Volume 1 July 1, 2009 Swine Flu, Medicare Quality Incentives, Autism and Vaccinations

Chance that swine flu was renamed “H1N1 flu” and that “Asian and Hong Kong

flu” (Influenza A and Influenza B) were renamed “seasonal flu” for “political

correctness”: 100%

The Avian or bird flu lobby has yet to be organized, I guess.

Number of deaths last year in the United States from seasonal flu: 36,000

Number of H1N1 flu cases and deaths in U.S. to date respectively: 13,217 / 27

The month the next peak of flu in the U.S. is expected: December

The month of expected flu peak in Australia: July

Number of H1N1 flu cases and deaths in Australia as of June 2009 respectively: 1,211 / 0

Chance that H1N1 flu will mutate to a more virulent strain by the fall in the U.S.: unknown,

but likely to happen as it did in the 1918 flu pandemic.

Calculated fatality rate of 1918 flu and H1N1 flu, so far, respectively: 5% / 0.7 %

Cost of order placed by U.S. government with Novartis for a vaccine that does not yet exist:

$298 million

Month that Novartis says it will produce the vaccine: September

Number of  “quality-associated” conditions that Medicare won’t reimburse hospitals for: 8

Amount that one, “hospital falls and trauma”, can increase patient care costs: $4,000 per fall

Percentage of hospital inpatients that fall while in the hospital: 3 to 20

Percentage of falls that might be prevented by application of evidence-based guidelines:  20

Percentage of studied interventions that prevented serious injury from a hospital fall:  0

Year that the Federal Vaccination Compensation Injury Program was created: 1988

Number of vaccines covered by the VCIP: 16

Different types of complications recognized by VCIP as caused by vaccines: 9

Number of claimants since 1999 alleging that vaccinations cause autism:  5,589

Chance that vaccinations cause autism, immune deficiency, or gastrointestinal dysfunction

as determined by a review of three test cases in U.S. Federal Court of Claims in 2008: 0

Number of scientific journal articles reviewed by the three masters of that court: 900

Number of pages of legal transcripts and briefs reviewed: 5000

Number of expert reports reviewed and medical experts testifying respectively: 50/28

Number of court masters that thought that the families affected were “acting in good faith”

but that the case made by the claimants that vaccinations caused these three conditions

was “not even close”: 3 of 3

Chance that claimants will appeal to state courts or higher Federal Court of Appeals: 100%

Quotable Quote

“There is always an easy solution to every human problem – neat, plausible, and wrong.”

H.L. Mencken

Sources:

Swine Flu- ABC news, WHO, CDC, Associated Press websites, WIRED magazine July

2009, p.33, VNA of Cape Cod Infection Prevention Report

Medicare Quality Incentives – New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) 360:23, p. 2390,  S.Inoyue, MD

Vaccine and autism – VCIP page on Health Resources and Services Administration

http://www.hrsa.gov/vaccinecompensation/

New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) 360:24, p. 2500, R. Silverman, MD

Autism Exploitation  http://www.acsh.org/factsfears/newsID.1220/news_detail.asp

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