News & Perspective

Nov 05, 2002

Nov 05, 2002

FDA licenses repackaged smallpox vaccine from federal stockpile

(CIDRAP News) – The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has updated the licensing for the government's decades-old stockpile of Dryvax smallpox vaccine by approving a new vaccine kit that includes a new diluent and bifurcated needles, according to federal officials.

Nov 06, 2002

Nov 06, 2002

HHS seeks comments on proposed trial of smallpox vaccine in children

(CIDRAP News) – Federal health officials have taken the unusual step of asking the public its opinion on whether the possible benefits of testing smallpox vaccine in a small group of children are worth the risks.

Nov 07, 2002

Nov 07, 2002

CIA believes four nations have secret smallpox virus stocks, report says

(CIDRAP News) – The CIA has good evidence that four nations—Iraq, North Korea, Russia, and France—have secret stores of smallpox virus, according to a Washington Post report based on comments from officials speaking anonymously.

Nov 18, 2002

Nov 18, 2002

Decision on smallpox vaccinations expected soon, Osterholm says

(CIDRAP News) – Now that the federal government has some licensed smallpox vaccine in its stockpile, a presidential announcement on vaccination recommendations may be coming very soon, bioterrorism expert Michael T. Osterholm, PhD, MPH, predicted last week.

"I believe that in the next days you'll be hearing from the president about this vaccine," Osterholm told healthcare workers at a meeting in Minneapolis.

Nov 22, 2002

Nov 22, 2002

Homeland Security law leaves HHS in control of bioterrorism preparedness

(CIDRAP News) – In passing a bill to create a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) this week, Congress left the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in charge of most bioterrorism preparedness and civilian biodefense research programs—to the relief of medical research and public health groups.

Nov 26, 2002

Nov 26, 2002

Study to check smallpox immunity in people inoculated decades ago

(CIDRAP News) – About 900 adults who received smallpox shots in childhood are being revaccinated in a multicenter study to determine whether they still have any immunity to smallpox.

Dec 05, 2002

Dec 05, 2002

With smallpox vaccination campaign likely, CDC seeks to expand VIG supply

(CIDRAP News) – As the likelihood of a large-scale smallpox vaccination program grows, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is seeking to expand the government's limited supply of vaccinia immune globulin (VIG), the mainstay of treatment for severe reactions to the vaccine.

Dec 09, 2002

Dec 09, 2002

Most public comments oppose testing smallpox vaccine in children

(CIDRAP News) – Most people who took the opportunity to comment on a federal government proposal to test the smallpox vaccine in young children feel it's not a good idea.

Several hundred comments submitted in response to the proposal are available on a Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Web site, and it appears that most of them oppose the trial.

Dec 10, 2002

Dec 10, 2002

Most states met CDC deadline to file pre-event smallpox vaccination plans

(CIDRAP News) – Thirty-eight of 62 US states, territories, and major urban areas have filed "pre-event" smallpox vaccination plans with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as of today. The plans for vaccinating key public health and healthcare personnel were due to the CDC yesterday.

Dec 11, 2002

Dec 11, 2002

Infectious disease experts oppose smallpox shots for public

(CIDRAP News) – The 7,000-member Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) has urged President Bush not to make smallpox vaccine available to the public for now, on grounds that serious reactions to it could undermine public confidence in the shots and in other immunizations as well.

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