Official Known for ’76 Swine Flu Fiasco Has Died

ATLANTA – Federal health officials say Dr. David Sencer has died. He’s a former director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention whose tenure was tainted by controversy over a swine flu vaccine campaign in 1976.


Sencer died in an Atlanta hospital Monday. He was 86.

He was director of the CDC from 1966 through 1977 and served as New York City’s health commissioner during the AIDS crisis of the 1980s.

Sencer left the CDC after an ill-fated campaign to vaccinate Americans against swine flu. The epidemic he warned about never materialized, and the campaign was suspended after dozens of reports of a paralyzing condition linked to the vaccine. He also helped launch a successful effort to rid the world of smallpox.

Categories: Health

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