The result was Project BioShield, a $5.6 billion effort to exploit the country’s top medical and scientific brains and fill an emergency medical cabinet with new drugs and vaccines for a host of threats. “We will rally the great promise of American science and innovation to confront the greatest danger of our time,” President Bush said in starting the program.
But the project, critics say, has largely failed to deliver.
So far, only a small fraction of the anticipated remedies are available. Drug companies have waited months, if not years, for government agencies to decide which treatments they want and in what quantities. Unable to attract large pharmaceutical corporations to join the endeavor, the government is instead relying on small start-up companies that often have no proven track record.
The troubles have been most acute with the highest priority of all: a $900 million push to add a new anthrax vaccine to the stockpile. What had begun as an effort to test and manufacture a safer, faster-acting vaccine has turned into an ugly battle between two biotech businesses.
Let me get this straight, after a biological attack on this country Big Pharma decided to take a pass because there isn't enough money in it, and for putting the knife in the back of the American people, the republicans turned around and still let them write the Medicare Part D legislation. The republicans had all of the leverage in the world to get Big Pharma on board and they simply didn't use it. That is just plain dumb.
As for the ugly battle between the two companies involved in making the vaccine, both have hired high profile lobbyists and you know what happens when you mix republicans and lobbyists. You get a big ole mug of fucked up.