Vaccine for the H1N1? Anyone?
There is still a divided opinion in the Swedish population whether or not to take the Pandemrix shot. See debate in Swedish. Although this is provided free by the Swedish Government, not everyone is convinced regarding the positive effects of the vaccine for the individual or the society at large.
I personally reckon that the positive effects weigh more than the negative.
For corporations and businesses, this is a cost they never need to worry about. For the government, this is an investment to protect the Swedish economy from a probable breakdown. While the rest of the world is on a temporary sick-leave, the plan is to have Sweden and perhaps a few prosperous countries be the international economic motor during such uncertain period. Smart move. The question is if a few countries can give enough boost to keep the world economy rotating? On the other hand, more will stay home which means less travelling thus decrease in CO2 emissions?
Whether the standpoint of the population is positive or negative with regards to the free Pandemrix, we Swedes are very fortunate to be given the freedom to choose. And with the swedish culture built on equal rights to everybody, this simply gives a head start for Sweden than the rest of the international community. I would rather have the government spend my income tax on something I personally can gain from… than using it on social welfare for unemployed neo-nazists, racists, religious fanatics and intolerant homophobics.
The decision is right to give out the vaccine for free. It protects the Swedish society to an uncertain viral foe that can break the security every swedish citizen and residents are enjoying.