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Smallpox Alert!

December 2002 Smallpox news, Page 2.
Remember, 'news' contains a few interesting facts and lots of "party line" opinions.

Back to Page 1 of Pox News

Update - Smallpox Vaccine opinion by Jon Rappaport
Military Smallpox Plan Unveiled
Smallpox and Smallpox Vaccination NEJM

GA hospital doesn't give smallpoxshot yet
[RMNFILES] Health alert: military and secondary smallpox
Smallpox vaccine may cause outbreak

NY times articles on smallpox
Reaction Is Mixed to Smallpox Inoculations
Research: Will millions need new smallpox vaccinations?

Public urged to forgo smallpox vaccination
Army to enforce smallpox quarantines
Bush Signals He Thinks Possibility of Smallpox Attack Is Rising--NYT

Health workers fear smallpox plan
Children Won't Get Smallpox Vaccine
Health care workers balk at Bush's smallpox vaccine plan

For Victims of Smallpox Vaccine, Winning Case Will Be Hard
Side-Effects of Smallpox Jabs Alarm Volunteers
Smallpox vax - An Interview With Bush Made News in Advance

Smallpox-Plan for Vaccinations Carries Risk of Infecting Other People
Smallpox Vaccine Test Results from Baylor College of Medicine
Smallpox Vaccine Test Volunteers and Side-Effects

Smallpox vaccine side effects catch doctors by surprise
Governors seek access to smallpox vaccine
"ER Workers Ready For Smallpox Vaccine"

Update - Smallpox Vaccine opinion by Jon Rappaport

From John Rappaport's StratiaWire's Newsletter:

Monday, December 23, 2002


DECEMBER 23. I have had time to consult with several very good sources, and this is what is happening with the smallpox vaccine.

There is a full-court press on the major media to keep them from saying, THE GOVERNMENT HAS REVERSED ITS POSITION ON THE VACCINE. THE GOVERNMENT SCREWED UP BIG-TIME.

How long this pressure will succeed we don't know. But so far the media campaign of OMISSION is working. The dumbed-down public is buying the moment-by-moment coverage without connecting the dots.

Too busy shopping and making plans for the holidays. In point of fact, the government could have begun leaking its reversal-of-position info a lot earlier, but now is perfect. Xmas rules all.

The amazing "confession" data re the vaccine FROM THE MAINSTREAM PRESS is a series of planned leaks. This is all orchestrated, for reasons I've been mentioning in recent articles.

It's being made to look like responsible medical bureaucrats have the public interest at heart. Some of them do. But overall, this is a story about heavy protection of the vaccine industry from exposure, since the smallpox vaccine is so dangerous and toxic.

The CDC is now scrambling to do two things: one, tell those thousands of community vaccine centers they have been setting up, all across America, to back off on the smallpox shot; and two, retain the STRUCTURE of those centers, a new infrastructure for all sorts of medical OPS (covert operations), including, of course, vaccines to be given in the event of a PURPOSELY STAGED "biowar attack."

However, because the prior propaganda about the importance of getting the smallpox shot was so successful, there will be people who insist on getting the vaccine. Some of them will get very sick, and some will die.

The government is not willing to simply say, "Well, we warned you." That is not enough. That is not going to carry the day. So as many of these deaths as possible will be attributed to other causes. But it is likely there will be problems. As I write this, legal experts are working to figure out how the government should deal with the liability, and PR firms are weighing in, too, to concoct spin trips to minimize bad press. Odds are, the vaccine manufacturers will stay out of the spotlight.

Whatever heat there is to take, the government will take it. This, in fact, was the whole point of the VAERS system of liability payouts that was put into effect in 1986. Get the drug companies off the hook and involve claimants in a maze of government pros who could stall God from making it rain.

Okay? So now we have to ask, if the government has been making an amazing reversal of opinion and policy in the last week on the smallpox vaccine, why did they ever support mass vaccinations in the first place? Why say yes and then say no later on, when the liability exposure is so fraught with danger?

This part of the story is definitely DEVELOPING, as they say in the news business.

Was Bush told to launch the mass vaccination program by people who were stupid, who didn't understand what could happen? Did Tommy Thompson, Bush's secretary of health and human services, tell him to do this? Thompson knows nothing about these matters, as far as the science is concerned. If the urging for a green light came from Thompson, then HE had been briefed by others first.

Was Bush urged to give the green light by George Tenet, the CIA director? Did Tenet think he had good information that a smallpox bio-attack might be imminent? If it was Thompson or Tenet, who had briefed these men first?

We know that Bush is impulsive, and that he gets advice from his people and tends to jump into action without reflection.

There is another possibility. Somebody ran an OP on Bush. Somebody wanted him to do exactly the wrong thing. Somebody wanted to him to be the dupe for an eventual vaccine disaster of enormous proportions. A Gerald Ford with his absurd swine flu vaccine fiasco. Only much worse.

Can you imagine the damage Bush would have suffered (and could still suffer) if he had given the final okay for a mandate to vaccinate the whole nation? People dying like flies, photos, the whole war on terrorism cast as a medical screw-up of the first order?

Bush's Waterloo.

Judging from the rising tide of negative opinion about the vaccine coming from the CDC and NIH over the last few months, it's unlikely that the original instigator for this mass vaccination program came from official channels at these two giant federal agencies.

And you see, as long as the major media refuse to pursue the story of the government 180-degree turnaround on the smallpox-vaccine issue, reporters are not going to ask Bush, "Who convinced you this was a good idea in the first place?"

I have spoken with my prime source on propaganda matters, Ellis Medavoy. He said, "You have to look for layers of people here. You have to build a chain of people to see where the idea for this mass vaccination came from. It's quite possible that someone within the intelligence cartel was the real source. Someone who WANTED a disaster. Because disasters are what create the kind of chaos certain people want. (I have referred to these elements in past articles as the Plan B people). They are not satisfied with the slow-drip method of gaining more control over the global population. They want to burn down everything to the ground and build a steel-trap society on the ruins."

Bush is still up against it. The Army is vaccinating lots of soldiers. How successful will the cover-up of deaths be? Well, it's a lot easier to manage that behind the military walls than out in the public.

Bush is still on the hook as the dupe. How do you make a dupe? You feed him information which merges with his general outlook, you give him a detailed suggestion as to action, and you stand back and let him go to work.

In the case of instituting that VAERS (Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System) in 1986 that took vaccine manufactures off the liability-payout hook, the federal government allowed anti-vaccine activists to propose VAERS, activists who thought that GOVERNMENT was a better protector of the people than DRUG COMPANIES.

Hello? The medical monopoly IS a joint venture of government and drug companies. More coming"

Although I haven't been able to obtain the medical records of those Marines in San Diego who are falling ill and dying, I believe that at least some of them are the victims of the smallpox and/or anthrax vaccine. I'm still looking for better confirmation. This ranks as a maybe right now.

Meanwhile, CNN reports that hundreds of sailors aboard the USS Roosevelt have come down with the flu. Of course, no details on exactly how the blood of these people was tested to make that diagnosis---and we don't know whether the sailors have recently been vaccinated. The ship is in the Atlantic Ocean on exercises, and is third in line to go to the Middle East---so it's possible the crew has received smallpox shots. If this outbreak is really a vaccine reaction, it's being covered up. Maybe we're seeing a reaction to a flu vaccine.

MSNBC is reporting on a new survey done to see what Americans know and don't know about smallpox and the vaccine. The conclusion? Americans are confused about the most elementary facts. There is a clue here for us: The complete government turnaround on ITS position vis-a-vis the vaccine is now being laid off on the public---"The government is not talking out of both sides of its mouth, it's the public that has all the wrong ideas." And this MSNBC piece also tells us how the press is going to worm its way out of confronting the White House about that 180-degree turnaround---again, the "confusion" is going to be laid at the door of the public. Repulsive.

US soldiers are caught in the crossfire of the government's 180 re the vaccine. As far as we know, the smallpox vaccinations are proceeding in the military. This is happening with NO announced evidence that any nation is preparing to use, or can use, smallpox as a bio-weapon. If Bush publicly calls off the vaccine program for the military, then he exposes the whole hoax. The Pentagon brass tend to view "their boys" as the healthiest specimens in the world, and so they convince themselves that the vaccine will do little harm.


This represents yet another fast-breaking phase in the complete government turnaround re this vaccine. BOOM.

However, this "careful medical screening" the Army is doing right now to identify those who should be exempted from the shot? What will happen soon when the big wave of 500,000 soldiers is due for the vaccine all at once? The usual style is, get in line, roll up your sleeve, keep moving, keep your mouth shut. That's exactly how they can process so many people. They are going to sit these 500,000 guys down, one at a time, and put them through an extensive interview to determine whether they should get the shot? No possible way.

So there are three choices. One, they quietly cancel the whole vaccine campaign. Two, they shoot up all the soldiers and lie about the damage and death that actually results. Three, they stage a bio-war attack with the smallpox germ and thereby justify giving them all the shot---in which case vaccine deaths are blamed on the "bio-attack."


There are still very important snakes in the grass. As Jane Orient, MD, points out, the Homeland Security Act, which was passed without a single congressional hearing or testifying witness, contains, in Section 304, Subsection C, a provision that empowers the secretary of health and human services (Tommy Thompson, at the moment)to declare states of emergency. He can order "countermeasures" against bio-attacks. He can order quarantines and detainments for "categories of individuals" he invents according to his own guidelines. This broad power, undefined, opens the door for all sorts of medical/police actions.

So although Thompson says he's not taking the smallpox vaccine himself, don't assume we are looking at a moment of enlightenment.

"What good fortune for those in power that the people do not think." ~Adolf Hitler

"Through clever and constant application of propaganda people can be made to see paradise as hell, and also the other way around, to consider the most wretched sort of life as paradise." ~Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf, 1923 "It also gives us a very special, secret pleasure to see how unaware the people around us are of what is really happening to them." ~Adolf Hitler

Military Smallpox Plan Unveiled

Smallpox and Smallpox Vaccination NEJM

GA hospital doesn't give smallpoxshot yet

Tue, 17 Dec 2002 17:53:57 +0000

Grady's workers won't be given smallpox shot yet Risk outweighs threat, hospital says

By M.A.J. McKENNA Atlanta Journal-Constitution Staff Writer Grady Memorial Hospital has decided not to vaccinate its workers against smallpox, backing away from a state and nationwide campaign to protect health care workers before any possible bioterrorist attack.

