July 1st, 2010
03:22 PM ET

Swine flu vaccine tossed

An estimated 40 million doses of H1N1 vaccine expired Wednesday and will be thrown away, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services,  says. Federal officials say the expired vaccine accounts for nearly 25 percent of the 162 million doses of swine flu vaccine that were available for public use. The vaccine will be crushed and then incinerated.

According to HHS, an estimated 90 million doses of the vaccine was dispensed in 2009-2010. Eighty million Americans were vaccinated–about 25 percent of the population–children under 9 years old got two doses. Approximately 32 million doses remain in storage, set to expire at various times next year.

Manufacturing the vaccine in large numbers was justified, says HHS spokesperson Bill Hall. "Our decisions regarding vaccine production were in line with the existing threat at the time such decisions were made. Although there were many doses of vaccine that went unused, it was much more appropriate to have been prepared for the worst case scenario than to have had too few doses. As we have said repeatedly, the risk of influenza disease is far greater than the risk of vaccination either for seasonal or pandemic influenza."

For the upcoming flu season, manufacturers expect to produce about 175 million doses of the 2010-2011 seasonal vaccine that will include the 2009 H1N1 strain. But HHS is encouraging states to keep any H1N1 vaccine they have in stock in the event cases begin to spike before that seasonal vaccine is available.

soundoff (47 Responses)
  1. Kirk Patrick

    Hey, better safe than sorry right?
    Except vaccines don't make us safe.

    But this was the first pandemic in 40 years so we had to be prepared, right? But it never would have been a pandemic if they hadn't changed the very definition from "kills many" to "infects many" just to sell more vaccines.

    If we saved one life it was worth wasting Billions, right? But spending those billions on water sanitation in other countries could have saved millions with the same amount of resources.

    Face it gover-lovers and CDC apologists, we were lied to and manipulated so Big Pharma could steal our money to push bogus, useless, untested, unneeded vaccines. MANY OF YOU SHOULD DO JAIL TIME FOR THIS.

    July 1, 2010 at 17:10 | Report abuse | Reply
    • A Kay

      The government has to actively pursue manufacturers ot make vaccines. With the lawsuits, no customer except government bulk sales, and a dedicated group of naysayers, it's bad business sense and no one got rich making vaccines, especially short-term flu vaccines which require a lot of work and generate a poor return on the investment compared to, say, Viagra.

      The "pharma making money" argument doesn't really hold up to actual facts.

      July 1, 2010 at 20:30 | Report abuse |
    • george brooks

      Sorry A Kay I"m not buying it,I'm with Kirk Patrick.There was a reason that the world was scared to death over nothing and I as a health care worker was FORCED to be vacinated and I say it was MONEY.I was part of the wait and see croud when this was first announced as a pandemic but the longer it went on with no evidence that this was of any concern the more sceptical I got and here we are over a year later and NO,NO it was not an epidemic but it may have been a pandemic if you change the meaning of pandemic as the WHO and CDC did!

      July 1, 2010 at 22:09 | Report abuse |
    • Shelly S.

      Amen!!! It's all poison....No doubt..

      July 1, 2010 at 22:51 | Report abuse |
    • The Voice of Sanity

      George, as a healthcare worker you should understand why the response worked and how it would have worked if things got even worse. I'm willing to bet you're pretty lousy at your job and that you aren't a nurse, doctor or other highly skilled medical professional. No one got rich off of this is right and vaccination is good proven science, but in this country science is evil and put down as some fictional nonsense.

      July 1, 2010 at 23:49 | Report abuse |
    • Erick Denney

      You're a moron. Vaccines don't make us safe? Really? Really?!! I suggest you take a crash course in immunology. I'd love to stick you with a good dose of Clostridium tetani if you've never been vaccinated, then watch you break your back from the uncontrolled spasms that result from the toxins. Get a clue!!

      July 2, 2010 at 01:16 | Report abuse |
    • Ralph Gentry

      Yikes. I thought H1N1 was bird flue. You mean pigs can now fly?

      July 2, 2010 at 08:11 | Report abuse |
    • fluoride

      Carol Baker how many people get killed every year frombee stings? What about the fluoride in OUR water!?!?! The new world order is getting exposed and finally people are WAKING UP! BETTER LATER THANE NEVER http://www.infowars.com

      July 6, 2010 at 19:40 | Report abuse |
  2. Fabric Softener Kills

    Here are some real Terrorists (defined as those who cause mass panic for their own political or personal gain): Margaret Chan of the WHO (who declared the pandemic after changing definition at the behest of a "secret" panel of "experts" who of course all had ties ot Big Pharma), HHS Kathleen Sebelius (who waived all liability for vaccine manufacturers), President Barack Obama (who declared a state of emergency via executive order that is likely still in effect).

