GSK to give free vaccines – targeting the uneducated and uninformed

News Observer

North Carolina

BY DAVID RANII – Staff Writer

Pharmaceutical giant Glaxo SmithKline has expanded its program of providing free medicines to low-income and uninsured patients to include vaccines.

The new GSK Vaccines Access Program unveiled Monday provides free vaccines for low-income patients age 19 and older who lack health insurance. The available vaccines are for hepatitis A, hepatitis B, tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis, or whooping cough. Women ages 19 to 25 also can receive free doses of GSK’s cervical cancer vaccine.

“I think it’s a good thing they are doing it,” said Adam Searing, project director of the N.C. Justice Center’s Health Access Coalition. “I would have some question about how much impact it will have.”

Income levels set

Children through age 18 are eligible to receive free vaccines under a federally funded program called Vaccines for Children, but no similar program is in place for adults. That, according to GSK, has led to under-utilization of vaccines by adults.

For example, about 12 percent of adults have been vaccinated against hepatitis A and fewer than 25 percent have been vaccinated against hepatitis B, said spokeswoman Sarah Alspach. About 15 percent have been vaccinated against whooping cough.

The new program marks the first time that GSK, which produces more than 30 approved vaccines and has 20 more in development, has offered free vaccines to low-income patients. GSK is providing free vaccines to uninsured single people over age 18 with an income of less than $27,075, or $36,425 for a couple.

“This is another step for us in making sure people have access to our products,” Alspach said. “We think timely access to vaccines – and prescription medicines, for that matter – are an essential part of cost-effective and comprehensive medical care.”

Nothing is for free Рit is obvious that GSK cannot sell its HPV vaccine since the public is becoming wary of all of the negative publicity and the adverse reactions and deaths surrounding both Cervarix and Gardasil.  So they are going after the uneducated and unsuspecting (and those without Internet access). This demographic also has a less healthy immune system (diet and nutrition) making them more susceptible to adverse reactions.
If this does not raise anger about the predator going after the prey – I do not know what will. For shame.
PG

Author: Leslie Carol Botha

Author, publisher, radio talk show host and internationally recognized expert on women's hormone cycles. Social/political activist on Gardasil the HPV vaccine for adolescent girls. Co-author of "Understanding Your Mood, Mind and Hormone Cycle." Honorary advisory board member for the Foundation for the Study of Cycles and member of the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research.