The decision comes three days after President Bush opened voluntary vaccination to emergency workers and two weeks after the state Division of Public Health said Grady would be one of the first Georgia hospitals offered the vaccine.

"Grady has balanced the known dangers of the smallpox vaccine, which can in some instances cause serious side effects, against the unlikely risk of exposure to the smallpox virus," spokeswoman Karen Frashier said in a statement Monday evening.

"Grady will not vaccinate its health care workers for smallpox at this time, but would move rapidly to vaccinate health care workers if a case of smallpox is reported, or a clearly imminent danger of smallpox transmission is shown to exist."

The hospital's decision took the state division by surprise. A letter asking hospitals to estimate how many staff might agree to vaccination has not even been mailed, said Dr. Kathleen Toomey, state health director.

"I am not concerned. I think it's a reflection of the fact that we have done our job in making people realize that this vaccination is voluntary," Toomey said Monday evening. "We are not strong-arming them in any way."

The federal government decided to relaunch vaccination against smallpox, which has not been used in the United States since 1972, based on fears that rogue regimes, such as Iraq and North Korea, might use the highly infectious, frequently fatal disease as a weapon.

In making the vaccine available once again, officials have underlined the side effect risks. For every 1 million vaccinations, the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates, there will be one to two deaths; 14 to 52 life-threatening reactions, including gangrene, encephalitis and severe skin infections; and 50 to 900 other side effects, such as rashes, fevers and viral eruptions far from the vaccination site.

The federal smallpox policy, announced Friday, calls for mandatory vaccination for about 510,000 military personnel and voluntary vaccination for about 440,000 civilian smallpox-response teams and emergency-room staff.

As part of that, Georgia intends to offer the vaccine initially to about 500 civilians, a plan that is considerably more conservative than those crafted by states such as New York and California.

Georgia's plan calls for vaccinating up to 15 doctors and nurses at each of the state's 15 trauma centers, as well as teams of roughly 15 people in each of the state's 19 health districts. Because the state plan calls for vaccinations to begin in metro Atlanta, Grady staff would have been among the first to receive the shot.

As Georgia's largest public hospital, and one of only two Level One trauma centers in the state, Grady's decision could influence other institutions that are still debating whether to offer their staff the vaccine.

The decision was made by the hospital's infection control committee. Members declined to comment Monday.

Grady is jointly staffed by physicians from the Emory University and Morehouse schools of medicine. Dr. Carlos del Rio, an Emory professor who heads that school's medical service at Grady, supported the decision Monday on behalf of his staff.

"I see no immediate threat of smallpox happening," he said. "At this point in time, the risk of the vaccine far outweighs the the benefit of getting the vaccine."

The vaccine could be justified now for a military member being deployed to Iraq, he added, or for a lab worker who handles either smallpox or the related virus used to make the vaccine. But in a hospital full of sick patients -- many of them with weak immune systems, which increase the risk of vaccine complications -- it cannot be justified yet, he said.

"I don't want recently vaccinated people running around our clinics and our wards," he said. "Even though the risk is small, there will be a risk of the vaccine virus being disseminated to somebody."

Similar concerns are being expressed by other hospitals, Toomey said. "We are hearing about issues of liability for vaccine injury, and issues of workmen's compensation -- in the rare but possible event of a complication, how are the hospitals going to pay?"

According to federal officials, new laws that go into effect Jan. 24 will protect anyone who administers the vaccine, including a hospital or an individual physician, against liability; anyone who experienced a bad reaction would have to sue the federal government.

Officials have not fully defined how claims of compensation for health care costs or lost work time would be handled. Over the weekend, Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson said compensation would come first from state workers' comp laws, which vary from state to state. He suggested the issue might be taken up by Congress, but said his department is not planning to submit legislation.

Grady has not refused to participate in the broad smallpox-emergency planning that the state is doing, Toomey added.

"They've been a key player, and we're sure they will continue to be even though they have made a decision not to have their staff get vaccinated," she said. "In my 10 years in Georgia, I've never seen such cooperation between hospitals and public health."

The federal vaccination plan calls for the smallpox vaccine to be offered in phases: first, to the 1 million military and emergency-team members; second, to up to 10 million health care workers, police, fire and first responders. In that second phase, up to 3,000 Georgians will be offered vaccination, Toomey said.

"I am sure we will get some people vaccinated," she said.

If the risk of a smallpox attack appears to increase, Grady will re-evaluate, Frashier said Monday. Unlike most vaccines in use, the smallpox vaccine protects against the disease even if it is administered a few days after exposure to the virus.

Unless the picture changes, del Rio said, there could be grave consequences to alarmed Americans over-reacting and seeking the vaccine.

"As an infectious disease physician, I do not think I will see a case of smallpox," he said. "But I can tell you, I will see cases of the complications of smallpox vaccine."

[RMNFILES] Health alert: military and secondary smallpox

Date: Mon, 16 Dec 2002 17:34:07 -0800

----- Original Message ----- From: AAPS Online To: Association of American Physicians & Surgeons

The Voice for Private Physicians Since 1943

PUBLIC HEALTH ALERT: Military May Receive Smallpox Vax This Week


--Military could transmit vaccinia virus to family personnel

--Physicians should be on alert to possibility of secondary transmissions

--Resources to recognize signs and symptoms


The advisory below was sent to us from the Arizona Department of Health Services via the Arizona Medical Association to alert physicians and other medical workers about the possibility of secondary transmission of vaccinia virus from military personnel.

We recommend that you check with your state or county health department for reporting requirements or any other advisories in your area. The link to the CDC smallpox clinic plans is posted on the AAPS website, along with other useful information about the vaccine.

We urge you to post your questions and comments on the AAPS forum on the website.

Association of American Physicians & Surgeons

1601 N. Tucson Blvd. Suite 9

Tucson, AZ 85716

(800) 635-1196

(520) 325-4230 Fax



Dear Health Care Provider: Last night, we were informed that members of the US military would begin receiving smallpox vaccine as early as today. Naturally, members of the military will receive their own health care, including evaluation and treatment for vaccine side effects, from military health care providers.

However, there is a chance of accidental transmission of vaccinia virus from vaccinated personnel to their family members, who may seek care from civilian health care providers. We encourage you to be alert to the possibility of secondary transmission to family members of military personnel who present with signs and symptoms consistent with vaccinia infection. The following web-based resources have detailed information on the signs and symptoms:

- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Smallpox Page -

- Arizona Department of Health Services' Home Page -

Let's face it, there are very few of us who have ever seen this. If you have any question about the possibility of this in a patient, please err on the side of caution and consult your infectious disease consultant, or call your County Health Department or the Arizona Department of Health Services at 602-230-5871.

Our own vaccination activities for Public Health Rapid Response Teams and Hospital Rapid Response Teams will not likely begin before late January. Importantly, the goal of this first phase of vaccinations is not to protect us from inadvertent exposure to the first case of disease. Rather, it is designed to create a limited cadre of professionals who will be asked to respond and treat the initial smallpox cases. Anyone who may have been exposed to initial cases, including health care workers, can be vaccinated successfully after exposure. Of course, if there ever were genuine cases of disease, we would accelerate vaccination of other health care personnel. We will keep you informed of our progress.

Sincerely, Bob England, MD, MPH State Epidemiologist

Smallpox vaccine may cause outbreak

Mon, 16 Dec 2002
Media Release:

Smallpox Vaccine May Cause Outbreak

For immediate release - Monday, December 16, 2002:

If John Howard follows the lead of America and uses the smallpox vaccine we are now stockpiling, Australia may be guaranteed of an outbreak of vaccinia - a mystery virus whose origin nobody knows but whose symptoms and risks mimic exactly those of smallpox.

"This is a live-virus vaccine", says Meryl Dorey, President of the Australian Vaccination Network, a national, non-profit organisation whose goal is to educate Australian parents and health professionals on this issue. "A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) on 16 October 2002 showed that when the vaccine had been used previously, for every 100,000 vaccinations there would be at least 2-6 cases of vaccinia in vaccine contacts.

The one million people that George Bush will vaccinate in the United States may translate into at least 60 cases of vaccinia in people who in turn, can infect many others.

When this outbreak occurs, since vaccinia is indistinguishable from smallpox, it will almost certainly be blamed on terrorists, triggering the Howard government to use its 50,000 vaccines in Australia. The use of this notoriously dangerous and unreliable vaccine and the subsequent deaths and injuries from both the vaccine itself and the illness it causes, may see the reintroduction of this disease around the world.

The same JAMA study goes on to state that today's numbers of killed and injured by this vaccine could be much, much higher as our immune systems are so much weaker today than they were at the time. There is no explanation given for our weakened state, but one can only assume that 50 years of multiple vaccines, pesticides and herbicides in food, formula feeding of infants and indiscriminate use of antibiotics have taken their dreadful toll on the human race."

Before we use this vaccine on any Australian citizens or residents or our armed forces, we must be assured that it is both safe and effective.

We currently know that it is unsafe - it has been described by many eminent scientists as 'a vaccine with the highest risk of complications of any vaccine ever manufactured.'

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's fact sheet (dated November 1, 2002) on Smallpox vaccination, in two studies published in 1968 (when they admit that our immune systems would have been stronger): reactions to this vaccine include (my comments in italics):

1,000 out of every one million vaccinated:

1- A vaccinia (smallpox) rash or outbreak of sores limited to one area. This is an accidental spreading of the vaccinia virus caused by touching the vaccination site and then touching another part of the body. If this touching involves the eyes, it can lead to blindness.

2- A widespread vaccinia (smallpox) rash. The virus spreads from the site of vaccination. Sores will break out on parts of the body away from the vaccination site and can be spread to others who are in close contact.

3- A toxic or allergic rash in response to the vaccine that can have various forms (erythema multiforma).

14-52 out of every one million vaccinated:

1- Eczema vaccinatum - Bad skin rashes that may have serious consequences.

2- Progressive vaccinia (or vaccinia necrosum). Ongoing skin and tissue destruction frequently leading to death.

3- Postvaccinal encephalitis - a complication of many vaccines used today causing swelling of the brain. May lead to brain damage or, in rare cases, death.

In addition, there is no evidence that this vaccine even works. Looking back over the history of smallpox vaccination, we see disaster after disaster with large outbreaks occurring in those who had been fully vaccinated and death rates higher in the vaccinated as well. For instance, one of the worst smallpox outbreaks ever occurred in the Philippines where the United States occupiers required mass smallpox vaccinations. The result was 25 million vaccines administered to a population of 10 million people resulting in 170,000 cases and more than 75,000 deaths in a country which had previously only had sporadic cases in rural villages previously.

