“Greatest medical scandal of the century” to come under scrutiny
The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, a 47 nation body encompassing democratically elected members of parliament, has begun hearings to investigate whether the H1N1 swine flu pandemic was falsified or exaggerated in an attempt to profit from vaccine sales.
A PACE resolution, passed last month, gave context to the hearings which began yesterday in Strasbourg.
“In order to promote their patented drugs and vaccines against flu, pharmaceutical companies influenced scientists and official agencies, responsible for public health standards to alarm governments worldwide and make them squander tight health resources for inefficient vaccine strategies and needlessly expose millions of healthy people to the risk of an unknown amount of side-effects of insufficiently tested vaccines. The “bird-flu”-campaign (2005/06) combined with the “swine-flu”-campaign seem to have caused a great deal of damage not only to some vaccinated patients and to public health-budgets, but to the credibility and accountability of important international health-agencies.”
Heading the hearings will be chairman of the Health Committee of PACE, Dr. Wolfgang Wodarg, a former German lawmaker, a medical doctor and epidemiologist. Wodarg has referred to the swine flu pandemic as “one of the greatest medical scandals of the century.”
Wodarg charges that the WHO altered the definition of a pandemic from an outbreak in several continents at once with an above-average death rate, to one where the spread of the disease is constant.
The Parliamentary inquiry will determine if a “falsified pandemic” was declared by WHO in June 2009 on the advice of medical advisors, many of whom have close financial ties to the very pharmaceutical giants – GlaxoSmithKline, Roche, Novartis, – that produced the H1N1 vaccines.
It will also look into the controversy surrounding the fact that two shots were initially advised when it was later revealed that one dose was entirely suitable.
Pharmaceutical companies are thought to have made a profit of somewhere in the region of $7.5-$10 billion on H1N1 vaccines. The worldwide death toll from H1N1 is thought to be around 13,500, just over a third of the number who die from regular flu every year in the U.S. alone.
PACE has noted that the alleged conspiracy could have exposed “millions of healthy people to the risk of side-effects of insufficiently tested vaccines”.
Many countries have begun offloading huge stockpiles of unused vaccines and canceling outstanding orders. The latest to do so is Greece, where the government had announced that it would make H1N1 vaccination mandatory.
PACE will also hold a debate next week entitled ‘Faked pandemics, a threat to health’, to be attended by representatives of the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the European pharmaceutical industry.
“Unlike the European Parliament, it has no decision-making powers, but, as was demonstrated by its report into extraordinary rendition, it does have the power to make life uncomfortable for the powers that be,” notes the Irish TImes.