merylnass:The committee is welcomed by Amanda Cohn, MD, who is not only the ACIP Executive Secretary but also a member of the FDA’s vaccine advisory committee, VRBPAC–a considerable conflict of interest, which helps to asssure both federal agencies push the same policies smoothly, together. Drs. Walensky and Amanda Cohn thanked Anne Schuchat for her service. Schuchat was fired from her position as Deputy Director by Director Walensky. She is a very capable liar who I first encountered when she testified to the House Government Reform Commiitttee about the anthrax vaccine 22 years ago.
Her primary job has been narrative control. I am not sure what she did to cause Dr. Walensky to fire her, but it seemed like Walensky was given a series of silly presentations to make. Eventually she perhaps got sick of being the laughingstock who was the face of CDC’s oddball recommendations. Do you recall Walensky doing her best to straight face the description of wearing 2 masks, and then adding a leg from pantyhose over your face to get a tighter fit, with less leakage of air around the 3 mask layers?
While that might have been a better approximation of an N95 mask, I never saw anyone try it. It would have ruined hairdos and added lots of wrinkles to wearers’ faces. Not to mention the crotch-to-face implications.
merylnass:Dr. Matthew Daley claims the current safety systems for Covid vaccines are the most rigorous ever used in the US. That is interesting, because the public has been getting less data than ever before.
Dr. Daley has some impressive happy talk, given the injuries he is working with.
Who is Dr. Matthew Daley? A vaccine researcher who works for Kaiser. His web page lists 3 separate CDC grants. Plus he chairs the CDC working group on Covid. Yet he declares no conflicts of interest, even though significant income comes straight from CDC.
merylnass:Daley claims Israel only saw 148 myocarditis cases, 95% were mild, and there was only a “possible link” to the vaccine. This is minimizing the actual Israeli data, for which the rate in young males was said to be 25 times higher than baseline.
merylnass:Dr. Matt Oster presents the overview of myocarditis and pericarditis. He is an employee both of Emory U and the CDC. He mentions that CDC is counting probable and confirmed cases, and mentions certain symptoms and signs, but he surprisingly omits the actual case definition. He does not tell us what combination of findings are required for a patient to be counted as a probable or confirmed case. He states that one must have 2 of 4 findings. This misses cases that could be confirmed in other ways. IMHO his vague and incomplete case definition was selected to reduce the number of cases identified.
*I had an opportunity to look at the slides more carefully after the presentations. It looks like the case definition on the slides that was used for probable myocarditis cases is reasonable, while the CDC’s definition for confirmed cases is overly restrictive. For this ACIP meeting CDC is adding probable and confirmed cases together, which is okay. But if in future they exclude probable myocarditis cases from the total case counts, you can be sure it was intended to falsely minimize the numbers.
merylnass:Daley’s list of causes of myocarditis omits vaccinations! That is convenient. Yet it is well known that vaccines are a cause, and much more common than the parasites he did include. Smallpox and anthrax vaccines caused many cases in young soldiers.
merylnass:Required myocarditis treatment is exercise restriction for 3-6 months or longer, until the heart can be shown to have fully recovered, if it ever does. While Oster’s slide mentions the possible need for a heart transplant, the words do not pass his lips.
merylnass:I am very familiar with a young solider who got a heart transplant at UNC after his vaccinations about 16 years ago.
merylnass:My friend JR was instrumental in calling media attention to this patient, so the military was not allowed to let him die in a military hospital.
merylnass:Dr. Daley picks out tiny numbers of cases, discusses their treatments in some detail, and reassures us they did just fine. Just in case we didn’t get it, he repeats himself in minimizing the data from Israel.
merylnass: He omits the fact that 1250 cases of myocarditis have been reported to VAERS. He never mentions the 18 hospitalizations in young vaccinees in Connecticut alone, which were revealed by the Connecticut Department of Health director. He failed to mention any of the reported deaths.
merylnass:And the icing on the cake: Daley says these cases are not as severe as usual. In other words, don’t worry about them.
