Not recommending AstraZeneca vaccine for the elderly risks the lives of the most vulnerable

Jonathan Pugh, University of Oxford and Julian Savulescu, University of Oxford

Regulators in Europe are at odds over whether the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine should be given to the elderly. In the UK, the vaccine has been approved for use in adults aged 18 and up, but France, Germany, Sweden and Austria say the vaccine should be prioritised for those under the age of 65. Poland only recommends it for those younger than 60. Italy goes one step further and only recommends it for those 55 and younger.

It is only ethical to approve a vaccine if it is safe and effective. Crucially, the reluctance to approve the AstraZeneca vaccine in the elderly is grounded only in concerns about its efficacy.

The concern is not that there is data showing the vaccine to be ineffective in the elderly, it’s that there is not enough evidence to show that it is effective in this age group. The challenge is in how we manage the degree of uncertainty in the efficacy of the vaccine, given the available evidence.

So how much data is there? The interim results from the AstraZeneca vaccine study pooled data from over 11,000 participants who received two doses of either the AstraZeneca vaccine or a placebo. A further report shows that only 660 participants were aged over 65, and there were only two cases of COVID in this group. Because of the low numbers, the authors of the study conclude that the efficacy of the vaccine in the elderly could not be determined. In comparison, the published Pfizer vaccine study included nearly 38,000 participants; around 16,000 of them were aged over 55.

There is also data about the extent to which the AstraZeneca vaccine generates an immune response. A study analysed whether the vaccine provoked an immune response in 560 participants, including 400 participants over the age of 55. Early phase human trials found that the vaccine elicited a similar immune response across all age groups after the second dose. Although this isn’t proof that the vaccine prevents symptomatic disease, it suggests that the vaccine has an important effect in the elderly.

An ethical rather than scientific disagreement

The disagreement about whether to recommend the vaccine for the elderly concerns an ethical rather than a scientific question, namely, what standard of evidence do we need to establish the efficacy of a vaccine before approving it for use in a pandemic?

The more evidence available, the greater the certainty that regulators can have that a vaccine works, and about which distribution strategies will maximise its public health benefit. But gathering evidence takes time. The higher the standard, the greater the delay before people can access the intervention. In the pandemic, this trade-off is particularly acute. Time here is lives.

Consider the following rough calculations based on publicly available statistics. According to data from the Office for National Statistics, from November 28 2020 to January 1 2021, there were 14,633 COVID-related deaths in the UK. Only 1,351 of those deaths were in the 20-64 age group; 13,280 were in people over 65.

Imagine that the UK had been able to fully vaccinate all of those between the ages of 20-64 before November 28 2020 with a vaccine that was 95% effective. Assume that preventing infection with coronavirus would have been enough to avoid all of the above deaths. On this assumption, the vaccine could have been expected to prevent 1,283 of the deaths that occurred in the 20-64 age band.

Suppose now that we could also have vaccinated all of those over the age of 65 with this vaccine, but that there was limited data about how effective it would be in the elderly. Here is the crucial point: for it to save a same number of lives (1,283) in those over 65, the vaccine would need to be just shy of 10% effective, given the far higher mortality in the elderly.

This is generously assuming that the vaccine is very effective below the age of 65. If the vaccine was 70% effective in the 20-64 age band, then it would need to be only 7.1% effective in the elderly to be expected to save an equivalent number of lives (946 in this case).

Here’s another example. A recent study suggests the average risk of death for 60- to 64-year-olds infected with coronavirus is 0.46%. For a person aged 80 or older, the risk is 8.3%. Again, assume generously that a vaccine is 95% effective in 60- to 64-year-olds. That means for every 1,000 people vaccinated in this group who would have become infected, the vaccine would save 4.3 lives. How effective would a vaccine need to be in those aged 80 and older to still save the same number of lives? 5.2%.

We are not suggesting that the effectiveness of the AstraZeneca vaccine in the elderly is this low, nor that regulators should approve a vaccine as ineffective as this imaginary one. The World Health Organization has stipulated a minimum efficacy of 50% for COVID-19 vaccines. But these examples show how important it is to consider the limitations of efficacy (or its evidence) with the actual mortality risk faced by people in the absence of a vaccine.

A vaccine with limited effectiveness is problematic if it stops people accessing other effective available interventions. However, other vaccine supplies are currently scarce, and their evaluation in the elderly is also ongoing. Meanwhile, those over the age of 65 face an exponentially increasing risk of death. In the absence of other effective prophylactic interventions, a vaccine can have far lower efficacy in older groups and still be expected to save many lives.

Jonathan Pugh, Research Fellow, University of Oxford and Julian Savulescu, Visiting Professor in Biomedical Ethics, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute; Distinguished Visiting Professor in Law, University of Melbourne; Uehiro Chair in Practical Ethics, University of Oxford

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

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February 6, 2021 6:09 am

It seems that every problem is reduced to a single variable. If life were only so simple.

Jay Willis
Reply to  Scissor
February 6, 2021 7:56 am

Indeed. It is a little worrying that these two Oxford professors say: “So how much data is there?”, when it should be: “how many data are there?” Makes me wonder, how much science they have written about before….but may be just pedantry.

Then, they ask if it were about ethics or science. How about we have a look at treatments such as Ivermectin? Is it ethical to avoid all treatments in order to make the vaccines more attractive? The FLCCC in the USA are advocating a treatment based around ivermectin, which has performed well in clinical trials. The FLCCC are absolutely top established professionals in this field – the YouTube video of FLCCC sworn testimony to the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs has been censored!

Furthermore, invermectin based therapy has independently been advocated in Australia by the most credible physician in the World who took on the drugs companies over ulcers and famously won (a positive Ad Hominem in this case). It is interesting to note that the mortality rate in Australia plummeted soon after this announcement.

The ivermectin based evidence has been supported by Dr Andrew Hill, a UK scientist working with WHO, and independently reviewed by credible medical consultants.iin the UK.

So how would their numbers look if they added in the 75% reduction in mortality that has been recorded in randomised clinical trials for this medication, and its similar efficacy as a prophylactic and treatment in all stages of COVID?

We are left with a petition to sign, pleading with UK government to make funds available to assess this treatment! At what point does ignoring a safe and effective treatment become manslaughter? Talk about ethics, it’s a joke that we accept that cheap effective medicine is not promoted by pharmaceutical companies, because of regulatory capture – but how far does it have to go?

Ben Vorlich
Reply to  Jay Willis
February 6, 2021 10:45 am

Jay Willis
So how much data is there?

Data is plural, but uncountable. As I understand and was taught that in English uncountable nouns are treated as singular.

Therefore “So how much data is there?” is correct and “So how much data are there?” is incorrect.

This may be different elsewhere in the world

Jay Willis
Reply to  Ben Vorlich
February 6, 2021 3:36 pm

Ben, data uncountable. Cripes, if only I’d known that./sarc. Sorry that’s about the only thing that data are. It should be “how many data are there” in any language.

Ben Vorlich
Reply to  Jay Willis
February 7, 2021 12:11 am

How many datum are we talking about here then? Numberless means we do not know how many there are and it could have changed since the last time we looked.
Premier League teams are a numbered quantity the number of people playing soccer on a Sunday morning is a numberless quantity because we don’t know it and are never going to. That’s the reason and you can be as sarcy as you like about it.

Pat Frank
Reply to  Ben Vorlich
February 6, 2021 3:52 pm

What, then, is a datum?

I treat data set as singular.

Spectrum and spectra follow the same grammatical form as datum and data. The spectra is, is wrong.

It may be that hewing to the data are is a lost cause. But popular negligence should not stop anyone from correct usage.

An even more hopeless case is the use of since when meaning as.

As in, Since “data” is treated as a singular by the misnomerati …, when the correct grammatical usage is, As “data” is treated as a …

A grammatical editor that Dick Zare consulted complained about that very miscarriage of grammar.

Reply to  Pat Frank
February 8, 2021 12:25 pm

According to Fowler’s Modern English Usage, Latin plurals sometimes become singular English words, e.g. agenda and stamina, and data is often treated that way in the US.

John Howe
Reply to  Jay Willis
February 6, 2021 2:45 pm

If vaccines are less effective for the elderly all the more reason to make available an effective treatment like ivermectin. If the vaccines don’t stop transmission of the virus we will have a lot of spreaders going around further increasing exposure to the unprotected elderly.

