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Japan to Stockpile Bird Flu Vaccines for 10 Million People

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posted on Jan, 5 2007 @ 01:19 PM
Japan is ordering prototype bird flu vaccines for 10 million people, with production to be completed by February, says Kyodo News Agency, quoting unidentified Health Ministry officials. The prototype vaccine is based on samples of the H5N1 strain of the virus detected in Vietnam in 2004 and in Indonesia in 2005 - and will be used as a stopgap until a vaccine can be targeted to the pandemic strain.

Japan to Stockpile Bird Flu Vaccines for 10 Million

Japan plans to buy prototype bird flu vaccine solutions for up to 10 million people, a news report said Wednesday, amid concerns that the country lacks an adequate stockpile of drugs to fight the virus.

The Japanese government will earmark 4.5 billion yen (US$37.9 million) in its supplementary budget for the fiscal year ending March 31 to build up the stockpile, Kyodo News agency reported, citing unidentified Health Ministry officials.

Four Japanese vaccine makers are expected to complete production of two types of prototype vaccine for 10 million people by around February, Kyodo cited the officials as saying.

Last year, Switzerland did the same thing - but the pandemic didn't materialize.

This year, things may be a little different. Who knows?


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