merylnass:Dr. Frey tries to pin him down: how many were military members? How does this rate of myocarditis compare to the myocarditis cases after smallpox vaccine? What is the increased rate over baseline of myocarditis? [Israel’s Dr. Dror Mevorach says the rate in Israeli young males is 25 times higher than expected.]
merylnass:He pleads ignorance.
merylnass:Asked a similar question about how he knows these cases are mild? “We’re still learning a lot.” In other words, he was blowing smoke.
merylnass:Daley wraps himself in the recommendations of professional societies, which do not distinguish between mild/moderate/severe cases in terms of treatment. Eventually Daley admits, to questioning, that you can wind up with a permanent scar, reduced cardiac output and increased risk of arrhythmias after myocarditis. Finally, he is very optimistic that patients will get all better but acknowledges they don’t actually have the data to say so yet.
merylnass:Daley admits “we don’t know the mechanism” but the pedi long covid syndrome named MIS-C appears to be a very different illness than myocarditis.
merylnass:Sometimes the MIS-C kids do have myocarditis, which can be very significant. But the kids “tend to look really good” six months down the road.
merylnass:Daley is asked the obvious question: how damaged was the heart acutely? What was the ejection fraction on echocardiogram? He provides no real data, says most were not bad. They tended to “rebound quickly”. Longterm we will just have to see. But the truth is, they have these data. They must have been instructed not to share them.
merylnass:Dr Grace Lee , who was the chair of the CDC VaST Working Group, asks for more clinical details, While Daley waffles, he finally admits that maybe if they looked harder they would find more cases.
Update: I now realize that both Drs. Daley and Oster are named “Matt” so I have mixed up their comments here. They seemed equally clueless.
merylnass:Dr. Sanchez asks whether any of the myocarditis cases have been tested for spike protein in the blood? Maybe they produce more or don’t clear it as quickly as others? Daley says there is a single case report in a 52 year old, then fails to tell us what it showed. Maybe he realized he better not after spitting out the reference to impress us? Dr. Sanchez continues, asking about spike protein found in blood by PCR? Daley says yes, it is recommended to look for this. Of course, Sanchez points out, we know that it is recommended. We want to know if it is found, or not.
merylnass:Daley says, “I have not seen that”. Wait what? 1,250 cases and you are not asking doctors to test them for the presence of spike protein in blood? What IS CDC suggesting they look for????
(Nass notes: a Harvard study of 13 vaccinees and an autopsy case report have shown spike protein does disseminate in the blood and to multiple organs.)
merylnass:Jose Romero jumps in to try and deflect.
merylnass:Frey asks about the relative incidence of myocarditis wrt Pfizer vs Moderna? (This was covered at the VRBPAC meeting 2 weeks ago, and both caused approximately the same amount, but only Pfizer is authorized for the under 18s.) Daley doesn’t know. What *does* CDC expert Daley know apart from a few tiny case series?
merylnass:Dr. Shimabukuro (this is the correct spelling) shows “data” from the V-safe system, which comes from kids reporting to CDC using a cell phone app. Like VAERS, this is not really reliable data. Furthermore, there are no solicited adverse events that would suggest myocarditis within the CDC’s web app. So why is he even providing these numbers in a talk on pediatric myocarditis?
merylnass:He provides the necessary caveat that VAERS data are not reliable either in terms of rates or causality. (This is why we need CDC to share its much more useful databases. You know, those most rigorous databases in the history of the world that they bragged about an hour ago. But a few minutes later he used the VAERS data to calculate observed rates. No one questioned this massive inconsistency.)
merylnass:Dr. Tom lists the “most commonly reported adverse events” which is how the federal agencies have preferred to present their data in recent years. The commonest side effects are all mild. They tell you nothing about longterm problems, disabilities, deaths. In fact, when you die, you can no longer report to V-safe on your cellphone app.
merylnass:I was wrong–there are now 1250 VAERS reports of myocarditis.
merylnass:Want to see how CDC minimizes the myocarditis cases in the 12-15 age group?
