- Vaccines are a cornerstone in any pandemic influenza preparedness plan. Research and development of new influenza vaccines are essential for global preparedness. There are major differences between countries regarding production capacities, priorities and resources for pandemic influenza vaccine policy and planning. In this article, the authors review development efforts currently undertaken in research and production entities across the globe. The possibilities, dilemmas and considerations that policy-makers take into account when setting pandemic influenza preparedness policy are reviewed. The seasonal flu vaccine, as is in the current event, will probably not be effective against pandemic strains. Development efforts should be focused on developing broad-spectrum vaccine against both seasonal and pandemic viruses. Equitable distribution of scarce resources in the world requires attention to ethical dilemmas by a multinational and multidisciplinary team.