• Six months on, Gaza is a "betrayal of humanity" – Day 182 Israel admits to "grave mistake"; UN leaders reflect on 6 months of slaughter; US on high alert for possible attack by Iran; childhood in Gaza
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    Six months on, Gaza is a "betrayal of humanity" – Day 182 Israel admits to "grave mistake"; UN leaders reflect on 6 months of slaughter; US on high alert for possible attack by Iran; childhood in Gaza — Read… http://donshafi911.business.blog/2024/04/07/six-months-on-gaza-is-a-betrayal-of-humanity-day-182/
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    Six months on, Gaza is a “betrayal of humanity” – Day 182
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  • The WHO Pandemic Agreement: A Guide
    By David Bell, Thi Thuy Van Dinh March 22, 2024 Government, Society 30 minute read
    The World Health Organization (WHO) and its 194 Member States have been engaged for over two years in the development of two ‘instruments’ or agreements with the intent of radically changing the way pandemics and other health emergencies are managed.

    One, consisting of draft amendments to the existing International health Regulations (IHR), seeks to change the current IHR non-binding recommendations into requirements or binding recommendations, by having countries “undertake” to implement those given by the WHO in future declared health emergencies. It covers all ‘public health emergencies of international concern’ (PHEIC), with a single person, the WHO Director-General (DG) determining what a PHEIC is, where it extends, and when it ends. It specifies mandated vaccines, border closures, and other directives understood as lockdowns among the requirements the DG can impose. It is discussed further elsewhere and still under negotiation in Geneva.

    A second document, previously known as the (draft) Pandemic Treaty, then Pandemic Accord, and more recently the Pandemic Agreement, seeks to specify governance, supply chains, and various other interventions aimed at preventing, preparing for, and responding to, pandemics (pandemic prevention, preparedness and response – PPPR). It is currently being negotiated by the Intergovernmental Negotiating Body (INB).

    Both texts will be subject to a vote at the May 2024 World Health Assembly (WHA) in Geneva, Switzerland. These votes are intended, by those promoting these projects, to bring governance of future multi-country healthcare emergencies (or threats thereof) under the WHO umbrella.

    The latest version of the draft Pandemic Agreement (here forth the ‘Agreement’) was released on 7th March 2024. However, it is still being negotiated by various committees comprising representatives of Member States and other interested entities. It has been through multiple iterations over two years, and looks like it. With the teeth of the pandemic response proposals in the IHR, the Agreement looks increasingly irrelevant, or at least unsure of its purpose, picking up bits and pieces in a half-hearted way that the IHR amendments do not, or cannot, include. However, as discussed below, it is far from irrelevant.

    Historical Perspective

    These aim to increase the centralization of decision-making within the WHO as the “directing and coordinating authority.” This terminology comes from the WHO’s 1946 Constitution, developed in the aftermath of the Second World War as the world faced the outcomes of European fascism and the similar approaches widely imposed through colonialist regimes. The WHO would support emerging countries, with rapidly expanding and poorly resourced populations struggling under high disease burdens, and coordinate some areas of international support as these sovereign countries requested it. The emphasis of action was on coordinating rather than directing.

    In the 80 years prior to the WHO’s existence, international public health had grown within a more directive mindset, with a series of meetings by colonial and slave-owning powers from 1851 to manage pandemics, culminating in the inauguration of the Office Internationale d’Hygiene Publique in Paris in 1907, and later the League of Nations Health Office. World powers imposed health dictates on those less powerful, in other parts of the world and increasingly on their own population through the eugenics movement and similar approaches. Public health would direct, for the greater good, as a tool of those who wish to direct the lives of others.

    The WHO, governed by the WHA, was to be very different. Newly independent States and their former colonial masters were ostensibly on an equal footing within the WHA (one country – one vote), and the WHO’s work overall was to be an example of how human rights could dominate the way society works. The model for international public health, as exemplified in the Declaration of Alma Ata in 1978, was to be horizontal rather than vertical, with communities and countries in the driving seat.

    With the evolution of the WHO in recent decades from a core funding model (countries give money, the WHO decides under the WHA guidance how to spend it) to a model based on specified funding (funders, both public and increasingly private, instruct the WHO on how to spend it), the WHO has inevitably changed to become a public-private partnership required to serve the interests of funders rather than populations.

    As most funding comes from a few countries with major Pharma industrial bases, or private investors and corporations in the same industry, the WHO has been required to emphasize the use of pharmaceuticals and downplay evidence and knowledge where these clash (if it wants to keep all its staff funded). It is helpful to view the draft Agreement, and the IHR amendments, in this context.

    Why May 2024?

    The WHO, together with the World Bank, G20, and other institutions have been emphasizing the urgency of putting the new pandemic instruments in place earnestly, before the ‘next pandemic.’ This is based on claims that the world was unprepared for Covid-19, and that the economic and health harm would be somehow avoidable if we had these agreements in place.

    They emphasize, contrary to evidence that Covid-19 virus (SARS-CoV-2) origins involve laboratory manipulation, that the main threats we face are natural, and that these are increasing exponentially and present an “existential” threat to humanity. The data on which the WHO, the World Bank, and G20 base these claims demonstrates the contrary, with reported natural outbreaks having increased as detection technologies have developed, but reducing in mortality rate, and in numbers, over the past 10 to 20 years..

    A paper cited by the World Bank to justify urgency and quoted as suggesting a 3x increase in risk in the coming decade actually suggests that a Covid-19-like event would occur roughly every 129 years, and a Spanish-flu repetition every 292 to 877 years. Such predictions are unable to take into account the rapidly changing nature of medicine and improved sanitation and nutrition (most deaths from Spanish flu would not have occurred if modern antibiotics had been available), and so may still overestimate risk. Similarly, the WHO’s own priority disease list for new outbreaks only includes two diseases of proven natural origin that have over 1,000 historical deaths attributed to them. It is well demonstrated that the risk and expected burden of pandemics is misrepresented by major international agencies in current discussions.