According to a study released by the Chief Medical Officer for the Ministry of Health on the statistics regarding smallpox vaccination in England and Wales (available upon request). as the rate of those vaccinated declined, so did the incidence of smallpox. Not only that, but in every year for which there are records, (with the exception of 1927 when there is a dispute about the causes of death), more children aged 0-5 died from smallpox vaccination than died from smallpox itself.

Most American states have passed new anti-terrorist laws allowing compulsory vaccines at gunpoint in the event of suspected terrorist events. American students have already been vaccinated at gunpoint by the National Guard in trials of how this will work.

One can only hope that in this instance, The Howard government will not follow the American lead. We in Australia are entitled to know that measures taken by our government on our behalf are for our protection and not to our detriment. Any government which intentionally uses medical procedures known to cause death and disablement may not call itself democratic and, in fact, is the epitome of tyranny.

Websites with further information: - A very extensive list of medical journal articles dealing with smallpox vaccine effectiveness and risks. - Another page with many links to government and medical sites regarding smallpox. - From the Centers for Disease Control website - 3 pages of very graphic images of smallpox vaccine reactions. - Manufacturer's informationfor the smallpox vaccine.

NY times articles on smallpox
December 15, 2002
Smallpox Shot Will Be Free for Those Who Want One


new smallpox vaccine will be provided free to Americans who want it if the vaccine, now being manufactured, passes licensing tests as expected in 2004, Tommy G. Thompson, the secretary of health and human services, said yesterday.

But in a news conference, Mr. Thompson repeated President Bush's strong recommendation made on Friday that the public not seek vaccination now with an older vaccine because there is no imminent danger of a bioterrorist attack.

On Friday, Mr. Bush announced his long-awaited decision to give smallpox vaccinations for the first time in 30 years to select groups of Americans.

In the first stage, about 500,000 frontline military personnel and 500,000 civilian health care workers will get the vaccine. The military began vaccinating on Friday afternoon. Vaccination of health care workers will begin in late January.

Immediately after the first stage is completed, up to 10 million health care workers, firefighters, police officers and emergency medical technicians will be offered the vaccine. Despite tremendous logistical challenges, officials hope to finish this second stage in summer.

These people will receive the same vaccine that was used to eradicate smallpox from the world in 1980 and has been stored since then.

When a vaccine made by newer techniques is licensed, probably in 2004, the government will offer it to Americans through clinics but not through private doctors.

Mr. Bush said that public health agencies would work to accommodate some Americans who insist on being vaccinated now.

As long as there are no smallpox cases, the vaccine is unlikely to be given to children, even if parents request it, because it has not been tested on them, said Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Researchers had hoped to conduct such studies in children, but ethics panels at medical centers refused to allow them, citing federal regulations banning human experiments in which risks outweigh benefits, he said.

How many Americans will choose to get the vaccine now, or in the future, is unknown, federal health officials said in a news conference.

Dr. Julie L. Gerberding, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said that her federal agency had conducted focus groups that found "mismatches" between the public's desire to be protected and its understanding of the vaccine's risks. Smallpox vaccine is the most dangerous of all human immunizations, and the virus it is made from can be inadvertently transmitted to others.

More than 140,000 doctors have signed up to participate in educational programs to help them answer questions from patients, Dr. Gerberding said. The disease prevention agency is preparing to send about 150,000 educational CD-ROMs to doctors by the end of the year.

To illustrate the point about misunderstandings, Dr. Fauci said that when participants in focus groups were asked if they wanted to be vaccinated, about 60 percent said yes. But after health workers explained the dangers of the vaccine, the number dropped to 15 to 20 percent, Dr. Fauci said.

Federal officials participating in the news conference initially said that Americans might be able to get the new vaccine at their doctors' offices.

But Mr. Thompson interrupted and said emphatically that individual doctors would not be permitted to keep the vaccine in their offices.

"It will not be in your doctor's office," Mr. Thompson said. "We will not give it up out of our custody. It will not be willy-nilly handed out to doctors across America. We will retain custody of the vaccine."

Plans are still being worked out to provide vaccine for Americans who want it now. Dr. Fauci said that one way was for people to enroll in clinical trials being conducted to study smallpox vaccine.

But there are caveats — not everyone is accepted into clinical trials, the number of participants is limited and participants must meet certain medical requirements and agree to certain conditions.

For people who cannot get into a clinical trial, the government may create a program in which the vaccine can be given as an experimental drug, Dr. Fauci said.

Reaction Is Mixed to Smallpox Inoculations

December 15, 2002


Fear of smallpox, fear of its vaccine. Worried about Baghdad, worried about Washington. Even before President Bush on Friday announced plans to vaccinate civilian health care workers and military personnel and make the vaccine available to the public as early as next year, many Americans were wrestling with these issues: Is smallpox really a threat, and is a risky ounce of prevention worth it?

Anthony Burrows, 38, a United Parcel Service driver from Brooklyn, was not eager to be inoculated. "I'm not taking it," said Mr. Burrows as he dropped off boxes in Midtown Manhattan. "This whole thing is politics and big business. Somebody stands to make a bundle off the vaccine."

Mr. Burrows said he would not have his children vaccinated either. He said he did not like the idea of being injected with a disease to fight another disease. And, he said, he was not afraid of a germ attack even though his job theoretically made him vulnerable, like the postal employees who contracted anthrax.

Others had the opposite reaction.

"I would take it, and my kids would too," said Linda Massina of La Plata, Md., who was a few blocks away, headed for Radio City for a Rockettes performance. Her 20-year-old son can make his own decision, Mrs. Massina said, but the three younger children will be getting the shots. "We knew people who were lost at the Pentagon." Mrs. Massina said. "We see the effects of terrorism here in New York. There was already that subway attack in Japan with that sarin or whatever."

Mr. Burrows and Mrs. Massina represented two ends of a spectrum of decision and indecision that seemed to waver across the nation. Some people were sure they would take the vaccine, some were sure they would not — but most were just not sure.

The president's announcement that he himself would be vaccinated against smallpox because he is commander in chief, but that his family would not be, seemed to leave some people confused.

"It's a very curious message " `I'll set an example but my family is not going to get inoculated,' " said Bob Schatz, a wholesale bookseller from Portland, Ore., visiting Houston on business. "What is he telling us? If we are supposed to, then show leadership. If it's an ill-defined thing that could happen, there are a million things that could happen."

Julia Schreiber, 37, an accountant and mother of four in Houston, said she would get vaccinations only if the state required it or her company, Reliant Energy, strongly recommended it. Even then, Mrs. Schreiber said, she might do as she does now with the flu, have herself vaccinated but not her children.

There were a fair number of people who thought that the whole debate was a waste of time, that no smallpox attack was imminent.

"Saddam Hussein has been described as evil, but not suicidal," said Dr. Franklyn N. Judson, director of public health for Denver. "His main interest is staying in power. I guess if they ever had it, they've probably gotten rid of it."

Although he is a professor of preventive medicine at the University of Colorado and one of those in charge of Denver's response to any outbreak, Dr. Judson, 60, said he personally would not recommend that anyone in Denver — including his own family — get a smallpox shot now.

"There's no benefit," he said. "The chances that somebody will show up in Denver or Rangely, Colo., with smallpox is so vanishingly small. It's a virus that's not known to exist but in two laboratories."

Tina Getsee, 41, a police crime statistician in Coral Springs, Fla., with five sons aged 4 to 18, said she was not worried about the vaccination itself since her children had had others with no problems. But she was also not worried about a smallpox attack. "I don't think they would attack here," Mrs. Getsee, said. "I think they would hit major cities. I feel fairly safe."

In a poll taken in October, sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and released only last week, 65 percent of all Americans said they were ready to be vaccinated against smallpox. In a similar poll taken by the foundation in May, 59 percent said they were.

In Los Angeles, Janice Black, 56, said she, too, might get revaccinated. "If it saves my life, I'd put up with three days of sickness," Mrs. Black said. "It sounds dangerous, but where was the danger when everybody was taking it years ago?"

Shauna Harrington of Watertown, Mass., shopping with her young daughters Zoe and Enya, said she thought that immunizing soldiers made sense, but having herself or her daughters vaccinated did not.

At Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Los Angeles, Dr. Coleen Sintek, 51, a cardiac surgeon, and Dr. Marjorie Bernstein Singer, an oncologist, both argued against precautionary vaccinations, saying they believed there was enough time to vaccinate after an attack started.

Dr. Sintek said she would not get the vaccine herself, noting that a lot of patients had compromised immune systems and that contact with the site of her vaccination could put them at risk. Dr. Singer, speaking of Mr. Bush, said she felt "the whole thing is a scare tactic to get people to support his policy."

The chief of the emergency room in North General Hospital in Harlem, Dr. Neal M. Shipley, said he did not plan to get vaccinated because he has a 14-month-old child at home. Dr. Shipley said he found the president's decision to ask emergency personnel to be vaccinated "very frustrating."

He said, "We have real patients, with real problems — diabetes, high blood pressure, domestic assault — right now."

Many of those in the military who were interviewed said they were not worried about vaccinations and would willingly be inoculated. On Friday, a few marines at Camp Pendleton, near San Clemente, Calif., sat around a barbershop and talked about the president's announcement.

One of them, Cpl. Eric Pinkston, 23, of Salida, Colo., said of getting vaccinated: "I'm all for it. Given a choice of a vaccine or dying from anthrax or smallpox, I'll take the vaccine."

Research: Will millions need new smallpox vaccinations?

15 DEC 2002 Research: Will millions need new smallpox vaccinations?

By BEN DOBBIN of the Associated Press

ROCHESTER, N.Y. - In a hallway at Strong Memorial Hospital, two volunteers in a medical study showed off the results of booster vaccinations they were given for the smallpox vaccinations they had received as children.

"I've got a nice big round thing that itches like crazy," said James Campbell, 67, pointing at the fresh scar on his left shoulder that matches one he got in 1940.

"Me too!" said Janet Martel, mother of two teenagers. "I probably had no immunity left, which surprises me."

About half of all Americans alive today were inoculated for smallpox as children, and most still carry residual protection, though not nearly as strong as in the five to 10 years after the inoculation, said Dr. John Treanor, the study's chief investigator.