    July 1, 2010 at 17:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Q Lee

    This "waste" needs to be compared to the $500 million dollar cost to dispose of expired human anthrax vaccine worth some $2.5 billion to acquire for the US Strategic National Stockpile since 2005. This is one vaccine that is a refined Anthrax toxin and is preserved with known carcinogens. It can not be dumped down a drain. It is still a required inoculation for all troops heading to Iraq and Afghanistan and has a two in one thousand chance of causing severe adverse reactions.

    July 1, 2010 at 17:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Drainthepoison

    This "vaccine" caused my pregnant aunt to miscarry 24 hours AFTER she was injected. The government is trying to decrease the population.

    July 1, 2010 at 19:20 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mara

      There's an old logical fallacy called "post hoc ergo propter hoc" (after which, thus because of which). I hate to tell you, but just because a miscarriage occurred after the vaccine doesn't prove the vaccine caused it. If I got into a car accident 24 hours after getting the vaccine, would you believe me if I said the vaccine caused the car accident? How about if I fell down the steps? What if I was diagnosed with diabetes?

      Correlation does not equal causation. End of story.

      July 1, 2010 at 20:21 | Report abuse |
    • Shelly S.

      All vaccines are poison...It's called depopulation people...you seriously need to do some research!

      July 1, 2010 at 22:54 | Report abuse |
    • The Voice of Sanity

      Shelly, I suggest seeking out professional mental help immediately if you believe this conspiracy theory nonsense you're spouting.

      July 1, 2010 at 23:51 | Report abuse |
    • Fabric Softener Kills

      If anything bad happened, it was a coincidence, but if anything good happened, it was because of the vaccine! Notice how those saying vaccines keep us safe provide no evidecne? There is none!

      July 2, 2010 at 09:31 | Report abuse |
  5. Huyie

    If the WHO is so above board with everything, why have they not recommended suspending this year's seasonal flu vaccine, for children five and under (worldwide) after many children in Australia suffered adverse events?

    Adverse events following influenza vaccination in Australia–should we be surprised?
    Peter Collignon, Peter Doshi, Tom Jefferson (7 May 2010)


    July 1, 2010 at 20:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Sgranahan

    Well, I can tell you why a lot of it was wasted. I don't know about anywhere else but where I live they were charging a minimum of $25 a pop for that at the health dept. We are low income and medicaid was not accepted for it! So it was feed the kids or vaccinate. Well, they get hungry so we risked it. If there was a hint of a snifffle in their class they stayed home. They missed 11 days but we lived and they ate.

    July 1, 2010 at 21:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. mugwomp

    As usual, we have a lot of ignorant, uneducated people making comments on a subject they know nothing about. Read the book "The Great Influenza" by John Barry & you'll see why knowledgeable medical people were scared to death by H1N1. It had all the earmarks of the 1918 epidemic that killed more people than any single event in human history. We were lucky last year, but we're not out of the woods yet.

    July 1, 2010 at 21:50 | Report abuse | Reply
    • george brooks

      Get a grip mugwomp,it was all hype and we know it.I love how you assume we are all uneducated and unfamiliar with the practice of medicine,think again!

      July 1, 2010 at 22:14 | Report abuse |
    • The Voice of Sanity

      mugwomp, its true but we live in a country where we believe science is evil and against God, so what else can you expect.

      July 1, 2010 at 23:53 | Report abuse |
    • Fabric Softener Kills

      Shut up you sheep.

      July 2, 2010 at 09:32 | Report abuse |
    • C A

      Influenza is nothing to dismiss. It is frequently the cause of death for the elderly or anyone who has a compromised immune system. The 1918 flue epidemic killed four members of my grandfather's family, including his father and 2 aunts, and my great uncle died fom it fifteen years ago. I've been hospitalized three times for it, beginning in my 30's, because I'm dealing with two chronic diseases that have compromised my immune system. Good food, exercise and healthy living are ongoing ways to keep oneself healthy, but don't be fooled into thinking this will guarantee you immunity. I typically hear the "your-bad-lifestyle" blaming from the anti-vaccine herd, but as an athletic vegan I can assure you, it doesn't.

      July 2, 2010 at 12:56 | Report abuse |
    • Chris Maraia, Director of WPR

      Because of the 1918 Pandemic Influenza I created a project called "HandsUP America." See http://www.worldpublicrestrooms.com

      July 22, 2010 at 12:57 | Report abuse |
  8. Got my shot

    I've gotten a flu shot every year since the early 70s. I almost died of the flu in my 20s. Yes, I got a free HINI shot at the local health department; yes I waited 2 hours, but it was worth it. I will be getting one this Fall too. Better safe than sorry/sick. Teachers need to be careful–students came to school sick and most had HINI.