Reply to  John Howe
February 7, 2021 3:33 am

the usual fluvax is stated on the handouts in aus to be around 29 to 32% effective
as close to useless as not bothering
the pneumonia vax would be more use to the elderly and IS pushed heavily, in spite of it being likely to cause ongoing adverse events with the 2nd dose ( no closer than 5 yrs preferably 10 apart)and NO 3rd doses are recommended, the so called preservative and not mentioned adjuvant effect is gained by? Phenol

Reply to  Scissor
February 7, 2021 5:58 pm

Unfortunately, this article has limited itself to effectiveness and completely ignored the safety aspect. Early reports from the vaccine roll-out suggests that it is far from safe, with young and healthy patients dying within hours of taking the vaccine; nursing homes that never had a single case of Covid, now having 30% death tolls within two weeks of residents being vaccinated. I’m not an anti-vaccer, but I don’t think this stuff is safe enough to risk my 90 year old parents’ lives.

John McCabe
February 6, 2021 6:16 am

These recommendations are political bullsh1t resulting from Brexit. The fact that the UK and Sweden, currently one of the most euro-sceptic EU countries, as I understand it, made the breakthrough of an effective, cheap, easily distributed vaccine when the French have failed completely, and Germany has come up with a very expensive, very difficult to store vaccine, does not look good for the ‘mighty’ EU, so they’re playing political games and, in Macron’s case, essentially just lying.

Phillip Bratby
Reply to  John McCabe
February 6, 2021 11:48 am

Ursula Fond o Lying is blaming others for her continuing incompetence.

Reply to  John McCabe
February 6, 2021 10:22 pm

More on Covid-19 and the mRNA injections – they are NOT “vaccines”. These mRNA injections are experimental treatments – they are high risk and low reward.

I published against taking the mRNA injections long before I saw the following videos, based on fundamental scientific principles – a relatively mild disease, except for the very elderly and infirm, with a very low risk of dying for the vast majority of people, and a high (3%++) risk of severe complications now and later from the mRNA injections.

You don’t have to believe everything in these videos to be concerned about the very real high risk / low reward of the mRNA (Pfizer and Moderna) injections.

For the record, I take the flu shots every year but I will not take the mRNA injections.

Regards, Allan


In this interview Dr. Lee Merritt explains that mRNA technology is not a vaccine, mirroring what Dr. David Martin also stated recently.
In animal studies, after mRNA injections have been administered to cats when the virus arrived once again into the body, it arrived like a Trojan Horse, undetected by the cats’ own immune system. The virus multiplied unchallenged and all animals involved in the experiment died from various causes.
According to Dr. Merritt,
“What happened is all animals died… but they didn’t die of the “vaccine”. What they died from used to be called “immune enhancement” and now they call it “antibody-dependent enhancement” (ADE).”
“Here’s what happens; they make the RNA and you get the “vaccine” and you do fine. Now, you challenge the animal with the virus that you are supposed to be immunizing against. So when they challenged those cats with SARS [a.k.a. SARS-CoV-1, is a coronavirus species], instead of killing the virus or weakening it, the immune response that they built into your system when out and codded the virus, so the virus came into the cat’s body like a Trojan Horse, unseen by the cat’s own immune system, and then it replicated without checking and killed the cats with overwhelming sepsis and cardiac failure. And that [also] happened in ferrets, that happened every time they tried this.

[You can skip to 16:00 minutes]
Dr. David Martin takes apart the phony story that Moderna and Pfizer are delivering vaccines.
The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act (NCVIA) of 1986 was signed into law by United States President Ronald Reagan as part of a larger health bill on November 14, 1986.
This legislation makes drug companies immune from liability for injury caused by the vaccines. Big Pharma now has a problem though – the vaccines are actually gene and chemotherapy agents – which means they can be sued for injury.
You need to know that the vaccine is not a vaccine by any legal definition – it is actually a mRNA gene / chemo therapy agent. This means it is not covered by the 1986 National Vaccine Injury Act which protects vaccines and manufacturers from liability in vaccine injury. Watch this video from Del Bigtrees friend Dr David Martin then talk to your lawyer.Dr. David Martin takes apart the story that Moderna and Pfizer are delivering ‘vaccines’.
The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act (NCVIA) of 1986 (42 U.S.C. §§ 300aa-1 to 300aa-34) was signed into law by United States President Ronald Reagan as part of a larger health bill on November 14, 1986.
This legislation makes drug companies immune from liability for injury caused by the vaccines. Big Pharma now has a problem though – the vaccines are actually gene and chemotherapy agents – which means they can be sued for injury.
You need to know that the vaccine is not a vaccine by any legal definition – it is actually a mRNA gene / chemo therapy agent. This means it is not covered by the 1986 National Vaccine Injury Act which protects vaccines and manufacturers from liability in vaccine injury.

by Brian Shilhavy
Editor, Health Impact News
Recently Sasha Stone hosted a 2 hour live stream event called “Focus on Fauci.” Participating in the event were Dr. Rocco Galati, Dr. David Martin, Dr. Judy Mikovits, and Robert F. Kennedy Jr.
Dr. Martin has made tidal waves in the Alternative Media since this event, by explaining that the experimental mRNA COVID vaccines are not even vaccines, and legally cannot be called “vaccines,” because they are really medical devices.
Dr. Martin should be familiar to readers of Health Impact News (as are the other participants), as he was the featured scientist in filmmaker Mikki Willis’ excellent production: Plandemic. He exposed, for example, how the U.S. Government has owned patents on coronaviruses since the 1990s.
Here is a partial bio of Dr. David Martin from his website:
His first invention was a laser integrated system to target and treat inoperable tumors. His mathematics helped unravel the way the human body processes hormones and led to the detection and treatment of many diseases.
His observation of human behavior led to his development of technology which deciphers the intention and motivation of communication – a technology that has impacted and saved the lives of billions.
Here is a partial transcript of the video below explaining that the mRNA vaccines are not really vaccines:
This is not a vaccine.
We need to be really clear. We’re using the term “vaccine” to sneak this thing under public health exemptions.
This is not a vaccine. This is an mRNA packaged in a fat envelope, that is delivered to a cell.
It is a medical device designed to stimulate the human cell into becoming a pathogen creator.
It is not a vaccine. Vaccines actually are a legally defined term, and they’re a legally defined term under public health law, they’re legally defined term under the CDC and FDA standards.
And a vaccine specifically has to stimulate both an immunity within the person who is receiving it, but it also has to disrupt transmission.
And that is not what this is. They have been abundantly clear in saying that the mRNA strand that is going into the cell, it is not to stop transmission. It is a treatment.
But if it was discussed as a treatment, it would not get the sympathetic ear of the public health authorities, because then people would say, well what other treatments are there?
Watch the full explanation by Dr. Martin below.


February 7, 2021 8:12 pm

Maybe the Peruvians are a lot smarter than the rest.

The original article is here – hit the English button and get a translation.

Source: La Voz del Interior 6080 – CP: X5008HKJ – Córdoba, Argentina

February 7, 2021 8:50 pm

Time Magazine’s extraordinary admission, the election was no accident, it was “fortified” by a secret cabal
Let the bragging begin — Who manipulated the election to “Save Democracy”? A Corporate Cabal!
Now that the Left have the main levers of power, it’s safe for them to come out and tell the world how important they are. Indeed the race to the top of the vanity pile is on. This is not an accidental admission. When the real game is to get to the top of the pecking order, bragging is part of the plan.

And brag they do. Time actually published this:

by Molly Ball, Time Magazine

The Cabal decided the “proper outcome” of the election.

“Every attempt to interfere with the proper outcome of the election was defeated,” says Ian Bassin, co-founder of Protect Democracy, a nonpartisan rule-of-law advocacy group. “But it’s massively important for the country to understand that it didn’t happen accidentally. The system didn’t work magically. Democracy is not self-executing.”

Which rather flies in the face of that quaint old idea that the government is meant to be by the people and for the people? If it isn’t self executing, it’s done by outside design. Do we need to say that it’s profoundly un-democratic to pick rulers by secret cabals?

But the participants want this story told, mostly for their own personal aggrandizement. See how important I must be, pulling the levers of power?

That’s why the participants [of the cabal] want the secret history of the 2020 election told, even though it sounds like a paranoid fever dream – a well-funded cabal of powerful people, ranging across industries and ideologies, working together behind the scenes to influence perceptions, change rules and laws, steer media coverage and control the flow of information. They were not rigging the election; they were fortifying it. And they believe the public needs to understand the system’s fragility in order to ensure that democracy in America endures.

It sounds like a paranoid fever dream, because it is one — a cabal of shadowy powerful people are manipulating what people think by “controlling the flow of information”. That’s not what a good work colleague does, it’s what a predatory office narcissist uses as their main tool of oppression. It’s the idea that holding back information is better for the punters.

