So Cooper, from the time Sencer first talked to him in February, was prepared to take an activist approach, provided it had backing from the “scientific community,” that is to say from the relevant experts. He wanted to be sure that anything from CDC was first reviewed by the ACIP, and had support from NIAID, BoB and their advisers. Not leaving everything to others, Cooper himself talked to Dr. Albert Sabin. The latter’s live vaccine for polio (superseding in this country Dr. Jonas Salk’s killed-virus vaccine) had been used in the last nationwide mass immunization, 100 million in two seasons, “half the number in twice the time” that Sencer was now seeking. Sabin was encouraging, as Cooper knew when Sencer phoned him to report affirmatively on the ACIP meeting. So Cooper left for Cairo confident he could support what Sencer came up with. When he returned he did.

Meanwhile, his colleagues had gone to the President.

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