Their data collection ended on June 11. The first day kids under 16 could get a shot was May 11. While almost all cases occur with 5 days of the second dose of an mRNA vaccine, very few children who were vaccinated after May 11 had enough time in one month to get a second dose and present with symptoms. Even so, the rates are many times higher than expected in the age group 17 and under.
merylnass: The data collection he presents ended on June 11–so the window was only 31 days long. You cannot give a second dose earlier than 21 days after the first dose.
merylnass:Then Dr. Tom goes to the Vaccine Safety Datalink data, for which the numbers of myocarditis events are very small. This is a database comprised of the medical records of 12 million Americans. However, the great flaw with this database for assessing Covid vaccine side effects is that the vast majority of people who received Covid vaccinations in the US did so at special clinics that were deliberately set up outside the healthcare system, so the vaccinations were not entered into patients’ medical records.
Using this small database, he is able to abolish the statistical significance of some of the findings. However, even diluting the rate of myocarditis by using older age groups (up to age 39) and females, which have lower rates than young males, the increased number of observed vs expected cases is considerable.
merylnass:Clearly this is a big problem. But by choosing the VSD data, which has less than 100 cases in it, it looks less worrisome.
merylnass:Shimabukuro then presents the VSD ICD-10 data, and comes up with myocarditis cases in young men of only 1/32,000. If you limit the ages to 12-17 y/o males, the rate is about 1/16,000. Compare these rates to 1/3,000-1/6,000 from Israel. No attempt is made to explain the discrepancy. But I can explain it. CDC is not looking at its supposedly rigorous databases, such as its database of every soldier and every veteran.
merylnass:Now Grace Lee gives her presentation, with no question period for Dr. Shimabukuro. She points out how extensive the safety data are (most of which have never been mentioned at any advisory meeting) and she emphasizes how many meetings her VaST committee has held “to ensure that there is a sense that folks should have confidence” in the safety review. She notes that her group knew about myocarditis at its May 17 and May 24 meetings. I guess this is to show they have not been asleep at the switch. They recommended continued safety monitoring. (Duh, this is meaningless.) She recommended “appropriate management.” Are you impressed? Then she wanted to communicate transparently about what was and was not known. She repeats the commonest adverse events in kids. (Is this the 2nd or 3d times these meaningless data have been presented today?) “Based on the continued review of data, the risk of myocarditis in adolescents and adults…remains higher in adolescents and in males.”
merylnass:Based on chart confirmed cases –she gets the rate down to close to the baseline rate. She claims the VAERS data are similar to the VSD findings (yet VAERS findings are over 10x more.)
merylnass:Now she says there is a likely association betwen the mRNA vaccines and myocarditis, esp after dose 2. Her VaST committee will continue to look at this. It will continue to update CDC on its findings and conclusion.
merylnass:As of now, two major ways the rate of myocarditis were minimized was to lump people from age 39 and down, even though the highest rates are in the youngest kids. This waters down the rate. The other method, which I mentioned earlier, was to only include a very narrow window of time after the 12-15 year old vaccinations started, thus omitting the vast majority of dose 2’s, which is when about 3/4 or more of the myocarditis cases occur. Also, the genders were sometimes mixed. And rates in girls are much lower than boys.
merylnass:We have yet to hear about a single death, yet a young 19 year old black women was reported about a week ago to have died one month after a heart transplant, which followed her mRNA vaccination. It is very likely that some of the sudden deaths post vaccination are due to arrhythmias related to myocarditis, as well as pulmonary thromboemboli. And due to massive cytokine release.
merylnass:Dr. Tom points out that CDC should be able to get data from doctors and follow cases reported to VAERS. “We are in the process of planning how to do that” he says. This is asinine. There is already a process: all serious adverse events are required by law to have VAERS employees follow up the cases. Dr. Tom made clear that CDC does not appear to have been doing this, so far. CDC is the world expert in how not to look for data you do not want to find.