Who rules you? The person who decides what information you are allowed to hear. The lie-by-omission is still a lie. This is not the whole truth and nothing but — it’s the authoritarian dictocrat who lords themselves over you.

Say this with a straight face:

“They were not rigging the election; they were fortifying it.“

February 8, 2021 8:16 pm

More on Covid-19 and the mRNA injections – they are NOT “vaccines”. These mRNA injections are experimental treatments – they are high risk and low reward.

I published against taking the mRNA injections long before I saw the following videos, based on fundamental scientific principles – a relatively mild disease, except for the very elderly and infirm, with a very low risk of dying for the vast majority of people, and a high (3%++) risk of severe complications now and later from the mRNA injections.

You don’t have to believe everything in these videos to be concerned about the very real high risk / low reward of the mRNA (Pfizer and Moderna) injections.

For the record, I take the flu shots every year but I will not take the mRNA injections.

Regards, Allan
Uncontrollable Tremors
Bell’s Palsy or Guillain-Barre Syndrome
CDC: 181 deaths
And this is just short-term – it’s the long term effects I’m more concerned about – watch Dr Merrick’s video above.
The mRNA shots are hi-risk, ~no reward for those under-65 – who are at low risk of dying of Covid-19 .
If a very low-risk under-65 person still feels they should take a high-risk Covid-19 shot, they should wait for the Oxford–AstraZeneca version – it is not mRNA.

Last edited 4 months ago by ALLAN MACRAE
February 8, 2021 10:08 pm

On USA Inauguration Day, 20 January 2021, the World Health Organization changed its definition of New Covid-19 Cases to a more stringent standard.
Not coincidentally, new Covid-19 Cases plummeted.
It’s a Miracle! Way to go Biden!

(Sarc off!)
22 Jan 2021

The World Health Organization (W.H.O.), on the day President Joe Biden took office, released a notice to laboratories worldwide to clarify information previously provided by the W.H.O. about coronavirus testing.

On Inauguration Day, the W.H.O. issued the new notice for the commonly used PCR testing in the form of a “medical product alert,” indicating that an asymptomatic patient who comes out “weak positive” may need to take a second test.

The next day, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the top infectious disease expert in the U.S. government, revealed that his new boss, Biden, had signed a letter to rejoin the organization.

In July 2020, Trump withdrew from the W.H.O. for helping China hide the severity of the coronavirus that originated within its borders during the disease’s early stages, allowing it to spread to the world.

Independent assessments by media outlets and a recently released report commissioned by the W.H.O. itself have confirmed Trump’s reasons for pulling out of the international body.

On Tuesday, the W.H.O advised laboratories that a single PCR test, considered the “gold standard” by health officials, might no longer be enough, noting that an asymptomatic person who tests positive may need a second test for confirmation.

“Where test results do not correspond with the clinical presentation, a new specimen should be taken and retested using the same or different [PCR test],” W.H.O. officials wrote. W.H.O. officials now say that the PCR tests that have been used across the U.S. and elsewhere to detect coronavirus infections are a mere “aid for diagnosis,” adding:
Therefore, health care providers must consider any result in combination with timing of sampling, specimen type, assay specifics, clinical observations, patient history, confirmed status of any contacts, and epidemiological information.

W.H.O. officials now explain:
[D]isease prevalence alters the predictive value of test results; as disease prevalence decreases, the risk of false positive increases. …. This means that the probability that a person who has a positive result (SARS-CoV-2 detected) is truly infected with SARS-CoV-2 decreases as prevalence decreases, irrespective of the claimed specificity.

SARS-CoV-2 is the official name of the coronavirus.

February 10, 2021 7:21 am


Two Alberta MLAs and several former local politicians joined the growing “End the Lockdown Caucus” on Tuesday.

According to a letter signed by all members of the caucus, the purpose of the organization is to “ensure there is open, honest, and public debate regarding the COVID-19 government response.”

“​After careful examination and scrutiny of mitigation measures undertaken by all levels of government, it is now evident that the lockdowns cause more harm than the virus and must be brought to an end,” claimed the statement.

My comment:

Attaboys all around – only 11 months too late to prevent the carnage – the needless destruction of our Canadian economy and countless lives. A correct move, but far too late, far far too late.

The full-Gulag lockdown of Canada for the relatively-mild Covid-19 flu was never justified – the lockdown was a huge over-reaction and probably a global scam.

From credible data, it was obvious by ~1March2020 that Covid-19 was only dangerous to the very elderly and infirm – so over-protect them and get the low-risk population back to work and school.

Instead, our governments failed to protect the high-risk population and fully locked-down the low-risk population – 100% wrong and hugely destructive to our economy and our lives.

I published the correct analysis and the proper path forward on 21&22March2020:

Isolate people over sixty-five and those with poor immune systems and return to business-as-usual for people under sixty-five.
This will allow “herd immunity” to develop much sooner and older people will thus be more protected AND THE ECONOMY WON’T CRASH.

This full-lockdown scenario is especially hurting service sector businesses and their minimum-wage employees – young people are telling me they are “financially under the bus”. The young are being destroyed to protect us over-65’s. A far better solution is to get them back to work and let us oldies keep our distance, and get “herd immunity” established ASAP – in months not years. Then we will all be safe again.

February 10, 2021 11:31 am

I think this work is highly credible – Covid-19 is a flu caused by a lab-created virus. I concluded that months ago but this work adds huge credibility.
Regards, Allan

Steven Carl Quay, MD PhD, January 29, 2021 Working Paper  139 pages
SQuay_Bayesian Analysis of SARS-CoV-2 FINAL V.2.pdf

Dedication. This work is dedicated to the men, women, and children who were infected with SARS-CoV-2 over the last year. It is my hope that this work becomes part of the body of evidence to help inform the public about gain-of-function pathogen research and that a renewed debate can be had about the benefits and risks of this research in the context of world health.

February 6, 2021 6:19 am

Sorry, this is neither scientific nor technical, It is as with all things EU, political and commercial.

Astra Zeneca – UK/Swedish owned – is dishing the vaccine out at cost – one quarter the price of anyone else. Big pharma – mainly US owned and EU based – is hurting.

The EU has made a total mess of not ordering early, and is covering its tracks by claiming the vaccine is no good.

Profit and political face saving is driving this, Not science. Not concern for citizens.

Reply to  Leo Smith
February 6, 2021 6:50 am

Not for over 65 ??? Sounds like OBOZO’s planned healthcare for the elderly… Just give them a pill or something…

Reply to  Leo Smith
February 6, 2021 7:47 am

“The EU has made a total mess of not ordering early, and is covering its tracks by claiming the vaccine is no good.”

Then demanded to be put at the front of the queue for Astra Zeneca !!

Cheeky bar-stewards

Richard Page
Reply to  Leo Smith
February 6, 2021 9:22 am

Possibly even worse – the UK govt investing early in the development may have enabled AZ to essentially ‘write off’ some of the development costs, reducing the price still further. The AZ vaccine is at least 86% effective at both preventing infection and reducing transmission. The fact that it is also effective for the UK variant is also significant – there is good data available from at least 3 countries for the original strain and the fact that researchers have thought ahead to study variants shows a good commitment to delivering an effective vaccine, not to the company profit margin or to political considerations. Frankly the behaviour of the EU throughout this episode has been appalling – they’re putting political influence ahead of the lives of their own citizens. I’m damn glad we’re out of the EU and I feel sorry for European’ s saddled with such an incompetent bunch of political hacks.

Reply to  Leo Smith
February 7, 2021 1:33 pm
Richard Page
Reply to  ResourceGuy
February 7, 2021 3:43 pm

Unsurprising – it’s designed for the original strain, not the new S.A. variant prevalent in South Africa.

February 6, 2021 6:44 am

Left unsaid here is the ability of Astra Zeneca/OU vaccine to reduce the spread of the virus – a feature that is unreported for the Pfizer and Modena vaccine options. I, at 72, am holding out for the availability of the Astra Zeneca, pending any additional information on its relative effectiveness.

Reply to  Bernie1815
February 6, 2021 6:59 am

I’ve had the first jab of AstraZeneca, so I’m all right, Jack! (Age 73, since you ask).

Last edited 4 months ago by Disputin
Reply to  Bernie1815
February 6, 2021 7:05 am

At 72, the decision around vaccines is problematic. At least there are choices but the mRNA approach seems more than a little rushed. Like Astra Zeneca’s, the J&J vaccine is also adenovirus-vectored.

For now, I’ll stick with vitamin D and a healthy lifestyle while the guinea pigs go about their business. It’s too bad that in this age of “transparency” uncensored information is not more freely available.

Gordon A. Dressler
Reply to  Scissor
February 6, 2021 7:21 am

Don’t forget the daily zinc intake.

