Monday, November 02, 2009

Harper Conservatives Bear Full Responsibility For Swine Flu Vaccine Debacle

Another great Goodale Weekly Update. Harper spent his millions on partisan political ads about his bogus "Action Plan", while Canadians died with little info about the flu, and less vaccine available than the US:


The federal response to the H1N1 flu pandemic has been botched. And the health of Canadians has been jeopardized as a consequence.

The confusion and worry across the country are reflected almost every night on national television newscasts. Anxious people have been standing in line-ups for hours, even days, at vaccination stations. Provincial health care workers are under siege.

And sadly, some people have died – including otherwise healthy teenage hockey players and others – before they could be vaccinated.

How could there possibly be delays and shortages in vaccine supplies now, after so many months of unmistakable warnings?

The first H1N1 outbreak occurred last March in Mexico. The World Health Organization immediately went on pandemic alert. The Liberal Official Opposition began asking pointed questions in Parliament in April. We were repeatedly told not to worry; everything was totally under control.

In early May, Canadian scientists beat the rest of the world in “mapping the genetic code” of the H1N1 virus, paving the way to the right vaccine.

But it was the United States, not Canada, that placed the world’s first order for the mass production of vaccine supplies. That was in late May. Many other countries followed suit.

Shockingly, the Conservative did not place an order for Canada until August. That was three months after our genetic mapping breakthrough. We dropped tragically behind the rest of the world, and the Canadian roll-out of vaccine supplies has been late, hesitant and confusing.

People naturally wonder “what might have been”, IF Canada had placed its first vaccine order back in May, like the Americans did.

Provincial authorities and health care workers are doing their best to cope. But they’ve been badly let down by a federal government that falsely assured everyone that everything was just fine – when clearly, it was not!

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WesternGrit said...

When Conservatives who don't believe in Science, or funding for scientific research, this is what you get.

Frunger said...

Keep it up guys.

Don't worry. People won't think that "Harper kills people with the flu" line is over the top at all.

People are a little ticked, for sure. The reality is that we are getting as much as we can as fast as we can. It's also true that there are more Canadians vaccinated so far than in most other developed countries per capita.

More silly season from you Liberals.

CanadianSense said...

Great post,

the us overestimated they would have 40 million samples with 5 producers, they have 26 million

We have already 6 million on hand 50% for the 20% estimated priority list.

Did you expect the Federal Government to take over the provincial responsibility and set up clinics too?

They have negotiated a sequence on who and how.

How does blaming deaths address seasonal flu, H1N1 kills people?

Sars killed 44 in Canada, 800 worldwide, H1N1 estimates is 300 Canada, 3000 worldwide.

Again how does blaming someone change this tragedy for political gain help?

WesternGrit said...

The Conservatives spent well over $100 Million on partisan ads, hoping to convince people they were doing more than nothing to fight the recession (time will tell that they wasted the so-called "stimulus" on items that put money in the pockets of the rich, gave useless tax cuts - versus wise ones like income tax cuts, etc.etc.).

While they spent all they could to "self-promote" the people of Canada were less informed than the poor-healthcare nation to the South regarding the flu.

Another KEY point is that, when supplies were running short, the USA ordered extra vaccine and upped production. Much of that vaccine the US is getting is coming from the factory in Quebec.

WHY did the Harper Conservatives not act swiftly to ensure and secure vaccine for Canadians???

The Harper Conservatives - more concerned about partisan self-promotion than the health of Canadians. The sad thing is, this fits their ultimate plan - saying that universal, government-funded healthcare doesn't work, so it should all be privatized - the same thing they've tried to do to every other branch/dept of government.

If you guys don't think some of this sticks, you're wrong. It will. Conservatives care nothing about innovation, science, and research. They don't care to fund related departments and initiatives. They prefer to let greedy private interests control any such efforts. We're seeing some of the results already. I just hope we don't see too many more "results" like this in the next few months, before the Cons lose the next election...

Big Winnie said...

How does blaming GSK for the outage and the public solve the problem when the government screwed up by it's lack of vision?

Why didn't they have another supplier on hand to alleviate the demand?

It is the government's fault but like most CONs, it's easier to blame someone else.

CanadianSense said...


how does picking a "scapegoat" without facts make sense?

Make a case with numbers without the hysteria.

Are six million doses in 8 days gone or are they available?

We have a 20-40% drop for this week, so how does this FACT change the first point SUPPLY is not an issue.

What is the ISSUE? Can you explain where how six million Canadians have gone through the vaccine in 8 days, how much is left?

The News needs to "boost" ratings and opposition are taking cheapshots.
How many died from Sars in Canada and worldwide? (44, 800)

Austraila already went through their second wave without the vaccine 29 per million mortality rate.

Want to crunch numbers?

How serious and widespread is H1N1?

H1N1 has been declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization, the first one of the 21st century. WHO reports that nearly 5,000 people worldwide have died this year as a result of H1N1; as of Oct. 26, this includes 86 Canadians. Patients who experience life-threatening complications do so as a result of lung problems that require them to be placed on respirators. The Australian experience this past summer revealed that 29 out of every million in the population got so sick from H1N1 as to have ended up in an intensive care unit and 15 per cent of these died. Extrapolating to the seven million inhabitants of Quebec, we might expect about 200 patients requiring intensive care and 30 deaths. This is just a guess, however, and the tendency for flu to spread more rapidly as we stay indoors over the winter months may make this worse if we don’t fight back with vaccine. Australia did not have access to the vaccine this summer.