merylnass:A questioner whose name I missed points out that myocarditis is not rare in general, and is more common after vaccination. She notes the evidence is overwhelming of a dose response relationship, indicating causality. She further points out that V-safe reports note muscle pain in up to 50% of vaccinees. Might this be a signal of some myocarditis cases in those who report muscle pain? Why are we not seeing muscle pains in VAERS? Dr. Tom says it is the way the databases work, and that muscle pain (myalgia) is probably reported in VAERS too, just under the top ten reports, so it was not included in his chart.
merylnass:Dr. Freihofer chimes in, representing AMA. She applauds CDC about their work. She asks what is the real (baseline) rate of myocarditis?
merylnass:And asks how many are vaccinated? I guess the order must have gone down that baseline rates were not to be discussed. Dr. Tom says 53% over age 12 have been vaccinated in the US. Dr. Tom suggests she not “focus in on a specific number” to tell her patients what the risk of myocarditis is for them. He suggests “couching it instead in terms of the overall benefit and risk.”
merylnass:The nurse midwife asks about screening people for myocarditis who perform vigorous exercise. Dr. Tom says he will have to talk to some CDC group about that. We don’t get that level of detail in V-safe. It may be challenging to get at that informatin through V-safe. (I.e., you must be kidding?!! You want us to screen kids to find out which ones shouldn’t play sports in high school and college? You actually want us to go looking for these cases? Hasn’t it become clear to you by now we are trying to BURY the cases, not dig them up? Are you trying to get us to do something controversial, like tell kids who have been afflicted subclinically not to play sports?)
merylnass:Dr. Tom says that 3 of 29 VSD, chart-confirmed, vaccinated myocarditis cases had a history of Covid. One wonders, if he had a sample greater than 29, how many there might be? What if CDC had looked at non-Spike antibodies to try to detect cases of prior infection using a sensitive marker? Might CDC find a sign that maybe kids with prior infections should not be vaccinated? And that they should not get booster doses? Isn’t this really important to discern? Yet CDC has failed to recommend to treating physicians that they seek out this type of information to better assess the risk of vaccination in the recovered population.
merylnass:Someone suggested that questions asked by the V-safe phone app could be improved to elicit more comprehensive data, since we know better what to look for now. Dr. Tom said V-safe has standard questions and we are not changing it. VSD and VAERS might be better. Dr. Shah asked about geographic clustering of cases? Maybe there exists a respiratory or GI virus upon which the myocarditis could be blamed? Dr. Tom said we have no evidence on this.
merylnass:And now for the young ladies: Megan Wallace and Sarah Oliver. Dr. Oliver is one of the 3 CDC docs who lied to Congressman Tom Massie regarding CDC’s recommendation to vaccinate the recovered.
merylnass:Megan presents some modelling to try and scare the audience about variants. Her presentation has pretty colors for the different variants but is meaningless. About 50% of US cases are the original variant. 20% are delta. She presents nothing to suggest there is any difference between them.
merylnass:She exaggerates the hospitalization rates in adolescents, which I have recently discussed in my blog–when Dr. Cody Meissner pointed out that the CDC was lying about the current number at the VRBPAC meeting.
merylnass:Megan frightens us about MIS-C (multisystem inflammatory syndrome cases in children, but without context. The rates currently are next to nothing. But she warns that if Covid cases increase, so will MIS-C cases. Same for MIS-A (the adult cases). (That is the same as saying if we get more flu this year, we will get more penumonia. Duh.)
merylnass:She has very small numbers of MIS-C and -A cases, which allows her to emphasize that most of the cases she describes have been diagnosed in blacks and Latinos. She then moves on before we ask what this actually means and why her total numbers are so low.
merylnass:Megan tells us that overall efficacy of the Pfizer vaccine in youth is 100%. Moderna’s is almost that good. Then she did a risk vs benefit analysis, comparing myocarditis cases vs hospitalization rates for Covid in kids aged 12-29 years.
merylnass:The problem with her analysis is that the myocarditis rate she used is too low. But the risk from Covid is magnified. Variants, racial minorities, and the fact that minorities get vaccinated less than whites are presented as problems. But NO ONE of these CDC shills has divided the myocarditis cases, or other adverse effects, to tell us whether minority members are at greater risk of adverse vaccine effects. Yet it seems they are. Why is that information being withheld?
