Myth Buster: The Swine Flu Vaccine Edition

Early last week 70,000 swine flu vaccines were made available in New York City, and public health officials are working to dispel myths about the vaccine.

The safety and effectiveness of the vaccinations that came in the form of a nasal spray is now being called into question.

Bill Maher announced to  his Twitter followers who have gotten the swine flu vaccine that  “you are idiots,” according to  The New York Times.

On a Newsday message board a person who identified themselves as cabouthillier commented that the vaccine will “kill and disable those with Blood Types A, B & O.”


All conspiracy theories aside, here are a few facts about the swine flu vaccine as reported by the Centers for  Disease Control:

  • These vaccines are made just like seasonal flu vaccines.
  • They are expected to be as safe and effective as seasonal flu vaccines.
  • They will not prevent “influenza-like” illnesses caused by other viruses.

A more popular misconception reported by Newsday is that there has been virtually no clinical testing of the H1N1 vaccine.

On the contrary, Newsday has reported that, “there have been a series of clinical trials of the vaccine, including a new round of testing that begins at Stony Brook University Medical Center this month on pregnant HIV-infected women.”

CDC experts say the vaccine is subject to the same rigorous manufacturing controls that are applied to the seasonal vaccine and is manufactured by the same companies.

By the end of October, there is  expected to be 1.2 million doses of the H1N1 influenza vaccine available in New York City, and one million doses every month thereafter.

Early priority for vaccinations have been given to children and healthcare workers.


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