Health Impact News Editor
Lawrence Solomon of the Huffington Post in Canada has written a very insightful analysis of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) annual estimates of deaths due to influenza. The CDC claims that deaths due to the annual flu range from 3,000 to 49,000 deaths each year.
As can be seen from the graphic above, which is a screen shot of selected text directly from the CDC’s own website, the CDC claims they don’t really know how many people die from the flu each year. The reason given as to why they make estimates is “it is important to convey the full burden of the seasonal flu to the public.” What they would like you to believe, of course, is that the flu is dangerous and tens of thousands of people are dying from it.
But the other way that statement could be read is that the burden to the public is to purchase more flu vaccines, since they are manufactured ahead of time and stockpiled for the flu season.
According to Lawrence Solomon, that is exactly what they are doing. They are inflating the numbers to encourage more flu vaccine sales. While the most common number cited by the media is 36,000 deaths a year, actual death certificates only list about 500 per year. And since a laboratory test is not usually taken to determine if it was actually the influenza virus, only 15-20 percent of those 500 recorded flu deaths were actually due to the flu, which means the real numbers are about 100 or less. But it would be very difficult to sell 145 million doses of the flu vaccine if the public knew less than 100 people died each year from the flu.
As we have previously reported, the flu vaccine is the most dangerous vaccine in the United States, based on actual payments made by the government to vaccine injuries and deaths. Flu vaccine damages that are awarded to the victims are more than all other vaccines combined. See: Flu Vaccine is the most Dangerous Vaccine in the U. S. based on Settled Cases for Injuries
Don’t Believe Everything You Read About Flu Deaths
Flu results in “about 250,000 to 500,000 yearly deaths” worldwide, Wikipedia tells us. “The typical estimate is 36,000 [deaths] a year in the United States,” reports NBC, citing the Centers for Disease Control.
The numbers differ wildly from the sober tallies recorded on death certificates — by law every certificate must show a cause — and reported by the official agencies that collect and keep vital statistics.
According to the National Vital Statistics System in the U.S., for example, annual flu deaths in 2010 amounted to just 500 per year — fewer than deaths from ulcers (2,977), hernias (1,832) and pregnancy and childbirth (825), and a far cry from the big killers such as heart disease (597,689) and cancers (574,743).
Even that 500 figure for the U.S. could be too high, according to analyses in authoritative journals such as the American Journal of Public Health and the British Medical Journal. Only about 15-20 percent of people who come down with flu-like symptoms have the influenza virus — the other 80-85 per cent actually caught rhinovirus or other germs that are indistinguishable from the true flu without laboratory tests, which are rarely done. In 2001, a year in which death certificates listed 257 Americans as having died of flu, only 18 were positively identified as true flus. The other 239 were simply assumed to be flus and most likely had few true flus among them.
The CDC’s decision to play up flu deaths dates back a decade, when it realized the public wasn’t following its advice on the flu vaccine. During the 2003 flu season “the manufacturers were telling us that they weren’t receiving a lot of orders for vaccine,”Dr. Glen Nowak, associate director for communications at CDC’s National Immunization Program, told National Public Radio. “It really did look like we needed to do something to encourage people to get a flu shot.”
The CDC’s response was its “Seven-Step ‘Recipe‘ for Generating Interest in, and Demand for, Flu (or any other) Vaccination,” a slide show Nowak presented at the 2004 National Influenza Vaccine Summit.
The CDC unabashedly decided to create a mass market for the flu vaccine by enlisting the media into panicking the public. An obedient and unquestioning media obliged by hyping the numbers, and 10 years later it is obliging still.
Read the Full Article Here.
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