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10 Comments

  1. 1

    Ben Harris-Roxas

    It does seem a bit foolhardy. The only other swine flu mass vaccination campaign resulted in 500 cases of GBS.

    Reply
  2. 2

    Margaret Bozik

    GBS = Group B Strep, a term probably not understood by most people.

    Group B strep (GBS), also known as beta strep, is a common bacteria found in about 1 in 4 pregnant women. Most women who carry GBS do not have symptoms. While usually not harmful to pregnant women, some babies who are exposed to GBS during pregnancy, birth, or after delivery, become sick or even die.

    It’s a concern given that pregnant women are being urged to receive the vaccination!

    Reply
  3. 3

    deccles

    Thanks Margaret. I was wondering what GBS stood for. Is there anything mug ‘consumers’ of the Swine Flu vaccination can do to minimise their risk of contamination with multidose vials?

    Reply
  4. 4

    hardworking

    GBS also stands for Guillain Barre Syndrome, which is the risk here rather than group B Strep. Information on Guillain Barre Syndrome can be found at http://www.gbs.org.uk and information on group B Strep can be found at http://www.gbss.org.uk.

    Reply
  5. 5
    Croakey

    Croakey

    I assumed Ben was referring to Guillain-Barré syndrome? Is that what you meant Ben?

    By the way, David thanks for raising the issue about involving patients in their care. I was thinking along the same lines myself today, and have just put up a related post on this issue
    – Melissa Sweet (Croakey moderator)

    Reply
  6. 6

    Altakoi

    Other interesting facts are that the WHO yesterday recommended that the composition of the southern hemisphere 2010 winter seasonal flu vaccine should include:

    an A/California/7/2009 (H1N1)-like virus;
    an A/Perth/16/2009 (H3N2)-like virus;
    a B/Brisbane/60/2008-like virus.

    (see the WHO website).

    This makes it even more interesting as to why one would use a multidose mono-valent H1N1 vaccine when, in about four months time, a single-dose trivalent product will be available in time for next winter. This makes the H1N1 vaccine a sensible choice, I guess, if you are worried about dying of pandemic influenza before next winter but that is hardly the bulk of the population.

    In defence of the multidose vial, one assumes that this was designed for the sort of truely mass vaccine rollout which would be required if H1N1 had turned out to be deadly to healthy people. An influenza pandemic like that is a real possibility which the Health Department has correctly planned for. It just seems that it might be a tad of an overreaction for this particular pandemic.

    Reply
  7. 7

    Ben Harris-Roxas

    Sorry everyone, I did mean Guillain-Barré syndrome. The three-letter acronym strikes again.

    Reply
  8. 8

    boots

    Also worth considering is the fact that pregnant women are told to avoid all mercury in pregnancy as it is a deadly neuro toxin. It is medically advised not to eat tuna or deep sea fish during pregnancy to avoid any risk of exposure, yet this vaccine contains 24.5mcg of mercury (in the preservative thimerosal) – 49 times more than a grown person should be exposed to in a day – hundreds more then a foetus should receive…

    Thimerosal has already been removed from vaccines in children under 10 in Australia due to concerns (though not proven) as causing an increased risk of autism.

    Reply
  9. 9

    reasonable

    @boots. Your comments are incorrect and deceptive. I have my suspicions as to why. The autism link has been thoroughly debunked and Dr Wakefield is now a laughing stock in medical debates. But that’s just another conspiracy, isn’t it.
    Your mercury calculations are also scurrilous.
    @Ben. I believe you are referring to a 30 year old vaccination program. You need to do more research about G-B Syndrome, and its myriad of possible causes before you link it to modern vaccination programs.
    @author of story. Basing a story in fear mongering is not a public service, even if you do it in the guise of “open and frank discussion”. Oh please, Meryl Dorey uses that line all the time. But, when you ask a question, the debate finishes.

    Reply

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