smallpox link

  2. Visit oramar profile page

    About oramar

    Joined: Nov '98; Posts: 7,097; Likes: 5,244
    returned nurse


  3. by   NRSKarenRN
    Smallpox: An Attack Scenario
    posted in above thread

    Email from Oramar re this article:

    Tell me what you think of the article. Does it strike you that there is an assumption that there are hordes of healthcare workers out there that are well versed in the technique of administering this vaccine? It is a fairly simple proceedure but it appears to me that valuable time would be lost if an epidemic broke out because of the need to train. In addition I wonder if the CDC is aware that there are not a lot of people around who are aware of what constitutes a vaccine take. I am on a one man email campaign to find out just what the contingency plan might be. It alarms me that the biggest concern the CDC and other goverment agencies seem to have is whether or not there is enough vaccine. This is certainly a good idea but you need people to administer it or it is useless. My suggestion that I keep repeating in all my emails so far is to vaccinate healthcare workers and to use the vaccinations as a way of giving demonstrations to the uninitiated. Just wondering what
    you thoughts are on this. Must say I do not know for sure that they have not considered the problem but so far I have not seen anything that addresses the fact.
  4. by   Ellen in Ont
    A smallpox outbreak has always been my greatest concern. That is the scenario I have been trying to plan for. I recently contacted Dr. D. A. Henderson (one of the original people who eliminated smallpox and currently is head of bioterrorism defence at John Hopkins (this is not his correct title - I will try and find it and post it later). I asked him if it was possible to use arm to arm transfer of vaccine if the supply of vaccine ran out. Here is his reply.

    "The scheme you propose could be done. In fact, this was the technique employed for propogating vaccine throughout most of the 19th century. The problem is that such as Hepatitis B and C, as well as HIV, can be transferred in this manner and so, unless one's back is really against the wall, this is not a technique to be advocated. D.A.Henderson "

    I would like to know more - for example how much do you use, how do you actually do it, can it be collected and mixed with say saline to dilute it to make it go farther, how do you lessen the risk of bacterial contamination, can it be dried and stored etc. Many questions and very hard to find answers.
  5. by   oramar
    The wrong time to try to conduct a nationwide education and training program n the middle of an out break. It used to be inconcievable but I have no doubt that if they get there hands on it they will use it. Does anyone care to argue that fact?
  6. by   P_RN
    No doubts at all that it could be used.

    As far as trainng workers to administer vaccine for smallpox, the technology exists to manufacture a tine device similar to the tb tine test.

    There is also a two pronged needle with a capillary device to give the vaccine. Arm to arm is historically the earliest means. Due to the diseases mentioned it is not a viable option.

    I doubt the "old" way of using a steel needle to puncture the skin and then rub the serum into the punctures would be used.
  7. by   Enright
    Any information as to how they can tell resistance for those of us who were vaccinated as kids? Can they draw a titre? I've read a lot of reports that we"probably" have lost all our immunity but it would be interesting to know.
  8. by   P_RN

    If people got the vaccination in the past when it was used routinely, will they be immune?

    Not necessarily. Routine vaccination against smallpox ended in 1972. The level of immunity, if any, among persons who were vaccinated before 1972 is uncertain; therefore, these persons are assumed to be susceptible. For those who were vaccinated, it is not known how long immunity lasts. Most estimates suggest immunity from the vaccination lasts 3 to 5 years. This means that nearly the entire U.S. population has partial immunity at best. Immunity can be boosted effectively with a single revaccination. Prior infection with the disease grants lifelong immunity.

    How many people have not had the vaccination?

    Approximately half of the U.S. population has never been vaccinated.
  9. by   BlueBear
    I have NO IDEA id I was vaccinated. Pediatrician got rid of all old records! I was born in 1966-at what age was the smallpox vaccine given?
  10. by   debbyed
    Even though I was vaccinated in 1955 the scar is quite easy to see. Check you upper arms for a small round scar, as I assume in the later years the vaccine still left a scar. However the point is that even if you were vaccinated in 1966 you probably have only partial to no immunity now.
  11. by   BlueBear
    I understand what the point is, I guess I am nervous enough to think partial immunity is better than NO immunity!!!!