Taking Our Medicine

Friday, October 09, 2009


As people get the H1N1 vaccine, there will inevitably be cases of seizures, heart attacks, strokes and miscarriages -- all unrelated to the vaccine itself. Centers for Disease Control media relations director Glen Nowak says his agency is reminding reporters about the difference between correlation and causation.

Comments [14]

kiers from new york

LOL. "not confusing correlation and causation"


How do u think all drugs are "tested" as safe? in a broad sample testing against a "control" group. It's the SAME THING. NPR IS SUCH A MOUTHPIECE AT TIMES. JUDITH MILLER STRIKES BACK.

Oct. 24 2009 10:45 AM

Your report fails to mention the immunologic adjuvant (squalene) used in most of the swine flu vaccines e.g. Pandemrix (GlaxoSmithKline), Panvax®H1N1(CSL), Focetria and Celtura (Novartis) . Seasonal flu vaccines don't contain adjuvant. Why adjuvant free swine flu vaccines e.g. Panenza (Sanofi) and Celvapan (Baxter) are recommended to pregnant women if the said adjuvant were safe?
BTW, how do you know if your vaccine has adjuvant or not? The adjuvant free vaccine is clear liquid, because squalene is an oil it makes the vaccine look like an emulsion.

Oct. 20 2009 06:27 AM
Deb McCann from Summit, NJ

This is one of the most biased piece of reporting I've ever heard. EXTREMELY DISAPPOINTING NPR!!!!! Why are people who are weighing the risks of the actual disease with the risks of taking a vaccine (tested on humans only for one month) being reckless? I really would like the reporter to explain that to me. Please.....email me back and tell me.

Oct. 14 2009 11:28 PM
mary from NY

I'm still scratching my head at the idea that a comedian has a "responsibility" to NOT express his opinion about a flu vaccine to his fans. I get that Garfield is big fan of vaccines who believes that any adverse outcome from one is merely a "coincidence", but to snark that a comedian is irresponsible for tweeting his fans his opinion regarding this flu strain and this vaccine? Very, very strange.

Oct. 13 2009 10:31 AM
David Lieberman from California

I intend to get both a seasonal flu shot and an H1N1 shot. But I found your report quite puzzling.

You interviewed someone who had written a book about the Ford era immunization attempt. Fine. But then you didn't ask him what happened.

To refresh your memory there were no reported fatalities caused by the flu among either those vaccinated nor among those not vaccinated. But there were several hundred cases of Guillen-Barré syndrome, including several dozen deaths and life-long paralysis for many.

It is curious that a program which calls itself a press watchdog does a shoddier reporting job than the press it is supposedly watching. Were you deliberately withholding information for our own good?

Oct. 12 2009 09:36 PM
Elisabeth Hartline from Des Moines, Iowa

I'm listening to as much of the news available regarding both the seasonal flu and H1N1 with interest as my child has an autoimmune disorder for which has been prescribed an immunosuppressant. The subject of social responsibility came up several times during the course of today's show. One caller suggested that our decision not to vaccinate (FluMist was the vaccination she cited) could result in the hospitalization or death of someone else- and the visiting doctor from Philadelphia's Children's Hospital agreed with her. What the doctor failed to mention was that individuals who take certain immunosuppressants cannot be exposed to people who have been vaccinated with FluMist do to viral "shedding" of this live vaccine. No, this isn't an urban legend. We've been looking at the possibility of homestudy for our child to lessen his exposure to those who chose the FluMist vaccine. I can forgive Karen's ignorance, but the doc's is quite irritating.

Oct. 12 2009 04:35 PM
Tom Dodson from Boston, MA

As always, I enjoyed the in-depth and spirited meta-coverage. I was especially interested in the discussion of the relation of this flu outbreak to the pandemic in 1918.

For those interested in that past pandemic, I'd like to share a link to the first episode of my new podcast, in which I interview fiction writer Cat Sears about a trio of stories set during the 1918 pandemic. I invite you to listen to the interview and hear Cat read one of the stories at:


I'm a librarian by trade, and have also collected on that page a set of online resources for historical and contemporary information about H1N1.

Thanks again OTM for your level-headed coverage.

