DoD to resume giving anthrax shots

first_imgMay 4, 2005 (CIDRAP News ) – With a federal judge’s permission, the US Department of Defense (DoD) has announced it will resume giving anthrax shots to military personnel, but on a strictly voluntary basis.The DoD’s mandatory anthrax immunization program had been suspended since October 2004, when US District Judge Emmet G. Sullivan ruled that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) did not follow proper procedures in approving the vaccine for inhalational anthrax.In January the FDA issued an “emergency use authorization” (EUA) permitting DoD to resume the vaccinations, but only on a voluntary basis. On Apr 6, Sullivan granted a DoD request to resume giving the shots under the terms of the emergency authorization.Yesterday the Pentagon announced it was ready to resume giving anthrax shots. Officials said the vaccinations would mostly be limited to military units assigned to the Central Command area, which includes the Middle East, and to troops serving in Korea and in homeland bioterrorism defense.”The implementing program requires commanders to follow EUA conditions very carefully, providing members of the armed services both education on the program and an option to refuse the vaccination without penalty,” the DoD announcement said.Dr. William Winkenwerder, assistant secretary of defense for health affairs, called the immunization program a “vital protection measure for military personnel, who are at increased risk of exposure to an anthrax attack.”A DoD policy memo about the program says the EUA is scheduled to expire on July 27, less than 3 months away. “At that time, other initiatives may result in resumption of the normal AVIP [Anthrax Vaccine Immunization Program], including mandatory vaccinations for selected personnel,” the memo says. “Alternatively, the EUA may be extended or other direction may be provided.”Perry Bishop, a Pentagon spokesman, said DoD will continue to press for mandatory vaccination, according to an Associated Press report published yesterday.The DoD memo says all personnel eligible for anthrax vaccination must be told they may refuse the shots and will not be punished. Troops must be told they will not be discharged for refusing and they can still be deployed. However, personnel must also be told, “Your military and civilian leaders strongly recommend anthrax vaccination,” the memo states.Personnel will be given a brochure that explains the known and potential benefits and risks of vaccination as well as the alternatives to vaccination.Before Sullivan’s ruling, anthrax shots were mandatory for personnel serving in areas where the risk of anthrax attack was considered high. More than 1.3 million troops had been vaccinated in the program, which began in 1998. But hundreds of troops refused the shots because of concern about side effects, and some were disciplined or discharged from the service.Sullivan’s ruling came in a lawsuit filed by six DoD personnel and civilian contractor employees who objected to the shots. In an initial ruling in December 2003, the judge ordered DoD to stop requiring the shots on the ground that the FDA had never specifically approved the vaccine for inhalational anthrax. The vaccine was originally licensed in 1970.The FDA responded immediately by declaring that the vaccine was safe and effective for all forms of anthrax. Sullivan then lifted his injunction in January 2004. But in his subsequent ruling in October 2004, Sullivan said the FDA had failed to follow its own rules in declaring the vaccine safe for all forms of the disease.Last December, military officials asked the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for emergency authority to resume the vaccination program. Under the Project Bioshield Act of 2004, the FDA, in a declared emergency, can authorize the use of a medical product that has not gained ordinary FDA approval. The FDA then issued the emergency authorization on Jan 27, but said the shots had to be voluntary.The anthrax vaccine used by DoD requires six shots over a period of 18 months, followed by annual boosters. Last November HHS awarded an $877 million contract for a new anthrax vaccine that officials hope will require fewer doses and have fewer side effects, but that vaccine is intended to go in a stockpile for civilian use.See also:May 3 DoD news releaseDoD policy memolast_img read more

All-around effort propels Syracuse 7-0 against North Carolina State

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on April 22, 2018 at 4:37 pm Contact David: When Syracuse plays left-handed hitters with a tendency to hit to the opposite field, it rotates its outfielders to account for Bryce Holmgren’s lack of speed. The switch puts Alicia Hansen in left field, who is quicker and better suited to run down balls down the line or in the gap, head coach Mike Bosch said last week.In the top of the sixth inning on Sunday, Holmgren proved the swap may not be necessary. When North Carolina State’s Jade Caraway lined the ball down the left field line in foul territory, it looked as if Holmgren had no chance to reach it. Rather, the junior sprinted from her spot and past the foul line before laying out, her body parallel to the ground, to make an unbelievable diving catch. Hansen, who was in center, ran over to Holmgren as she got up to congratulate her.“I was smiling when the ball was hit,” Hansen said. “I knew it was foul, and no harm could come from it. I was like ‘lay out! lay out!’ And she did.”Holmgren’s diving effort topped off an all-around day for the Orange, led by another dominant performance from Alexa Romero in the circle. Romero’s one-hit, 11-strikeout day helped Syracuse (26-18, 8-11 Atlantic Coast) complete the three-game sweep over North Carolina State (22-25, 5-15 ACC), 7-0, on Sunday afternoon at Skytop Softball Stadium. The win marks six-straight for SU, which officially clinched its spot in the ACC Tournament in Atlanta, Georgia, starting May 9.After scoring five runs combined in Saturday’s doubleheader against the Wolfpack, SU’s offense came out scorching hot. Hansen led off the bottom of the first with a solo home run to right center field. With two outs and runners on first and second, Rachel Burkhardt singled to drive in Holmgren, and, after a throwing error by right fielder Angie Rizzi, Gabby Teran came home. A batter later, Michala Maciolek drove in Burkhardt to give the Orange a four-run lead.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“We looked at a little bit of film last night, things we could do a little better, some counts we could be more aggressive in,” Bosch said about SU’s big day at the plate. “When you see a pitching staff a second or third day, you’re going to have some better swings. That’s what you saw.”The Orange’s strong hitting performance was equaled by Romero’s pitching. Coming off a career-high 16 strikeouts in the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader, Romero struck out five of her first six batters. The only hit the sophomore allowed came in the top of the third, when N.C. State’s Cheyenne Balzer drilled the ball into Romero’s thigh before it traveled into the outfield. After a brief stoppage, Romero continued. Her thigh “didn’t hurt at all,” she said after the game.Immediately after the incident, Romero threw two wild pitches, allowing Balzer to advance to third with two outs. A batter later, she returned to her usual self with an inning-ending strikeout. From innings four to six, Romero retired nine straight, including four strikeouts. She narrowly missed her third consecutive complete game, as Miranda Hearn relieved Romero in the seventh inning.“I struggled a little bit in the Notre Dame series, I had to turn myself around,” Romero said about her recent stretch of dominance. “This past week and weekend was a good turnaround for me. I feel better about everything mentally, emotionally and physically.”Sunday marked Romero’s third consecutive and 11th overall game with double-digit strikeouts, as well as her fifth start with no walks this season. Romero’s 246 strikeouts on the year are 63 more than any other ACC pitcher, while she sits a thousandth of a point behind Florida State’s Kylee Hanson for the conference’s lowest opponent batting average (.142).In the fifth, Andrea Bombace came off the bench and cranked a solo home run, Syracuse’s third of the game, to give the home team its seventh and final run of the game. After hitting just two home runs in its first 30 games this season, SU has exploded for 10 in its last 14 games. Much of the team’s recent power surge comes from playing at home, Bosch said.“Whether it was the catch in left field, Alexa striking people out or pinch-hit home runs, everybody did what they could,” Bosch said. “When you put those things together, you get team victories.” Commentslast_img read more