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WHO Accused of Overstating Swine Flu Threat

Posted on Jun 4, 2010
Flickr / Wootang01

WHO’s warnings on the swine flu “pandemic” and the subsequent media hysteria in early 2009 set off a wave of panic around the world.

Two reports released Friday are critical of the World Health Organization’s handling of the H1N1 flu pandemic—which was dubbed “exaggeration on stilts”—as well as the fact that some WHO scientists had previously been on the payroll of big drug companies.

Critics say the WHO’s response sent the world into an unnecessary tizzy, wasting huge sums of money and provoking “unjustified fears” within the populace. —JCL

Al Jazeera English:

A joint report into the handling of the H1N1 outbreak has found that some scientists who advised governments to stockpile drugs, had previously been on the payroll of big drug companies.

The report, published in the British Medical Journal, found World Health Organisation (WHO) guidelines on the use of medicine to treat the virus were prepared by experts who had received consulting fees from the top two manufacturers of the drugs—Roche and GlaxoSmithKline.

The WHO’s decision to name the flu a “pandemic” is also coming under scrutiny from European investigators, and stands accused of exaggerating the dangers of the H1N1 outbreak, which emerged in April last year.

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By Just ME in T, June 6, 2010 at 5:03 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

WHO can U trust?

Several key advisors who urged WHO to declare a pandemic received direct financial compensation from the very same vaccine manufacturers who received a windfall of profits from the pandemic announcement. During all this, WHO refused to disclose any conflicts of interests between its top advisors and the drug companies who would financially benefit from its decisions.

All the kickbacks, in other words, were swept under the table and kept silent, and WHO somehow didn’t think it was important to let the world know that it was receiving policy advice from individuals who stood to make millions of dollars when a pandemic was declared.

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By Maani, June 4, 2010 at 8:24 pm Link to this comment

What I wonder is why it always takes some “formal” study, report, etc. to tell us what many of us already knew…Those of us who followed the swine flu nondemic from its beginnings knew full well, from day one, that this was the single most overblown, mega-hyped nondemic in planetary history.

Now I am waiting for the “formal” study, report, etc. that tells us that the vaccine itself was responsible for some (many?) of the ilnesses and deaths attributed to the disease…

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By Aaron Ortiz, June 4, 2010 at 12:41 pm Link to this comment

That is very true phasor, that is why I read this website, even though I seldom
agree with the perspective of its editors.

I just wish they would look at other sources, and present something much more
like what they claim to present: the truth.

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By phasor, June 4, 2010 at 11:49 am Link to this comment

Aaron Ortiz, your idea that there are news organizations that are “impartial” is irrational.

Everyone has a point of view.

To see the whole picture you need different perspectives.

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By William Benton, June 4, 2010 at 11:40 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The proven danger was there . The universal hands washing program was the key. For better health we should laud hands washing .Reconise credit for hands washing as the reason the flu pandemic failed this time.

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By Aaron Ortiz, June 4, 2010 at 9:17 am Link to this comment

I agree that the pandemic was overstated. I myself had this flu in Mexico, and was
in the age group 30-40, which had the most danger. I was sick a week BEFORE the
WHO made all the fuss. But forcing Mexico to shut down lost millions and perhaps
billions of dollars in the economy of Mexico.

I squirm though, that the editors of Truthdig cite sources like AlJazeera. No
wonder they are so far from impartiality.

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