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Suggested Citation:"Readings." National Research Council. 1978. The Swine Flu Affair: Decision-Making on a Slippery Disease. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.
Page 151
Suggested Citation:"Readings." National Research Council. 1978. The Swine Flu Affair: Decision-Making on a Slippery Disease. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.
Page 152

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Readings: A Selection W. I. B. Beveridge, Influenza: The Edwin D. Kilbourne (editor), The In- Last Great Plague, Heinemann, fluenza Viruses and Influenza, London, 1977. Academic Press, New York, 1975. Concise, non-technical account Excellent, authoritative textbook. of the epidemic behavior of in- fluenza. June Osborn (editor), Influenza in America, 1918-1976, Prodist, New Alfred W. Crosby, Jr., Epidemic and York, 1977. Peace, 1918, Greenwood Press, Based on a symposium concern- Westport, Connecticut, 1976. ing the history, science and poli- Comprehensive, non-technical tics of influenza held at a meet- ac-count of the great influenza ing of the American association pan-demic of 1918-19. for the History of medicine in May 1977. Comptroller General of the United States, The Swine Flu Program: an Philip Selby (editor), Influenza: Virus, Unprecedented Venture in Preven- Vaccine and Strategy, Academic tive Medicine, Report to the Con- Press, London, 1976. gress, June 27, 1977. Papers presented at a conference Reviews planning and operation on pandemic influenza in January of the swine flu program and of- 1976; the state of expert thinking fers recommendations. just prior to isolation of swine flu in New Jersey. The Journal of Infectious Diseases, Volume 136, supplement, Decem- Sir Charles H. Stuart-Harris and Geof- ber 1977. frey C. Schild, Influenza; The Vi- ruses and the Disease, Publishing Reports presented at a sympo- Sciences Group, Littleton, Massa- sium sponsored by NIAID, BoB chusetts, 1976. and CDC in January 1977. Intro- ductory papers contain detailed Technical but well written sum- accounts of investigations sur- mary of knowledge in the field. rounding identi-fication of swine flu in New Jersey; others deal United States Senate, Hearings, Sub- with clinical studies of swine in- committee on Health, Committee fluenza vaccine. on Labor and Public Welfare, Ni- nety-fourth Congress, Second Ses- 151

sion, April 1 and August 5, 1976. eign Commerce, Ninety-fourth Congress, Second Session, Serial Contemporary introduction to the No. 94-113, June 28, July 20, 23 swine flu program’s logic and in- and September 13, 1976. tentions. The August hearing deals with liability. Wide-ranging discussion of the swine flu program; emphasizes House of Representatives, Supplemen- liability issues. Detail on posi- tal Hearings, Subcommittee on tions of drug and insurance firms Health and the Environment, as well as public officials. Committee on Interstate and For- 152

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In 1976, a small group of soldiers at Fort Dix were infected with a swine flu virus that was deemed similar to the virus responsible for the great 1918-19 world-wide flu pandemic. The U.S. government initiated an unprecedented effort to immunize every American against the disease. While a qualified success in terms of numbers reached—more than 40 million Americans received the vaccine—the disease never reappeared. The program was marked by controversy, delay, administrative troubles, legal complications, unforeseen side effects and a progressive loss of credibility for public health authorities. In the waning days of the flu season, the incoming Secretary of what was then the Department of Health, Education and Welfare, Joseph Califano, asked Richard Neustadt and Harvey Fineberg to examine what happened and to extract lessons to help cope with similar situations in the future. The result was their report, The Swine Flu Affair: Decision-Making on a Slippery Disease.


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