The dime-sized blisters, which typically scab over and heal within weeks, indicate the vaccine took, Treanor said. Now, those once familiar scars will be seen again as vaccinations begin for at least some Americans.

Smallpox vaccinations began Friday for the military, and medical workers are to start getting them in January. The government is not recommending smallpox inoculation for most Americans, but the vaccine is already available for those who volunteer for medical studies.

At Strong Memorial, the University of Rochester's research hospital, and six other research sites around the country, 927 people are taking part in a study sponsored by the National Institutes of Health. It will determine if diluted smallpox vaccine can boost the immunity of people vaccinated before 1972, when routine inoculation ended in the United States.

Earlier studies on unvaccinated younger adults indicated the limited government stockpile of the 40-year-old smallpox vaccine - some 15 million doses - could be diluted five to 10 times and still be effective.

Now researchers want to see if the same holds true in those already vaccinated. The results, to be published in the spring, could differ because previously vaccinated people might need stronger doses.

"They'd be a little immune and may not get quite as vigorous a viral replication as you would see in people who had never been vaccinated," said Treanor, director of the Vaccine and Treatment Evaluation Unit at the University of Rochester Medical Center.

Smallpox once killed hundreds of millions of people. About a third of those infected died, and survivors were often blinded or disfigured. A vaccine was developed in 1796.

The last smallpox case in the world was recorded in Somalia in 1977, and the disease hasn't been seen in the United States for half a century.

Some of the most definitive historical data is provided by a rare outbreak in Liverpool, England, in 1902. The epidemic killed about half the infected adults over 50 who'd never been inoculated and bypassed every vaccinated child. As for adults inoculated as youngsters, "most developed smallpox and about 10 percent of them died," Treanor said.

"The general feeling is vaccine protection lasts for a few years and then it starts to go away bit by bit," he said.

Fear that smallpox could be used as a terrorist weapon has been raised by growing hostilities with Iraq - believed by U.S. intelligence officials to possess smallpox virus - and evidence found in Afghanistan that Osama bin Laden was pursuing potential biological weapons.

With all that is going on in the world, "it's not going to be long before people are going to be more fully aware of things like biohazards," said Campbell, a retired philosophy professor.

"I do not know the depths to which the world will go, so I don't think we can take chances. It is sad. Some Chinese say, 'Woe to those who live in interesting times.' We live in interesting times."

Martel, a drug company administrator, thinks the public has become lackadaisical about vaccines, especially younger people unfamiliar with scourges like polio. A big believer in vaccines, she gets a flu shot every year. "If the prevention is out there, why not?" she said.

Another volunteer, Todd Sazenski, 34, said he experienced the normal red, itchy bump. But his wife, who volunteered for a separate study of non-vaccinated adults a year ago, suffered headaches and had swollen lymph nodes for a couple of days.

Some of her fellow participants had grapefruit-sized swellings, rashes and flu-like aches, and one in three was sufficiently ill to miss school or work or have trouble sleeping, Treanor said.

In the current study at Strong Memorial, symptoms have been much milder, he said.

The study is also taking place at Saint Louis University Medical Center, the University of Maryland, Duke University Medical Center, Stanford University, Kaiser Permanente California and the University of California, Los Angeles.

Public urged to forgo smallpox vaccination

Sun, 15 Dec 2002

Public urged to forgo smallpox vaccination
Most still unaware of risks, officials say
By TODD ACKERMAN, Houston Chronicle Medical Writer, 12.15.02

Saying many people still have no idea just how risky the smallpox vaccine is, leading U.S. health officials stressed Saturday that the federal government isn't recommending it for the general public.

Leaders from the Department of Health and Human Services, the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defended President Bush's plan to make the vaccine available to the public but said they hope few seek it.

"The federal government is not recommending vaccination (beyond military personnel and emergency health workers)," said HHS Secretary Tommy Thompson. "It will just accommodate members of the public who insist on being vaccinated."

However, children will not be eligible to receive the vaccination unless there's a bioterrorist attack with smallpox, the leaders said. Because ethical and safety concerns disqualify children from clinical trials being conducted with the vaccine, it cannot be licensed for them.

The health leaders warned of the vaccine's dangers during a conference call with the media a day after Bush announced a long-awaited plan in the event of a smallpox attack. Although smallpox was eradicated in the 1970s, experts fear terrorists or hostile nations could use it on the battlefield or against civilians.

The plan calls for the vaccination of 500,000 military personnel, which began Friday, and of 450,000 to 500,000 smallpox response teams and hospital workers, which is scheduled to begin Jan. 24. A second round of vaccinations for health care workers and emergency personnel, scheduled for the spring, could bring the civilian medical and response team total to 10.5 million people.

States initially were told they'd have 30 days to carry out the inoculation of their teams, chafing some that worried about finishing in time. But Thompson said Saturday it is fine if some states take longer.

It was Bush's decision to offer the vaccine to the general public in 2004 that is causing health officials to mount an aggressive educational campaign. Polls show that most people would get the vaccine if given the chance. But the health leaders said people's minds change when they find out about the side effects.

Tony Fauci, director of the NIH's National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said that when he speaks at public meetings, about 60 percent of people initially say they want the vaccine. After he shows slides of its side effects -- such as a nasty rash -- the number of those who say they want the shot drops to 15 percent to 20 percent.

In the past, between 14 and 52 of every 1 million people who were vaccinated experienced potentially life-threatening reactions, and one to two died. In a recent study, one-third of participants taking the vaccine missed at least one day of work or school, typically from fever.

Thompson said the vaccine will be available only through public health agencies and that it won't be handed out "willy-nilly to doctors in America."

Army to enforce smallpox quarantines
Pentagon plans for smallpox outbreak
By Pamela Hess
UPI Pentagon Correspondent
From the International Desk
Published 12/13/2002 4:36 PM

WASHINGTON, Dec. 13 (UPI) -- The military could be called on to keep order and quarantine affected areas if there were a smallpox outbreak in the United States, according to a Defense Department response plan completed in September.

The White House and Pentagon unveiled plans Friday to begin vaccinating health-care workers and as many as 500,000 military personnel against the release of smallpox on the battlefield, but it also has a step-by-step guide for military commanders in the event of a domestic biological weapons attack.

Because the disease was finally eradicated in 1979, a single case of smallpox would be considered to be the result of a germ warfare attack. There are only two known stocks of the disease -- in the United States and Russia -- but the U.S. government fears that some of the stock may have been stolen and sold on the black market.

Smallpox would kill one-third of its victims if they are not treated in time, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

The newly organized U.S. Northern Command, currently headed by Air Force Gen. Ralph Eberhart, would be in charge of coordinating military support for a domestic biological attack.

While the military is generally prohibited from performing law enforcement duties on American soil under a law known as the Posse Comitatus Act, the military can be pressed into service by civilian authorities in the event of an emergency.

Military personnel would generally not be carrying weapons to enforce the quarantine in the event of a biological weapons attack. However, they could be deployed to the affected area with weapons, and the weapons would be secured in a warehouse in case they are needed. Weapons would only be carried with the express order by the secretary of defense and the attorney general, according to a Defense Department smallpox response plan released in September.

Local military commanders may use troops at local civilian authority request without approval from the Pentagon to save lives, prevent human suffering and mitigate great property damage, according to the plan.

An outbreak of smallpox in the United States could seriously infringe on military activities, as flights and troop movement would be cut to a minimum to slow the potential spread of the disease. Those within one hour of ground transportation -- or one leg of a commercial flight originating at an airport within an hour ground transport of an infected area -- would be considered the most likely to have been exposed.

Military personnel might also be pressed into mortuary-related duties in the event of mass casualties

Copyright © 2002 United Press International

Bush Signals He Thinks Possibility of Smallpox Attack Is Rising--NYT

Sun, 15 Dec 2002
Here's 2 paragraphs from the story:

Bush Signals He Thinks Possibility of Smallpox Attack Is Rising
In December 1997, six years after the Persian Gulf War, the Pentagon announced that it had decided to vaccinate its 2.4 million solders and reservists against anthrax. It was unclear what prompted the decision. Iraq's program to make biological weapons had been exposed more than two years earlier, and Clinton Administration officials offered no public assessment of what new dangers existed, if any.

In time, the anthrax program turned into a public-relations disaster, with hundreds of soldiers refusing to take the shots and some even suing the government. One fear, discounted by federal officials, was that the vaccine can cause serious side effects, as medical experts agree that the smallpox vaccine did in the past and can do again today.

Health workers fear smallpox plan

WASHINGTON, Dec. 14 - The announcement yesterday that as many as 11 million Americans will soon be vaccinated against a disease that nobody on Earth has contracted in 24 years marks a strange and unique moment in the history of American public health.

IT IS THE first time a U.S. vaccination campaign has been launched not simply in the name of disease prevention, but to advance "homeland security" - the still-evolving amalgam of military and civil preparedness, psychological reassurance and personal health. In fact, for the first time it may be impossible to say whether anyone benefited from a mass inoculation.

The Bush administration recognizes the policy is unprecedented, and its implementation fraught with uncertainty. "We're going to learn a lot, and there's going to be some bumps along the way," Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy G. Thompson said yesterday.

Nevertheless, the administration has concluded that by vaccinating about 450,000 hospital workers starting in January - and as many as 10 million police, fire and paramedic workers by early summer - the United States will be prepared for a smallpox attack.

By late summer, vaccine may be available to any citizen - although not recommended - further building "herd immunity" in the U.S. population. Some experts believe that the plan may help take smallpox virus out of the arsenal of terrorists - if it's there, which nobody seems to know for certain. What is certain is that many people in state, city and county public health departments and in the country's approximately 5,000 hospitals aren't a bit enthusiastic about the program. That's not simply because they must implement the enormously complicated program. It's because they'll be the ones forced to deal with its problems, which are certain to emerge in short order even if the benefits remain forever unknown.

State health officials, epidemiologists, hospital administrators, emergency room doctors and public health nurses will do what the federal government asks. Patriotism is involved, after all. But their reluctance is evident in the tone and choice of words that creeps into discussion of the plans. "Because of our duties to respond, we need to be prepared, and the best available evidence is that the vaccine is how we get prepared. That is how we are convincing ourselves to sort of accept the vaccine," said Thomas Terndrup, head of emergency medicine at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, who has an interest in bioterrorism planning.

Patricia Quinlisk, medical director of the Iowa Department of Public Health and vice president of the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists, has participated in innumerable conference calls in recent weeks. Colleagues from around the country are voicing lots of semi-rhetorical questions.

