Do vaccines work are they safe?

Do Covid-19 vaccines work?


The global effort to vaccinate people against SARS-CoV-2 in the midst of an ongoing pandemic has raised questions about the nature of vaccine breakthrough infections and the potential for vaccinated individuals to transmit the virus. These questions have become even more urgent as new variants of concern with enhanced transmissibility, such as Delta, continue to emerge. To shed light on how vaccine breakthrough infections compare with infections in immunologically naive individuals, we examined viral dynamics and infectious virus shedding through daily longitudinal sampling in a small cohort of adults infected with SARS-CoV-2 at varying stages of vaccination. The durations of both infectious virus shedding and symptoms were significantly reduced in vaccinated individuals compared with unvaccinated individuals. We also observed that breakthrough infections are associated with strong tissue compartmentalization and are only detectable in saliva in some cases. These data indicate that vaccination shortens the duration of time of high transmission potential, minimizes symptom duration, and may restrict tissue dissemination.

The vaccines do not stop people getting COvid-19, but the vaccianted are less likely to contract the disease and if they do they are less likely to infect others and less likely to become seriously ill.

But are they safe?

Professor Graham Le Gros says they are:

“The way we eliminate this virus is vaccination,” Le Gros said. . . 

This vaccine is the safest vaccine I’ve ever seen,” he said.

Le Gros’ confidence in the vaccine comes from seeing the “rigerous” testing and monitoring it has undergone since being released, he said.

The vaccine is monitored both globally by health authorities who report on it. He says providers also do interior testing while also seeing if there are any effects for numerous demographics including the elderly and those with asthma.

“It drives a scientist like me nuts with how rigorous [testing the vaccine] is,” Le Gros said.

“It doesn’t just stop with looking at the data once, they are forever monitoring in what they call ‘phase four’ of the trial.” . . 

Why do so many people still question the efficacy and safety of the vaccines?

Despite the constant monitoring, Le Gros conceded there is misinformation spreading about the vaccine through numerous channels making it more difficult for New Zealand to hit its vaccination targets.

It’s an issue Dr Vanisi Prescott has been trying to tackle on social media with informative videos on platforms such as Tik Tok, but she told Breakfast it’s an uphill battle.

“It’s heartbreaking seeing our most vulnerable communities being effected by this misinformation,” Prescott said. “There’s so much misinformation out there and it’s difficult to decipher what information to actually listen to.

“The issue with social media is that it doesn’t differentiate truth from rumour and it’s become such an issue that it’s caused a lot of animosity and division as well as anxiety and fear among our people.”

Prescott said she understands people have their reasons if they choose not to get vaccinated but misinformation from social media shouldn’t be one of them.

“Social media masks the fact that there have been a vast majority of studies and medical opinion out there to confirm that this is a safe vaccine and good for all of us.

“Try not to rely on what we see out there but trust in sources or people you trust in like your GP.”

Prescott added she has extra motivation for informing those who are both vulnerable to the virus and misinformation.

“With me being a Tongan GP, I stand firmly in terms of my culture and my values and that is to respect, love and care for my patients – I wouldn’t be standing in front of everyone advocating for a vaccine if we didn’t know it was safe. . .

Charlie Mitchell’s three weeks down the misinformation rabbit hole of dangerous misinformation shows how easy it is to find misinformation and views that foster fears.

There’s lots to be said for not taking everything that comes from official sources as gospel, for questioning and challenging authorities and for doing your own research.

But that doesn’t mean thinking something you find by googling should carry more weight than the data and evidence resulting from scientific rigor by qualified people with experience in the field.

7 Responses to Do vaccines work are they safe?

  1. Bulaman says:

    This is worth a watch (as are his older ones)


  2. Andrei says:

    Le Gros’ confidence in the vaccine comes from seeing the “rigerous” testing and monitoring it has undergone since being released, he said.

    The vaccine is monitored both globally by health authorities who report on it. He says providers also do interior testing while also seeing if there are any effects for numerous demographics including the elderly and those with asthma.

    “It drives a scientist like me nuts with how rigorous [testing the vaccine] is,” Le Gros said.

    “It doesn’t just stop with looking at the data once, they are forever monitoring in what they call ‘phase four’ of the trial.” . .

    This is propaganda and example of the “Appeal to Authority” logical fallacy

    There is an accepted protocol that has to be followed before authorising any new drug, vaccine or technique for general
    therapeutic use

    This is to ensure

    (1)That it is actually useful and provides a better outcome for patients than any treatments or approaches that are currently available

    (2) To it doesn’t have any unforeseen side effects that are deleterious to the patient

    The way this is done is to construct two matched groups of people, using one as the test group and the other as a control group and conduct a longitudinal study over a period of five to ten years, preferably a double blind study where the people conducting the experiment are unaware of which people are controls (given a placebo) and which people are the test subjects. The people who analyse the data will be the only people who know which group is which

    This slow and methodical approach is what prevents things like the Thalidomide disaster.

