H1N1 Vaccine Protest Planned At CDC Headquarters
Posted by Jane Akre
Monday, October 19, 2009 4:28 PM EST
The Search For Swine Flu Answers
Unlike flu seasons of the past, many Americans are still on the fence about whether they will receive the H1N1 swine flu shot this season.
The concerns are forced when those who work in health care must have the swine flu inoculation as a condition of their employment, and when government sources don't make readily available information on exactly what is in the different formulations.
Adding to the confusion is the fact that the government has offered full immunity to the drug makers under the Public Readiness & Emergency Preparedness Act (PREP Act). If there are any adverse side effects or deaths, consumers lose their ability to hold the corporations accountable.
Amid the doubt and questions, a citizen protest is planned at the CDC headquarters in Atlanta on Wednesday.
Dressed in full haz-mat suits, the citizens, headed by Moms Against Mercury, plan on greeting members of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) as it meets for the fourth time this year to discuss the H1N1 vaccine, as well as other public health vaccines.
Amy Carson of Moms, says they want the government to be more forthcoming about the H1N1 vaccine so consumers can be fully informed before they give their consent to be vaccinated.
“I’m not anti-vaccine I’m pro-informed consent,” she tells IB News.
“When it comes to vaccines you blindly sign a consent form but you don’t get a list of ingredients. Why do we have to ask what’s being injected into you. The only thing they tell you if you are allergic to eggs or thimerosal you should not receive this vaccine.”
“We want the public to see just how toxic these vaccines are. If a vaccine vile is spilled, a haz-mat team is required for clean-up and the vaccine must be disposed of as biohazardous waste. Since when has the human body been deemed a toxic waste dump?” asks Karey Williams of Moms Against Mercury.
Not Easy To Be Informed
Protesters say that government health officials have not told all they know about the side effects of the H1N1 vaccine.
And finding the exact ingredients in the five formulations is a task. The CDC does not contain it on their Web page. Why not?
Amanda Aldridge of the CDC Press office says the CDC is not in charge of vaccines, that is the area of the FDA. “They are in charge of manufacturing and oversight of the vaccine,” she tells IB News.
Deep within the FDA, consumers can find information on the formulations.
Patricia Elhinnawy, in the FDA’s Office of Public Affairs, tells IB News they are in the process of making that information more front and center but it can be found on the Descriptions & Ingredients page in the FDA of the swine flu formulations.
Specifically, citizens are worried that the swine flu vaccines contain the mercury-based preservative, thimerosal as well as other toxins including ethylene glycol (antifreeze), formaldehyde, phenol, and antibiotics.
“What happens when they make any vaccines, they use chicken embryos and there is no way to make a pure vaccine, they can’t clear out the bacteria, so they are putting antibiotics in there. Most have some form of antibiotics because they are contaminated,” says Carson.
And some multi-dosage formulations do contain thimerosal.
Novartis has added thimerosal to multi-dose vials of inactivated swine flu vaccines.
MedImmune does not contain thimerosal because it contains the live virus, as shown on the Descriptions & Ingredients page.
Information & Misinformation
The lack of easily accessible information has some speculating the worst.
According to Dr. Joseph Mercola, board-certified family physician, who runs Mercola.com, H1N1 vaccines, made by Novartis and GlaxoSmithKline, both contain immune system boosters known as squalene. One of them, known as MF-59, has yet to be approved by the FDA and has been linked to the Gulf War Syndrome.
“That’s just not true,” says the FDA’s Elhinnawy.
“There are no adjuvants in any vaccine for swine flu in the U.S.,” she tells IB News, adding that adjuvants are not used in any seasonal flu vaccine either, though Health and Human Services could order the addition to the formulations if there is a perceived need.
Adjuvants, such as aluminum, give an extra boost to a vaccine, though they have not been approved for safety. They may be used in formulations in Italy, she adds.
Carson said the protest is being held to make all information on the swine flu vaccine readily available, including whether pregnant women should receive swine flu vaccines with thimerosal and whether the live virus, which sheds for up to three weeks, should be given at all.
Carson adds the government needs to be more forthcoming about the growing body of information that does show thimerosal’s link to neurological damage, instead of issuing blanket denials.
“The government needs to be 100 percent totally honest so people can weigh risk and benefits and decide for themselves. People are doing it blindly because of fear. I’d hate for them to ask questions after they’ve been injured. “
The protest is planned for early Wednesday morning at the gates of the CDC on Clifton Road as the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) meets to discuss childhood vaccine schedule as well as HPV vaccine and the swine flu vaccine supply.
The ACIP consists of 15 experts in fields associated with immunization, selected by the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services to provide guidance on the use of vaccines to control and prevent disease.