merylnass:Sara Oliver suggests that with care, even if you get myocarditis after a first shot, you might be able to get a second shot. We don’t know yet, but that is no reason to be excessively cautious.
merylnass:CDC’s current policy, just to remind everyone, is to vaccinate everyone age 12 and over. Will the ACIP give CDC cover, now that WHO has suggested kids under 18 should not now be vaccinated? CDC does NOT want a vote, just a little discussion.
merylnass:Doran Fink, MD, PhD is a liaison from FDA. He carefully informs the group that informing vaccine recipients of the myocarditis risk in the fact sheet they receive “would be warranted.” In fact, the FDA has been working on the language. They expect to add a warning re prior myocarditis cases and get this out soon. Sara Oliver says that CDC will coordinate with FDA to change their language too.
merylnass:Dr. Daley piped up to try and strengthen CDC’s argument: there have been 2,700 Covid deaths in the 12-29 age group and he suspects most have been vaccine preventable. Why wasn’t this emphasized? Megan points out that the vaccinated people are “removed from this risk pool”. What this means is that not a single person of the approximatley 6,000 deaths reported to VAERS post-vaccination has been included in a single calculation or chart presented during this ACIP meeting. Where did they go? If the FDA and the ACIP are not looking at them, then nobody is trying to figure out what killed them.
merylnass:I blogged about the WHO notice posted two days ago recommending that Covid vaccines not be given to children under 18. When today’s ACIP meeting presentations went along blithely as if the WHO warning did not exist, I thought I’d better recheck the WHO website with the warning. And guess what? WHO scrubbed their warning! It was posted 2 days ago, and scrubbed yesterday. If you go back to the website https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/covid-19-vaccines/advice you will find the current guidance. But if you take that URL to the WayBack Machine and dial in June 21, you can find the earlier warning about children.
merylnass:Isn’t it fascinating how these soulless bureaucrats (the ACIP members, CDC briefers and the liaison members) posing as MDs never mention that there must have been a huge blowup between CDC and WHO over this issue… which is probably why the meeting got postponed last week. Really, there has not been a voice for sanity raised by the people who are getting paid to be here.
merylnass:I tried to offer a public comment but did not get selected in the CDC’s lottery, they say.
merylnass:Now we are up to the public comments. Finally, some common sense. Why is Vitamin D sufficiency not being discussed? How can you regulators support Covid vaccines in our children when we still don’t know the long-term effects? The public has lost confidence in its public health agencies.
merylnass:Speaker two, Mr. Wm. Houston, notes that technical experts were not allowed to speak, nor was he allowed to cede his time to an expert. The trials must be halted immediately due to massive injuries and deaths. Thje EUAs were issued using scientific and medical fraud. It is highly questionable the benefits outweigh the risk. The alternatives were suppressed. The “VAERS data lag” or backloading of VAERS data is reported to be 3-14 x higher than the VAERS reports made public. He claims the number of vaccinations is being exaggerated to lower the rates of injuries. At that point Mr. Houston’s mike was cut off. The 3d speaker is Dr. Perry, a retired cardiologist. He points out the lack of evidence of benefit of vaccination in the recovered. One has to know the duration of immunity in order to make sensible vaccine policy–yet we don’t know this. The studies are ongoing. The reinfection rates are vanishingly small. Immunity is durable. T cell immunity is being neglected. His mike was then cut off. Speaker #4, Ms. Berry is a provaxxer who is providing testimony she was not allowed to give to the Ohio legislature. Ms Margolin is speaker #5. She is a traditional Chinese medicine practitioner who, with her colleagues, is seeing a large number of illnesses their patients attribute to the Covid vaccinations they received. She asks that the vaccinations be paused until all the VAERS reports have been investigated. She says TCM practitioners have the means to treat Covid successfully. Then was cut off, but managed to say, “First, do no harm.” Speaker #6 points out that ACIP members have been recently instructed to vote while the data were not yet available. She points out that the underlying rates are sketchy. And why do the different databases use