The US Food and Drug Administration has released documents suggesting that in the two years since the HPV vaccine Gardasil was introduced in the country 18-20 women have died as a result. During that time 8 million women have been vaccinated. That suggests the chance of dying from the vaccine is very roughly around 1 in 500,000.
You've 28 times more chance of dying from Gardasil than of winning the UK national lottery. It's not quite as simple as that since the UK is using a different vaccine - Cervarix - for which I haven't seen the side-effects data but you see the point.
The vaccine protects women against HPV which causes cervical cancer. The disease can already be detected using a smear test while HPV transmission can be reduced by practising safe sex.
But let's put these considerations aside for a moment. The big question is: vaccine programmes only work if pretty much everyone is vaccinated, is it acceptable for George Bush - or Gordon Brown - to ask citizens to run a 500,000-1 risk?