From the Office of Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi

Pelosi Applauds Decision to Donate Excess Congressional Flu Vaccine

October 22, 2004

Washington, D.C. -- House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi today issued the following statement following the announcement that the Capitol's attending physician, Dr. John Eisold, will donate a previously ordered shipment of flu shot vaccine to the District of Columbia Department of Health to be given to seniors and others at high risk of serious complications from the flu.

"I applaud Dr. Eisold's decision. It is the responsible thing to do. As I wrote to him earlier this week: while communities across the nation are struggling to meet the need for flu vaccine, Members of Congress and their staffs should not be given special treatment.

"However, I remain concerned that the attending physician's office was allowed to distribute the vaccine without regard for federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines to begin with. This reflected poorly on the House of Representatives and should not have been allowed by the Speaker's office.

"We need to make certain that there is a system in place so that in case of any future shortages, Members and staff who do not need the shots do not get them -- just like Americans all over the country."

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