Reply to  Gordon A. Dressler
February 6, 2021 7:55 am


Reply to  Martin C
February 6, 2021 8:52 am

More like rather than being against, NIH is now neither for nor against.

In the meantime, Merck comes out with a statement against. The profit potential is just too low compared to liability risks.

Reply to  Scissor
February 6, 2021 10:34 am

Finally some movement, albeit small. The doctors have been screaming for more access since August 2020.

Pamela Matlack-Klein
Reply to  Scissor
February 6, 2021 1:53 pm

Just so, with Chlorquin and ivermectin so easy to get (feed stores sell ivermectin for horses and other livestock) who even needs a vaccine? Pushing 74 real hard and have yet to see a single sick person or hear of anyone dying. The story here in Portugal is that all the sick people are in the public hospitals and that is why the private hospitals are not overrun. What, only poor people get Wuflu? I spent half a day in a public hospital back in July, long enough to know that is where people go to die! And it was not full of Wuflu patients either. Vitamin D and lots of sun exposure and fresh air for me!

Reply to  Scissor
February 6, 2021 5:03 pm

A recent study done on the regular (habitual) use of vitamin D supplements found a 35% reduction in COVID. It also found no benefit to zinc or any other vitamin taken singly or in a multi-vitamin.

You need to get past the first few minutes to get to the results corrected for other factors. The corrected results found (with a very high confidence) that vitamin D has a high benefit in fighting COVID infection.

It’s about at minute 12:40 when the Dr. discusses the negative finding about zinc and other vitamins/minerals.

The video also discusses another study that indicates a deficiency in the blood serum levels of calcifediol (the body’s metabolite of vitamin D) increases the chance of dying from COVID by a factor of 14.75 – HUGE. So why do vitamin D supplements only reduce COVID by 35% when low calcifediol increases the odds of dying by almost 15? It’s because relatively few people are deficient in calcifediol – often elderly people with bad diets. If you haven’t been vaccinated take vitamin D and, if you are at-risk, talk to your Dr. about getting your blood tested for calcifediol.

Walter Sobchak
Reply to  Bernie1815
February 6, 2021 8:30 am

Take any vaccine that is offered to you. The more the merrier.I am scheduled for a Pfizer/Moderna next week. If there after I can get one of the others I will take it.

Reply to  Walter Sobchak
February 6, 2021 8:54 am

The Zook family is still in favor. Mr. Zook cannot comment, him being deceased and all but he too was for it before his life was ended.

What is a euphemism for “dead” that can be used? Apparently, “deceased” is no better.

Last edited 4 months ago by Scissor
Richard Page
Reply to  Scissor
February 6, 2021 11:36 am

Hmm. The Pfizer vaccine again, just like the 23 Norwegian deaths of over 80’s that were given the Pfizer vaccine – might be a polyethylene glycol issue rather than a vaccine issue per se.

Reply to  Richard Page
February 6, 2021 2:34 pm

Since PEG is being used to transport the mRNA through the cell membrane it still is a vaccine issue.

Richard Page
Reply to  chemman
February 6, 2021 4:39 pm

Well yes, but not all vaccines use polyethylene glycol. As far as I’m aware only the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines use PEG, although I can’t find a huge amount of information on all of the vaccines.

Reply to  Richard Page
February 7, 2021 4:02 am

My 76 year old mother in law had reaction to Pfizer. Blood pressure, 230/90. Two days in row.
She is treated for high blood pressure, but this was exceptional.

Richard Page
Reply to  Scissor
February 6, 2021 1:23 pm

Ex voter? No, that doesn’t fit with the democrats either. How about ‘living impaired’?

Reply to  Scissor
February 7, 2021 6:40 pm

How about “an alternate state of living”?

Richard Page
Reply to  Walter Sobchak
February 6, 2021 9:29 am

Try not to mix vaccines across the 2 doses. All the data on effectiveness is for each of the vaccines over both doses. Nobody really has a clue if mixing 2 vaccines actually works well or at all. Best advice is whatever vaccine you have for the first dose, have the same one for the second dose. Eventually, there might be data available for mixing but I wouldn’t risk it at this stage.

Steve Richards
Reply to  Richard Page
February 6, 2021 9:52 am

Trials have just started with mixed vaccines, 1st one one brand, then 2nd one other brand. Apparently it is quite common.

Richard Page
Reply to  Steve Richards
February 6, 2021 10:48 am

That’s great news. The more we know the better.

Reply to  Steve Richards
February 7, 2021 3:40 am

and that SHOULD only be done as a new phase 2 and controlled, the pharmas themselves spoke against it.
of course they also said that whatever you got first would be the brand you should then be given ongoing yearly..nice earner

Richard Page
Reply to  Bernie1815
February 6, 2021 1:20 pm

I’m in my 50’s and, if I’m offered a choice, I would also prefer the AZ vaccine and, if offered either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, I’d refuse them. I have had a slight allergic reaction to substances in the past so I’m just not going to risk the PEG issue.

Reply to  Richard Page
February 6, 2021 2:35 pm

What substance is AZ using to get the mRNA through the cell membrane?

Richard Page
Reply to  chemman
February 6, 2021 4:49 pm

No idea. I’m picking up bits of info as I go along. Why don’t you look it up then tell me?

Thomas Fellmann
Reply to  Richard Page
February 7, 2021 1:43 am

What COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca contains:

One dose (0.5 ml) contains: COVID 19 Vaccine (ChAdOx1-S* recombinant) 5 × 10^10 viral particles

*Recombinant, replication-deficient chimpanzee adenovirus vector encoding the SARS CoV 2 Spike glycoprotein. Produced in genetically modified human embryonic kidney (HEK) 293 cells.

This product contains genetically modified organisms (GMOs).

The other excipients are:

L-histidine hydrochloride monohydrate
magnesium chloride hexahydrate
polysorbate 80
sodium chloride
disodium edetate dihydrate
water for injections

Abolition Man
February 6, 2021 7:35 am

Why are we rushing vaccines to the market when there are already safe, effective and inexpensive treatments available? This virus is a moderately nasty bug that has been pumped up to zeppelin-sized hysteria by politicians and “experts” who stand to make a lot of money from it!
The elderly and unhealthy could take the HCQ or ivermectin regimen with nearly zero side effects but Fauxi’s buddies at the drug corporations wouldn’t make much money that way and he would be out the expense of financing the gain-of-function experiments that he sponsored as the Wuhan Virology Lab! If the truth about this dempanic ever breaks through the censorship of the corporate media and Big Tech Nazis we will find that Lil’ Tony Fauxi makes Dr. Joseph Mengele look like a piker! At least he gave the DemoKKKrats what they needed to steal the election and save us from the Dread Tyrant Trump; and they only had to kill a few hundred thousand Americans to pull it off! Such a deal!

February 6, 2021 7:39 am

naive fallacy.
AZ has overall some 50% efficiency – if any at all. The Data available is a Desaster.
However, if there is a choice, one should give a much more efficient vaccine to the most vulnerable people, not this one with poor efficiency.

Steve Safigan
Reply to  Alex
February 6, 2021 9:05 am

THIS. A vaccine with 70% effectiveness will fail to protect a population at 6 times rate of a vaccine with 95% effectiveness. Give ALL the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines to the elderly and other high-risk groups.

Reply to  Steve Safigan
February 6, 2021 9:50 am

Agree with the first part but the PEG is a known anaphyaxis shock inducer. Anyone with any allergy or co-morbidities is at serious risk. That means most old people.

Richard Page
Reply to  TRM
February 6, 2021 10:53 am

PEG is present in both Moderna and Pfizer vaccines – the UK has issued guidelines that they should not be used by people with a history of anaphylaxis or any allergic reactions. Pfizer apparently knew this and excluded all such people from the study groups, yet didn’t see fit to mention it publicly.

Richard Page
Reply to  Alex
February 6, 2021 9:38 am

Incorrect. All the data suggests an average efficacy of over 86% with the upper range being around 95%. This is in line with both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. The fact that there is also data to show it reduces transmission and is effective against the UK Kent variant adds weight to the idea that the AZ vaccine should be given in preference to the others. If Pfizer and Moderna release any data on transmission reduction or efficacy against other variants, I’d be happy to reconsider; however they appear to be remarkably reticent on both issues so far.

Kevin McGrane
Reply to  Richard Page
February 6, 2021 2:50 pm

“there is also data to show it reduces transmission”.


