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Queue for vaccine in Luleå, in the north of Sweden. Photo: André Pettersson/SR Norrbotten.

More Swine Flu Vaccine On The Way

On Tuesday the Swedish local authorities will receive the highly awaited new deliveries of the Swine Flu vaccine. During the last few weeks the queues outside clinics administering the flu shots have been growing steadily. In many places the vaccine has run out before everyone has been seen to.

In a fortnight the pharmaceutical giant behind the vaccine, Glaxo Smith Kline, will be able to deliver the promised million doses a week. But Danish papers have revealed that Denmark has accepted a clause in the contract with the company where they disclaim any responsibility for potential future side effects. It is believed Sweden has signed a similar deal.

Minister for Health, Maria Larsson, referred the question to the National Board on Health and Welfare, the authority which has drafted the contract.  According to the Board, the clause, which has not been made public, should not be seen to reflect badly upon the safety of the vaccine. Richard Bergström, the CEO of the trade association for the research-based pharmaceutical industry in Sweden, agrees. He says that as far as he knows Sweden has never agreed to such a clause before, but that it is not unusual when a vaccine has to be produced swiftly.

“Without that protection there would be no research into vaccines;” Bergström said to Swedish news agency TT.

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