I got this email and thought it would be good to post

HSI eAlert - Health Sciences Institute

On my drive home the other day, I turned on NPR and was shocked to the core. They were talking about testing the anthrax vaccine...on kids. 

I don't need to tell you this is insane. But to see just how insane it is, let's review a few facts... 

* Anthrax has been a biological weapon for a century. But the number of anthrax attacks in the U.S. totals exactly one, in 2001. And fewer than two dozen people were infected. 

* The government has spent billions developing BioThrax, the anthrax vaccine. 

* BioThrax is given to special military units and scientists who handle anthrax. 

* The Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System has received thousands of reports linked to BioThrax. These include brain inflammation, seizures, paralysis, and memory loss. 
* About 300 of those cases resulted in permanent disability and more than 25 deaths. (So the vaccine has done far more damage than the 2001 attack.) 
OK...those are the facts. Now...can I please borrow your...


...to test the vaccine on? 

In the NPR report, one health official argued that we don't want to be caught in an anthrax emergency without knowing if the vaccine can be used in kids. 

So, we should poison a generation of kids to see if the solution will work in preparation for an attack that will probably never come?! 

For now, the plan to test BioThrax in kids is facing stiff opposition. That's because it's hard enough to make an ethical argument to test it in adults. So kids are just completely out of the question. 

Well... You would think. But Health and Human Services officials have actually asked for more research before making a decision about testing kids. 

That means someone is still pushing this insane idea along. 

What's frightening is that all they'll need is one minor anthrax scare. Then, the fear factor might be enough to get the ball rolling. 

If it should come to that -- if officials start calling for testing in kids and mass vaccinations -- keep this point in mind... BioThrax is worthless as a response to an attack. Doctors give it in five doses over 18 months. And even then they don't know how effective it is. 

This is a pointless vaccine that would be going nowhere if there weren't billions of dollars behind it. 

We've already thrown away the money. Let's not ruin children's lives, too
To Your Good Health, 

Jenny Thompson, Director of HSI