Wednesday, November 03, 2021

Vaccinated people are still highly likely to give covid to others

A new Lancet study about the transmission of Covid-19 among the vaccinated vs. unvaccinated is raising questions for some about vaccine mandates.

The study on “Community transmission and viral load kinetics” of the Delta variant in both the vaccinated and unvaccinated in the UK found the former were just as likely as the latter to spread Covid-19 among those in their household.

The vaccinated also had a similar viral load as the unvaccinated.

“Although vaccines remain highly effective at preventing severe disease and deaths from COVID-19, our findings suggest that vaccination is not sufficient to prevent transmission of the delta variant in household settings with prolonged exposures,” noted the paper, which studied 621 symptomatic participants over a year.

Significantly, the research found the vaccine was much more effective at reducing transmission of the alpha variant in a household, rather than the delta variant.

For some, the findings raise serious questions about vaccine mandates and lockdown efforts that governments around the world have pursued in an effort to contain the pandemic.

The researchers also noted booster shots and increasing the rate of vaccination among younger populations will help but the focus ought to remain on those most vulnerable.

“Increasing population immunity via booster programmes and vaccination of teenagers will help to increase the currently limited effect of vaccination on transmission, but our analysis suggests that direct protection of individuals at risk of severe outcomes, via vaccination and non-pharmacological interventions, will remain central to containing the burden of disease caused by the delta variant,” the researchers wrote.


Greece Covid cases: Country records highest daily infections to date

After opening its borders during the summer tourism season, Greece has just recorded the highest daily increase of Covid-19 cases, since the start of the pandemic.

The European country reported 5400 cases on Monday, which pushes its daily average to 3900 new infections a day.

The country also recorded 52 deaths from Covid-19, which takes their pandemic death toll to 15,990 out of 747,595 cases.

Despite ballooning cases and rising deaths, a nationwide lockdown seems unlikely, reports local Athens-based newspaper, Kathimerini.

Development Minister Adonis Georgiadis said the government wasn’t looking at imposing a lockdown in winter, with the country shifting its Covid-recovery plan to focus on increasing vaccinations.

“We are now dealing with the pandemic of the unvaccinated,” he told local TV channel, Skai TV. “Our national right to lock people up has disappeared.”

Currently, 60.5 per cent of Greece’s population is fully-inoculated, with figures lagging behind the European average of 75 per cent.

Just four weeks ago Greece’s Health Miniser Thanos Plevris announced the removal of all indoor Covid-19 restrictions for fully vaccinated people. This meant business-as-usual activity was able to resume in restaurants, cafes, bars and nightclubs, with customers allowed to stand while drinking, play music and dance.

“A key prerequisite to regain our freedom is the increase in vaccination. We want to send the message that where the risk is lower, freedoms will reach the norm,” said Mr Plevris.

In order to encourage citizens to get the jab, unvaccinated public and private employees have been forced to pay for weekly tests in order to gain entry into their place of work and sports stadiums, museums, archaeological sites, cinemas and restaurants. The government has also mandated vaccines for healthcare workers.

The sudden uptick in cases is a dire sign for Greece’s already struggling economy. Just four years after the country emerged from a six-year depression between 2010 to 2016, Greece was plunged into another recession in 2020.

Writing for Vox EU, Professor of Economics, Athens University of Economics and Business and the former Greek Minister of Economy and Finance, George Alogoskoufis expects it will take years for Greece’s economy to recover.

“Greece appears to have experienced a very deep recession in 2020 and even under optimistic assumptions, a full recovery will take some time beyond 2021,” he wrote.

“In addition, the recession and the cost of the measures to mitigate it have already led to a further sharp rise of Greece’s already exorbitantly high public debt.”


CDC Says Young Kids Can Receive COVID Vaccine

A whole new frontier has opened up in the battle over COVID-19 vaccines, and it’s one that is going to invoke a great deal of emotion and anger. That’s thanks to the latest recommendations from the CDC, which were released on Tuesday.

Vaccine advisors for the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) voted Tuesday that children ages 5-11 should get COVID-19 vaccines.

The vote comes after a special federal advisory committee met to debate the issue. A final say on the matter is expected from CDC Director Dro. Rochelle Walensky.