"What I am hearing from others is, 'I wonder why? How did [government policymakers] come to make that decision? What are the pieces of information they're using?' " she said. HEALTH OFFICIALS OPPOSE PLAN This is an unusual state of affairs for public health officers, who are normally the apostles of disease prevention and the great promoters of vaccines. In the case of smallpox vaccine, the prevailing - but not unanimous - view is that the less it gets around, the better.

In a poll taken in June, 91 percent of members of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials opposed any policy that would allow the general public to get vaccinated against smallpox before an attack. In October, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), a body of epidemiologists and academic physicians that is the chief adviser to the government on vaccine matters, rejected the proposal to vaccinate 10 million people, backing only the plan to immunize 500,000 hospital workers.

Opposition to wide use of smallpox vaccine bubbles up from three wellsprings - one psychological, one medical, one sociological. The psychological one involves the history of smallpox itself. It's the only human disease to have been eradicated - a feat that many epidemiologists feel has never been fully appreciated by the public.

To reverse that achievement through the intentional release of smallpox virus would be "a crime against humanity of unimagined proportions," says Georges C. Benjamin, executive director of the American Public Health Association and former head of the Maryland health department. Bringing back vaccination makes such an event thinkable - and that's something many people have a very, very hard time accepting.

The medical reason for opposing widespread vaccination is the relative riskiness of the vaccine and the difficulty of minimizing that risk. At least one-quarter of the potential pool of recipients - and possibly a lot more - will need to be screened out. This includes anyone who is infected with the AIDS virus, is pregnant, is on immunosuppressive drugs or has any of the skin diseases known collectively as eczema.

Because the vaccine is a live virus that can be transmitted to others, anyone in close contact with a person in those categories must also be excluded. That will be an even harder task, and one more vulnerable to mistakes. Even if everything goes perfectly, there will be thousands of people with hot, swollen, sore arms. More likely, there will be complications and a few deaths. SOCIOLOGICAL CONSEQUENCES What has public health officials most worried are the sociological consequences of a vaccination campaign that is badly handled, or even just unlucky.

Although vaccines are perhaps medicine's greatest accomplishment, their acceptance is regularly under threat. Health officials and practitioners wage a constant campaign to convince the public of their value. That's because vaccination has made most of the diseases they protect against rare and, consequently, no longer feared. At the same time, it's easy to attribute all kinds of bad things to vaccines.

In recent years, both autism and the symptoms known as "Gulf War syndrome" have been blamed on vaccines, although there is little or no scientific evidence to support the contention. Skepticism about vaccines is fueled by the fact that occasionally one does cause harm, as in the case of the rotavirus vaccine against a common intestinal illness. The vaccine was abandoned after it was found to have triggered an intestinal defect in some people.

Mere coincidence can be damaging. This occurred in the ill-fated swine flu vaccination campaign mounted in 1976 to protect Americans against what was believed to be an extremely dangerous strain of influenza. Three elderly people, all heart patients, dropped dead on one day (Oct. 11) after getting shots at a Pittsburgh clinic. Experts concluded the vaccine was not responsible, but it took President Gerald Ford and his family getting swine flu shots on national TV to restore confidence in the program - and even then only for a while.

The greatest fear of public health officials is that something will happen during widespread smallpox vaccination that will sour the public on vaccines in general - including the ones against diseases that are still around and not, as with smallpox, only theoretical risks.

Asked last week why public health doctors fear the worst from smallpox vaccination despite politicians' enthusiasm, Benjamin, the former health secretary of Maryland, said:

"The difference can be summed up in a word - experience." With millions of Americans now preparing to roll up their sleeves - some eagerly, others out of duty - Benjamin's world-weary view will be put to the test.

Children Won't Get Smallpox Vaccine

Children Won't Get Smallpox Vaccine
Officials Cite Ethical, Safety Concerns

POSTED: 5:59 p.m. EST December 14, 2002

WASHINGTON -- Ethical and safety concerns will keep children from having access to the smallpox vaccine.

Anthony Fauci, who heads the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, says "the currently existing mechanisms of clinical trials" don't even allow testing the vaccine on as few as 20 children.

Fauci also feels too many people who say they want smallpox vaccine don't understand its potentially dangerous side effects. Fauci says they need to eliminate a "disconnect between desire for vaccination and full understanding" of the potential adverse effects.

Fauci joined Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson and other federal health officials in a teleconference on the vaccination program. They said they're proceeding very carefully to make it as safe as possible.

Health care workers balk at Bush's smallpox vaccine plan

Health care workers balk at Bush's smallpox vaccine plan
Date: Saturday, December 14 @ 08:34:58 EST

Safety issues cloud smallpox inoculations

By Sabin Russell, San Francisco Chronicle

President Bush revealed his plan Friday to vaccinate troops and medical personnel against smallpox, but opposition is building among the civilian health care workers who will be among the first asked to take the 30- year-old vaccine.

An estimated 500,000 troops will be required to take the vaccine, which carries a small risk of serious complications -- statistically, one of those soldiers can be expected to die from them. Vaccination of a small number of military personnel is already under way.

Bush told reporters at a Washington, D.C., briefing that he felt obliged as commander-in-chief to be vaccinated himself. "I do not believe that I can ask others to accept this risk unless I am willing to do the same," he said.

By summer, administration officials said, the vaccine will be available to any healthy adult American who demands it, but because of the its dangerous side effects, they strongly discouraged average citizens from being inoculated.

Health care workers who would be most likely to treat smallpox victims are being asked to take the vaccine voluntarily. But some doctors, nurses and other hospital workers are balking.


Health care worker union members staged press conferences throughout the nation Friday -- including one at San Francisco General Hospital -- to voice concerns over the safety of the vaccine and the practical problems of giving it to so many medical staffers at one time.

"We're going to discourage people from participating until a plan is put forward that adequately protects both health care workers and their patients," said Lorraine Thiebaud, a San Francisco General Hospital nurse and vice president for Local 790, of the Service Employees International Union.

"We are so stretched here, with budget cuts coming down on us, and now we are asked to run out and get vaccinated against an imaginary threat," Thiebaud said.

Among her concerns is whether vaccinated health care workers will be permitted to stay home from work during a period when they could infect their patients with the live virus found in scabs formed by their vaccination.

Smallpox vaccine is made from a live cowpox virus, a weaker germ that is closely related to smallpox but not nearly as dangerous to human beings. But it can be dangerous to people whose immune systems are weakened by HIV, cancer chemotherapy or immunosuppressive drugs for organ transplants. The vaccine is not recommended for pregnant women or people with a history of the skin condition eczema.


Thiebaud also noted that the vaccine would be administered with a nonretractable lancet, resembling a miniature two-pronged fork, designed to scratch the skin at the inoculation site. It is a 50-year-old technology and poses a small risk of nicking a nurse or doctor with a blood-contaminated point.

Thiebaud's local union was instrumental in pushing for laws that banned use of unsafe needles in hospitals across the nation.

The SEIU, which represents 750,000 health care workers in 22 states, has been campaigning for a variety of safeguards before the vaccine campaign is rolled out.

"Let's slow down and do it right," said Sal Rosselli, president of Local 250, which represents nursing home workers and hospital orderlies in Northern California.

Rosselli said the union has been talking with Northern California hospital operators, but he is concerned the workers' concerns will be ignored in other locales.


Robert Golomb of Lafayette, an emergency room doctor, had reservations.

"I must assume that the president is aware of clear evidence that smallpox can be used as a bio-weapon and is not making a decision based on fear alone," he told The Chronicle. "Only on this basis can I support his policy and have myself revaccinated."

Anticipating the federal plan to inoculate health care workers, California has ordered 40,000 doses of smallpox vaccine from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which controls the national supply of it. According to Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson, the nation now has enough vaccine on hand to protect the entire country in the event of a terrorist attack.

An international vaccination campaign wiped out naturally occurring smallpox in 1980. While the United States kept cultures of the virus under tight security, there are lingering fears that stocks of the virus were maintained in Russia, and possibly Iraq and North Korea -- and that terrorist organizations have been actively seeking it.

The risk that terrorists would gain access to the long-silenced smallpox virus is theoretical, but the danger posed by the vaccine is real. For every 1 million Americans vaccinated against smallpox for the first time, an estimated 15 will suffer life-threatening complications, and one or two will die.

With that risk in mind, federal health officials have decided against a mass immunization campaign -- which many of Bush's more conservative backers were demanding. Instead, the president said his administration "will work to accommodate" members of the general public who want to be vaccinated, but will not recommend that they seek it.

Bush told reporters that neither his staff nor his family would be vaccinated, "because our health and national security experts do not believe vaccination is necessary for the general public."

The smallpox vaccine is considered more dangerous than other modern vaccines because it consists of a live virus. The vaccine actually causes a mild case of cowpox, a disease closely related to smallpox but not remotely as lethal. Antibodies raised against cowpox will protect against smallpox for an unknown period -- experts estimate between five and 30 years. But almost no one has received a smallpox vaccination in the United States since 1972, when routine vaccinations were halted.

The Washington Post contributed to this report. / E-mail Sabin Russell at

©2002 San Francisco Chronicle.

Reprinted from The San Francisco Chronicle

For Victims of Smallpox Vaccine, Winning Case Will Be Hard

December 14, 2002
Health: For Victims of Vaccine, Winning Case Will Be Hard
People injured by the smallpox vaccine will be able to sue only one defendant, the federal government.

Full Story:

For Victims of Vaccine, Winning Case Will Be Hard

WASHINGTON, Dec. 13 — People injured by the smallpox vaccine will be able to sue only one defendant, the federal government, and experts who have studied the relevant laws say it will be difficult for anyone to win compensation for injuries or deaths caused by the vaccine.

In the Homeland Security Act, signed by President Bush on Nov. 25, Congress shielded doctors and vaccine manufacturers from liability for injuries suffered by people who take the vaccine. If the federal government authorizes use of the vaccine, the law says, anyone giving or producing it will be "deemed to be an employee of the Public Health Service," and the government will become the only defendant.

An injured person can pursue compensation under the Federal Tort Claims Act, but lawyers said it would be difficult to win money under that 1946 law.

"The government can probably escape liability for almost all injuries," says an analysis by Prof. Edward P. Richards and Dr. Katharine C. Rathbun of Louisiana State University.

Under the tort claims act, they said, plaintiffs would have to show that the government or people acting on its behalf were negligent in administering the vaccine.