Oct. 12 2009 03:45 PM
Claudia Tomaso from California

i found the 'reporter' to be nothing more than a PR person for the CDC and drug companies. why bother asking, for example, what exactly is contained in vaccines that can cause serious side effects when the CDC spokesperson mentioned they are listed. why do any extra work? no wonder media is going the way of infotainment! we deserve fox news at this point.

same guy did the UK story as well. again, no hard questions asked, mention a tumor and everyone is supposed to shift any connection between a vaccine for cervical cancer (making 1 drug company millions of dollars) and serious side effects. i'm sure 'on the media' can find a more talented interviewer.

Oct. 12 2009 02:28 AM
david dranikoff from New Jersey

I thought your editorial report this morning covering the dangers of vaccines was irresponsible. You did not take one second to consider the view and the science behind the danger flags. You didn't contact local organizations or any of the many national organizations such as The National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC). You didn’t even take the time to read the adverse information available on the FDA web site or the package information inserts. Therefore let me furnish that info for you.

H1N1 vaccine adverse reactions have included: Guillain-Barre (paralysis); Thrombocytopenia (spontaneous bleeding); anaphylaxis (life threatening allergic reaction); lymphadenopathy (diseased lymph nodes); convulsions; encephalomytis (brain inflammation/damage); optic neuropathy (optic nerve damage); syncope (loss of consciousness); and vasculitis (inflammatory destruction of blood vessels). http://tiny.cc/FDAliveh1n1 (package insert: nasal spray) http://tiny.cc/FDAkilledH1N1 (package insert: injected)

H1N1 vaccine ingredients include: MSG (carcinogen: H1N1 nasal spray); 25 mcg/full dose of thimerosal/mercury (neurotoxin: Sanofi Pasteur multi-dose); formaldehyde (tested carcinogen: http://tiny.cc/formaldehydecancer); hemagglutinin (glycoprotein causes red blood cells to clump and attach to respiratory tract, causing infection); gelatin (allergen); polyethylene glycol p-isoctylphenyl ether (detergent). (see package inserts above)

H1N1 vaccines have NOT been tested for their cancer causing or mutagenic potential. (see package inserts)

H1N1 vaccines are NOT safety tested for pregnant women or nursing mothers (note: pregnant women are a priority target group): "It is not known whether these vaccines can cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman or can affect reproductive capability. It is not known whether the H1N1 vaccine is excreted in human milk." (see package inserts)

Oct. 11 2009 04:26 PM
geo8rge from Brooklyn NY

So what's the big deal with H1N1? I would like to see a story on what the fuss is? The body count (both pigs and people) is not high, it is not being transmitted by migratory birds. The people that did die seem to have had other major health problems. Why spend a bunch of money on H1N1 that could be spend on other health issues or video games or whatever?

Oct. 11 2009 09:46 AM
James J. Pizzadili, D. C. from Anchorage, Alaska

Your piece that aired today on vaccines was a classic case of government propaganda apparatus masquerading as news. Your host was in complete agreement with the offical government line that vaccines are totally safe and that anyone who disagrees with them is "irresponsible" or "destructive."
If you had a shred of journalistic integrity, you would also interview someone like Barbara Loe Fisher from the National Vaccine Information Center, who could explain exactly why the CDC claims about the hazards of flu are inflated and overblown and their assertions about vaccine safety are not credulous. You could also interview Bill Sardi of KnowledgeofHealth.com, who could describe the mysterious juxtaposition of the opening of a new vaccine manufacturing facility in Mexico with the release of this new swine flu. Bill Sardi and others could also educate your listeners and yourselves about the incestuous and money driven relationship between vaccine makers and government agencies. The most outrageous part was when your host made clear that he has swallowed hook, line, and sinker the government claim that even though vaccines could not possibly have caused the toxic reactions and deaths that routinely occur after vaccination because those terrible outcomes are mere coincidence. Considering the witches brew of neurotoxic chemicals including mercury, formaldehyde, aluminum; and the disgusting combination of cells from monkey kidneys, chicken embryos, and aborted fetuses that are included in vaccines; and the fact that these toxic combinations are injected directly into the blood stream bypassing the body's natural defenses...to dismiss these toxic vaccine reactions as coincidence is akin to NPR blithely broadcasting the news that a person with a bullet fired into their chest just coincidentally died of heart failure.

Oct. 11 2009 04:22 AM
Nazanin Rafsanjani from New York, NY

Hey guys,

Sorry about the podcast problem. Our engineers are aware of it and they're looking into it now. We're hoping it'll be fixed soon.


Oct. 10 2009 04:49 PM
David C Rowe from United States

I show no download available.

Oct. 10 2009 02:40 PM

Mp3 file is corrupted.

Oct. 10 2009 09:25 AM

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