Re: Vaccine efficacy

From: Robin Hanson (
Date: Tue Feb 08 2000 - 07:35:21 MST

CT wrote:
> > Yes, you can find a lot of advocacy groups making strong claims.
> > But quotes from these groups are not an adequate response to my directly
> > citing evidence from the academic literature on this topic.
>cdc = Center for Disease Control ... who = World Health Organization ...
> = GAVI...board = Bhutan govt, Zimbabwe govt, ...

I am well aware of what these abbreviate.

>The line separating academia from business from govt from advocacy groups
>appears to have evolved to encompass and unify disparate communities towards
>achieving a common goal.

Large government organizations whose budgets depend on the perceived
effectiveness of vaccines which they distribute are not independent sources
whose word we can just accept as gospel. I am asking for *evidence*.

> > On the effect of medicine overall in the US, I point you to:
> > Joseph P. Newhouse And The Insurance Experiment Group,
> > Free For All? Lessons from the RAND Health Insurance Experiment,
> > Harvard University Press, 1993, ISBN 0-674-31914-1
>Saving Scarce Public Health Resources and Saving Lives, Dr. Paul Epstein,
>M.D., M.P.H., Harvard University School of Medicine
>"Climate forecasting can also be extremely useful in targeting scarce
>funding for surveillance and response, research and training, and emergency
>production of vaccines, drugs, and diagnostics, in the U.S. and abroad..."
>in a publication by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

How is this even remotely related? The book I cited is a summary of a 50M$
controlled experiment of 5000 people over 3-5 years where some where randomly
given free health care and others were instead given a small subsidy.
Those given free care incured ~30% more expenses, and yet had almost identical
health. You offer a random quote where someone hopes that climate forecasting
will help inform vaccine production. I can't see the relation.

Robin Hanson
Asst. Prof. Economics, George Mason University
MSN 1D3, Carow Hall, Fairfax VA 22030
703-993-2326 FAX: 703-993-2323

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