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Are Their Restrictions on Freedom of Speech in Sweden Over H1N1 Vaccine Dangers?

Sweden has been unusually quiet about the potential risks of unwanted side effects of the Pandemrix vaccine, writes Professor Tore Scherstén from Bastad.

During the autumn, the media and authorities, mainly the MPA, the National Board and the Infectious Diseases Institute, conducted an intensive campaign to convince the Swedish people to be vaccinated against swine flu (A/H1N1). Various reasons had been given in the campaign - from fear to solidarity. Solidarity against whom or what one may ask - the state, health care or population?

With regard to potential risks of unwanted side effects with the Pandemrix vaccine, it has been unusually quiet. The risks of adverse reactions have been intensively discussed in several other countries.

In an earlier contribution to the debate in HD, I have raised doubts with the immune-reinforcing additives, squalene and tocopherol. In the vaccine to be distributed in Europe, these additives can cause autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis. In the U.S. vaccine, these additives are prohibited due to such risks.

In Germany, there are many concerns over the safety of the vaccine (Pandemrix), which is offered to the general public. Der Spiegel published an article which where it became known that top politicians and government officials offered an alternative vaccine without these additives (Celvapan).

Michael Kocher, president of the German College of general practitioners and family doctors, believe that the vaccine is insufficiently tested to be given in each case to children and pregnant women. He does not recommend doctors in his organization vaccinate patients because the potential risks, according to him outweigh the potential benefits.

Wolf-Dieter Ludwig, president of the German Medical Association's drug commission, has described the entire vaccination program as a scandal. He believes that the German government has become too lenient to the pharmaceutical company's requirements and linked to earlier concluded contracts for the purchase of vaccines.

After exposing some of the associated risks of the vaccines, a survey showed that only 12 percent of Germans were intending to vaccinate themselves.

The situation in Germany was reported in detail in an article in the very highly regarded British Medical Journal (BMJ, October 21) with comments and subsequent discussion.

Why is it so quiet here in Sweden with such publicly and vital information so prevalent from the U.S., Germany and England? Is there a disguised restriction on freedom of expression on the sensitive issues that are of importance to the entire nation?

* A full list of h1n1 vaccine ingredients, alerts and warnings.


Reference Sources: hd.se
November 22, 2009

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