Thursday, July 06, 2006

A Short Reprieve to Celebrate

You can't complain all the time, can you? I probably could, but today I don't need to because there are two good things to report.

One, is that a federal vaccine advisory panel unanimously recommended the Gardasil vaccine for the HPV virus. What a pleasant surprise. I guess once in a while facts do have some sway. Even better, the panel added this vaccine to Vaccines for Children, which provides free vaccinations to the poor. Yes, it is cheaper to prevent illness than to treat it. Next question is whether this vaccine will be included with vaccines required for school attendance. Apparently this process takes about a year after a vaccine is introduced. If there are any parents out there with girls in this age range, let us know if your doctor is talking to you about this.

And this super interesting news item, sure to cause a stir concerns a housing project in Seattle specifically built for chronic alcoholics. The city idenfitied 200 people who were costing so much in ER visits, incarcerations and detox programs that they intervened with a more cost-effective solution: offering them permanent subsidized housing with no treatment strings attached. So simple yet breathtakingly revolutionary. I almost fell off my chair when I saw that the Bush administration was backing this project. It actually makes no sense at all, but okay, great!

I will complain about one thing today. Because Ken Lay "died" before he was convicted/exhausted his appeals process, apparently his conviction will likely be vacated. And if that happens, the government's attempt to seize his assets for Enron shareholder lawsuits would also be moot. Grrrrr.

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