    The urgency for May 2024 is clearly therefore inadequately supported, firstly because neither the WHO nor others have demonstrated how the harms accrued through Covid-19 would be reduced through the measures proposed, and secondly because the burden and risk is misrepresented. In this context, the state of the Agreement is clearly not where it should be as a draft international legally binding agreement intended to impose considerable financial and other obligations on States and populations.

    This is particularly problematic as the proposed expenditure; the proposed budget is over $31 billion per year, with over $10 billion more on other One Health activities. Much of this will have to be diverted from addressing other diseases burdens that impose far greater burden. This trade-off, essential to understand in public health policy development, has not yet been clearly addressed by the WHO.

    The WHO DG stated recently that the WHO does not want the power to impose vaccine mandates or lockdowns on anyone, and does not want this. This begs the question of why either of the current WHO pandemic instruments is being proposed, both as legally binding documents. The current IHR (2005) already sets out such approaches as recommendations the DG can make, and there is nothing non-mandatory that countries cannot do now without pushing new treaty-like mechanisms through a vote in Geneva.

    Based on the DG’s claims, they are essentially redundant, and what new non-mandatory clauses they contain, as set out below, are certainly not urgent. Clauses that are mandatory (Member States “shall”) must be considered within national decision-making contexts and appear against the WHO’s stated intent.

    Common sense would suggest that the Agreement, and the accompanying IHR amendments, be properly thought through before Member States commit. The WHO has already abandoned the legal requirement for a 4-month review time for the IHR amendments (Article 55.2 IHR), which are also still under negotiation just 2 months before the WHA deadline. The Agreement should also have at least such a period for States to properly consider whether to agree – treaties normally take many years to develop and negotiate and no valid arguments have been put forward as to why these should be different.

    The Covid-19 response resulted in an unprecedented transfer of wealth from those of lower income to the very wealthy few, completely contrary to the way in which the WHO was intended to affect human society. A considerable portion of these pandemic profits went to current sponsors of the WHO, and these same corporate entities and investors are set to further benefit from the new pandemic agreements. As written, the Pandemic Agreement risks entrenching such centralization and profit-taking, and the accompanying unprecedented restrictions on human rights and freedoms, as a public health norm.

    To continue with a clearly flawed agreement simply because of a previously set deadline, when no clear population benefit is articulated and no true urgency demonstrated, would therefore be a major step backward in international public health. Basic principles of proportionality, human agency, and community empowerment, essential for health and human rights outcomes, are missing or paid lip-service. The WHO clearly wishes to increase its funding and show it is ‘doing something,’ but must first articulate why the voluntary provisions of the current IHR are insufficient. It is hoped that by systematically reviewing some key clauses of the agreement here, it will become clear why a rethink of the whole approach is necessary. The full text is found below.

    The commentary below concentrates on selected draft provisions of the latest publicly available version of the draft agreement that seem to be unclear or potentially problematic. Much of the remaining text is essentially pointless as it reiterates vague intentions to be found in other documents or activities which countries normally undertake in the course of running health services, and have no place in a focused legally-binding international agreement.

    REVISED Draft of the negotiating text of the WHO Pandemic Agreement. 7th March, 2024

    Preamble

    Recognizing that the World Health Organization…is the directing and coordinating authority on international health work.

    This is inconsistent with a recent statement by the WHO DG that the WHO has no interest or intent to direct country health responses. To reiterate it here suggests that the DG is not representing the true position regarding the Agreement. “Directing authority” is however in line with the proposed IHR Amendments (and the WHO’s Constitution), under which countries will “undertake” ahead of time to follow the DG’s recommendations (which thereby become instructions). As the HR amendments make clear, this is intended to apply even to a perceived threat rather than actual harm.

    Recalling the constitution of the World Health Organization…highest attainable standard of health is one of the fundamental rights of every human being without distinction of race, religion, political belief, economic or social condition.

    This statement recalls fundamental understandings of public health, and is of importance here as it raises the question of why the WHO did not strongly condemn prolonged school closures, workplace closures, and other impoverishing policies during the Covid-19 response. In 2019, WHO made clear that these dangers should prevent actions we now call ‘lockdowns’ from being imposed.

    Deeply concerned by the gross inequities at national and international levels that hindered timely and equitable access to medical and other Covid-19 pandemic-related products, and the serious shortcomings in pandemic preparedness.

    In terms of health equity (as distinct from commodity of ‘vaccine’ equity), inequity in the Covid-19 response was not in failing to provide a vaccine against former variants to immune, young people in low-income countries who were at far higher risk from endemic diseases, but in the disproportionate harm to them of uniformly-imposed NPIs that reduced current and future income and basic healthcare, as was noted by the WHO in 2019 Pandemic Influenza recommendations. The failure of the text to recognize this suggests that lessons from Covid-19 have not informed this draft Agreement. The WHO has not yet demonstrated how pandemic ‘preparedness,’ in the terms they use below, would have reduced impact, given that there is poor correlation between strictness or speed of response and eventual outcomes.

    Reiterating the need to work towards…an equitable approach to mitigate the risk that pandemics exacerbate existing inequities in access to health services,

    As above – in the past century, the issue of inequity has been most pronounced in pandemic response, rather than the impact of the virus itself (excluding the physiological variation in risk). Most recorded deaths from acute pandemics, since the Spanish flu, were during Covid-19, in which the virus hit mainly sick elderly, but response impacted working-age adults and children heavily and will continue to have effect, due to increased poverty and debt; reduced education and child marriage, in future generations.

    These have disproportionately affected lower-income people, and particularly women. The lack of recognition of this in this document, though they are recognized by the World Bank and UN agencies elsewhere, must raise real questions on whether this Agreement has been thoroughly thought through, and the process of development been sufficiently inclusive and objective.

    Chapter I. Introduction

    Article 1. Use of terms

    (i) “pathogen with pandemic potential” means any pathogen that has been identified to infect a human and that is: novel (not yet characterized) or known (including a variant of a known pathogen), potentially highly transmissible and/or highly virulent with the potential to cause a public health emergency of international concern.

