Wednesday, November 19, 2003

Revisionist History?

CDC Denies Existence of Smallpox Program

I could have sworn that the CDC had launched a smallpox vaccination program earlier this year, a program that failed miserably.

But, I guess not. Bill Borwegen, from SEIU, which led the opposition to the apparently non-existent program that contained no guarantees of compensation for workers who were made ill or missed work because of the vaccinations, was similarly confused by this article that he forwarded to me.
In a sharp departure from previous public comments by senior federal officials, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Friday that the United States never launched a smallpox vaccination program this year, but instead worked toward an overall preparedness campaign.
Unfortunately, it's hard to change the facts:
Although the difference between an immunization program and a preparedness program might seem small, the CDC has been trying to play down expectations for the nationwide vaccinations after far fewer health care workers than expected volunteered to receive the smallpox vaccine.

Officials expected to immunize as many as 450,000 health workers, but fewer than 40,000 have been inoculated. Several senior health officials have recently acknowledged that the program has fallen short of its goals, but no U.S. official has ever denied the existence of the immunization effort.
Meanwhile, President Bush announced today that the United States had never invaded Iraq, but instead worked toward an overall disarmament, democracy and privatization campaign.

Glad we got all that straight.