Gymno

succumbing to peer pressure

Monday, July 07, 2008

Stupid Fucking FDA
(yes, I realize one day during a job hunt I may come to regret this headline, but this makes me emotional)

The Food and Drug Administration has decided not to approve the HPV vaccine for women over 26. This means older women can still obtain the vaccine, but their insurance won't pay for it. The FDA is citing concerns regarding the vaccine's effectiveness in the older age group. Perhaps that's because by age 50 at least 80% of all women will be infected with some strain of HPV. But you know what? It can't hurt to vaccinate all of them against a VIRUS THAT FUCKING CAUSES CANCER!

Why am I screaming? Because all the vague references I've been making to a sick friend and spending nights in the hospital? That friend had cervical cancer. She's fine now, physically, after two surgeries, one of which was a hysterectomy. It's been a hellish five months, an experience everyone should be spared.

I know as a public healther I should be capable of making rational arguments about cost-effectiveness, and should understand the government's hesitation to endorse insurance coverage for a treatment that may have little to no effect on a large swath of the population. But a) I don't much care for rational on this topic and b) vaccines ain't all that expensive. Two surgeries and five nights in the hospital are.

Lastly, it's at least another year out before Merck makes the push for approval to vaccinate men. You know, the other half of the sexual equation that passes along HPV. And meanwhile, condoms don't always prevent its spread.

2 Comments:

Blogger Sudiptya said...

This is f-ing ridiculous... any idea on why the delay on pushing for approval for men? I mean, fuck, its not like you can't try and get approval for two different purposes at the same fucking time...

~Sid

5:16 AM  
Blogger Ben Ostrowsky said...

This is what puzzles me about Republicans. I figure they view unnecessary or preventable abortions as worth preventing. So in order to make it less likely that people will have potentially procreative sex, they ought to be encouraging oral sex. And one of the best ways to encourage oral sex is to make sure that everyone old enough to receive vaccinations is protected against getting oral and throat cancers from going down on someone.

That's my new line of thinking about this. "Really? You want people to go down on you LESS often because they're afraid of getting cancer as a result? Well, I enjoy receiving oral sex, and I don't want anyone to hold back simply because they're not protected against sexually transmitted carcinogenic viruses."

5:46 AM  

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