Get your shot or you’re fired!



Original here:

Many people this season are being forced to accept unwanted flu shots in order to keep their jobs. Recommendations and mandates for flu shots have been escalating steadily over the past 10 years, and so have reports of injuries and adverse events.

10 years ago, a flu shot was recommended only for “high-risk” groups including seniors, and was not available outside of a medical office, clinic or hospital. The idea of giving it to a pregnant woman or a healthy child or adult was unheard of.

Today it is recommended that everyone take a yearly flu vaccine from 6 months of age on, and in many communities we can get one at school, at work, or at the drug store and local supermarket. Through aggressive lobbying efforts, we have seen legislation introduced to force flu vaccines on healthcare workers, school administrators and students in some states. Where is the public health need supporting this massive effort? Where is the proof that yearly flu shots are really making you and your children healthier in the long run, and where is the proof that we are not causing more harm than good by forcing these products on the entire population, particularly on healthy people with low risk?

Each quarter, the department of justice (DOJ) puts out a report of adjudicated vaccine injury claims. Here is one from June, 2016, where in a 3 month period 206 claims were filed overall, and 81 claims were compensated for injury or death following a flu shot. The injuries compensated include Guillain-Barre Syndrome; Rheumatoid arthritis, Transverse myelitis, AIDP, CIDP, ADEM, CIDM, Lewis-Sumner Syndrome, shoulder injuries, and neurological demeylinating injuries. This represents a tiny fraction of the adverse events and injuries reported to VAERS every year. The numbers of flu related hospitalizations in healthy children and adults is extremely low, yet there are thousands of reports to VAERS for serious events following flu vaccination in this population.

Where has the push come from to force these products on healthy “low-risk” people? This large scale initiative to push uptake of several vaccines is laid out in DHHS Healthy People 2020, which has been adopted by state and local health depts. The requirements, and rule changes have been slowly inching forward and are becoming much more aggressive as we get closer to 2020, and the goals are far from being met.

Julie Gerberding left the CDC in 2009 to head up Merck’s vaccine division. Healthy people 2020 was constructed during her tenure. It was also during her 7 year term as agency director, that she restructured the CDC into a sophisticated PR machine with roots into every local health department. It was also during this time that the vaccine industry began growing by $$Billions annually. Current estimates put annual global vaccine revenue at $41 Billion, up from only $1 billion in the early 2000’s. According to a WHO 2013 report, the vaccine industry is projected to grow to an astounding $100 Billion annual global revenue by 2025.

The focus has been shifting to adults as they are the next untapped market, ripe for research and development. The NAIP (National adult immunization program) was rolled out last year, and industry is working diligently with many public and private stakeholders to increase community demand for these vaccines. Merck just sponsored and released a study which claims to show that “unvaccinated” adults are costing the US $7 Billion per year, which sets the stage perfectly to push for stronger adult mandates.

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