"It would be very hard to recover from the government for risks that the government knew it was exposing people to," said Professor Richards, who is director of the program in law, medicine and public health at Louisiana State. "The government is not liable if it makes a policy choice to expose citizens to risks. It might be a bad policy choice, but it's not negligence."

Dr. Rathbun added, "If everything is done perfectly, without any negligence, some percentage of people given the vaccine will be injured by it — it's a dangerous vaccine — and they will not be compensated under the law."

Health officials estimate that 14 to 52 people of every million vaccinated may face life-threatening injuries, and that one or two will die. But, they say, the risk of serious injuries is much higher among people whose immunity has been suppressed by AIDS, cancer chemotherapy or other illnesses and treatments.

Under the tort claims act, federal employees must observe federal laws and regulations, but generally have no liability for policy decisions or actions performed in an exercise of official discretion.

The litigation process for victims of the smallpox vaccine will differ significantly from that for people injured by childhood vaccines.

In 1986, Congress created a no-fault system to compensate people injured by childhood vaccines. The government reviews and pays claims. The claims are paid from a federal trust fund financed by an excise tax included in the price of each dose of the recommended vaccines. To obtain compensation, a person must show the existence of a vaccine-related injury, but does not have to show negligence.

When the House considered the Homeland Security bill last month, Representative Henry A. Waxman, Democrat of California, said it "severely restricts the ability of persons killed or injured by the smallpox vaccine to receive any form of compensation." In short, he asserted, "if you are hurt, you are out of luck," and "the vaccine manufacturer, for all practical purposes, is going to be immune from liability."

The American Medical Association said today that it supported President Bush's plan to offer smallpox vaccinations to certain health care workers and emergency personnel. But it said that the liability protections, which take effect on Jan. 24, should be in place before doctors start giving the vaccine.

The Service Employees International Union, which represents many health care workers, said the government should establish a "simple and fair compensation system" for people injured by the vaccine. Such a system, it said, should make up income lost by people who become too sick to work after taking the vaccine.

Jim Turner, a spokesman for the Defense Department, said that if active-duty military personnel were injured by the vaccine, they would receive health care through the department's worldwide medical system. If disabled, he said, they could obtain disability benefits and health care from the government.

But military personnel could not sue the government for vaccine-related injuries, even if they believed that the injuries resulted from negligence by members of the armed forces or civilian federal employees. The Supreme Court ruled in 1950 that "the government is not liable under the Federal Tort Claims Act for injuries to servicemen" arising from their military service, and the court has repeatedly reaffirmed this principle, known as the Feres doctrine after the case that established it.

Side-Effects of Smallpox Jabs Alarm Volunteers
Side-Effects of Smallpox Jabs Alarm Volunteers

Dec. 12
© By Maggie Fox, Health and Science Correspondent

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - When health-care workers start inoculating 500,000 Americans against the smallpox virus next year, they will see side-effects not seen in 30 years -- sore, swollen arms, scary- looking scabs and perhaps even illness serious enough to hospitalize a few people.

President Bush said on Wednesday he was going ahead with widely expected plan under which 500,000 military troops would be vaccinated right away, and another 500,000 health-care workers a few weeks later.

These health-care workers would then be protected against smallpox in case of a biological attack, and could be available to vaccinate others.

Smallpox was eradicated in 1978, but experts believe Iraq has at least tried to develop smallpox into a biological weapon that it may use if attacked by the United States.

Bush was forced to balance the risks of the vaccine against the theoretical risk of a biological attack.

"We stopped using this vaccine when this disease was eradicated because it was dangerous," Dr. Julie Gerberding, head of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, told reporters in a recent briefing.

The United States stopped vaccinating the public in 1972, but there is a small group of people who have been vaccinated recently under studies aimed at seeing if 30-year-old stocks of the vaccine could be diluted and stretched out.

Doctors conducting those trials said they have seen startling side- effects -- reactions not seen with today's improved vaccine technology.

"We did have a lot of people calling us in a panic," said Dr. John Treanor, who has tested the vaccine on volunteers at the University of Rochester in New York. "They are only scary because people are unfamiliar with using the vaccine."

About one in five people get a big red lump at the vaccination site. The vaccine is a solution containing a live virus, called vaccinia, which is related to smallpox. This is scratched into the skin using a two-pronged needle.


If the vaccine is successful, the patient develops an oozing blister that shows the vaccinia has infected the body. If all goes well the body responds with a targeted attack that leaves it primed to also attack and eliminate smallpox virus.

"Those relatively large reactions can be associated with swelling of the lymph nodes in the armpit, which can be painful," Treanor said. "You can get malaise. Ten percent or so may have missed a couple of days from work because they didn't feel up to coming in."

"This is just what the vaccine is doing in the process of making you immune to smallpox, but it is not very comfortable."

People can also develop a more serious rash over parts or all of their bodies. "We don't understand why people get that rash," Treanor said. "It does look kind of alarming."

Like a cold sore, the blister "sheds" a virus that can be passed from person to person, or spread to other parts of the body. "If you get vaccinia in your eye, you can become blind," Gerberding said.

Out of every million people who got the vaccine in the 1960s, two died of serious complications such as encephalitis and another 14 were sick enough to go the hospital.

Experts are not sure what to expect today. "Although the vaccine may be the same, we are different," Washington state Secretary of Health Mary Selecky told a recent conference.

"How many people do you know who have gone through chemotherapy today, and how many did you know, or did your parents know, in 1954?"

Former cancer patients, people infected with the AIDS virus, transplant recipients and others with suppressed immune systems are all more susceptible to severe side-effects from a live virus vaccine. So are people with eczema, which for some reason is more common than it was 30 years ago.

Smallpox vax - An Interview With Bush Made News in Advance

December 13, 2002 An Interview With Bush Made News in Advance By JIM RUTENBERG

The president's comments on ABC News on Wednesday that he would offer voluntary smallpox vaccinations to the public caught senior health officials by surprise and seemed to get ahead of an announcement planned for today, a rare occasion for a White House that sticks closely to its playbook.

The administration's plans to defend against a possible smallpox attack by terrorists or hostile governments had been tightly held as officials debated how aggressively to proceed with the potentially dangerous vaccine.

The president spoke in an interview that was intended for tonight's edition of the ABC program "20/20" and included his wife, Laura.

In the interview, Barbara Walters asked the president if he believed that all Americans should receive smallpox vaccinations. The president responded by saying, "I think it ought to be a voluntary plan."

That was the first time Mr. Bush had offered such a definitive opinion on the issue. After the interview, White House officials called ABC News to find out whether it was still planning to hold the interview for "20/20," officials at the White House and ABC said.

With no rules dictating when it could show the interview, ABC News responded that the president had made news and that it intended to broadcast an excerpt that night. More of the interview will be shown on "20/20" tonight.

"We made the decision to go with it because the president made news in his interview, " said Jeffrey Schneider, an ABC News spokesman.

Another ABC News executive said that the White House had not put up a fight and that White House officials had not put restrictions beforehand on when the interview could be shown. A White House official said that the administration accepted the decision and that ABC News was "professional in every way, shape and form."

The president's comments were shown on "World News Tonight" at 6:30 p.m. Eastern time and prompted other national news outlets to follow the report. In the process, administration officials released other details of the smallpox plan.

White House officials denied that the president had gotten ahead of the administration's planned announcement, saying he was the one who decided how and when information was dispersed.

Ari Fleischer, the White House press secretary, said that the president had known the subject of smallpox vaccines was likely to come up in the interview and that he had simply answered Ms. Walters's question.

Mr. Fleischer said he did not think the interview would dilute news coverage of today's announcement of the nation's smallpox plans. "I don't think people are going to fail to cover the president's remarks," he said.

Smallpox-Plan for Vaccinations Carries Risk of Infecting Other People

Fri, 13 Dec 2002 09:33:55 +0000
Plan for Vaccinations Carries Risk of Infecting Other People

For about three weeks after a smallpox vaccination, the site on the upper arm can shed the live virus used in the vaccine and infect other people who come into contact with it, making some of them very ill.

As the United States prepares to vaccinate large numbers of people for the first time in 30 years, one of the greatest concerns of public health experts is that vaccinated people may inadvertently infect others who have a high risk of being harmed by the vaccine, which contains the virus vaccinia, a relative of smallpox.

Vulnerable people include pregnant women, babies younger than a year old and people with H.I.V. or other immune disorders, some types of cancer, organ transplants or histories of skin problems like eczema. No one who lives with a person at high risk should be vaccinated, said Dr. Lisa Rotz, an epidemiologist with the bioterror program at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

To reduce the chance of transmission, Dr. Rotz said, patients will be told to keep the vaccination site covered with a gauze bandage and tape for two to three weeks, until the scab falls off. Vaccinated health care workers will wear special semipermeable bandages at work, because they are better than gauze at preventing transmission.

Vaccinated people have to wash their hands often, especially after changing bandages, and avoid touching the site or letting anyone else touch it. Used bandages are supposed to be sealed in plastic bags and thrown out with the rest of the household trash. The scab should be discarded in the same way.

Activities are not restricted, Dr. Rotz said. Even swimming and hot tubs should be safe, she said, as long as the person wears a waterproof bandage. People can play sports, as well, though she advises against wrestling. Problems may arise if a person sweats so much that the bandage falls off.

Researchers say very close contact is required to spread vaccinia, like touching the vaccination site or an article that has been in contact with it like clothing or a bandage. Infection occurs when the virus enters a break in the skin caused by a cut or a rash.

According to a study of 11.8 million Americans in the 1960's, for every 100,000 people vaccinated for the first time, vaccinia spread to two to six others who had not been vaccinated. Most who caught the virus developed "accidental infections," sores that healed on their own. But one or two became very ill.

People vaccinated for the first time were more likely to transmit the virus. Most person-to-person infections, 68.5 percent, occurred in children younger than 5 who caught the infection from a recently vaccinated sibling or close relative. One baby was infected by a nurse, and two children by contacts in day care. Several adults were infected by vaccinated children, and one woman by sleeping with a recently vaccinated soldier. A wrestler infected his opponent.

Researchers say that the low rates of transmission are reassuring, but that rates could be higher today, because skin conditions like eczema are more common than in the past, as are organ transplants.

Smallpox Vaccine Test Results from Baylor College of Medicine

Please forward this important article to others in your network(s).

Foreword by

Leonard G. Horowitz, D.M.D., M.A., M.P.H.

