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Council of Europe condemns “unjustified scare” over swine flu

BMJ 2010; 340 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.c3033 (Published 07 June 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;340:c3033
  1. Adrian O’Dowd
  1. 1London

    The Council of Europe has heavily criticised the World Health Organization, national governments, and EU agencies for their handling of the swine flu pandemic.

    The parliamentary assembly of the council—the international organisation that protects human rights and the rule of law in Europe—published a draft of a report that reviewed how the H1N1 pandemic was handled.

    National governments, WHO, and EU agencies had all been guilty of actions that led to a “waste of large sums of public money, and unjustified scares and fears about the health risks faced by the European public,” says the report.

    The conclusion came in the parliamentary assembly’s social, health and family affairs committee report published on 4 June.

    The report was prepared by Paul Flynn, socialist member of the assembly and Labour MP for Newport West and approved by the committee ahead of a plenary debate at the end of this month. It says there was overwhelming evidence that the seriousness of the pandemic was vastly over-rated by WHO, which led to a …

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