different age ranges? Why are reactions being diluted by including those aged up to 39? She notes that in December, the ACIP met multiple time on the weekends when the manufacturers wanted their vaccine approvals. But this meeting got postponed over Juneteenth, which speaks volumes. Speaker #7, Dr. Moore, points out that she can read data, and the data are atrocious and frightening. The vaccines are still investigational but the data is not being collected. People are being shot up and left to deal with the consequences on their own. There are 6,000 deaths reported to VAERS despite a two month backlog on reports. You cannot vaccinate them to protect others, since the vaccines don’t prevent transmission. They do not contribute to herd immunity. Anyone who says that vaccine immunity is better than natural immunity needs to go back to medical school. (Hear! Hear!–Nass). Mrs. Detriech spoke next. She called the CDC to ask about myocarditis. Why can’t we wait for a full license? There is no pediatric Covid emergency. Most who were hospitalized had multiple comorbidities. It is unconscionable to ask a child to risk his life to protect adults. Is it okay for the CDC director to use out of date data to manipulate parents and public opinion? Then the Immunization Action Coalition’s Kelly Moore thanked several of the worst current and former CDC staff and produced a paean to Debra Wexler, founder of the IAC pro-vaccine slush fund she works for. Her comments have nothing to do with today’s discussion. Mrs. Johnson was next. She is very concerned about the adverse events of Covid vaccines. It was bad enough to target adults, but to target children is worse. There are NO long term studies, none of them. We don’t know what this will look like in a year. I implore you to do the right thing.
merylnass: NowSara Oliver is back with her chirpy voice to discuss future booster doses !!!
merylnass: These are her questions for discussion by ACIP members: Does everyone need booster doses? Can we switch manufacturers? How often will they need to be given?
merylnass:Sara never bloody well explains why booster doses are even being discussed. There is no evidence whatsoever that they are needed. Cases and deaths are as low as they have been since the onset of the pandemic in March 2020. The variants are causing no increased deaths or hospitalizations. And both vaccine and natural immunity have shown no evidence of waning.
merylnass:In other words, Dr. Sara and the CDC are clinically insane to suggest boosters at this time.
merylnass: Reckless and ignorant. Now our public servants have really gone off the rails.
merylnass:A correlate of protection (a lab result that can assure us that immunity has been achieved) has never been established. If it had, we could prove immunity and the public health bobble-docs would have no excuse to vaccinate people who have recovered and are now immune.
While there is no data to show that neutralizing antibody titers are sufficient to be used as correlates of protection, it looks like CDC is going to do its damnedest to use them anyway.
merylnass:And then Sara pulls out another *model* with fake estimates of strength and duration of protection. I wonder when the American public will start to tar and feather the modellers. Sara uses her models to tell us this MAY happen and that MAY happen. I hope you feel assured. She is really reaching here. And then suddenly, her mike is pulled. No more Sara Oliver MD, CDC’s latest Anne Schuchat wannabe. Has someone at CDC realized that her performance is not convincing the audience?
merylnass:I can see the slides moving, but the chirping has stopped.
merylnass:Well, we got her back. Not sure that was a good thing. I see a slide about variants. Now she is talking about adults in nursing homes. The vaccine efficacy is surprisingly high in this population. Now we go to the immunocompromised, which is 2.7% of the population. Maybe they are more susceptible to infection from variants–you never know, right?
merylnass:Maybe they will have a decreased immune response. You never know. That would be a GREAT excuse to give them boosters. What a super way to start giving out 3d, 4th, 5th doses. After all, the federal government has contracts for (if memory serves) at least a billion more doses. They have to be used, right? Before their use-by date, right?
merylnass:Sara shows a study done in a total of 40 people. Are you impressed? And she has another one in over a thousand people, but it only looks at antibody titers, not T cells. And since CDC has been unable to show that antibody titers serve as a surrogate for protection, why are we even discusing them?
