What do we know about Covid-19 vaccines in under 5s?

How researchers and public health officials perceive the risk-benefit ratio of rolling out vaccines to under 5s varies around the world and depends on the impact covid-19 has had on that country. Sweden has had just a handful of fatalities in those aged under 18,6 and vaccines are still not available to children aged 5-11 years. But in Brazil the virus has killed an average of two children under the age of 5 each day7—a rate which equates to around one in every five deaths among under 5s worldwide. Understandably, doctors are keen to boost protection levels, fearful of the impact that future variants might have.

BMJ 2022;378:o1892 — https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.o1892 (Published 23 August 2022)

Are You Still Thinking About a Booster Shot?

What worries me is that what we now know in the United States is even if you’ve been vaccinated against Covid, you can incubate and replicate these variants, or even perhaps the native virus, in your nose, because we have incomplete immunity in the nose in someone who’s been vaccinated fully against Covid.

Corey Casper is the CEO of the Infectious Disease Research Institute and a professor of medicine and global health at the University of Washington.

The science behind booster shots – https://www.opb.org/article/2021/08/24/the-science-behind-booster-shots/

Experts say “waning immunity” is concerning, but it isn’t as scary as it sounds. The vaccines still work, and for most people, still provide a high level of protection against severe disease. “It’s been a challenge,” says Mark Slifka, an immunologist at Oregon Health and Science University. “because some people will say, ‘well the vaccines aren’t working.’ And that’s a misconception. Vaccines are still providing 90 percent protection against mortality and hospitalization.” Breakthrough infections have increased but infections are still three times more likely in unvaccinated than vaccinated individuals. Of those infections, only 3.9 percent have led to hospitalization in vaccinated patients compared to 9 percent in those who remain unvaccinated.

Six Questions About Waning Immunity to Covid-19 Answered — https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/six-questions-about-waning-immunity-to-covid-19-answered-180979135/

No political agenda here, no conspiracy theories. I’m just sharing some informative articles and hope you find them helpful as you navigate the Never Ending Pandemic.

mRNA Vaccination Induces Durable Immune Memory to SARS-CoV-2 with Continued Evolution to Variants of Concern

Twitter thread above. Link to the preprint study here:

https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/2021.08.23.457229v1

I Just Had my WOW Moment of the Weekend

WOW!

Protective heterologous T cell immunity in COVID-19 induced by the trivalent Measles-Mumps-Rubella and Tetanus-Diptheria-Pertussis vaccine antigens — Published:August 13, 2021DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.medj.2021.08.004

There is a downloadable PDF of the study at the link above. Most of the terminology and research methodology is WAY above my pay grade but the conclusion is still a WOW.

The Saddest Covid-19 Statistic

“For those of us in public health, it’s nothing short of amazing,” Dr. Jeff Duchin, the chief health officer for Seattle and King County, told me the other day. I had called Duchin to ask about a startling claim he made recently. At a weekly health briefing, he offhandedly remarked that of King County’s recent COVID-19 cases, 97% had occurred in unvaccinated people. It effectively meant the only people still catching coronavirus here in King County are people who haven’t gotten the shots. It also means the disease that just a few months ago threatened the entire nation is now almost exclusively circulating among a shrinking few.

“We’re getting to the point where it’s a tale of two societies,” says Dr. Umair Shah, the state health secretary.Shah reported this past week that unvaccinated people between ages 45 and 64 are now being hospitalized for COVID at rates 21 times higher than the vaccinated.

The ‘two societies’: 97% of new COVID cases are among people who haven’t gotten the shots — https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/health/the-two-societies-97-of-new-covid-cases-are-among-people-who-havent-gotten-the-shots/#comments

At the Seattle Times website for this article you’ll find over 500 comments. After reading several comments I had to stop. Every comment I read made me sad about all of the things we have gotten wrong during the pandemic. One of the worst things that has happened was the politicization of Covid-19. Sometimes I just wish it would stop.

If for whatever reason you choose to refuse the vaccine I have no interest in debating your decision. I’ll present some facts and we can remain cordial.

COVID-19 Vaccinations by Race/Ethnicity

While the data provide useful insights, they also remain subject to gaps, limitations, and inconsistencies that limit the ability to get a complete picture of who is and who is not getting vaccinated. For example, data gaps and separate reporting of data for vaccinations administered through the Indian Health Service limit the ability to analyze vaccinations among American Indian and Alaska Native people and Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander. Moreover, some states have high shares of vaccinations that are missing race/ethnicity or that are classified as “other,” limiting the ability to interpret the data. For example, in Alaska, over 30% of vaccinations were among people classified as “other” race, and race was unknown for over 30% of vaccinations in Virginia. Four states were not reporting vaccination data by race/ethnicity, including Georgia which halted reporting its data in March. Comprehensive standardized data across states will be vital to monitor and ensure equitable access to and take up of the vaccine.

Latest Data on COVID-19 Vaccinations Race/Ethnicity — https://www.kff.org/coronavirus-covid-19/issue-brief/latest-data-on-covid-19-vaccinations-race-ethnicity/

Meanwhile in Oklahoma…

Meanwhile More Israeli Data

Vaccines shift the age distribution of the critically ill from SARS-CoV-2 to younger ages in the preliminary data from Israel. This is no time to let your guard down. Stay safe and get vaccinated as soon as you can.

Meanwhile in Israel…

In Israel, people who are 60 years and older were prioritized to get the vaccine first. When we analyze that group, we see that since the peak in mid-January, there’s now a 55% reduction in cases, 40% reduction in hospitalizations, 35% reduction in critically ill patients, and also now even a 35% reduction in mortality in that age group.

‘The Impact of the Vaccine Has Been Tremendous’ Medscape – Feb 17, 2021. — https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/945680#vp_2