Last week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized emergency use for kid doses, which are about one-third of the dose given to adolescents and adults. The vaccine is already approved for emergency use in children 12-15 years old.

Tuesday’s move means that as many as 28 million more children could be eligible for vaccinations as soon as this week.

Of course, this also means that the federal government could hide behind CDC approval in mandating that all school-aged children be vaccinated to attend public school, which is the very issue that the anti-vax movement has been fighting for decades.

Despite what is sure to be a mighty pushback, the Biden administration is already full-steam ahead on the plan.

The Biden administration, awaiting a green light, has been assembling and shipping millions of COVID-19 shots for children.

“We are not waiting on the operations and logistics,” White House coronavirus coordinator Jeff Zients said Tuesday, assuring that the administration is “in great shape on supply.”

We can only imagine what school board meetings would begin to look like should vaccine mandates for children be considered.


Professor of Medicine on Suing School Over Vaccine Mandate

Dr. Aaron Kheriaty reacted to the COVID-19 pandemic like many other medical experts. He worked long hours as the United States tried to grapple with the new disease. He had too many conversations with family members whose loved ones were dying from it.

But as time wore on, he started noticing a pattern in public health decisions that seemed to diverge from traditional medical ethics, including an insistence that people at little risk from COVID-19 get a vaccine.

Kheriaty is now on suspension from the University of California, Irvine, (UCI) and challenging the school’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate in court.

“I had to stand up and try to do something about it,” the professor of psychiatry and director of the UCI Health’s Medical Ethics Program said on The Epoch Times’ “American Thought Leaders.”

Kheriaty contracted COVID-19 in mid-2020. His infection was confirmed by two different tests from two independent labs. His five children and wife also contracted the disease. They all recovered, with none requiring hospital care.

“It was, for me, actually a very liberating experience afterward, because I didn’t have to worry about the illness anymore. I knew the science on natural immunity,” Kheriaty said.

Natural immunity refers to when people contract COVID-19 and recover. Dozens of studies have documented that these individuals enjoy strong immunity against CCP virus re-infection. Some of the studies suggest the immunity is superior to that provided by COVID-19 vaccines, particularly the Johnson & Johnson one.

“I knew that at that point, I was among the safest people to be around, I didn’t have to worry about transmitting the infection to my patients,” Kheriaty said.

He continued taking precautions, wearing personal protective equipment like masks as required at the hospital. But he was confident he didn’t pose a risk to others, which served as a relief.

That relief turned into disbelief when, around a year later, the University of California system, which includes UCI, imposed a COVID-19 vaccine mandate.

The mandate (pdf) included a natural immunity opt-out, but only temporarily. People who recovered from COVID-19 were told they would only be exempt from the mandate for up to 90 days after their diagnosis.

University officials cited the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which alleges that the antibody tests it has authorized “are not validated to evaluate specific immunity or protection from SARS-CoV-2 infection.”

“For this reason, individuals who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or had an antibody test are not permanently exempt from vaccination,” officials said.

The mandate violated rights outlined in the U.S. Constitution’s Fourteenth Amendment, including equal protection and substantive due process, Kheriaty’s lawsuit asserts.

“Plaintiff is naturally immune to SARS-CoV-2. Therefore, plaintiff is at least as equally situated as those who are fully vaccinated with a COVID-19 vaccine, yet defendants deny plaintiff equal treatment and seek to burden Plaintiff with an unnecessary violation of bodily integrity to which plaintiff does not consent in order to be allowed to continue to work at UCI,” it states.

The situation creates two classes, vaccinated and unvaccinated, when a more reasonable division would be those who are immune and those who are not, Kheriaty believes.

“What kind of discriminatory policies do we have in place that are excluding someone like me from the workplace when I’m 99.8 percent protected against reinfection whereas someone who got the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, by the company’s own data that they submitted to the FDA, is 67 percent protective against COVID infection?” he said.

Most mandates across the country don’t have alternatives for people who had COVID-19 and recovered.

Kheriaty proposes putting the burden of proof on people who want to opt out.

“Just have them go get the testing on their own time. You don’t have to administer the T-cell test or the antibody test. You don’t have to go dig up their old medical record establishing that they’ve already had COVID,” he said.

“Just ask them to bring that in and sign off on that as a kind of immunity passport.”




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