    This provides a very wide scope to alter provisions. Any pathogen that can infect humans and is potentially highly transmissible or virulent, though yet uncharacterized means virtually any coronavirus, influenza virus, or a plethora of other relatively common pathogen groups. The IHR Amendments intend that the DG alone can make this call, over the advice of others, as occurred with monkeypox in 2022.

    (j) “persons in vulnerable situations” means individuals, groups or communities with a disproportionate increased risk of infection, severity, disease or mortality.

    This is a good definition – in Covid-19 context, would mean the sick elderly, and so is relevant to targeting a response.

    “Universal health coverage” means that all people have access to the full range of quality health services they need, when and where they need them, without financial hardship.

    While the general UHC concept is good, it is time a sensible (rather than patently silly) definition was adopted. Society cannot afford the full range of possible interventions and remedies for all, and clearly there is a scale of cost vs benefit that prioritizes certain ones over others. Sensible definitions make action more likely, and inaction harder to justify. One could argue that none should have the full range until all have good basic care, but clearly the earth will not support ‘the full range’ for 8 billion people.

    Article 2. Objective

    This Agreement is specifically for pandemics (a poorly defined term but essentially a pathogen that spreads rapidly across national borders). In contrast, the IHR amendments accompanying it are broader in scope – for any public health emergencies of international concern.

    Article 3. Principles

    2. the sovereign right of States to adopt, legislate and implement legislation

    The amendments to the IHR require States to undertake to follow WHO instructions ahead of time, before such instruction and context are known. These two documents must be understood, as noted later in the Agreement draft, as complementary.

    3. equity as the goal and outcome of pandemic prevention, preparedness and response, ensuring the absence of unfair, avoidable or remediable differences among groups of people.

    This definition of equity here needs clarification. In the pandemic context, the WHO emphasized commodity (vaccine) equity during the Covid-19 response. Elimination of differences implied equal access to Covid-19 vaccines in countries with large aging, obese highly vulnerable populations (e.g. the USA or Italy), and those with young populations at minimal risk and with far more pressing health priorities (e.g. Niger or Uganda).

    Alternatively, but equally damaging, equal access to different age groups within a country when the risk-benefit ratio is clearly greatly different. This promotes worse health outcomes by diverting resources from where they are most useful, as it ignores heterogeneity of risk. Again, an adult approach is required in international agreements, rather than feel-good sentences, if they are going to have a positive impact.

    5. …a more equitable and better prepared world to prevent, respond to and recover from pandemics

    As with ‘3’ above, this raises a fundamental problem: What if health equity demands that some populations divert resources to childhood nutrition and endemic diseases rather than the latest pandemic, as these are likely of far higher burden to many younger but lower-income populations? This would not be equity in the definition implied here, but would clearly lead to better and more equal health outcomes.

    The WHO must decide whether it is about uniform action, or minimizing poor health, as these are clearly very different. They are the difference between the WHO’s commodity equity, and true health equity.

    Chapter II. The world together equitably: achieving equity in, for and through pandemic prevention, preparedness and response

    Equity in health should imply a reasonably equal chance of overcoming or avoiding preventable sickness. The vast majority of sickness and death is due to either non-communicable diseases often related to lifestyle, such as obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus, undernutrition in childhood, and endemic infectious diseases such as tuberculosis, malaria, and HIV/AIDS. Achieving health equity would primarily mean addressing these.

    In this chapter of the draft Pandemic Agreement, equity is used to imply equal access to specific health commodities, particularly vaccines, for intermittent health emergencies, although these exert a small fraction of the burden of other diseases. It is, specifically, commodity-equity, and not geared to equalizing overall health burden but to enabling centrally-coordinated homogenous responses to unusual events.

    Article 4. Pandemic prevention and surveillance

    2. The Parties shall undertake to cooperate:

    (b) in support of…initiatives aimed at preventing pandemics, in particular those that improve surveillance, early warning and risk assessment; .…and identify settings and activities presenting a risk of emergence and re-emergence of pathogens with pandemic potential.

    (c-h) [Paragraphs on water and sanitation, infection control, strengthening of biosafety, surveillance and prevention of vector-born diseases, and addressing antimicrobial resistance.]

    The WHO intends the Agreement to have force under international law. Therefore, countries are undertaking to put themselves under force of international law in regards to complying with the agreement’s stipulations.

    The provisions under this long article mostly cover general health stuff that countries try to do anyway. The difference will be that countries will be assessed on progress. Assessment can be fine if in context, less fine if it consists of entitled ‘experts’ from wealthy countries with little local knowledge or context. Perhaps such compliance is best left to national authorities, who are more in use with local needs and priorities. The justification for the international bureaucracy being built to support this, while fun for those involved, is unclear and will divert resources from actual health work.

    6. The Conference of the Parties may adopt, as necessary, guidelines, recommendations and standards, including in relation to pandemic prevention capacities, to support the implementation of this Article.

    Here and later, the COP is invoked as a vehicle to decide on what will actually be done. The rules are explained later (Articles 21-23). While allowing more time is sensible, it begs the question of why it is not better to wait and discuss what is needed in the current INB process, before committing to a legally-binding agreement. This current article says nothing not already covered by the IHR2005 or other ongoing programs.

    Article 5. One Health approach to pandemic prevention, preparedness and response

    Nothing specific or new in this article. It seems redundant (it is advocating a holistic approach mentioned elsewhere) and so presumably is just to get the term ‘One Health’ into the agreement. (One could ask, why bother?)

    Some mainstream definitions of One Health (e.g. Lancet) consider that it means non-human species are on a par with humans in terms of rights and importance. If this is meant here, clearly most Member States would disagree. So we may assume that it is just words to keep someone happy (a little childish in an international document, but the term ‘One Health’ has been trending, like ‘equity,’ as if the concept of holistic approaches to public health were new).

