Thursday 30 May 2024

Biden Administration ‘Looking Closely’ At Vaccinating Farm Workers, Others For Bird Flu

 The Biden Administration, concerned about the impact of a bird flu virus (H5N1) that started in late 2020 but infected a Texas dairy worker in April and a Michigan dairy worker in May, is reportedly “looking closely” at vaccinating farm workers and others.

On May 10, the Food and Drug Administration reported, “Last week we announced preliminary results of a study of 297 retail dairy samples, which were all found to be negative for viable virus. The FDA is today announcing that all final egg inoculation tests associated with this retail sampling study have been completed and were also found to be negative for viable HPAI H5N1 virus.”

Yet Reuters reported that U.S. officials acknowledged they were transporting bulk vaccine from CSL Seqirus matching H5N1 that could create 4.8 million doses of vaccine. European health officials also said they were discussing acquiring CSL’s prepandemic vaccine.

“Human exposures to the virus in poultry and dairy operations could increase the risk that the virus will mutate and gain the ability to spread easily in people,” Reuters stated, adding, “The U.S. is in talks with mRNA vaccine makers Pfizer and about potential pandemic vaccines.”

The Biden administration is “looking closely” at vaccinating farm workers and others exposed to the virus, according to Dawn O’Connell of the U.S. Administration for Strategic Preparedness and Response

“All of our efforts need to be focused on preventing those events from happening,” said Matthew Miller, co-director of the Canadian Pandemic Preparedness Hub at McMaster University. “Once we have widespread infections of humans, we’re in big trouble.”


After the second dairy worker was infected in Michigan, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Principal Deputy Director Nirav Shah saidlast week, “We have not seen evidence of other cases in this area or elsewhere in any of our monitoring systems, let alone any evidence of human-to-human transmission. This is reassuring.”

“Risk is incredibly low right now,” Andrew Pekosz of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health added. “There is no real evidence of spread from human to human.”

Post a Comment

Start typing and press Enter to search