Nov 23, 2009
Early in November, rich Wall Street firms like Goldman Sachs, Citigroup and JPMorganChase got large allotments of swine flu vaccine.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) sets priorities for the scarce vaccine. Infants and children, healthcare workers, and pregnant women are to be first in line.
In New York, many hospitals and health clinics used by ordinary people – infants and children, healthcare workers, and pregnant women – got little or no vaccine. Even Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center got less than 1% of its request. But Goldman Sachs got about 4% of its request, and Citigroup got more than 50% of the vaccine it requested.
Why? Because money and connections trump the public health – whether it’s the swine flu, or the entire national economy.