Not data, conjecture. The study referred to this week is all data mining of old data collected up to December 7, by which time no trials on transmission had been done, so the paper has no data about actual transmission whatsoever: Not a single case of onward transmission after vaccination was ever logged or evaluated. The paper discussed transmission and makes tentative predictions but states unequivocally that

“transmission studies per se were not included in the analysis.”

The paper is utter rubbish, and it even admits that it is liable to the ‘post hoc propter hoc’ fallacy, which is anti-scientific nonsense:

“These are therefore post-hoc exploratory analyses only with potential for multiple sources of bias.”

Real scientific, then!

Reply to  Richard Page
February 6, 2021 4:43 pm

The efficacy percentages were for suppression of symptoms. The AZ submission to the FDA did not talk about transmission. They talked about reduction in hospitalizations and deaths especially in the vulnerable ages.

Kevin kilty
February 6, 2021 7:40 am

A vaccine with limited effectiveness is problematic if it stops people accessing other effective available interventions.

This ia a problem with all interventions, and especially so with masks. There is no evidence that they provide significant protection, and yet the constant emphasis on them causes people to see them as a sort of magic, and not worry about employing better strategies. We have reached a point where we can no longer expect complete or truthful explanations.

Reply to  Kevin kilty
February 6, 2021 8:03 am

Models show that if only people had perfectly round heads, then all masks would be more effective.

N95s, which have sealing mechanisms to prevent leaks around the nose, eyes, cheeks and mouth, have a better chance of working than cheaper alternatives. Cloth and surgical masks end up directing streams of humid air toward the eyes.

Reply to  Scissor
February 6, 2021 8:48 am

And masks do a wonderful job of holding onto any undesirables. When you take them off…who knows where your hands go 😉

Reply to  Scissor
February 6, 2021 5:27 pm


These masks are only good for a short duration (in hours). Almost nobody who uses these masks don’t use them for days on end, going to grocery store, work, etc. So, masks are not only useless but are dangerous. It is child abuse to force children to deprive growing bodies of the oxygen and clean air they need by forcing them to breath carbon dioxide, which, by the way, the same dimwit Global Warming crowd (and courts) have declared a toxic substance.

The stupidity of those who adhere to this Marxist drivel is monumental.

February 6, 2021 8:09 am

I’ve been a participant in one of the U.S vaccine studies since August. I’m 73 years old. At the “unblinding” in early January, I found out that I received two doses of the real vaccine, and not the placebo. I hope that, at the end of the study, I’ll be able to obtain the entire statistical results. One thing I am curious about, is whether those who experience few or no side effects develop as many antibodies as those who experience many side effects from the vaccine. I had no side effects, and thought I received the placebo. I almost never experience any side effects from vaccinations. BTW, the study I’m involved in is projected to last 25 months. I assume they are now trying to determine how long the antibodies last.

Reply to  littlepeaks
February 6, 2021 9:01 am

Did they vary dosage in your study? What is the followup study like? Are they testing you for CV and antibodies?

Reply to  Scissor
February 6, 2021 4:05 pm

I don’t think they varied the dosage. They take blood samples at every office visit, to check for antibodies. My last office visit was in January and my next one is in March. They have checked for CV during the office visits, but I don’t think during the next one. I have to complete a weekly diary on my smart phone, and report any changes to my health or medications to the study.

Reply to  littlepeaks
February 6, 2021 7:08 pm


Richard Page
Reply to  littlepeaks
February 6, 2021 9:45 am

That’s the next big question – so far the studies around the world into antibodies are only about 5 months long – we simply won’t know how long the antibodies will last until the studies have run their course. The Spanish flu antibodies lasted around the 10 year mark I think, so let’s hope Covid antibodies are similar or better.

Reply to  Richard Page
February 6, 2021 12:33 pm

I know a few people who had CV19 just months ago and now just recently have been inoculated for it. I’m thinking to myself, why would they do that?

Richard Page
Reply to  Scissor
February 6, 2021 1:28 pm

Did they get tested for antibodies first? Apparently not everyone who has symptomatic Covid will develop an antibody immunity.

Reply to  Richard Page
February 6, 2021 7:11 pm

Not sure about the antibodies, their illnesses were moderately severe.

Last edited 4 months ago by Scissor
Reply to  Scissor
February 7, 2021 3:45 am

the medicos are pushing the vax onto people who have had it saying it will just enhance antibodies
with no proof
like i had HAD measles but still forced a vaccine onto me as akid
utterly useless

Reply to  littlepeaks
February 6, 2021 4:45 pm

Each of the vaccine trials will be doing follow-ups to determine antibody response.over a two year period.

Nicholas McGinley
Reply to  littlepeaks
February 8, 2021 3:34 pm

I usually get a warm lump in my arm after a vaccination.
If I am busy, I may not notice it.
Or I may notice it.
Either way a warm red lump is not going to bother me one bit.
But some people freak out over things that do not bother other people.
Look at how differently people react to a needle stick to begin with, or to getting blood drawn.
For some it is a traumatic event…for people like me I literally cannot notice it.

That may be nearly all of the difference. Baby vs Not A Baby

Reply to  Yooper
February 6, 2021 9:03 am

That sounds promising.

Richard Page
Reply to  Yooper
February 6, 2021 10:56 am

Interesting data from the Israeli vaccine program – they reported that the Pfizer vaccine only had a 33% effectiveness after the first dose, as opposed to the 52% that Pfizr reported from its study groups.

Walter Sobchak
February 6, 2021 8:27 am

Brexit now appears to be a genius move.

Richard Page
Reply to  Walter Sobchak
February 6, 2021 9:50 am

Absolutely. I did, however, notice Nicola Sturgeon awkwardly try to deflect attention away from that – despite her political manipulation and slow vaccine rollout, she’s still trying desperately to insist that the EU method would have been better for Scotland!

Bob Johnston
February 6, 2021 8:56 am

Yeah… there’s no way I’m taking a novel vaccine (mRNA) that has never before been successfully brought to market, was rushed through trials with extremely soft endpoints and where long term adverse effects were never studied for a virus where my odds of survival are 99.7% if I even get COVID.

My distrust for the pharmaceutical industry is at least the same or more than it is for climastrology.

Reply to  Bob Johnston
February 6, 2021 9:30 am

My reasons for not taking it under any circumstances are as follows:

1) It is experimental RNA technology
2) It has NEVER worked in man nor beast
3) It killed the animals in 2012 when they were exposed to the wild virus
4) They skipped animal testing this time
5) Has no long term studies
6) It changes you at the cellular level to produce antibodies
7) There is NO way to turn it off
8) Ivermectin is vastly safer, effective & cheaper

Now comes the interesting part. Is society allowed to force/coerce people into taking it? The Nuremberg Code says NO but it doesn’t seem to bother a lot of politicians because they don’t see any personal risk of being charged. That will be the least of their worries.

1) The voluntary consent of the human subject is absolutely essential. This means that the person involved should have legal capacity to give consent; should be so situated as to be able to exercise free power of choice, without the intervention of any element of force, fraud, deceit, duress, overreaching, or other ulterior form of constraint or coercion; and should have sufficient knowledge and comprehension of the elements of the subject matter involved as to enable him to make an understanding and enlightened decision. 

4) The experiment should be so conducted as to avoid all unnecessary physical and mental suffering and injury.

6) The degree of risk to be taken should never exceed that determined by the humanitarian importance of the problem to be solved by the experiment.

If the governments violate that (especially for a 0.3 IFR disease) then I feel we are entitled to self defence against anyone going along with it IMHO.

Reply to  TRM
February 6, 2021 12:35 pm

Is that all? /s

Richard Page
Reply to  TRM
February 6, 2021 1:31 pm

I’m with you, I’ve been going stir crazy during lockdown and also just looking for any excuse to shoot someone! sarc

Reply to  Richard Page
February 6, 2021 2:53 pm

Shoot someone? Ah the old projectile weapons. Primitive but effective is how I classify that stuff. I know a lot of Americans love to shoot things up but I saw a drone on Zerohedge that is used for starting controlled burns in firefighting. Commercially available. Left, right, up and behind now need to be covered not just in front. Let’s see any gun top that. Like I said “the least of their worries”.

Seriously though. What do you do when your own government is violating the Nuremberg code? Litigation is expensive and time consuming while it gets sorted out. Bribery on the other hand is still expensive but quicker. How long before you can buy Chinese or Russian vaccination certification? For a fee they’ll be happy to be …

It avoids all the messy clean up from that shooting idea. Myself, I’m a bow man (Recurve! None of that sissy compound stuff). Just target shooting for relaxation and focus. I have no illusions about it or my abilities with it.