The following article by Jon Rappoport is the first I've seen reporting the harmful and possibly devastating effects of the Bush administration's rapidly advancing smallpox vaccination program. These results were previously predicted as expected outcomes by this author and many, many others.

I interject this foreword to alert you to the additional support cited below for the thesis raised earlier that the smallpox vaccination program is part of a genocidal agenda facilitated by the Bush administration's "War on Terrorism" and their current efforts to "immunize" the population against smallpox and later anthrax. In reality, this policy aims to induce chronic illness, additional healthcare expenditures (including pharmaceutical sales) and, ultimately, population reduction in America. Given the information below, and far more published elsewhere, this is certainly the anticipated outcome of this "preventative plan" for homeland insecurity. The "additional support," I refer to, comes from identifying Baylor University and their College of Medicine as the site of this initial study.

The following information was compiled for the book Healing Codes for the Biological Apocalypse (Tetrahedron Publishing Group, 1999;; 1-888-508-4787) by this author along with Dr. Joseph Puleo. Based on reputable sources, Past President George H. W. Bush's Secretary of State, James Baker III (Florida vote scam overseer for the current president), was reported to have owned part of the vaccine manufacturing company against whom ailing Gulf War veterans had filed a lawsuit. Moreover, Mr. Bush is said to have been a major shareholder in that company-Tanox Biosystems of Houston.

It is also well known that this past president, father to the current president, has served in an official capacity at Baylor University for some time. Not long before becoming CIA director, certain intelligence regarding Tanox's collaborative studies with Baylor College of Medicine concerning Mycoplasma infections and related vaccinations was available to the elder Bush.

Tanox was also closely linked to Dr. Shyh-Ching Lo, who, under employment by The Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, isolated and patented a "Pathogenic Mycoplasma" originally taken from an AIDS patient, that somehow contaminated many of the vaccines given to allied military personnel traveling to the Middle East in lieu of "Operation Desert Storm." Only the French soldiers who did not receive the American made vaccines did not develop GWS during this earlier war with Iraq.

Further, what would seem inconceivable without seeing the documents reprinted in Healing Codes for the Biological Apocalypse, Tanox and Baylor College of Medicine first tested their Mycoplasma-infected vaccines on Huntsville, TX prisoners. As a result, the prisoners, and others in the community with whom the prisoners made contact, developed GWS long before the Gulf War. Thus, GWS could have been, and probably was, predicted and effected.

Furthermore, evidence compiled by lawyers for the class of people sickened by Mycoplasma incognitas and related illnesses, from Huntsville, Texas, revealed more astonishing documents. These, also published in Healing Codes for the Biological Apocalypse, showed that Baylor College of Medicine investigators collaborated on studies of vaccinated Huntsville prison inmates beginning in 1968. Mycoplasma inoculations, as well as Mycoplasma vaccination studies, were listed as having begun in 1970 under U.S. Army contracts. Incredibly, Baylor's contract literally raised the specter of "ethnic cleansing" or racial genocide as it proved cervical cancer studies comparing Christian versus Muslim women, as well as Jewish versus Black women, were in progress.

Thus, to have this Bush administration authorized smallpox vaccine study be conducted at Baylor, where the senior Bush has served in an official capacity, with imput from the Tanox-linked College of Medicine is chilling. This is especially so considering the fact that today, unlike the early 1970s when the early Mycoplasma studies began, Mycoplasma is now considered among the most common vaccine contaminants. It is also currently linked to the recent onset of pandemic Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction Syndrome and many other illnesses, including certain expressions of HIV/AIDS.

In conclusion, as I wrote elsewhere and said often, if you see "first responders" coming to inoculate you with "cow pus," which is virtually what the smallpox vaccination is in its purest unadulterated form, run away and hide.

Monday, December 09, 2002


By Jon Rappoport

DECEMBER 9. The first returns are in on the smallpox vaccine. A recent multi-center US government clinical trial on 200 "young adults" has been completed.

MSNBC reports. The volunteers who got the shot were VERY healthy to begin with. One researcher, Kathy Edwards, called them the "crème de la crème."

Okay? So get this. "Yet when she [Edwards] inoculated them with smallpox vaccine, arms swelled, temperatures spiked and panic spread [at Baylor University]. It was the same at clinics in Iowa, Tennessee, and California."

Stats: After the shot, one-third of the volunteers missed at least a day of work or school. 75 out of 200 experienced high fever. "Several were put on antibiotics because physicians worried that their blisters signaled a bacterial infection."


And look, smallpox is a VIRUS, and antibiotics DON'T WORK against viruses. So, in essence, the researchers were inferring that the vaccine SUPPRESSED THE IMMUNE SYSTEMS of the volunteers- --thus allowing bacterial infections to bloom suddenly---OR the vaccine was contaminated with bacteria to begin with.

Researcher Edwards, who headed up the study, said, "I can read all day about it [the adverse effects of the vaccine], but seeing it is quite impressive. The reactions we saw were really quite remarkable."

When a researcher makes a comment like this, you know some very bad things are happening.


Of course, this story didn't get much play in the press. But the handwriting is on the wall. Anyone can see what'll happen if they start shooting up people by the millions with the vaccine. For example, people who don't qualify as severely immune suppressed by any obvious assessment, but still do, in fact, have reduced immune capacity---AND THAT IS A WHOLE LOT OF PEOPLE.---these folks will be AT GREAT RISK from the vaccine.

This government study is KEY. Because later on, they will try to cover up the devastating effects of the vaccine. They will lie, distort, omit. But right now, here it is. Out in the open. The results, for all to see.

Let me tell you something. The CDC WANTED to release the results of this study. They wanted to go on the record now, before the stuff really hits the fan. They are very frightened of being nailed for killing people with the vaccine.

About the author: Jon Rappoport has worked as a free-lance investigative reporter for 20 years. He has written articles on politics, health, media, culture and art for LA Weekly, Spin Magazine, Stern, Village Voice, Nexus, CBS Healthwatch, and other newspapers and magazines in the US and Europe. His website is:

This article was provided courtesy of Dr. Leonard G. Horowitz and Tetrahedron Publishing Group 206 North 4th Avenue, Suite 147 Sandpoint, Idaho 83864 Toll free order line: 888-508-4787; Office telephone: 208-265-2575; FAX: 208-265-2775 E-mail: See also:

Smallpox Vaccine Test Volunteers and Side-Effects

Thu, 5 Dec 2002 20:18:26 -0500

Vanderbilt Smallpox Vaccine Test Volunteers and Side-Effects

Reporter: Silvia Castaneda

Doctors are startled at just how sick some people here in Nashville have become from the smallpox vaccine. The vaccine is being tested at Vanderbilt, and President Bush could announce at any time just who needs the vaccine and when. When he does, just how worried should you be about the side effects? News 2's Silvia Castaneda showed us what local volunteers are going through.

Jennifer Doersam is a lab assistant working on the smallpox vaccine study. She's also gotten the vaccine herself.

"My arm was just very sore and I had a little bit of trouble using it, but otherwise I functioned perfectly well," Doersam said.

Vanderbilt researchers said that is the typical reaction to the vaccine.

What isn't so typical is Bedford County paramedic Brian Bruce's experience that went on for days.

"Headaches, body aches, you know. On a one to ten pain scale, I had pain at an eight," said Bruce.

Side effects from the vaccine also include fatigue, swelling, and rashes. In a previous study, those side effects were so severe, a third of volunteers had to stay home from work or school for at least a day.

While side effects are of concern, Vanderbilt researchers said these symptoms are also expected, and so far, no worse case scenarios: a death from the vaccine, which is rare.

So as plans to vaccinate Americans against the potential biological weapon grow near:

"I would tell the public to be prudent and cautious, but not to panic because of this vaccine. A lot of what we see today, we saw 30 years ago. It's just that it's a different culture and we're not used to seeing that," said Dr. Tom Talbot.

So what's the worst side-effect case that's been seen at Vanderbilt? It was a volunteer who had bouts of vomiting. She couldn't eat or drink anything, so she became dehydrated. After treatment, however, she recovered and is doing fine.

News 2 at 6 12.04.02

Smallpox vaccine side effects catch doctors by surprise

By Ceci Connolly / The Washington Post

As physical specimens, the Baylor University students were fit and healthy, the "creme de la creme," in the words of researcher Kathy Edwards. Yet when she inoculated them with smallpox vaccine, arms swelled, temperatures spiked and panic spread.

It was the same at clinics in Iowa, Tennessee and California. Of 200 young adults who received the vaccine as part of a recent government study, one-third missed at least one day of work or school, 75 people had high fevers and several were put on antibiotics because physicians worried that their blisters signaled a serious bacterial infection.

Even for experts such as Edwards, the Vanderbilt University physician overseeing the study, the side effects were startling. "I can read all day about it, but seeing it is quite impressive," she said. "The reactions we saw were really quite remarkable."

President Bush is poised to announce plans, perhaps as early as this week, to resume vaccinating Americans against smallpox as part of a massive push to protect the nation from a biological assault. As he weighs the decision, researchers are becoming reacquainted with the unpleasant -- often severe -- complications of the vaccine itself.

The experiences in a half dozen clinical trials offer an early look at what military personnel, hospital workers and other emergency workers will likely encounter if Bush adopts the recommendations of his top health advisers to vaccinate up to 11 million people in the coming months. What is disconcerting, say the people participating in the clinical trials, is that when it comes to smallpox vaccination, what had once been considered ordinary is rather extraordinary by today's standards.

"I just wanted to go to bed for a day or two there," said Alison Francis, a New York University graduate student who received the vaccine. Francis, 24, said she felt tired and achy after getting her shot. Her arm was heavy, warm to the touch and terribly itchy. "I thought, 'Can you just chop off my arm?'"

Participating in the study was part patriotism and part selfishness, she said. "Now I'm protected."

Once among the deadliest scourges on earth, smallpox was declared eradicated worldwide in 1981. But growing hostilities with Iraq, Osama bin Laden and other terrorists have renewed fears that the virus could be used as a potent, stealthy weapon.

Vaccination is surefire protection against the disease, but it is risky. For every 1 million vaccinated, between 15 and 52 people will suffer life-threatening consequences such as brain inflammation and one or two will die, according to historical data. Pregnant women, babies, people with excema or weakened immune systems should not receive the vaccine.

