This just in: An example of what happens when people change conclusions based on the data rather than digging in their heels in favor of a pet hypothesis. In this case, the UK government has reversed a previous decision regarding the 2009-2010 European Pandemrix vaccine for “swine flu” and its link to narcolepsy, a sleep disorder that can seriously disrupt activities of daily living. As a result, per The Guardian:
"The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has contacted people turned down for compensation last year to explain that, after a review of fresh evidence, it now accepts the vaccine can cause the condition. The move leaves the government open to compensation claims from around 100 people in Britain, and substantial legal fees if a group action drawn up by solicitors is successful."
According to the Guardian, here’s why the UK is taking this step:
"The government U-turn follows a major study of four- to 18-year-olds by the Health Protection Agency which found that around one in every 55,000 jabs was associated with narcolepsy. A spokesman for (vaccine maker) GSK said it had details of around 900 people from 14 countries who had narcolepsy and were vaccinated."
Emphasis mine. It’s a good example of drawing new conclusions based on new information, otherwise known as the appropriate conduct of science, and then doing the right thing. A total of 100 people among 6 million who received this vaccination in the UK developed narcolepsy, for an adverse event rate of 0.0017%. The death rate from the “swine flu” in the UK was 0.026%. Put another way, 26 of every 100,000 people who had the flu died; 1.67 people of every 100,000 (1 in every 55,000 according to the study) receiving the vaccine developed narcolepsy. In addition, the vaccine in question evidently was given to groups at high risk for adverse events from contracting the swine flu. The Pandemrix vaccine is no longer in use and was applied for that specific pandemic. One of its ingredients was an adjuvant, intended to enhance the immune response, called ASO3. According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), no influenza vaccines licensed in the United States contain adjuvants. The CDC has reviewed US data related to seasonal influenza and H1N1 vaccines used in the US and found no links between any US-licensed vaccine and narcolepsy.