Richard Page
Reply to  TRM
February 6, 2021 5:00 pm

Actually I’m not an American and I was only joking about the shooting! As far as I know the vaccine is completely voluntary – anyone that really doesn’t want any of them will not be forced to. However, the UK government has a theoretical % of the population that it needs to vaccinate in order to destroy it (well, stop it from being able to infect anyone anyway). What happens if they don’t meet that target might get awkward (I doubt we’ll find out, I think they’ll exceed their targets in the UK).

Reply to  Richard Page
February 6, 2021 5:22 pm

Yes, it will be completely voluntary.

They just won’t let you out of your house unless you take it.

Reply to  MarkG
February 6, 2021 5:38 pm

Hence the highlighted part about “coercion”. It is on the list and that is the first line of manipulation they will use “for the greater good” of course.

February 6, 2021 9:02 am

This would NOT be a pandemic prior to 2008 when they changed the definition of pandemic to get rid of the requirement for an IFR > 1.0
With an IFR of 0.3 (the worst hit areas are still below 0.5) this is NOT a pandemic.

From 2003 to 2020 there was a standard definition of “infectious disease death”. Over 90% of those claimed as covid-19 deaths would NOT have been classified as such previously.

We have a treatment, Ivermectin, that is vastly safer, vastly more effective and vastly cheaper. We could have eradicated this in any 2 month period since last summer.

The site lists all the research and the results are spectacular. The only studies that fail are those where treatment is started very late in the disease progression.

Richard Page
Reply to  TRM
February 6, 2021 9:53 am

Actually it looks like a dose of Ivermectin is more expensive than the AZ vaccine. But active prevention can be as effective as a cure IF you can show that it will reduce transmission as well as the vaccine.

Reply to  Richard Page
February 6, 2021 10:54 am

Is that the generic price and from where? The USA prices are grossly inflated. Just a quick look at the online Canadian prices for 12 mg x 2 months (most of the studies used 12 mg once a week):

12mg X 10 Pills @ $6.72 = $67.20

That is half what the 2 courses of RNA vaccine go for (~$120).

It is even better as a prophylactic than a cure (and it’s excellent as a cure). In the Argentine hospital RCT study 0/788 on Ivermectin got sick but more than half the 400+ (58%) on the placebo got sick.

Last edited 4 months ago by TRM
Richard Page
Reply to  TRM
February 6, 2021 11:44 am

I was thinking of the AZ vaccine which has been supplied around £1.63 per dose. So that’s around $5.60 ish Canadian dollars for the course?

Reply to  Richard Page
February 6, 2021 2:57 pm

Wow do Moderna and Pfizer hose people. LMAO. I knew there would be a difference but that is downright funny. Twenty times more? Typical markup for North America I guess.

Richard Page
Reply to  TRM
February 6, 2021 5:05 pm

That’s from the info that a Belgian minister tweeted a week or so ago showing the comparative prices the EU were paying for vaccines – buying in bulk paid off I guess. Unlike some of the other vaccines, AZ are supplying theirs at cost, rather than for profit.

Reply to  Richard Page
February 7, 2021 3:50 am

supplied heavily subsidised BY the govt of course

Reply to  Richard Page
February 6, 2021 6:07 pm

Apparently your comment does not account for “consent” nor the relative benign nature of this virus (vs AIDS, Ebola, Rabies, Small pox, or the Zombie Apocalypse). Who gives people the right to force another human being to take something they don’t want to prevent some disease that is no more deadly than a bad case of the flu (of course, the CDC claims that second hand smoke kills 41K people per year – so what does that say about the CDC or the concern of all politicians).

Is the Nuremberg code irrelevant to today’s morality? Do real human rights mean nothing to today’s citizens, and comment sections? Is common decency and simple basic science nothing more than fodder for today’s technology and political bigotry?

Richard Page
Reply to  Bill
February 7, 2021 7:36 am

Can you please supply information on who has been forced, against their will, to take the vaccine? You know the drill – extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.

Reply to  Richard Page
February 7, 2021 8:07 am

A typical MSM report that suggests we won’t be able to travel without proof of this vaccine should scare anyone. Any internet search will discover many articles like this. Our liberty is under siege and we argue over non-scientific claims while our rights disappear.

Richard Page
Reply to  Bill
February 7, 2021 3:52 pm

So not really then. When you mention the Zombie Apocalypse as a comparison for a real and life-threatening pandemic, then back it up with a news report as ‘evidence’ then I will maintain a healthy scepticism.

Mark E Shulgasser
February 6, 2021 9:05 am

Why does WUWT, so admirably critical of climate scientism, so readily swallow the science and media induced panic over Covid?

Reply to  Mark E Shulgasser
February 6, 2021 9:22 am

Most people “believe” something and while sceptical in one area lose that scepticism in other areas. It is an interesting phenomenon I’ve noticed here on other issues like GMO foods as well. Glad I’m not the only one who noticed it LOL.

The truly great thing about this site (and precious few others) is that Mr Watts allows views 180 degrees apart to be posted. I get censored on most sites posting what I do here. Kudos to the mods and Mr Watts for allowing discussion and not just a vapid echo chamber.

Rory Forbes
Reply to  TRM
February 6, 2021 10:51 am

How on Earth can a person expect to make an informed decision on any subject unless they’re exposed to ALL points of view? Call me perverse, but the moment I detect reticence to publish or even discuss opposing ideas, I want to know what they’re trying to hide.

I’m noticing the tendency to silence all discussion on the issues surrounding this virus … from its origins to the efficacy of masks. They’re now trying to violate the right to NOT make medical information public, using coercion … electronic vaccine passports, for instance.

Reply to  Rory Forbes
February 6, 2021 1:35 pm

It’s the only time in history that those who claim to be fighting fascism are doing so by consciencisly coordinating the stifling of free speech.

Rory Forbes
Reply to  Doonman
February 6, 2021 2:32 pm

Projection has always been the trademark of the Left. We’ve just seen over four years of one party attacking a the President of doing what they’ve never stopped doing themselves.

Richard Page
Reply to  Doonman
February 6, 2021 2:35 pm

Not really sure of that actually – Ennio Flaiano: “In Italy fascists divide themselves into two categories; fascists and anti-fascists.” Written probably just after WW2.

Reply to  Rory Forbes
February 6, 2021 2:59 pm

Yes trying to be informed on any subject in an echo chamber like the MSM and 95% of the web is a challenge but with great sites like this I can try.

Richard Page
Reply to  Mark E Shulgasser
February 6, 2021 10:01 am

It’s not all media induced – I live in the UK and have several friends and family who have been ill with Covid and a couple of friends who have died with it. It might not be the ‘worst disease evah’ but It’s serious and should not be dismissed or brushed aside as irrelevant.
One of the biggest problems we’ve got is the lack of data – unlike other illnesses, this one has precious little history to it, meaning we’re learning as we go along how to deal with it, and any mistakes made will cost lives.

Reply to  Richard Page
February 6, 2021 10:43 am

Covid seems to be a rather nasty little blighter that attacks many organs of the body simultaneously. I have a number of acquaintances who have been ill and” recovered”. Most have struggled with continuing issues such fatigue and breathlessness after the mildest exertion. I think it will be some time before the long term consequences of this disease are well understood

Reply to  Martin
February 6, 2021 6:32 pm

I had influenza last year. I still have “continuing issues” and I’m am perfectly healthy, who is older and take no drugs. So the flu poses these exact same issues and is nothing new in the world of respiratory trauma.

Personal observation, where data supports the opposite analysis, is neither productive nor reasonable.

Reply to  Bill
February 7, 2021 3:53 am

I was about to say the same last few cold and flus Ive caught have slowed me up for a couple of months at least, ageing being a hefty part of that Id bet

Reply to  Richard Page
February 6, 2021 5:24 pm

“a couple of friends who have died with it”

But what did they actually die OF?

Richard Page
Reply to  MarkG
February 7, 2021 7:38 am

They died of running out of life.

Reply to  Mark E Shulgasser
February 6, 2021 12:41 pm

Less than 97% of us do, surely.

Actually, the older I become, the more skeptical I’m getting about just about everything. The “truth” is now viewed as some fluid movement that we have to be told what it is by some authority. Anyway, I’ve come to listening to both sides and trying to figure out where the truth lies between the extremes.

Reply to  Mark E Shulgasser
February 10, 2021 11:44 am

Good question. However, having written a few things on climate, and then turned my attention to the “pandemic”, I was warned by a climate scientist to avoid “conspiracy theory” as it might damage the credibility of my work on climate. So there are people who hope to recover some element of acceptance by disassociating themselves from other views in opposition to globalist narratives. Of course I pointed out the huge similarities between the covid and climate projects: the sponsors, the fraudulent data, the censorship, moral blackmail etc.