    July 1, 2010 at 23:30 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Kirk Patrick

      If you almost died of the flu in your 20's you are quite sickly. I recommend eating your vegetables.

      July 2, 2010 at 09:33 | Report abuse |
  9. Huyie

    The 1918 flu: True history ignored:


    July 1, 2010 at 23:39 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. DB

    26% population got it. Not only they saved themselves but they prevented additional transmission to the rest. The govt did what is expected of it. Use common resources to protect public. Incidentally, had there been none, same folks would have cried the govt did not look out for them. I'd rather have lives saved, anytime. Why would you think otherwise?

    July 2, 2010 at 08:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Constant Skeptic

    All the conspiracy theorists can go ahead and spout off their unsupportable garbage tirades, but at the end of the day...I'll take the vaccine thank you very much. I've seen people die from the flu, I'll take my chances with a vaccine. Even if it is a conspiracy, looks to me like 80 million people survived the shot.

    July 2, 2010 at 08:46 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Kirk Patrick

      We can support one thing: THE VACCINES YOU TOLD US TO BY ARE BEING DISCARDED. You are now the boy who cried wolf and your track record of failure speaks for itself. Go scam someone else.

      July 2, 2010 at 09:57 | Report abuse |
    • C A

      If I read the article correctly, they are not being discarded because the government "cried wolf:" they're being discarded because they EXPIRED. All medicines have a shelf life, and vaccines have short ones. This simply means they had too much on hand, or not enough of the public accessed what was available. Making a judgement that the government ordered them to make money off Bigpharma isn't the case. Vaccines, antibiotics and other meds of this sort are money losers: they doen't have broad applications for illnesses and they cost too much to develop. This contributes heavily why we have a problem with bacteria showing up that is resistant to antibiotics: there aren't many antibiotics, and the bacteria has evolved to the point where it is strong enough to survive it. In a general way, it's like the purpose of having a vaccine in the first place: get a small dose of the illness to build an immunity to it.
      Take a science course or do some reading, folks. We could be heading into a heap of trouble within a few decades if we as a people lose the "herd immunity" effect.

      July 2, 2010 at 13:06 | Report abuse |
  12. Kirk Patrick

    Today's headline news on Natural News is a must-read:


    July 2, 2010 at 09:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Huyie

    To see WHO's website definition of pandemic preparedness as it appeared on May 1 2009 and the one that was on their web page Sept 2 2009. Go to this site.


    July 2, 2010 at 13:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Huyie

    To see the changing views of pandemic flu, before and after emergence of influenza A/H1N1 virus? Go to this site.


    July 2, 2010 at 13:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Carol J. Baker, MD

    To all those who say the H1N1 pandemic influenza is not so bad: so far it’s killed nearly 1,300 American children and hospitalized 87,000. As a pediatrician who has dedicated her life to keeping our kids healthy and safe, these numbers sadden me more than I can say. Yes, influenza viruses change often and it’s hard to know exactly how severe they’ll be or how easily they’ll spread every year. But we do know the best way to protect our children and ourselves is through vaccination. Please visit the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases’ website, http://www.preventchildhoodinfluenza.org for more information.

    Carol Baker, MD
    Past President, National Foundation for Infectious Diseases

    July 6, 2010 at 16:14 | Report abuse | Reply
    • nomorvac

      According to Peter Doshi, one of the worlds leading influenza experts, there is not a shred of scientifically valid evidence to your statement. His analysis in the BMJ of influenza studies showed a total lack of evidence supporting safety and/or efficacy. In fact, influenza vaccination rates among children have risen significantly over the past 7 years and so have childhood deaths attributed to influenza during that same period. The overall influenza vaccination rate has increased nearly six-fold in the last decade, with no corresponding decrease in the number of emergency room visits for reported flu symptoms. The major difference is that we are now spreading live influenza viruses via the live virus nasal influenza vaccine. According to the FluMist vaccine package insert, the live viruses are capable of colonizing in the sinus passages, infecting and replicating, and then shedding from the recipient for up to 30 days after vaccination. Children are spreading these viruses around schools, libraries and grocery stores and due to the high number of people who are now immune compromised, we are seeing dramatic increases in flu activity shortly after the release of the live virus vaccine. Just because you have achieved reductions in certain infectious diseases (which may or may not have been as a result of the vaccines) does not allow you to leap over the dearth of scientific evidence to the contrary and declare that vaccination is the best way to protect ourselves and children. Good nutrition, sleep, vitamin D and handwashing are by far superior methods of protecting against most forms of illness.

