Over the last few days there has been a lot of discussion about Texas’ Governor Rick Perry and his mandate that all girls in Texas receive the HPV vaccine. For those who don’t know, the HPV vaccine is supposed to protect against cervical cancer. Cervical cancer is not a big killer in the U.S. It is very treatable with early detection and the best protection is to get regular pap smears. The vaccine has not been tested with regard to its effect on reproductive health. It has also not been shown to work they way it is advertised to work. The only sure thing about the HPV vaccine (brand names Cervarix and Gardasil) is that since being licensed in the U.S., more young girls and young women have been injured or killed by the vaccine than the number of women who die from cervical cancer in this country during a typical year. This is a clear example of an instance where the “cure” is most definitely more damning than the disease it is meant to prevent. Given these facts, why would Governor Rick Perry mandate the HPV vaccine for all young girls in Texas? One simple word: Money. Governor Perry is strongly connected with Merck, the drug manufacturer that produces Gardasil.
Guess what? Governor Perry is a contendor for the republican nomination for president in 2012. Part of the “attraction” to Rick Perry is what he (and his predecessors) has done for the economy in Texas over the last 21 years. (Governor Perry is taking credit for Texas’ “economic strength” – but when you really look at the data, you can see that the trend was started long before he took office.) What governor Perry has achieved in Texas comes largely at the expense of the most vulnerable citizens in the state. Texas has a very high percentage of children without health insurance, and the environmental quality of the state sucks. Funding for schools is terrible, and Texas ranks right there with Mississippi for the percentage of its citizens working for minimum wage. The reason Texas is in such great shape financially is the same reason Indiana is in “good” financial shape, compared to our neighbors. Our governors have sold us out while courting big business and giving those who pollute our states carte blanche to do so. But this post is not about the environment. It’s about the cost of vaccinating against sexually-transmitted diseases. Governor Perry apparently believes Texas is in such great shape that the state can afford the cost of vaccinating every female child living below the poverty level with three doses of a vaccine that has not been shown to be effective, and which carries a price tag of more than $300 per person. Just imagine what could be done with that money.
The rest of this post was written several months ago. This is not just about the HPV vaccine; it also contains information about the Hepatitis B vaccine. I propose we do away with both. Actually, I propose we do away with lots more than just these; however, for the sake of argument, let’s just do away with Hep B and HPV vaccines. If we did that, we wouldn’t have a debt crisis.
Do you know how much money we are paying (as U.S. taxpayers) to vaccinate infants and children against sexually-transmitted diseases?
I spent some time looking at the numbers. Here is what I found:
In 2008, there were 4,247,695 births in the United States according to the National Vital Statistics report (http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr59/nvsr59_01.pdf ).
Nationally, in 2008, the percentage of children between the ages of 19-35 months of age who lived below the poverty level (and therefore qualified for government-funded vaccinations) was 28.7 (http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/stats-surv/nis/nis-2008-released.htm ).
Assuming the percentage of children born in 2008 and living below the poverty level is similar to the percentage of other preschool children in the U.S. who are living in poverty, we can estimate the number of government-funded vaccinations for children born in 2008 by multiplying the total number of births (4,247,695) by the percentage rate (.287). This gives us an estimate of 1,219,088.
According to data gathered by the CDC, among those children whose vaccinations were funded through the Vaccinations For Children (VFC) program (government-funded vaccines), 95.1% received all three Hepatitis B Vaccinations (http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/stats-surv/nis/nis-2008-released.ht ).
This means that 1,159,353 American children were vaccinated in 2008 against Hepatitis B (three times each) at tax-payers’ expense.
What does this mean?
According to the CDC’s Vaccine Price List, the cost of the Hepatitis B Vaccine (CDC cost per dose) is $10.25 (http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/programs/vfc/cdc-vac-price-list.htm )
Three doses (as recommended in the 2010 Childhood Schedule) would cost $30.75 (3 x 10.25) (http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/recs/schedules/downloads/child/2010/10_0-6yrs-schedule-pr.pdf )
So, the United States’ taxpayers paid a total of approximately $35,650,105 to vaccinate infants against a sexually-transmitted disease. IN ONE YEAR!
Our government spent more than thirty-five million dollars (our tax dollars) vaccinating children against hepatitis B. IN ONE YEAR!
Hepatitis B is a sexually transmitted disease. It is spread through sexual contact and sharing of infected needles, just like HIV/AIDS. Recent studies reveal that ANY immunity conferred through vaccination is GONE in 2-5 years. So, those children who have been vaccinated as infants will no longer have ANY immunity from vaccination by the time they become sexually active (unless they are crib-hopping in the hospital nursery!).
This is a complete waste of money. However, this is money that has already been spent. What we may want to ask ourselves at this point is, what do we have to look forward to in the future?
The Hepatitis B vaccine is a vaccine that is designed and marketed as protection from a sexually-transmitted disease. Another vaccine that has been recently developed and heavily marketed as protection against a sexually-transmitted disease is the HPV vaccine, known as Gardasil or Cervarix. Assuming that our government will continue to fund vaccination according to the recommended schedule for all U.S. children living at or below the poverty level, we can expect our taxpayer dollars to fund the vaccination of these children against HPV in the future.
The current cost (12/2010) of Gardasil (CDC cost per dose) is $108.72.
The current cost (12/2010) of Cervarix (CDC cost per dose) is $96.08.
Splitting the difference, we can expect to pay AT LEAST $ 102.40 per injection. At three injections, that means we (the U.S. taxpayers) will spend approximately $307.00 per child to vaccinate against HPV.
At $307.00 per child, it will cost us (the United States’ Taxpayers) $374,260,016.00 to vaccinate the children born in 2008, and living at or below the poverty level, against HPV virus. Of course, by the time children who are born in 2008 reach the age where they are required to receive the HPV vaccination in order to attend school, the cost of the vaccine may be much higher than it is now.
This is nuts.
The only ones who are benefiting from this are the vaccine manufacturers and the government officials who support them and benefit from them. Meanwhile, more and more children are dying from the vaccines, which are not only expensive, but have never been proven to be safe or even effective.
WE ARE FOOTING THE BILL WHILE THE GOVERNMENT IS KILLING OUR CHILDREN!
Why are we allowing this to happen?