Public Health Official: Canada Needs “No Fault” Compensation for People Harmed by Vaccine


Sharon Kirkey
Canwest News Service
July 21, 2009

[efoods]A leading public health expert is calling on Canada to create a no-fault compensation program for people who may be harmed by a swine flu vaccine that millions of Canadians will be urged by the government to get this fall.

Kumanan Wilson, Canada research chair in public health at the University of Ottawa, said in an interview with Canwest News Service that children and adults could be exposed to an incompletely tested vaccine and that a compensation scheme is needed to encourage the public to buy into any mass immunization program.

When the World Health Organization last month proclaimed swine flu the first pandemic since 1968, Canada’s chief public health officer, David Butler-Jones, said everyone should get the new flu shot when it becomes available.

“The more people that have immunity, the easier it is to stop,” he said.

But Canwest News Service has learned that, unlike the United States, the Public Health Agency of Canada has no plans to compensate people who may be injured by an H1N1 vaccine.

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