      July 13, 2010 at 16:13 | Report abuse |
  16. fluoride

    it's funny how first the h1ni1 makers went on cnn saying thy didn't make no money off the vaccine, they were doing it for the good cause!! I heard that with my own ears! BS!


    July 6, 2010 at 19:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Chris Maraia, Director of WPR

    I disagree with Dr. Baker also. But what about children who do not comprehend hand washing? Maybe these children should be vaccinated. As for the rest of us, KEEP YOUR HANDS CLEAN!! "Handwashing is a simple thing and it's the best way to prevent infection and illness." And good nutrition as well. I do not like flu vaccinations but it appears we need them. I would like to see an antidote made instead, if that's possible.

    Us common folk cannot afford $25 and $35 vaccines. Therefore, it is my mission to educate the public on the importance of hand-washing through my project called "HandsUP America." see http://www.worldpublicrestrooms.com

    July 22, 2010 at 13:39 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Violetta

      I was curious of your oinipon about the H1N1 vaccine? My son is a severe asthmatic with a dairy allergy. At age one he recieved the flu shot and H1N1 shot. From that weekend on he was severely sick. We were in and out of the emergency room weekly, there was one ambulance call, and 2 hospitalizations all due to not being able to breath. Multiple testing of H1N1, pnemonia,& bronchitis were uncertain. He continued like this from November till July the following year. My son is now three and my husband and I have different oinipons on getting him both these shots this year. We did not last year and also had a healthy child all year. Do you think these shots could have induced or caused his sickness? Does his asthma or allergy make him respond differently to these shots? I have had so many mixed answers I don't know what to do and cold season is upon us. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for your time!VA:F [1.9.10_1130]please wait...

      March 6, 2012 at 00:55 | Report abuse |
  18. Dave

    There's not a bit of statistical proof to show that flu vaccines do anything at all to curtail flu outbreaks.

    July 31, 2010 at 16:39 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. Lori

    Swine Flu (H1N1) Vaccine 8/5/2010
    During a routine physical I was asked if I had the swine flu vaccine yet. “No, do I still need that I pondered”? Yes you do, my doctor stated with authority. If only I could erase that day. I wish I never listened to the doctor’s orders.

    After receiving the swine flu vaccine I developed terrible headaches but little did I know the worst reaction had yet to come. I woke up one day and could barely speak a single word. I could not say my daughter name, speak to my husband, or talk to friends. Frankly, I could not talk to anyone without a soft whisper. The news came like a title wave. My right vocal cord was paralyzed! My vocal cord was unable to move, unable to vibrate, unable to swallow effectively.

    The news was devastating and the medical community tested me for every disorder under the sun only to find me perfectly healthy other than the paralysis. The swine flu vaccine paralyzed me.

    So if you’re pondering, is the vaccine safe? Is it effective? Is it necessary? I would answer a resounding NO!
    Since the majority of swine flu patients own immune system effectively fights off the flu it seems unnecessary to take a shot that could potentially disable you. It is mandatory to sign a release prior to the shot which provided immunity against any law suits that might result. That within itself was a red flag. Instead of saving my life it disabled me. In retrospect, had I got the swine flu in the first place, I’m sure I would have been speaking just fine by now.

    August 5, 2010 at 21:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Hayden Bennett

    swine flu scared the hell out of me when there was mass infection of this virus.:.

    October 6, 2010 at 13:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Deck Lighting 

    Swine Flue created a lot of mass panic during the height of its infection'.~

    October 20, 2010 at 16:03 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. Increase Instagram Post Views

    I got what you intend, thankyou for posting.


    January 31, 2021 at 18:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. zortilonrel

    Keep up the great piece of work, I read few content on this internet site and I conceive that your web site is very interesting and has circles of fantastic information.


    February 7, 2021 at 18:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. Fókuszpályázat pályázatíró cég

    Lovely just what I was looking for.Thanks to the author for taking his clock time on this one.


    February 9, 2021 at 06:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. Barry House Clearance

    Thank you a lot for sharing this with all people you actually realize what you're speaking approximately! Bookmarked. Please also discuss with my website =). We could have a hyperlink trade arrangement between us!


    February 9, 2021 at 08:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. storno brzinol

    I conceive this site has some really superb info for everyone :D. "This is an age in which one cannot find common sense without a search warrant." by George Will.


    May 16, 2021 at 19:31 | Report abuse | Reply

Post a comment


CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.