Wednesday, April 22, 2015
By Fred Mogul : Reporter, WNYC News
Wednesday, February 04, 2015
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
A working group of The National Biodefense Science Board (NBSB) has endorsed a plan to test anthrax vaccines on healthy children. The NBSB, which advises the federal government, says scientist should inject healthy children with BioThrax, the anthrax vaccine, to see if it is as effective on children as it is in adults. The Obama administration is now weighing the controversial step of subjecting children to possibly risky medical testing against waiting for an attack to happen and collecting data afterwards.
Wednesday, July 13, 2011
Reports are emerging that the C.I.A. used a fake vaccination drive in Pakistan to gather intelligence on the whereabouts of Osama bin Laden, prior to the May 1 raid where the Al Qaida leader was killed. The fake vaccine drive has received criticism from members of the public health community, who say this type of strategy could undermine future efforts to combat diseases across the globe.
Thursday, January 13, 2011
Seth Mnookin is a contributing editor at Vanity Fair and a former senior writer for Newsweek, where he covered media, politics, and popular culture. His new book, The Panic Virus: A True Story of Medicine, Science, and Fear, looks at the way science and popular culture have diverged on the issue of childhood vaccinations and the risk of autism.
Monday, September 20, 2010
This year marks the thirtieth year since the disease smallpox was eradicated. The disease has been around since roughly 10,000 BC, and killed approximately thirty percent of its victims. Over the course of history, it struck millions, including such famous survivors as George Washington, Andrew Jackson and Abraham Lincoln.
Now eradicated for three decades, what lessons can we take away from how we dealt with smallpox?
Sharing his insights is Dr. Walt Orenstein, Deputy Director for Vaccine-Preventable Diseases at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Friday, October 23, 2009
The federal government has thus far not been able to make good on its promise to deliver 120 million doses of the vaccine for H1N1, commonly known as swine flu. This week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that only 13 million doses have so far been delivered, leaving millions of Americans — including those at elevated risk for contracting the flu — unable to obtain it. We talk to Tom Skinner, spokesperson for the CDC, and Dr. Scott Gottlieb, former deputy commissioner at the Food and Drug Administration. They tell us why the shortage is partly a chicken and an egg problem...literally. We also speak to Alison Prange, who hasn't been able to get a vaccine for her 4-year-old daughter who has asthma.
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Donald G. McNeil Jr., a science reporter for The New York Times, joins us with a look at what could be a significant breakthrough in the fight against the spread of HIV. Researchers have announced the results of a six-year, 16,000-person study in Thailand, and it appears that an experimental HIV vaccine has cut the risk of infection by almost one-third when compared to a placebo. This is the first time a vaccine has cut the risk of infection at all.
Friday, September 11, 2009
Researchers in the United States and Australia have some good news for the fight against the potential pandemic of H1N1, or "swine flu." Turns out that the vaccine will protect adults with only one dose (and one shot, yay!). This means that the vaccines already in production will go twice as far as previously expected, allowing more people to be inoculated against the flu. Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, gives us the details.
Wednesday, September 09, 2009
China will be the first country in the world to start a mass vaccination program to inoculate their citizens against the threat of H1N1, commonly known as "swine flu." Shirong Chen, the BBC's China editor, explains that China learned valuable lessons from their experience with the SARS virus. He also offers an explanation for why China has opted to first inoculate the politicians and the participants in the National Day Parade.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Three years ago, the Food and Drug Administration approved the vaccine Gardasil, which protects against human papillomaviruses (HPV). The category includes around 100 sexually transmitted viruses that are the primary cause of cervical cancer. By the end of last year more than 23 million doses had been distributed – enough to vaccinate seven million girls.
A new government study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association has raised some concerns about side effects associated with the drug. Merck, the drug's manufacturer, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention maintain Gardasil is safe and effective, and that adequate warnings are provided. To find out more, we speak with Diane Harper, a physician and one of the lead researchers for Merck's Gardasil clinical trials. She has been speaking out in favor of more warnings. We also speak with Sheila Rothman, a professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. For one parent's point of view, we talk to Kenye Jones-Downing about whether she plans to give her daughter the vaccine.
Decide for yourself! Watch the ad below. Does it go too far? Or not far enough?
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
With summer coming to a close, the United States is preparing for autumn's flu season. The Department of Health and Human Services said only 45 million doses of the vaccine against H1N1 (or "swine flu") will be ready in October, rather than the 120 million doses they had expected. While pregnant women and health care workers will be the first to get the two-dose vaccine, school-age children and teens are next in line. So who better to deliver those H1N1 vaccines than the schools themselves? In what could be the largest campaign since the polio vaccine in the 1950’s, schools across the country are preparing to inoculate their students. Joining us for a look at the supply of and demands for the H1N1 vaccine – and how it will be administered – is Dr. Maria Simbra. She’s the medical reporter for KDKA TV in Pittsburgh.
Thursday, July 30, 2009
A Centers for Disease Control advisory panel has recommended that pregnant women get top priority for an H1N1 vaccine when it is expected to become available this fall. How is this recommendation reverberating on the frontlines? The Takeaway turns to Dr. Richard Wenzel, an epidemiologist and Chairman of the Department of Internal Medicine at Virginia Commonwealth University, who has just returned from studying the spread of the flu in South America. Also joining the conversation are Leila Laniado, an Atlanta resident who is 5 months pregnant and weighing her options, and Dr. Laura Riley, an OB/GYN at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston explains what she is telling her patients about the vaccine.
"It's clear that the CDC suggests that pregnant women be at the top of the list. I think what pregnant women need to do is go into their obstetricians or primary care physicians and say, 'I'm pregnant, I want the vaccine, I understand that there are some safety issues potentially, but I also understand that getting the flu in this situation could be far worse.'"
—Dr. Laura Riley on flu treatment for pregnant women
Thursday, July 23, 2009
The U.S. government is seeking thousands of volunteers, from babies to the elderly, to roll up their sleeves for the first clinical trials of an H1N1 flu vaccine. The race is on to test whether a new vaccine really will protect against this virus before its expected rebound in the fall. Will the vaccines work? Will there be enough vaccines for everyone? What are the dangers of the vaccine itself? The Takeaway talks to Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, which will oversee the trials.
"We think the risk is extremely small because we give tens of millions of doses of seasonal flu vaccine every year to adults, the elderly and children, and there's not a significant, at all, degree of adverse effects."
—Dr. Anthony Fauci on the H1N1 vaccine
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
We were lucky enough to be able to nab Dr. Fauci by phone before he heads to Capitol Hill this afternoon, where he will testify at an emergency Senate meeting about the federal government's response to swine flu.
For more from Dr. Fauci, read his commentary on MSNBC.com, Why there is no AIDS vaccine.