    Article 6. Preparedness, health system resilience and recovery

    2. Each Party commits…[to] :

    (a) routine and essential health services during pandemics with a focus on primary health care, routine immunization and mental health care, and with particular attention to persons in vulnerable situations

    (b) developing, strengthening and maintaining health infrastructure

    (c) developing post-pandemic health system recovery strategies

    (d) developing, strengthening and maintaining: health information systems

    This is good, and (a) seems to require avoidance of lockdowns (which inevitably cause the harms listed). Unfortunately other WHO documents lead one to assume this is not the intent…It does appear therefore that this is simply another list of fairly non-specific feel-good measures that have no useful place in a new legally-binding agreement, and which most countries are already undertaking.

    (e) promoting the use of social and behavioural sciences, risk communication and community engagement for pandemic prevention, preparedness and response.

    This requires clarification, as the use of behavioral science during the Covid-19 response involved deliberate inducement of fear to promote behaviors that people would not otherwise follow (e.g. Spi-B). It is essential here that the document clarifies how behavioral science should be used ethically in healthcare. Otherwise, this is also a quite meaningless provision.

    Article 7. Health and care workforce

    This long Article discusses health workforce, training, retention, non-discrimination, stigma, bias, adequate remuneration, and other standard provisions for workplaces. It is unclear why it is included in a legally binding pandemic agreement, except for:

    4. [The Parties]…shall invest in establishing, sustaining, coordinating and mobilizing a skilled and trained multidisciplinary global public health emergency workforce…Parties having established emergency health teams should inform WHO thereof and make best efforts to respond to requests for deployment…

    Emergency health teams established (within capacity etc.) – are something countries already do, when they have capacity. There is no reason to have this as a legally-binding instrument, and clearly no urgency to do so.

    Article 8. Preparedness monitoring and functional reviews

    1. The Parties shall, building on existing and relevant tools, develop and implement an inclusive, transparent, effective and efficient pandemic prevention, preparedness and response monitoring and evaluation system.

    2. Each Party shall assess, every five years, with technical support from the WHO Secretariat upon request, the functioning and readiness of, and gaps in, its pandemic prevention, preparedness and response capacity, based on the relevant tools and guidelines developed by WHO in partnership with relevant organizations at international, regional and sub-regional levels.

    Note that this is being required of countries that are already struggling to implement monitoring systems for major endemic diseases, including tuberculosis, malaria, HIV, and nutritional deficiencies. They will be legally bound to divert resources to pandemic prevention. While there is some overlap, it will inevitably divert resources from currently underfunded programs for diseases of far higher local burdens, and so (not theoretically, but inevitably) raise mortality. Poor countries are being required to put resources into problems deemed significant by richer countries.

    Article 9. Research and development

    Various general provisions about undertaking background research that countries are generally doing anyway, but with an ’emerging disease’ slant. Again, the INB fails to justify why this diversion of resources from researching greater disease burdens should occur in all countries (why not just those with excess resources?).

    Article 10. Sustainable and geographically diversified production

    Mostly non-binding but suggested cooperation on making pandemic-related products available, including support for manufacturing in “inter-pandemic times” (a fascinating rendering of ‘normal’), when they would only be viable through subsidies. Much of this is probably unimplementable, as it would not be practical to maintain facilities in most or all countries on stand-by for rare events, at cost of resources otherwise useful for other priorities. The desire to increase production in ‘developing’ countries will face major barriers and costs in terms of maintaining quality of production, particularly as many products will have limited use outside of rare outbreak situations.

    Article 11. Transfer of technology and know-how

    This article, always problematic for large pharmaceutical corporations sponsoring much WHO outbreak activities, is now watered down to weak requirements to ‘consider,’ promote,’ provide, within capabilities’ etc.

    Article 12. Access and benefit sharing

    This Article is intended to establish the WHO Pathogen Access and Benefit-Sharing System (PABS System). PABS is intended to “ensure rapid, systematic and timely access to biological materials of pathogens with pandemic potential and the genetic sequence data.” This system is of potential high relevance and needs to be interpreted in the context that SARS-CoV-2, the pathogen causing the recent Covid-19 outbreak, was highly likely to have escaped from a laboratory. PABS is intended to expand the laboratory storage, transport, and handling of such viruses, under the oversight of the WHO, an organization outside of national jurisdiction with no significant direct experience in handling biological materials.

    3. When a Party has access to a pathogen [it shall]:

    (a) share with WHO any pathogen sequence information as soon as it is available to the Party;

    (b) as soon as biological materials are available to the Party, provide the materials to one or more laboratories and/or biorepositories participating in WHO-coordinated laboratory networks (CLNs),

    Subsequent clauses state that benefits will be shared, and seek to prevent recipient laboratories from patenting materials received from other countries. This has been a major concern of low-and middle-income countries previously, who perceive that institutions in wealthy countries patent and benefit from materials derived from less-wealthy populations. It remains to be seen whether provisions here will be sufficient to address this.

    The article then becomes yet more concerning:

    6. WHO shall conclude legally binding standard PABS contracts with manufacturers to provide the following, taking into account the size, nature and capacities of the manufacturer:

    (a) annual monetary contributions to support the PABS System and relevant capacities in countries; the determination of the annual amount, use, and approach for monitoring and accountability, shall be finalized by the Parties;

    (b) real-time contributions of relevant diagnostics, therapeutics or vaccines produced by the manufacturer, 10% free of charge and 10% at not-for-profit prices during public health emergencies of international concern or pandemics, …

    It is clearly intended that the WHO becomes directly involved in setting up legally binding manufacturing contracts, despite the WHO being outside of national jurisdictional oversight, within the territories of Member States. The PABS system, and therefore its staff and dependent entities, are also to be supported in part by funds from the manufacturers whom they are supposed to be managing. The income of the organization will be dependent on maintaining positive relationships with these private entities in a similar way in which many national regulatory agencies are dependent upon funds from pharmaceutical companies whom their staff ostensibly regulate. In this case, the regulator will be even further removed from public oversight.

