By Norma Erickson, President of SaneVax Inc.
Currently, pharmaceutical companies are lobbying the New York State Legislature to mandate the two most expensive vaccines on the market. HPV vaccine for all sixth graders, and Menactra (meningitis vaccine) for all seventh graders in the state.
Let’s take a look at the cost to taxpayers should these mandates pass. First, let’s consider the proposed Menactra mandate.
According to New York Public School Statistics, there are 202,922 students in the 7th grade throughout the State of New York. Meningitis vaccine costs approximately $150.00 per dose to administer, considering the cost of the vaccine, administration costs, syringes, salaries, keeping school records, distributing parent information, etc…. No one knows how much of this cost will be subsidized by state and/or federal government. It doesn’t really matter, either way – the citizens pay.
At this rate, should the meningitis vaccine mandate pass, it will cost the taxpayers of New York, parents, and insurance companies over $30 million per year. Whoever ends up paying the bill, that 30 million dollars will be added to pharmaceutical company coffers.
Is Meningitis Vaccine Needed?
New York State has a population of approximately 20 million people. Of the 61 reported cases of meningitis, 46% occurred in congested, underprivileged areas with unsanitary environments. There are no less than seven different types of bacterial meningitis each caused by a different strain of bacteria. The vaccine only covers one variety. There are no records indicating whether any of the 61 reported cases occurred in vaccinated individuals. Even the vaccine manufacturer says their product is not effective for all individuals. Furthermore, meningitis is curable with antibiotics, providing it is diagnosed properly.
The package insert for Menactra clearly indicates that it is not guaranteed to protect everyone and can cause Guillane-Barre and Palsy.
Meningitis is primarily a Sub-Sahara, Africa disease problem. Every country and/or state should consider the potential risk of any disease based on the incident rate in their own populace, not worldwide statistics.
The SaneVax Team believes the risk to benefit and the cost to benefit ratios do not justify the expense of mandating this vaccine in the State of New York. We believe the taxpayers of the state would agree that the $30 million would much better spent on things like sanitation or economic development.
Keep in mind, this analysis does not include the proposed mandate for HPV vaccines. Should human papillomavirus vaccines also be mandated, the citizens of New York would be contributing an additional $68 million (estimate based on $350/series of shots) to pharmaceutical companies’ bottom line.
Almost a billion dollars, straight from the citizens to pharmaceutical companies–think about it! Do the taxpayers in the State of New York want to support the pharmaceutical industry, or spend their limited funds on programs that directly benefit their population?