February 6, 2021 9:44 am

<i>an ethical rather than a scientific question</i>
Wrong and wrong again.
It’s a national question.
EU countries are just joining a meme of post Brexit Britain-hating.
In their ugly attacks regarding the vaccine delivery and abortive flail toward northern Ireland, the EU let the mask slip and revealed why Brexit was such a necessity for the UK.
Biden and Pelosi hate the British as much as the Germans and French do so I expect Biden to sign up to the “AZ vaccine unsafe for over 60’s” bandwagon any day now.
Independent Britain is in a position somewhat similar to Poland in the 1930’s.
Sandwiched between geopolitical blocs deeply hostile to it on both sides.

Last edited 4 months ago by Hatter Eggburn
February 6, 2021 9:45 am

One thing I have not seen mentioned is that the immune system becomes less efficient with aging. This is demonstrated in studies where subjects are tested for a response to antigens that everyone has – measles, mumps, chickenpox, ect. The probability of recognizing the antigen (responding) goes down with age. In other words, your immune system has forgotten you had these illnesses. The emergence of the hiding chickenpox virus (Herpes zoster) to produce shingles in older individuals is another indicator. To the extent that the immune system retains competency the vaccine will act as a booster.
The above discusses herpes zoster efficacy in 50-59 y/o. Instead of providing the high level of protection seen when vaccinating children, the vaccine reduced shingles by about 2/3.

Other evidence of this is the regularity with which an infection becomes very hard to treat in the elderly. This is because, in the absence of the immune system ‘cleaning up’ after the course of antibiotics, relapse follows. Complete collapse of the immune system can occur in younger individuals as a consequence of a major insult. A typical case history would be ruptured appendix, sepsis, control with antibiotic, repeated relapses after long courses of antibiotic, death occurring after some months in intensive care. Similarly, a 90 y/o whose broken hip is surgically fixed, gets a respiratory infection, responds to treatment but keeps relapsing worse every time (Sir Tom anyone?). This is in the absence of drug-resistant organisms.

The bottom line is that without immune competency, you cannot get protection with a vaccine.

Richard Page
Reply to  Fran
February 6, 2021 11:14 am

There is also an issue that antibodies don’t last forever – different viral antibodies last for different times. The one I remember was the Spanish flu antibodies, which last for about 10 years then you’ve pretty much lost your immunity after that.

Reply to  Richard Page
February 6, 2021 5:05 pm

Actual antibodies fall below detection levels for pretty much every infectious disease within months. Body can’t afford to keep high levels of solid proteins circulating in the blood stream for every antigen our bodies have come into contact with.

The issue tends to be with actual T and B memory cells that recognize the antigen and tell the body how to manufacture the antibodies. These also fall off with time

February 6, 2021 9:51 am

The AstraZeneca-Oxford team were not only the first out of the blocks (apart from the Russians) with an effective covid vaccine.
The same speed and flexibility (capital offences in the EU) means they are also well underway to release modified vaccines for new mutant strains of the virus.
Covid vaccination will be like that for flu, new ones will be needed every year or two, forever.
So nations cutting themselves off from the AZ-Oxford vaccine have made a mistake that will stay with them for a long time.

February 6, 2021 10:27 am

‘Crucially, the reluctance to approve the AstraZeneca vaccine in the elderly is grounded only in concerns about its efficacy.’

No, this concern over ‘efficacy’ only arose after so many people died in care homes on receiving the vaccine, and not just the AstraZeneca – most governments are denying the connection of course.

Earlier attempts to produce a vaccine for coronavirus failed at the animal testing stage – because the animals died. This time they omitted or fudged the inconvenient animal stage.

‘Previous coronavirus vaccine candidates (for example, for SARS-CoV), caused the production of higher levels of binding antibodies which caused disease enhancement which in turn actually killed test subjects (animals) who received the vaccines. This is called “Antibody-dependent enhancement”.’

This article was originally published in the The Conversation. Is WUWT endorsing The Conversation as a source?

Richard Page
Reply to  Barbara McKenzie
February 6, 2021 11:05 am

The Norway case is interesting – the vaccine used was the Pfizer one which contains polyethylene glycol (PEG) which is known to induce anaphylactic shocks in patients with any history of allergies. Given that patients over 80 are likely to be sensitive to such substances I wonder why they were given such a risky vaccine?

Reply to  Barbara McKenzie
February 6, 2021 12:45 pm

Probably not. Most of us realize that “The Conversion” is not really what it implies. Rather it is more like a speech from a leftist platform.

February 6, 2021 10:39 am
Richard Page
Reply to  TRM
February 6, 2021 11:11 am

This letter principally sets out this organisations objections to Oxford researchers using placebos in a study group. I don’t see how that is ‘rigging the science’?

Reply to  Richard Page
February 6, 2021 3:04 pm

If they are setting up a study wrong then it is a concern. After 14 RCT studies maybe just give it everyone who needs it and do an interventional study? They seem all too happy to deploy their vaccine without 14 RCT studies. Do they want more to stall while they claim it is “still under study”?

I honestly don’t know. Given all the lies and manipulations of 2020 I’m a Black Sabbath song at this point.

Richard Page
Reply to  TRM
February 6, 2021 5:12 pm

Not sure about ‘wrong’ or ‘rigging the science’ – I think you’re right about timing though. Using placebos in a control is a standard study format but it takes more time. I think their point is that there are enough studies showing Ivermectin has some efficacy, so any study should move on and focus on how effective, effective dosage and when to use it best rather than starting over from scratch.

February 6, 2021 10:43 am

Freedom to choose vs. state systems in the case of health care is often a cloudy issue until you need that choice.

Rud Istvan
February 6, 2021 11:13 am

The root cause problem is poor AZ phase 3 study design. They shoild have recruited significantly more over 65s. Especially when itbwas known since March in Italy that Covid 19 disproportionately harms the elderly, who should therefore be the first vaccinated after the docs and nurses. Pfizer, Moderna, and JJ did not make this mistake.

Reply to  Rud Istvan
February 6, 2021 11:45 am

Omitting the over 60s in AZ trials was not by accident or because short life expectancy in Brazil.
It was deliberate, for safety.
But now it’s bit them in the a55 of course.

Richard Page
Reply to  Rud Istvan
February 6, 2021 11:51 am

Pfizer and (possibly) Moderna did screen their study groups to exclude people that might react negatively to ingredients in the vaccines. Pfizer definitely excluded people with a history of allergies that might have reacted to PEG’s. Given the reactions in patients given the Pfizer vaccine, I’d suggest the AZ vaccine might be a damn sight safer in the over 65 age groups.

February 6, 2021 11:21 am

In my view, the medical community and government bureaucracies have failed us greatly in this pandemic. My proof is the thousands of excessive deaths in nursing homes by forcing COVID-19 patients into them, and the thousands of excess deaths by failure to allow hydroxychloroquine and Ivermectin and other drug usage as emergency therapy. Recall that the first known deaths in the US were all confined to a single nursing home in Washington state. Any fool should have realized that that alone was enough evidence to prevent COVID-19 patients from entering nursing homes. Unfortunately, we have several foolish governors in this country.

The failure to permit therapeutic drugs was equally foolish. Many reports of effectiveness were dismissed as not coming from “double-blind” studies. Even the double-blind study of hydroxychloroquine in Ford Hospital was dismissed as “insufficient”. Again, the arrogant bureaucrats who made this decision could just as well have signed the death warrants.

Our daughter, her husband, and our grand daughter all had COVID-19. last month. They recovered without problems. However, they were advised by their doctors of absolutely NO treatments. They were advised “call us if it gets worse, and don’t take certain over the counter pain medications”. Our son-in-law has RA, so could have legitimately been given hydroxychloroquine for that . The doctor said nothing. I don’t blame him for that. The situation has been so politicized that his best position was to remain silent. I do blame the bureaucrats, though.

Abolition Man
Reply to  Tom
February 6, 2021 6:27 pm

A fool is someone who makes a mistake or does something stupid; someone who kills thousands of people unnecessarily is usually called a murderer! Killer Cuomo is starting to finally get some heat for his fatal policy decision, Gretchen Bitchmore is still being coddled by the leftist media propagandists but something is stirring in Michigan!
When the massive conspiracy to use the ChiCom virus to subvert the 2020 election is finally exposed for the world to see there will be an awful lot of butts in a sling; there is no statute of limitations on criminal conspiracy, especially one that results in hundreds of thousands dying!

Reply to  Tom
February 6, 2021 6:48 pm

I blame the AMA for this cowardice. They could stand up to the licensing bureaus of the States but fail miserably to do so. They do not help their members but the government.