    The clause on 10% (why 10?) products being free of charge, and similar at cost, while ensuring lower-priced commodities irrespective of actual need (the outbreak may be confined to wealthy countries). The same entity, the WHO, will determine whether the triggering emergency exists, determine the response, and manage the contracts to provide the commodities, without direct jurisdictional oversight regarding the potential for corruption or conflict of interest. It is a remarkable system to suggest, irrespective of political or regulatory environment.

    8. The Parties shall cooperate…public financing of research and development, prepurchase agreements, or regulatory procedures, to encourage and facilitate as many manufacturers as possible to enter into standard PABS contracts as early as possible.

    The article envisions that public funding will be used to build the process, ensuring essentially no-risk private profit.

    10. To support operationalization of the PABS System, WHO shall…make such contracts public, while respecting commercial confidentiality.

    The public may know whom contracts are made with, but not all details of the contracts. There will therefore be no independent oversight of the clauses agreed between the WHO, a body outside of national jurisdiction and dependent of commercial companies for funding some of its work and salaries, and these same companies, on ‘needs’ that the WHO itself will have sole authority, under the proposed amendments to the IHR, to determine.

    The Article further states that the WHO shall use its own product regulatory system (prequalification) and Emergency Use Listing Procedure to open and stimulate markets for the manufacturers of these products.

    It is doubtful that any national government could make such an overall agreement, yet in May 2024 they will be voting to provide this to what is essentially a foreign, and partly privately financed, entity.

    Article 13. Supply chain and logistics

    The WHO will become convenor of a ‘Global Supply Chain and Logistics Network’ for commercially-produced products, to be supplied under WHO contracts when and where the WHO determines, whilst also having the role of ensuring safety of such products.

    Having mutual support coordinated between countries is good. Having this run by an organization that is significantly funded directly by those gaining from the sale of these same commodities seems reckless and counterintuitive. Few countries would allow this (or at least plan for it).

    For this to occur safely, the WHO would logically have to forgo all private investment, and greatly restrict national specified funding contributions. Otherwise, the conflicts of interest involved would destroy confidence in the system. There is no suggestion of such divestment from the WHO, but rather, as in Article 12, private sector dependency, directly tied to contracts, will increase.

    Article 13bis: National procurement- and distribution-related provisions

    While suffering the same (perhaps unavoidable) issues regarding commercial confidentiality, this alternate Article 13 seems far more appropriate, keeping commercial issues under national jurisdiction and avoiding the obvious conflict of interests that underpin funding for WHO activities and staffing.

    Article 14. Regulatory systems strengthening

    This entire Article reflects initiatives and programs already in place. Nothing here appears likely to add to current effort.

    Article 15. Liability and compensation management

    1. Each Party shall consider developing, as necessary and in accordance with applicable law, national strategies for managing liability in its territory related to pandemic vaccines…no-fault compensation mechanisms…

    2. The Parties…shall develop recommendations for the establishment and implementation of national, regional and/or global no-fault compensation mechanisms and strategies for managing liability during pandemic emergencies, including with regard to individuals that are in a humanitarian setting or vulnerable situations.

    This is quite remarkable, but also reflects some national legislation, in removing any fault or liability specifically from vaccine manufacturers, for harms done in pushing out vaccines to the public. During the Covid-19 response, genetic therapeutics being developed by BioNtech and Moderna were reclassified as vaccines, on the basis that an immune response is stimulated after they have modified intracellular biochemical pathways as a medicine normally does.

    This enabled specific trials normally required for carcinogenicity and teratogenicity to be bypassed, despite raised fetal abnormality rates in animal trials. It will enable the CEPI 100-day vaccine program, supported with private funding to support private mRNA vaccine manufacturers, to proceed without any risk to the manufacturer should there be subsequent public harm.

    Together with an earlier provision on public funding of research and manufacturing readiness, and the removal of former wording requiring intellectual property sharing in Article 11, this ensures vaccine manufacturers and their investors make profit in effective absence of risk.

    These entities are currently heavily invested in support for WHO, and were strongly aligned with the introduction of newly restrictive outbreak responses that emphasized and sometimes mandated their products during the Covid-19 outbreak.

    Article 16. International collaboration and cooperation

    A somewhat pointless article. It suggests that countries cooperate with each other and the WHO to implement the other agreements in the Agreement.

    Article 17. Whole-of-government and whole-of-society approaches

    A list of essentially motherhood provisions related to planning for a pandemic. However, countries will legally be required to maintain a ‘national coordination multisectoral body’ for PPPR. This will essentially be an added burden on budgets, and inevitably divert further resources from other priorities. Perhaps just strengthening current infectious disease and nutritional programs would be more impactful. (Nowhere in this Agreement is nutrition discussed (essential for resilience to pathogens) and minimal wording is included on sanitation and clean water (other major reasons for reduction in infectious disease mortality over past centuries).

    However, the ‘community ownership’ wording is interesting (“empower and enable community ownership of, and contribution to, community readiness for and resilience [for PPPR]”), as this directly contradicts much of the rest of the Agreement, including the centralization of control under the Conference of Parties, requirements for countries to allocate resources to pandemic preparedness over other community priorities, and the idea of inspecting and assessing adherence to the centralized requirements of the Agreement. Either much of the rest of the Agreement is redundant, or this wording is purely for appearance and not to be followed (and therefore should be removed).

    Article 18. Communication and public awareness

    1. Each Party shall promote timely access to credible and evidence-based information …with the aim of countering and addressing misinformation or disinformation…

    2. The Parties shall, as appropriate, promote and/or conduct research and inform policies on factors that hinder or strengthen adherence to public health and social measures in a pandemic, as well as trust in science and public health institutions and agencies.

    The key word is as appropriate, given that many agencies, including the WHO, have overseen or aided policies during the Covid-19 response that have greatly increased poverty, child marriage, teenage pregnancy, and education loss.

    As the WHO has been shown to be significantly misrepresenting pandemic risk in the process of advocating for this Agreement and related instruments, its own communications would also fall outside the provision here related to evidence-based information, and fall within normal understandings of misinformation. It could not therefore be an arbiter of correctness of information here, so the Article is not implementable. Rewritten to recommend accurate evidence-based information being promoted, it would make good sense, but this is not an issue requiring a legally binding international agreement.

