H1N1 NEWS SCAN: Suspected vaccine reactions, rise in Cuban cases, vaccine in the Philippines

Australia's number of suspected vaccine reactions grows
The number of children in West Australia who had convulsions or fever and vomiting after receiving a seasonal flu vaccine that covers the pandemic strain has grown to 251, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) reported today. Officials say the immunizations likely came from multiple batches. Queensland is also investigating the possibility of adverse reactions in children, and police in Brisbane are probing the death of a recently vaccinated 2-year-old, according to other ABC reports.
Apr 26 ABC story

HHS vaccine advisors to probe GBS-vaccine findings
The vaccine advisory group of the US Department of Health and Human Services voted unanimously to explore recent findings that may suggest a Guillain-Barre syndrome link to the pandemic vaccine, the Washington Post reported. A member of the National Vaccine Advisory Committee said the possible link would likely disappear with further analysis and that no other safety monitoring systems detected such a link. The initial GBS findings were presented at a neurology meeting in mid April.
Apr 24 Washington Post story

Cuba reports rise in flu infections
Cuba's number of pandemic H1N1 infections continues to grow for the fifth week in a row, with 93 new cases reported to the country's national flu lab, Cuban News Agency (ACN) reported. The rising infections prompted a warning from national health authorities for the public to follow hygiene measures and seek medical care at the first sign of flu-like symptoms. Cuba recently launched its pandemic vaccination campaign, and health workers have so far immunized 981,130 people from high-risk groups.
Apr 24 ACN story

Philippines launches vaccine campaign
The Philippines launched its pandemic vaccine campaign today, with the top priority of immunizing about 420,000 of the country's healthcare workers, Deutsche Presse-Agentur (DPA) reported. The next priority is 2.5 million pregnant women, health officials said, adding that the disease threat remains, especially in advance of the country's rainy season in July. So far the country has seen no recent evidence of community transmission.
Apr 26 DPA article

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