In 1954, the New York City Department of Health launched a massive publicity campaign to promote vaccination against polio. Columnist and media bigwig Walter Winchell threw cold water on the effort, saying the vaccine, developed from an inactivated virus by Jonas Salk, “may be a killer.” This invited a correction from Salk himself. The following year almost 900 thousand New Yorkers were vaccinated, and the number of new cases declined sharply.
Elvis Presley Gets His Polio Shot
HUMANITIES, Summer 2020, Volume 41, Number 3