    For some treatments and drugs some patients may exhibit what are called “paradoxical effects” in which rather than alleviating the condition being treated it actually exacerbates it, and this is something I have personally experienced – sadly at my stage of life I take many medications, some of which carry risks, My liver function is monitored on a monthly basis due to a drug I take carrying the risk of liver damage

    This rigorous and expensive approach can also have beneficial effects for the developers of the treatments, for example Viagra was developed to help patients with circulatory problems, for which it works well – but it had the unforeseen “side effect” of increasing male libido and this “side effect” has generated far more profits for the manufacturers of viagra than its original use would have

    It probably takes five to ten years to do these studies and it costs a lot of money and most new drugs fall by the wayside during this process

    The other thing that alarms me about this is that before treating a patient for anything you need to balance the risk of the treatment against the risk of the thing you are treating.

    If you take an individualistic approach to this what happens is a patient discusses with his/her GP what the options are. And this would be with every health issue you can imagine – the GP might defer to a specialist and book a consultation for you but the concept the same – and often you might seek a second opinion for something very serious

    In this case you would ask what is the risk of a Covid infection to me, what are the risks of the vaccine and make your informed choice accordingly

    Mass vaccination is a collective approach and it is an article of faith that the outcome for everyone is better, even if there are some casualties along the way – I am not a collective approach guy philosophically and collective approaches historically have left many devastated lives in their wake

    The last part of the quote I extracted is worth repeating

    “It doesn’t just stop with looking at the data once, they are forever monitoring in what they call ‘phase four’ of the trial.” . .

    That is a freudian slip and a tacit admission that we are being used subjects mass public health experiment without our informed consent and in many cases being coerced to participate


  3. adamsmith1922 says:

    Reblogged this on The Inquiring Mind.


  4. Tom Hunter says:

    Time for a chuckle..


  5. Tom Hunter says:

    Back to seriousness.

    First, running my factors into the Oxford University Covid-19 risk calculation I get for me a risk that means in a crowd of 10,000 people with the same risk factors as me, 2 are likely to catch and die from COVID-19 and 10 to be admitted to hospital. If I happen to be one of those two it doesn’t change those odds.

    Which is why, while fully encouraging people 65+ and/or suffering from health problems, to get vaccinated, I will not be getting it myself, despite having had some 50-60 vaccinations in my life, including booster shots.


  6. Tom Hunter says:

    BTW, I see the next target are young people and kids, demographics who odds of severe illness and death are literally millions to one against. By contrast – and I wonder what your Stuff journalist would think of this…

    Thinking that everyone must be vaccinated is as scientifically flawed as thinking that nobody should. COVID vaccines are important for older high-risk people, and their care-takers. Those with prior natural infection do not need it. Nor children.

    If you haven’t seen that quote Elle it’s because FaceTwit and company banned it, along with the MSM, as well as banning the Twitter account of the person who said it. And who is he?

    Dr. Martin Kulldorff is a professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and a biostatistician and epidemiologist at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He helped develop the CDC’s current system for monitoring potential vaccine risks.

    Kulldorff is a “world-class” vaccine safety “superstar,” said Jeffrey Brown, a Harvard Medical School colleague specializing in drug and vaccine safety research. “His qualifications are spectacular,” Brown said of Kulldorff. “He’s an international expert in vaccine safety. No one on earth would question whether he’s qualified. … He’s a pioneer.”

    And in another BTW, last Friday none other than the FDA voted 16-2 to not to approve booster shots for anybody less than 65 years of age. In doing so Doran Fink, M.D., deputy director of the clinical side of the FDA’s Division of Vaccines and Related Products Applications said this:
    “If you look at the healthcare claims data, you see that there is evidence of some attributable risk at all age groups, although, the older you get, the higher the risk of complications from COVID that offset the risk of myocarditis,” he said. “So, when you look at the balances of risk versus benefit, what we really start to see is risk of myocarditis being higher [than COVID-19] in males under age 40.”

    To be precise, as he explained in committee, the odds of myocarditis from the vaccine in the young appear to be 1 in 5000, vastly greater than their odds of sickness and death from Covid-19.


  7. Andrei says:

    And her comes that Shaun Hendy clown right on cue pulling numbers out of his no 2 sewerage outlet

    Covid-19 NZ: Modelling suggests 7000 deaths in a year even with 75 per cent of country jabbed

    New modelling prepared for the Government by Shaun Hendy suggests that New Zealand could see up to 7000 Covid-19 deaths a year even with a high proportion of the population jabbed.

    The modelling from Te Pūnaha Matatini suggests that if 80 per cent of those aged five or over were fully vaccinated – around 75 per cent of the entire country – Covid-19 would still cause a serious death toll without other restrictions.

    Hendy projects it could cause just under 60,000 hospitalisations and just under 7000 deaths over a one-year period.

    If 90 per cent of the 5+ population was reached however – around 85 per cent of the full population – then deaths could drop to around 600 over a year, or just 50 alongside some other health measures.

    This is form of 21st century haruspicy which takes on the form and language of science but does not actually have any real scientific substance .

    Pseudo science like this comes in handy for advancing political agendas but doesn’t add anything of real world value to the man in the street


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