News & Perspective

Dec 29, 2006

Dec 29, 2006

Feds detail progress on pandemic preparedness

(CIDRAP News) – In a recent update on pandemic influenza preparedness planning, the US government reported meeting more than 90% of a long list of objectives it set for itself about 6 months ago.

The report charts progress on a wide range of preparedness measures, from shoring up laboratory capabilities to planning for distribution of critical medical supplies and preparing checklists for various sectors of the economy.

Dec 22, 2006

Dec 22, 2006

Study: 1918-like pandemic now would kill 62 million

(CIDRAP News) – Scientists who analyzed mortality records from the 1918 influenza pandemic estimate that a similarly severe pandemic today would kill about 62 million people worldwide, the vast majority of them in the developing world.

Dec 21, 2006

Dec 21, 2006

HHS seeks advice on allocating pandemic vaccine

(CIDRAP News) – The Department of Health and Human Services is seeking help from the public in figuring out how to allocate scarce supplies of influenza vaccine in the event of a flu pandemic.

In a Dec 14 Federal Register notice, HHS invited the public to submit comments on which groups should have priority for receiving pre-pandemic and pandemic vaccines and on related issues. The deadline for commenting is Jan 18, 2007.

Dec 20, 2006

Dec 20, 2006

HHS cancels VaxGen anthrax vaccine contract

(CIDRAP News) – The US government yesterday canceled its $877.5 million contract with VaxGen Inc. for a new anthrax vaccine, after problems with the vaccine's stability caused the company to miss a deadline for starting a clinical trial.

Dec 19, 2006

Dec 19, 2006

State progress on health preparedness called slow

(CIDRAP News) – Though the United States observed the fifth anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks this fall, the nation's public health emergency preparedness has improved slowly and remains inadequate, according to a report last week from the nonprofit organization Trust for America's Health (TFAH).

Dec 15, 2006

Dec 15, 2006

Congress passes public health preparedness bill

(CIDRAP News) – Just before adjourning on Dec 9, the US Congress passed a bill to establish a new biodefense research and development agency and tune up the nation's public health emergency preparedness programs in a number of other ways.

Nov 20, 2006

Nov 20, 2006

HHS issues planning guide for mass casualty events

(CIDRAP News) – The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has released a new medical care guide to help community leaders plan for and respond to mass casualty events such as an influenza pandemic or a terrorist nuclear attack.

Nov 20, 2006

HHS awards 3 contracts for more H5N1 vaccine

(CIDRAP News) – The US government today announced the awarding of three contacts to buy enough additional H5N1 avian influenza vaccine to immunize almost 2.7 million people, at a cost of $199.45 million.

Nov 17, 2006

Nov 17, 2006

HHS: Most H5N1 vaccine on hand is still potent

(CIDRAP News) – A Department of Health and Human Services official said today that loss of potency is affecting less than 20% of H5N1 avian influenza vaccine doses in the national stockpile, not a majority of doses as reported here yesterday.

Bill Hall, an HHS spokesman in Washington, DC, said the agency has acquired a total of about 7.5 million doses of H5N1 vaccine to date, and about 200,000 of those have been used for research.

Nov 06, 2006

Nov 06, 2006

FDA orders delay of anthrax vaccine trial

(CIDRAP News) – VaxGen Inc., which is developing a new anthrax vaccine for the US civilian stockpile, announced last week it was postponing the latest clinical trial because of potential problems with the vaccine's shelf life.

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