Q: How can they make the H1N1 vaccine so fast and still know if it is safe?
A: The flu virus constantly changes, so a new seasonal flu vaccine is made every year. Flu strains for the next season are selected during the winter and the vaccine is ready by September; this includes performing clinical trials and FDA approval. Since H1N1 is really just a new influenza virus, the technology to make it is already in place so its production isn’t as rushed as it may seem.
The H1N1 vaccine has been extensively tested and approved by the FDA. As of October 23, 2009, there have been 1198 scholarly articles published about the vaccine, 218 of which are specifically about the clinical trials used to test it. SO…this vaccine is considered to be just as safe and effective as the regular vaccine, which has a track record of safety dating back to the 1940’s.
Let me put it another way. I am going to be vaccinated and I’m recommending it to all the members of my family according to their health status.
Roger Miller, MD (Ohio State Student Health Services)