    Article 19. Implementation and support

    3. The WHO Secretariat…organize the technical and financial assistance necessary to address such gaps and needs in implementing the commitments agreed upon under the Pandemic Agreement and the International Health Regulations (2005).

    As the WHO is dependent on donor support, its ability to address gaps in funding within Member States is clearly not something it can guarantee. The purpose of this article is unclear, repeating in paragraphs 1 and 2 the earlier intent for countries to generally support each other.

    Article 20. Sustainable financing

    1. The Parties commit to working together…In this regard, each Party, within the means and resources at its disposal, shall:

    (a) prioritize and maintain or increase, as necessary, domestic funding for pandemic prevention, preparedness and response, without undermining other domestic public health priorities including for: (i) strengthening and sustaining capacities for the prevention, preparedness and response to health emergencies and pandemics, in particular the core capacities of the International Health Regulations (2005);…

    This is silly wording, as countries obviously have to prioritize within budgets, so that moving funds to one area means removing from another. The essence of public health policy is weighing and making such decisions; this reality seems to be ignored here through wishful thinking. (a) is clearly redundant, as the IHR (2005) already exists and countries have agreed to support it.

    3. A Coordinating Financial Mechanism (the “Mechanism”) is hereby established to support the implementation of both the WHO Pandemic Agreement and the International Health Regulations (2005)

    This will be in parallel to the Pandemic Fund recently commenced by the World Bank – an issue not lost on INB delegates and so likely to change here in the final version. It will also be additive to the Global Fund to fight AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria, and other health financing mechanisms, and so require another parallel international bureaucracy, presumably based in Geneva.

    It is intended to have its own capacity to “conduct relevant analyses on needs and gaps, in addition to tracking cooperation efforts,” so it will not be a small undertaking.

    Chapter III. Institutional and final provisions

    Article 21. Conference of the Parties

    1. A Conference of the Parties is hereby established.

    2. The Conference of the Parties shall keep under regular review, every three years, the implementation of the WHO Pandemic Agreement and take the decisions necessary to promote its effective implementation.

    This sets up the governing body to oversee this Agreement (another body requiring a secretariat and support). It is intended to meet within a year of the Agreement coming into force, and then set its own rules on meeting thereafter. It is likely that many provisions outlined in this draft of the Agreement will be deferred to the COP for further discussion.

    Articles 22 – 37

    These articles cover the functioning of the Conference of Parties (COP) and various administrative issues.

    Of note, ‘block votes’ will be allowed from regional bodies (e.g. the EU).

    The WHO will provide the secretariat.

    Under Article 24 is noted:

    3. Nothing in the WHO Pandemic Agreement shall be interpreted as providing the Secretariat of the World Health Organization, including the WHO Director-General, any authority to direct, order, alter or otherwise prescribe the domestic laws or policies of any Party, or to mandate or otherwise impose any requirements that Parties take specific actions, such as ban or accept travellers, impose vaccination mandates or therapeutic or diagnostic measures, or implement lockdowns.

    These provisions are explicitly stated in the proposed amendments to the IHR, to be considered alongside this agreement. Article 26 notes that the IHR is to be interpreted as compatible, thereby confirming that the IHR provisions including border closures and limits on freedom of movement, mandated vaccination, and other lockdown measures are not negated by this statement.

    As Article 26 states: “The Parties recognize that the WHO Pandemic Agreement and the International Health Regulations should be interpreted so as to be compatible.”

    Some would consider this subterfuge – The Director-General recently labeled as liars those who claimed the Agreement included these powers, whilst failing to acknowledge the accompanying IHR amendments. The WHO could do better in avoiding misleading messaging, especially when this involves denigration of the public.

    Article 32 (Withdrawal) requires that, once adopted, Parties cannot withdraw for a total of 3 years (giving notice after a minimum of 2 years). Financial obligations undertaken under the agreement continue beyond that time.

    Finally, the Agreement will come into force, assuming a two-thirds majority in the WHA is achieved (Article 19, WHO Constitution), 30 days after the fortieth country has ratified it.

    Further reading:

    WHO Pandemic Agreement Intergovernmental Negotiating Board website:

    https://inb.who.int/

    International Health Regulations Working Group website:

    https://apps.who.int/gb/wgihr/index.html

    On background to the WHO texts:

    Amendments to WHO’s International Health Regulations: An Annotated Guide
    An Unofficial Q&A on International Health Regulations
    On urgency and burden of pandemics:

    https://essl.leeds.ac.uk/downloads/download/228/rational-policy-over-panic

    Disease X and Davos: This is Not the Way to Evaluate and Formulate Public Health Policy
    Before Preparing for Pandemics, We Need Better Evidence of Risk
    Revised Draft of the negotiating text of the WHO Pandemic Agreement:

    Published under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
    For reprints, please set the canonical link back to the original Brownstone Institute Article and Author.

    Authors

    David Bell
    David Bell, Senior Scholar at Brownstone Institute, is a public health physician and biotech consultant in global health. He is a former medical officer and scientist at the World Health Organization (WHO), Programme Head for malaria and febrile diseases at the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND) in Geneva, Switzerland, and Director of Global Health Technologies at Intellectual Ventures Global Good Fund in Bellevue, WA, USA.

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    Thi Thuy Van Dinh
    Dr. Thi Thuy Van Dinh (LLM, PhD) worked on international law in the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. Subsequently, she managed multilateral organization partnerships for Intellectual Ventures Global Good Fund and led environmental health technology development efforts for low-resource settings.

