declared an influenza pandemic ("flu" is short for "influenza"), a step it had not taken since 1968.

Many who oppose H1N1 vaccination for their children are already wary of vaccines, which they believe are directly linked to the rising number of cases of autism, a developmental disorder. Adding to their misgivings is the claim that the H1N1 vaccine contains squalene, an additive that, while it has been used safely in vaccines in Europe, has never been tested in the U.S.

Many critics view the swine flu vaccine as too new and untested, saying its development proceeded too quickly and without the benefit of clinical trials. Vaccination critic Barbara Loe Fisher, co-founder of the National Vaccine Information Center, a private organization, suggested to CBS News in November that the "true nature" of the H1N1 outbreak was still unknown, and hence that inoculation against the virus was somewhat risky. "I think it's perfectly legitimate for people to question whether or not they should get vaccinated," she said, "and whether or not for some it's better to have the influenza, get antibodies and be protected in future years."

Some supporters of H1N1 vaccination, in fact, suggest that those who choose not be vaccinated or not to inoculate their children may be endangering their entire community.

As for side effects, such as GBS and autism, advocates of the vaccine insist that people have little to fear from the H1N1 vaccine.
(Their stance is in keeping with a special federal court decision issued in February 2009 that vaccines do not cause autism and that families with autistic children are not entitled to compensation from vaccine manufacturers.)
Says Doug Kamerow, a chief scientist at the research institute RTI International and a former assistant surgeon general, "There has been no evidence of harm or serious side effects in the vaccine[;]...the worst you can expect from the vaccine is a sore arm for a day or two"--a common reaction to seasonal flu vaccines.

Do you think it is safe to get the H1N1 vaccination?

Anderson, Jenny. "Officials Defend Distribution of Flu Vaccine to Companies." New York Times, November 6, 2009, :www.nytimes.com.

Associated Press. "A Third of U.S. Parents Oppose Swine Flu Vaccine." MSNBC, October 7, 2009, www.msnbc.msn.com.

Chitale, Radha, and Dan Childs. "Will Safety Fears Hurt Swine Flu Vaccinations?" ABC News, July 30, 2009, abcnews.go.com.

"Down with the Flu." Economist, October 16, 2009, www.economist.com.

------. "H1N1: Separating Myth from Fact." Fox News, August 13, 2009, www.foxnews.com.

Gardner, Amanda. "Many Americans Still Leery of Swine Flu Vaccine." BusinessWeek, October 13, 2009, www.businessweek.com.

Garrett, Laurie. "The Path of a Pandemic." Newsweek, May 2, 2009, www.newsweek.com.

Harrell, Eben. "How to Deal with Swine Flu: Heeding the Mistakes of 1976." Time, April 27, 2009, www.time.com.

Henig, Jess. "Inoculation Misinformation." Newsweek, October 19, 2009, www.newsweek.com.

Iannelli, Vincent. "The History of Vaccine Preventable Illnesses." About.com, April 18, 2008, pediatrics.about.com.

"Inoculating Against Fear of Vaccination." CBS News, November 8, 2009, cbsnews.com.

Kamerow, Doug. "Debate Over H1N1 Vaccine? There Shouldn't Be One." NPR, October 23, 2009, www.npr.org.

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