February 6, 2021 11:58 am

There’s also the small factor that the cost of AZ-Oxford vaccine is 20 times cheaper than the Pfizer and Moderna ones, plus not needing -70-80C storage.
In the USA the more expensive a drug is the better.
In the rest of the world though, believe it or not, it’s the reverse.

February 6, 2021 1:21 pm

Another example of the science not being settled, is the issue of pathogenic priming with these vaccines.

Paul in uk
February 6, 2021 5:34 pm

Given all this obsession with vaccines and talk of vaccine passports (in effect potentially forcing everyone to get vaccinated) I was glad to see a bit more caution from some regulators. My own feeling based on what little I know (not an expert in this at all) is the theory of the vaccine only makes sense for the approx 3-10% of us at high risk of bad outcome, i.e. most of us may not need it. But, then again perhaps based on the regulators observations even that may not be a good strategy. I presume the confidence intervals on both risks and benefits are just too large. And given cases seem to dropping worldwide now – to me that is a very interesting graph; for whole world cases have been rising since the start (i.e. one ‘wave’ unlike individual locations that had many waves), now it is possibly dropping and relatively fast too and the dip over Christmas is perhaps not real, but just due to amount of testing dropping, so the real peak was perhaps end of December. But what is that strange step around 20-27 January? Or is it going to be followed shortly by the next wave due to mutations.

Personally, given the speed of the vaccine development (and as an engineer who has done a lot of work on product validation) the relatively short length of trials and small numbers in the trials makes me nervous. In engineering there can be ways of accelerating the testing (but I can’t see how you could apply that to a vaccine) or narrowing confidence intervals but these rely on the right kind of parallel experience. But given the high speed of these vaccines development and that it sounds like in many cases this is new technology I’m thinking the testing has to be much more thorough and confidence intervals perhaps should be in effect widened for the time being.

This is not any old product but something they seem to be expecting virtually the whole human population to have to live with permanently in their bodies and potentially, indirectly we may end up with little or no choice about receiving this. As someone said above, we can’t reverse this once done.

In engineering we usually have mandatory failure modes and effects analysis (FMEA), concerns logs, this inputs into our validation program along with other outside regulatory and customer requirements. Is it same for vaccines? I think as engineers we love thinking up and have no fear of pointing out ways we think our product could fail. I’m probably wrong, but not getting the sense this inclusion of scepticism works so well in these situations; science, virus, vaccines etc. With sceptical scientists in fear of speaking out, being cancelled and as customers we don’t have the same power or involvement, having to accept the word of only the approved experts and in a field where failure or not may be more open to interpretation. Not sure how they have accounted for everything in the validation, unexpected direct or indirect failure modes that may come in or not be noticed until months or years down the line, or an understanding of how a very widespread, new virus may respond and evolve to vaccine strategies. I admit I don’t know enough about medical matters, the virus, vaccines, vaccine validation or the actual details and analysis of the vaccine data though so my comments or concerns may not be valid.

I always think a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing and in any new situation the experts may be in that position and not realise it.

D Cage
Reply to  Paul in uk
February 6, 2021 10:21 pm

Agreed but if everyone plays safe how does any vaccine get approval? I had the AZ jab partly as at my age of 76 I do not want to risk being a carrier even if I did not actually suffer from it myself. As past my use by date I felt happy to take the risk in the hope it will be some help to others.

I wish I had the same choice as to whether to take the risk with climate change where I totally despise the data set it is all based on. I cannot see the flaw in the argument that if measurements are taken on an evaporation cooled grass surface they will be low by an indeterminate amount and any surface with reduced evaporation like a drainage scheme will cause apparent warming. Surely wet and dry humidity tables work both ways. I seem to be able to get a three degree change from a test in our garden. I believe weather stations produce an agricultural equivalent of “feels like” temperature not a true one.

Xinnie the Pooh
February 6, 2021 6:19 pm

When there’s 5 years of data I might consider having a vaccine. Until then I’d rather just catch covid

D Cage
Reply to  Xinnie the Pooh
February 6, 2021 10:00 pm

At age 76 I have just had the Astra Zeneca jab and admit it gave me on monster size headache for a day followed by three days of total exhaustion. My fingers have stopped being slightly blue if that is relevant to anything or not as it first happened three months before covid started after I had some bug with similar symptoms but that never really went away completely. And if everyone was like Xinnie the Pooh there will never be five years of data.

Xinnie the Pooh
Reply to  D Cage
February 6, 2021 11:07 pm

the disease has a fatality rate of less than .5% – so not sure how you’re calculating a zero population in 5 years from that rate

Richard Page
Reply to  Xinnie the Pooh
February 7, 2021 3:58 pm

I don’t think he was saying that. I read it that if no-one took the vaccine, there would never be any data for you to review in 5 years time. People would still be around. Mostly.

Xinnie the Pooh
February 6, 2021 6:38 pm

Does anyone consider it a co-incidence that the two mutant strains came from the OxfordAZ test sites in South Africa and Brasil?

Richard Page
Reply to  Xinnie the Pooh
February 7, 2021 4:06 pm

You mean that because South Africa and Brazil were chosen for their high populations and high infection rates – factors that made them perfect areas for variant strains to develop that this means that the Astrazeneca vaccine definitively caused them? Ooh not sure on that one – wait while I put my tinfoil hat on then I’ll have a think about it.

February 7, 2021 12:42 am

Deletions are the key to covid19 mutations. This Science Daily article reports research from Pittsburg University by Paul Duprex and colleagues which shows why deletions are the most likely sort of covid19 mutation to occur. That’s because even a coronavirus has a gene “proof-reader” that corrects mutations during replication. However a deletion can’t be repaired, there’s nothing to replace.

Of course, randomly snipping off a part of the covid19 genome most of the time will render the virus dysfunctional and it will fail to replicate and spread. A dead end. But here and there in the genome there are short bits of RNA whose removal does not impair the virus’ vitality. Some may even enhance it. Such survivable deletions include ones that change the virus’ spike proteins, evading the immune response and – in some cases – the effectiveness of vaccines.

There are a limited number of such survivable and advantageous deletions in the viral genome and this is why the mutant strains emerging, from southern England, Brazil and South Africa for instance, are similar to each other sometimes involving the same deletion.

Finally another factor driving evolution of resistant covid19 strains is the severity of the infection in many patients and the length of time the person is sick with the virus. For weeks or even months. This gives time for the “cat and mouse” game between immune system and virus out of which successful mutant strains can arise. That could be bad news if severity of the infection carries survival advantage for the virus.

February 7, 2021 2:52 am

A poor analysis that assumes one life lost at age 90 is the same as one lost at age 30. Years of expected life lost would be the better measure, and that would alter the balance significantly.

Patrick MJD
February 7, 2021 5:19 am

There is talk here in Aus that a COVID vaccination certificate, digital (HA HA HA HA HA) or otherwise, will be required for travel within the country and internationally. Does not apply if you play sports.

Reply to  Patrick MJD
February 8, 2021 2:11 am

Papieren bitte!

Patrick MJD
Reply to  BUlldust
February 8, 2021 10:27 pm

With the emergency “heath guidelines” being activated here, police (Aus and the UK) seem to think they are above the law.

Morten Nilsen
February 7, 2021 11:24 am

And still, most health authorities do not recommend vitamin D supplements. The scientific proof is obviously not good enough!

Last edited 4 months ago by Morten Nilsen
February 8, 2021 3:09 am

I am having a problem with the efficiacy mathemathics…

Say (Moderna, was it?) 15000 guinea pigs each “vaccine” and placebo yielding 5 and 95 cases of Covid-19.

With a test number of 100, that would yield 5 and 95% efficiacy and relative efficiacy of (1-5/95)*100=94,7%.

With a test number of 10.000 and 5/95 cases of Covid-19, that would yield 99.95 and 99.05% for a relative efficiacy of (1-5/95)*100%=94.7%.

With a test number of 10.000 and 500/9500 cases of Covid-19, that would yield 5 and 95% efficiacy and a relative efficiacy of 94.7%.

With 5/95 cases out of 100 cases or 500/9500 cases out of 10.000 guinea pigs, vaccine looks like a nobrainer. With 5/95 cases out of 15.000 guinea pigs…

The effect of vaccine and placebo is approximate identical (14995/15000*100%=99.97, 14905/15000*100%=99.37) )and the difference in efficiacy is 14995/15000*100%-14905/15000*100%=0.6%

Meaning “vaccine” is as effective as placebo (or vice versa). Leading to the conclusion it is a nobrainer to NOT vaccinate.

Someone smarter than me do me a favor and qualify the mathematics and logic, please.


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