    View all posts
    Your financial backing of Brownstone Institute goes to support writers, lawyers, scientists, economists, and other people of courage who have been professionally purged and displaced during the upheaval of our times. You can help get the truth out through their ongoing work.

    https://brownstone.org/articles/the-who-pandemic-agreement-a-guide/

    https://www.minds.com/donshafi911/blog/the-who-pandemic-agreement-a-guide-1621719398509187077
    The WHO Pandemic Agreement: A Guide By David Bell, Thi Thuy Van Dinh March 22, 2024 Government, Society 30 minute read The World Health Organization (WHO) and its 194 Member States have been engaged for over two years in the development of two ‘instruments’ or agreements with the intent of radically changing the way pandemics and other health emergencies are managed. One, consisting of draft amendments to the existing International health Regulations (IHR), seeks to change the current IHR non-binding recommendations into requirements or binding recommendations, by having countries “undertake” to implement those given by the WHO in future declared health emergencies. It covers all ‘public health emergencies of international concern’ (PHEIC), with a single person, the WHO Director-General (DG) determining what a PHEIC is, where it extends, and when it ends. It specifies mandated vaccines, border closures, and other directives understood as lockdowns among the requirements the DG can impose. It is discussed further elsewhere and still under negotiation in Geneva. A second document, previously known as the (draft) Pandemic Treaty, then Pandemic Accord, and more recently the Pandemic Agreement, seeks to specify governance, supply chains, and various other interventions aimed at preventing, preparing for, and responding to, pandemics (pandemic prevention, preparedness and response – PPPR). It is currently being negotiated by the Intergovernmental Negotiating Body (INB). Both texts will be subject to a vote at the May 2024 World Health Assembly (WHA) in Geneva, Switzerland. These votes are intended, by those promoting these projects, to bring governance of future multi-country healthcare emergencies (or threats thereof) under the WHO umbrella. The latest version of the draft Pandemic Agreement (here forth the ‘Agreement’) was released on 7th March 2024. However, it is still being negotiated by various committees comprising representatives of Member States and other interested entities. It has been through multiple iterations over two years, and looks like it. With the teeth of the pandemic response proposals in the IHR, the Agreement looks increasingly irrelevant, or at least unsure of its purpose, picking up bits and pieces in a half-hearted way that the IHR amendments do not, or cannot, include. However, as discussed below, it is far from irrelevant. Historical Perspective These aim to increase the centralization of decision-making within the WHO as the “directing and coordinating authority.” This terminology comes from the WHO’s 1946 Constitution, developed in the aftermath of the Second World War as the world faced the outcomes of European fascism and the similar approaches widely imposed through colonialist regimes. The WHO would support emerging countries, with rapidly expanding and poorly resourced populations struggling under high disease burdens, and coordinate some areas of international support as these sovereign countries requested it. The emphasis of action was on coordinating rather than directing. In the 80 years prior to the WHO’s existence, international public health had grown within a more directive mindset, with a series of meetings by colonial and slave-owning powers from 1851 to manage pandemics, culminating in the inauguration of the Office Internationale d’Hygiene Publique in Paris in 1907, and later the League of Nations Health Office. World powers imposed health dictates on those less powerful, in other parts of the world and increasingly on their own population through the eugenics movement and similar approaches. Public health would direct, for the greater good, as a tool of those who wish to direct the lives of others. The WHO, governed by the WHA, was to be very different. Newly independent States and their former colonial masters were ostensibly on an equal footing within the WHA (one country – one vote), and the WHO’s work overall was to be an example of how human rights could dominate the way society works. The model for international public health, as exemplified in the Declaration of Alma Ata in 1978, was to be horizontal rather than vertical, with communities and countries in the driving seat. With the evolution of the WHO in recent decades from a core funding model (countries give money, the WHO decides under the WHA guidance how to spend it) to a model based on specified funding (funders, both public and increasingly private, instruct the WHO on how to spend it), the WHO has inevitably changed to become a public-private partnership required to serve the interests of funders rather than populations. As most funding comes from a few countries with major Pharma industrial bases, or private investors and corporations in the same industry, the WHO has been required to emphasize the use of pharmaceuticals and downplay evidence and knowledge where these clash (if it wants to keep all its staff funded). It is helpful to view the draft Agreement, and the IHR amendments, in this context. Why May 2024? The WHO, together with the World Bank, G20, and other institutions have been emphasizing the urgency of putting the new pandemic instruments in place earnestly, before the ‘next pandemic.’ This is based on claims that the world was unprepared for Covid-19, and that the economic and health harm would be somehow avoidable if we had these agreements in place. They emphasize, contrary to evidence that Covid-19 virus (SARS-CoV-2) origins involve laboratory manipulation, that the main threats we face are natural, and that these are increasing exponentially and present an “existential” threat to humanity. The data on which the WHO, the World Bank, and G20 base these claims demonstrates the contrary, with reported natural outbreaks having increased as detection technologies have developed, but reducing in mortality rate, and in numbers, over the past 10 to 20 years.. A paper cited by the World Bank to justify urgency and quoted as suggesting a 3x increase in risk in the coming decade actually suggests that a Covid-19-like event would occur roughly every 129 years, and a Spanish-flu repetition every 292 to 877 years. Such predictions are unable to take into account the rapidly changing nature of medicine and improved sanitation and nutrition (most deaths from Spanish flu would not have occurred if modern antibiotics had been available), and so may still overestimate risk. Similarly, the WHO’s own priority disease list for new outbreaks only includes two diseases of proven natural origin that have over 1,000 historical deaths attributed to them. It is well demonstrated that the risk and expected burden of pandemics is misrepresented by major international agencies in current discussions. The urgency for May 2024 is clearly therefore inadequately supported, firstly because neither the WHO nor others have demonstrated how the harms accrued through Covid-19 would be reduced through the measures proposed, and secondly because the burden and risk is misrepresented. In this context, the state of the Agreement is clearly not where it should be as a draft international legally binding agreement intended to impose considerable financial and other obligations on States and populations. This is particularly problematic as the proposed expenditure; the proposed budget is over $31 billion per year, with over $10 billion more on other One Health activities. Much of this will have to be diverted from addressing other diseases burdens that impose far greater burden. This trade-off, essential to understand in public health policy development, has not yet been clearly addressed by the WHO. The WHO DG stated recently that the WHO does not want the power to impose vaccine