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Mich. state health department reverses denial of H1N1 records

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  1. Freedom of Information
Michigan’s state health department released documents Wednesday that contained information outlining how funds for H1N1 prevention and treatment programs were…

Michigan’s state health department released documents Wednesday that contained information outlining how funds for H1N1 prevention and treatment programs were used, The Michigan Messenger reported.

The disclosure comes after a coalition of open government advocates appealed the Michigan Department of Community Health’s previous refusal to fulfill the Messenger’s March open records request for the documents, claiming doing so would identify "vulnerable" targets and thus violate state anti-terrorism laws.

“I think they were trying to find a neat excuse for closure,” Charles Davis, executive director of the National Freedom of Information Coalition, told the Messenger.

In a similar situation, journalism students from the University of Southern California fought for access to the death certificates of H1N1 patients for a series of news stories on the virus in 2009.