Federal health officials have proposed resuming vaccination in stages, beginning with up to 500,000 hospital workers most likely to see an initial case. Later, as many as 10 million police, fire and medical personnel would be offered vaccine. The Pentagon hopes to vaccinate 500,000 soldiers.

Over the past year, federal researchers have been testing the 40-year-old vaccine for its safety and potency. None of the 1,500 volunteers have died or been seriously injured by the vaccine. But even the most mundane cases can be disturbing to doctors and patients unaccustomed to the live virus used in the vaccine and its side effects.

Unlike most modern vaccines, the smallpox vaccine is administered by 15 quick pricks that literally "establish an infection in your skin," said Julie Gerberding, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta. "There is the immediate discomfort of getting poked in the arm and a range of annoying reactions."

Within three to four days, a red itchy bump develops, followed by a larger blister filled with pus. In the second week, the blister dries and turns into a scab that usually falls off in the third week. During the three weeks, many people experience flu-like symptoms -- aches, fever, lethargy -- and terrible itchiness.

"You can't scratch it, it's all bandaged up; all I could do was smack it," said Meg Gifford, a University of Maryland junior who participated in one study. For one weekend, she was "pretty miserable," suffering from a slight fever, an arm that was hot to the touch and swollen lymph nodes in her armpit.

At the University of Rochester Medical Center, researcher John Treanor saw a wide range of reactions, from a small rash to swelling the size of a grapefruit. About 5 percent of the 170 participants had rashes that spread to other parts of the body. It took time and experience, he said, for the team to get comfortable with the natural course of the vaccine.

"The reactions we are seeing are totally out of line with today's vaccine experience and absolutely in line with historical experience," said Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. "In the 30 years since we had routine vaccination, the public's tolerance level has gone way down."

Maryland researchers have begun a second trial revaccinating older adults to see how much immunity stays in the system. Early indications are that people who have been previously inoculated do not suffer as many severe side effects. "I had a small red mark and that was about it," said Edward Dudley, 33.

Very few of today's practicing physicians have administered the vaccine or treated its side effects. Even at the CDC, where health experts work daily with an array of germs, smallpox vaccinations were briefly halted when 10 people had serious enough reactions to begin antibiotics, said Walter Orenstein, director of CDC's National Immunization Program.

"The clinic physician couldn't decide if this was a normal primary exuberant take or a bacterial infection," he said, explaining that, in fact, the swollen, itchy, red arms were routine.

As a first year medical student 33 years ago, Orenstein was so alarmed by the fever, swollen glands and red streak up his arm after he was vaccinated that he went to the emergency room for antibiotics. "I respect this vaccine," he said.

If Bush moves forward with vaccination, as expected, Edwards warns doctors to expect the array of unsightly, unfamiliar complications that will come.

"You are going to have to be prepared to see these individuals and to see really bad takes," she told state health officers. "You'll wonder if they are bacterial infections; in some cases the rash will move up the arm and onto the chest. The vaccinee requires a lot of TLC."

Governors seek access to smallpox vaccine

Governors seek access to smallpox vaccine
Ralph Z. Hallow

Published 11/24/2002

DANA POINT, Calif. - The Bush administration has come under fire from the governor of South Dakota, who says that the government needs to be more aggressive in making its smallpox vaccine stockpile available to the public in anticipation of a terrorist attack.

With military action against Iraq looming on the horizon, Gov. Bill Janklow at a meeting of Republican governors asked Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy G. Thompson why the federal government has not begun sending at least a part of its smallpox vaccine stockpile to the states to begin inoculations immediately in advance of expected terrorist attacks.

Mr. Thompson told the governors that the vaccine stockpile was for use in the event of an attack, not in anticipation of such an attack.

Mr. Thompson, a former Wisconsin governor, said that much of the smallpox vaccine was awaiting federal approval for use, and that the earliest delivery to the states would be December 2003.

The governors, assembled for the Republican Governors Association's (RGA) annual conference this weekend, shared their security concerns with Mr. Thompson.

As a war with Iraq looms and with it heightened expectations of terrorism against the United States, the RGA showed its concern by devoting the opening plenary session to preparations for dealing with terrorist attacks.

Mr. Thompson urged the governors to get their plans for immunization against smallpox to him as soon as possible. "We're going to be able to immunize every man, woman and child in America, usually on a voluntary basis, but there has to be a plan.

"You can imagine, if we do go to war in Iraq, and there is some kind of smallpox epidemic, all of you are going to be held responsible if you are not prepared," Mr. Thompson warned.

But Mr. Janklow, who is leaving the governorship and won election to the U.S. House on Nov. 5, said, "All of us here were made aware of the crash basis on which the administration decided to move on smallpox."

He said 70 percent of the people exposed to the smallpox virus in the event of a bioterror attack will contract the disease, and 30 percent will die. There is no cure after the first three to five days, unless the vaccination is administered.

Without mentioning Iraq, Mr. Janklow said the Bush administration is privy to information about what countries possess stockpiles of the smallpox virus and might use it against the United States.

"You know where it is, you know who has it," he told several representatives of the Bush administration. "And you've created 290 million doses of smallpox vaccine on a crash basis. Now the rhetoric is going around about how people don't want it."

Mr. Janklow said the quicker the federal government "moves to make it available, the more surprised you'll be how many places there are in America where most of the people will get the shots."

Mr. Janklow argued that the time to give the vaccine should be before, not after, a bioterrorist attack.

Mr. Thompson responded by saying that one reason for the delay in administering vaccines is that the government has 75 million doses not yet licensed by the Food and Drug Administration.

He said that some of the side effects of the vaccine include inflammation of the brain, physical disfigurement and even death.

"This vaccine is very potent, and in order to do this," Mr. Thompson said, "we have to get an antidote. We have some of it, not enough, but will have enough shortly."

He said the president has to make a decision about "how to vaccinate - all the health care workers, the first responders, police and firemen - or everybody who wants to get it."

"But right now we do not have a licensed vaccine, and it is our position that we'd like to have the FDA approval, the safety approval, before those vaccines are given out to the American public."

He said 80 percent of the governors already had forwarded bioterrorism spending plans to Washington and received a share of the $1.1 billion his department set aside for help in bioterrorism defense.

"And we'll get another $1.5 billion, as soon as Congress appropriates the money," Mr. Thompson said.

Copyright © 2002 News World Communications, Inc. All rights reserved.

"ER Workers Ready For Smallpox Vaccine"

Sat, 30 Nov 2002
Emergency Room Workers Ready to Be Inoculated Against Smallpox
Despite Risks of Vaccine

The Associated Press

L A S V E G A S, Nov. 30 — In a town known for high-stakes gambling, Suzanne Lau is ready to risk a small chance of injury and even death to be vaccinated against smallpox. A nurse at one of the city's busiest emergency rooms, she probably will be among the first Americans in three decades to be offered the vaccine.

She does not betray any of the angst that has consumed federal officials now completing vaccination plans for the nation.

"It's what you do. It's part of the risk of the job," said Lau, whose hospital ID hangs on a red, white and blue cord, stamped USA, around her neck. "We're here to take care of the patients. That's the bottom line."

The government is preparing for the possibility of a bioterror attack that would use smallpox, a deadly and incurable virus, but President Bush has yet to say who will be offered the vaccine.

The plan being considered would offer the inoculation first to those most likely to come in contact with a contagious smallpox patient; that would be people assigned to special smallpox response teams in each state, and those who work in hospital emergency rooms. In total, they expect about a half-million vaccinations during this first stage.

It will put emergency rooms such as University Medical Center's at the forefront of that readiness effort. If there were to be an attack, doctors at the Las Vegas facility also would be responsible for spotting smallpox, a particular challenge given that the disease has not been seen in this country for half a century.

For now, the issue is vaccination.

The government soon will undertake an education campaign to ensure that people understand the risks of the vaccine, which is more dangerous than any other.

In the 1960s, 15 out of every million people being vaccinated for the first time faced life-threatening complications, and one or two died. Side effects included horrible rashes and brain-destroying diseases.

Some people who came into close contact with those vaccinated also got sick when the live virus used in the shot escaped and touched them.

But most workers at the University Medical Center emergency room voice little concern and say smallpox is much more to be feared than the vaccine.

"The odds are with you," nurse Tom Erichsen said. Added nurse Beth Leoni: "I've seen pictures of smallpox, and it scared the hell out of me."

Lau says she would send her 6-year-old son to live with his grandparents during the days after her inoculation, just to be sure he is not exposed.

Hearing the statistics about side effects, Dr. Tom Higgins is nonchalant. "That's probably safer than most drugs we use on a daily basis," he said.

This instinctive willingness to be vaccinated has some worried. Health care workers need to understand the vaccine's dangers, said Cheryl Peterson, senior policy analyst for the American Nurses Association.

"Most of us got the vaccine when we were a child, and we never heard about any problems. We just went and got it," she said.

But that was a time when the disease was still prevalent. The last smallpox case was in 1977, and it was declared eradicated in 1980. Experts now worry it could be unleashed again in an attack.

There is some nervousness about the vaccine in the Las Vegas emergency room.

Secretary Patti McGill said she does not trust the government enough to get an annual flu shot, much less be vaccinated for smallpox. "I'm not a big believer in vaccines, especially this one," McGill said.

Dr. Wes Kaplan wants more information about the risk of an attack and about the vaccine before making up his mind. He is not particularly worried that smallpox would hit his hospital.

"It's like saying, `Am I worried about a bomb going off in the hospital?'" Kaplan said.

Kaplan, a resident in internal medicine who helps cover the emergency room, said he doubts he could spot a case of smallpox, which easily is confused with chickenpox.

"I don't know the first thing about smallpox," he said.

To help doctors such as Kaplan, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has created a poster that explains the differences between chickenpox and smallpox. No one at University Medical Center can recall seeing the poster.

Dr. Dale Carrison, director of the emergency department, said he is confident he would catch "a classic case" of smallpox, though a more subtle one might get by.

He said the biggest difference between smallpox and chickenpox is that smallpox lesions are all in the same stage of development, which is true. But when asked about another classic difference chickenpox usually occurs on the body's trunk, whereas smallpox is usually on the face and hands he said he knew nothing about that.

Dr. Mario Pineiro and others say they are not thinking much about smallpox, either how to spot it or how to protect against it.

"I'm worried about 10 GI (gastrointestinal) consults I have today. I worry about night float (shift coming up). And my mom is having back pain, and I'm worried it's some kind of cancer, and I have to move by Saturday," said Pineiro. "Those are my worries."