Canada Looking To Share Its Deadly
Arepanrix Vaccine With Other Countries
Late last month, the Canadian federal government stated that
it was to announce a decision on what to do with tens of millions
of unused doses of the deadly Arepanrix
H1N1 vaccine. Now, at the health detriment of other countries,
Canada's chief public health officer has stated that the World
Health Organization will begin putting the surplus doses to use.
Chief Public Health Officer Dr. David Butler-Jones said the Public
Health Agency would talk with it's supplier about turning back
unneeded vaccine so the company could start filling orders from
other countries sooner.
Canada ordered 50.4 million doses of H1N1 vaccine, enough to give
75 percent of Canadians two doses apiece if two were required.
Up until now, Canadian authorities have steadfastly refused to
discuss what they might do with the excess vaccine, saying they
wanted to ensure Canada's needs were being met before crossing
The World Health Organization (WHO) has also been promised more
than 150 million doses by four vaccine manufacturers, including
Canada's main supplier GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). A Canadian spokesperson
had said it was not clear what form Canada's donation would take.
GSK had asked several provinces to set aside the 170,000 doses
from the questionable batch they'd noticed a higher-than-usual
number of allergic reactions from one batch. Dozens of Canadians
have suffered severe
allergic reactions while 200 others died from the vaccine.
However recently, Canada has communicated with WHO indicating
it could share it surplus does of the H1N1 vaccine with other
countries such as Vietnam.
In an urgent communication to WHO, Vietnam has demanded that all
information about the Arepanrix H1N1 vaccines produced by the
GlaxoSmithKline, including its dosage and the number of allergic
reactions to it in other countries, be clearly stated, the health
ministrys Drug Administration said. The country is expected
to receive 1.2 million does of vaccines produced by GlaxoSmithKline
from the WHO this month.
A Canadian government spokesperson said it will be important
to hold onto some additional supply, in case increased demand
is triggered by future events that cannot be foreseen.
Vaccine researcher and Naturopathic Doctor, Dave Mihalovic stated
that holding onto any additional H1N1 vaccine supply is useless.
"The H1N1 virus has already mutated as verified by the WHO,
so even based on rudimentary vaccine science (if that even exists),
any vaccine developed by GSK six months ago would be completely
ineffective against the current strain."
Reference Sources 89, 220, 234
December 10, 2009