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Friday, October 28, 2005

Vaccine Makers

In response to the posting on September 21 entitled “Vaccine Shortages” I would like to take the time to agree that government’s heavy hand is involved:

“Under the policy, even if the total cash due is paid up-front for a product, ‘revenue should not be recognized until final delivery has occurred.’”

This means that no matter how much the government puts aside for vaccine-makers, they cannot include this money in their sales until it is actually delivered to the doctors when and if an outbreak occurs. As a result vaccine makers will take a loss if they contribute to the stockpile and the vaccines go unused.
To me it sounds like the government wants to encourage vaccine makers to have a reserve on hand, but they are unwilling to financially support vaccine makers for their time and effort. It was even stated in the article that trial lawyers would have something to say about ‘deceptive’ accounting if vaccine makers profited without actually distributing the vaccines.
When there is no benefit for keeping vaccines on reserve, what is the motivation for vaccine makers to prepare for outbreaks? There seem to be more policies against vaccine stockpiling than not. When an outbreak does occur the first people to blame are the vaccine makers and it appears they are in a lose/lose situation.

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