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Originally posted by wizardwars
As many as 20m people could be inoculated this year. Ministers have secured up to 90m doses, and the rest of the population is likely to be ** offered ** vaccinations next year.www.timesonline.co.uk...
The path of a popular medicine from the laboratory to the chemist or doctor’s surgery can involve years of clinical trials on a select group of patients.
When the new vaccine for swine flu arrives in Britain, regulators said this weekend, it could be approved for use in just five days.
Regulators at the European Medicines Agency (EMEA) said the fast-tracked procedure has involved clinical trials of a “mock-up” vaccine similar to the one that will be used for the biggest mass vaccination programme in generations. It will be introduced into the general population while regulators continue to carry out simultaneous clinical trials.
The first patients in the queue for the jab - being supplied to the UK by GSK and Baxter Healthcare - may understandably be a little nervous at any possible side effects. A mass vaccination campaign against swine flu in America was halted in the 1970s after some people suffered Guillain-Barré syndrome, a disorder of the nervous system.
However, regulators said fast-tracking would not be at the expense of patient safety. “The vaccines are authorised with a detailed risk management plan,” the EMEA said. “There is quite a body of evidence regarding safety on the trials of the mock-up, and the actual vaccine could be assessed in five days.”
The UK government has ordered enough vaccine to cover the entire population. GPs are being told to prepare for a nationwide vaccination campaign.