Sara has a few anecdotes regarding immediate antibody levels after giving booster doses to patients with challenging conditions. But she never admits that in similar situations with other vaccines, the antibody levels rise immediately, but then often drop rapidly. And blocking antibodies or ADE may be induced. Ms. Chirpy does admit there is concern about this population’s ability to respond to booster doses, but then again, monoclonal antibodies could solve that problem. (Don’t the monoclonals currently cost $30,000 a pop?)
merylnass:Studies are upcoming. We at CDC will continue to monitor for variants of concern and breakthrough illness cases (but only with a low cycle threshold to reduce their counts).
merylnass:CDC is doing studies to look at antibodies at 6 months…suggesting its plan is to administer boosters every six months. By early fall CDC will have lots of data to justify boosters. ACIP will be meeting to vote on boosters then. The CDC working group said it would consider boosters if there is evidence of vaccine protection waning or if variants occur which escape vaccine protection. Sara’s voice gets a little sad here. How can it be that the working group wants evidence that boosters are needed before recommending them? Can’t ACIP recommend boosters already, based on the risk of disease? (I.e., based on the supposition they might be needed?)
merylnass:Sara finally seems a little forlorn, but ends her presentation with a trill of thanks to the amazing CDC team.
merylnass:Thanks to the CHD commenters, who point out that if the vaccine does not prevent transmission, why does the US need to vaccinate the world?
merylnass:Ms Chirpey 2 jumps in: Amanda Cohn, MD, another gal who lied to Tom Massie that CDC would not recommend vaccinations for those who are already immune . “The more data we wait for, the more preventable cases may occur,” she asserts solemnly. In other words, ACIP members, give us at CDC the wink to let us know we can convene you again soon to approve the boosters. In other words, can’t be just fuggedabout the data?
merylnass:One of the most remarkable things about ACIP meetings is the level of erudition of the participants. The level is very low. No one displays any evidence of immunology knowledge. Very little literature is cited, apart from that cooked up in CDC’s magic science kitchen. Remember, CDC has a stable of magic science experts who, for example, showed masks work by choosing a mathematical method (cumulative cases for the denominator) and period of time (mostly spring into summer) that guaranteed disease rates would fall after masks mandates were instituted.
merylnass:The end of this meeting is perhaps the most disappointing. The participants are so mealy-mouthed that you can hardly understand what they are saying. They appear to be trying to find a way to justify boosters without data, by rambling around spouting illogical suppositions. I fear they have given CDC the thumbs up: yes, they are prepared to approve boosters in the absence of data and the absence of need. Grace Lee, however, says we need to see breakthrough cases before starting boosters.
But CDC had just changed its standards to reduce the notifications of breakthrough cases.
merylnass:Uh oh! CDC may need to dial up those cycle thresholds on breakthrough cases to jack up their numbers.
merylnass:Amanda comes back. She is SO relieved. Her ACIP members are even more supine than she expected. Now she is asking them to commit to when she can start the boosters!
merylnass:Jose Romero, the chair, says they have given CDC “the information they were looking for.” Yup. ACIP kissed the ring again. This is truly a travesty.
merylnass:I’ve got a new name for ACIP: Boosters ‘R Us
Update June 30: The June 28 NYT tells us that those booster doses Sara Oliver wants us all to have appear to be unnecessary.
The findings add to growing evidence that most people immunized with the mRNA vaccines may not need boosters, so long as the virus and its variants do not evolve much beyond their current forms — which is not guaranteed. People who recovered from Covid-19 before being vaccinated may not need boosters even if the virus does make a significant transformation…
The results suggest that a vast majority of vaccinated people will be protected over the long term — at least, against the existing coronavirus variants. But older adults, people with weak immune systems and those who take drugs that suppress immunity may need boosters; people who survived Covid-19 and were later immunized may never need them at all.
Exactly how long the protection from mRNA vaccines will last is hard to predict. In the absence of variants that sidestep immunity, in theory immunity could last a lifetime, experts said. But the virus is clearly evolving.
“Anything that would actually require a booster would be variant-based, not based on waning of immunity,” Dr. Bhattacharya said. “I just don’t see that happening.”