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|Reuters reported that the move to upgrade quality assurance was voluntary and not the result of a Food and Drug Administration directive to straighten up. In Wyeth's press release on the matter, the company sought to comfort investors with assurances that this will not result in a shortage, and that this development does not imply any questions about the safety or effectiveness of the vaccine.
However, the delay does make one wonder: Why is this upgrade happening now instead of prior to the manufacturing ramp-up months ago?
Although the delay may not affect revenues for this $1 billion-per-year vaccine, it's disconcerting nonetheless. While stepping up quality control is certainly a case of better late than never, a delay before the season when illnesses crop up more frequently makes one wonder whether somebody dropped the ball.
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