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H.Res. 673 (eh) [Engrossed in House] ...


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106th CONGRESS
  2d Session
H. RES. 672

 Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the private-
 sector distributors of the influenza vaccine should give priority to 
 distributing the available vaccine to those people at a high risk of 
         developing complications from an influenza infection.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                            December 8, 2000

   Mr. Green of Texas submitted the following resolution; which was 
                 referred to the Committee on Commerce

_______________________________________________________________________

                               RESOLUTION


 
 Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the private-
 sector distributors of the influenza vaccine should give priority to 
 distributing the available vaccine to those people at a high risk of 
         developing complications from an influenza infection.

Whereas influenza is a contagious viral infection that affects the respiratory 
        tract;
Whereas people of any age can become infected with influenza;
Whereas, although most people who become infected with influenza recover within 
        a few days, some people develop serious complications that can become 
        life-threatening;
Whereas influenza causes thousands of deaths each year, mostly among the 
        elderly;
Whereas vaccination can prevent a person from becoming infected with influenza;
Whereas the periodic mutation of the influenza virus requires the influenza 
        vaccine to be annually updated to contain the most recent influenza 
        virus strains;
Whereas a lower-than-expected yield of one of the components of this season's 
        influenza vaccine has caused the distribution of the vaccine to be 
        delayed;
Whereas the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, the 
        Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, and the Director of 
        the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are working closely with 
        vaccine manufacturers to facilitate the availability of a safe and 
        effective influenza vaccine for this influenza season;
Whereas temporary shortages of the influenza vaccine early in this influenza 
        season may require decisions to be made regarding how to prioritize the 
        use of the available vaccine;
Whereas the vaccine available early in this influenza season should be used to 
        maximize the protection of people at a high risk of developing 
        complications from an influenza infection;
Whereas the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports 
        that the groups of people at a high risk of developing complications 
        from an influenza infection are--

    (1) people who are 65 and older;

    (2) residents of nursing homes and other chronic-care facilities that 
house people who have chronic medical conditions;

    (3) people who have chronic disorders of the pulmonary or 
cardiovascular systems, including asthma;

    (4) people who have had required medical follow up or hospitalization 
during the past year because of chronic metabolic disease, kidney 
dysfunction, blood disorders, or immunosuppression;

    (5) children and teenagers who are receiving long-term aspirin therapy; 
and

    (6) women who will be in the second or third trimester of pregnancy 
during the influenza season;

Whereas all influenza vaccine used in the United States is produced in the 
        private sector, and 90 percent of that vaccine is distributed by 
        private-sector distributors for use by health care providers;
Whereas reports have indicated that certain distributors of the influenza 
        vaccine are taking advantage of the influenza vaccine shortage by 
        raising their prices by as much as 500 percent;
Whereas distributors are first supplying those buyers willing to pay the highest 
        price for the influenza vaccine, even when those buyers were the last to 
        order;
Whereas, for example, although the Director of the California Department of 
        Health Services contracted with a distributor in February to purchase 
        influenza vaccine at a cost of $17.99 per vial and has received only one 
        third of the order, the Director of the Maine Division of Disease 
        Control contracted with that same distributor in June and July to 
        purchase influenza vaccine at a cost of $39.00 per vial and received 
        both shipments within two months; and
Whereas distributors are in a unique position to make vaccines available first 
        to facilities serving people at a high risk of developing complications 
        from an influenza infection, such as nursing homes, hospitals, and 
        doctors offices: Now, therefore, be it
    Resolved, That it is the sense of the House of Representatives that 
the private-sector distributors of the influenza vaccine should make 
all reasonable efforts to ensure that, during any shortage of the 
influenza vaccine, priority is given to distributing the available 
vaccine to those groups of people identified by the Director of the 
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as being at a high risk of 
developing complications from an influenza infection.
                                 <all>

Pages: 1

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