mandates or lockdowns on anyone, and does not want this. This begs the question of why either of the current WHO pandemic instruments is being proposed, both as legally binding documents. The current IHR (2005) already sets out such approaches as recommendations the DG can make, and there is nothing non-mandatory that countries cannot do now without pushing new treaty-like mechanisms through a vote in Geneva. Based on the DG’s claims, they are essentially redundant, and what new non-mandatory clauses they contain, as set out below, are certainly not urgent. Clauses that are mandatory (Member States “shall”) must be considered within national decision-making contexts and appear against the WHO’s stated intent. Common sense would suggest that the Agreement, and the accompanying IHR amendments, be properly thought through before Member States commit. The WHO has already abandoned the legal requirement for a 4-month review time for the IHR amendments (Article 55.2 IHR), which are also still under negotiation just 2 months before the WHA deadline. The Agreement should also have at least such a period for States to properly consider whether to agree – treaties normally take many years to develop and negotiate and no valid arguments have been put forward as to why these should be different. The Covid-19 response resulted in an unprecedented transfer of wealth from those of lower income to the very wealthy few, completely contrary to the way in which the WHO was intended to affect human society. A considerable portion of these pandemic profits went to current sponsors of the WHO, and these same corporate entities and investors are set to further benefit from the new pandemic agreements. As written, the Pandemic Agreement risks entrenching such centralization and profit-taking, and the accompanying unprecedented restrictions on human rights and freedoms, as a public health norm. To continue with a clearly flawed agreement simply because of a previously set deadline, when no clear population benefit is articulated and no true urgency demonstrated, would therefore be a major step backward in international public health. Basic principles of proportionality, human agency, and community empowerment, essential for health and human rights outcomes, are missing or paid lip-service. The WHO clearly wishes to increase its funding and show it is ‘doing something,’ but must first articulate why the voluntary provisions of the current IHR are insufficient. It is hoped that by systematically reviewing some key clauses of the agreement here, it will become clear why a rethink of the whole approach is necessary. The full text is found below. The commentary below concentrates on selected draft provisions of the latest publicly available version of the draft agreement that seem to be unclear or potentially problematic. Much of the remaining text is essentially pointless as it reiterates vague intentions to be found in other documents or activities which countries normally undertake in the course of running health services, and have no place in a focused legally-binding international agreement. REVISED Draft of the negotiating text of the WHO Pandemic Agreement. 7th March, 2024 Preamble Recognizing that the World Health Organization…is the directing and coordinating authority on international health work. This is inconsistent with a recent statement by the WHO DG that the WHO has no interest or intent to direct country health responses. To reiterate it here suggests that the DG is not representing the true position regarding the Agreement. “Directing authority” is however in line with the proposed IHR Amendments (and the WHO’s Constitution), under which countries will “undertake” ahead of time to follow the DG’s recommendations (which thereby become instructions). As the HR amendments make clear, this is intended to apply even to a perceived threat rather than actual harm. Recalling the constitution of the World Health Organization…highest attainable standard of health is one of the fundamental rights of every human being without distinction of race, religion, political belief, economic or social condition. This statement recalls fundamental understandings of public health, and is of importance here as it raises the question of why the WHO did not strongly condemn prolonged school closures, workplace closures, and other impoverishing policies during the Covid-19 response. In 2019, WHO made clear that these dangers should prevent actions we now call ‘lockdowns’ from being imposed. Deeply concerned by the gross inequities at national and international levels that hindered timely and equitable access to medical and other Covid-19 pandemic-related products, and the serious shortcomings in pandemic preparedness. In terms of health equity (as distinct from commodity of ‘vaccine’ equity), inequity in the Covid-19 response was not in failing to provide a vaccine against former variants to immune, young people in low-income countries who were at far higher risk from endemic diseases, but in the disproportionate harm to them of uniformly-imposed NPIs that reduced current and future income and basic healthcare, as was noted by the WHO in 2019 Pandemic Influenza recommendations. The failure of the text to recognize this suggests that lessons from Covid-19 have not informed this draft Agreement. The WHO has not yet demonstrated how pandemic ‘preparedness,’ in the terms they use below, would have reduced impact, given that there is poor correlation between strictness or speed of response and eventual outcomes. Reiterating the need to work towards…an equitable approach to mitigate the risk that pandemics exacerbate existing inequities in access to health services, As above – in the past century, the issue of inequity has been most pronounced in pandemic response, rather than the impact of the virus itself (excluding the physiological variation in risk). Most recorded deaths from acute pandemics, since the Spanish flu, were during Covid-19, in which the virus hit mainly sick elderly, but response impacted working-age adults and children heavily and will continue to have effect, due to increased poverty and debt; reduced education and child marriage, in future generations. These have disproportionately affected lower-income people, and particularly women. The lack of recognition of this in this document, though they are recognized by the World Bank and UN agencies elsewhere, must raise real questions on whether this Agreement has been thoroughly thought through, and the process of development been sufficiently inclusive and objective. Chapter I. Introduction Article 1. Use of terms (i) “pathogen with pandemic potential” means any pathogen that has been identified to infect a human and that is: novel (not yet characterized) or known (including a variant of a known pathogen), potentially highly transmissible and/or highly virulent with the potential to cause a public health emergency of international concern. This provides a very wide scope to alter provisions. Any pathogen that can infect humans and is potentially highly transmissible or virulent, though yet uncharacterized means virtually any coronavirus, influenza virus, or a plethora of other relatively common pathogen groups. The IHR Amendments intend that the DG alone can make this call, over the advice of others, as occurred with monkeypox in 2022. (j) “persons in vulnerable situations” means individuals, groups or communities with a disproportionate increased risk of infection, severity, disease or mortality. This is a good definition – in Covid-19 context, would mean the sick elderly, and so is relevant to targeting a response. “Universal health coverage” means that all people have access to the full range of quality health services they need, when and where they need them, without financial hardship. While the general UHC concept is good, it is time a sensible (rather than patently silly) definition was adopted. Society cannot afford the full range of possible interventions and remedies for all, and clearly there is a scale of cost vs benefit that prioritizes certain ones over others. Sensible definitions make action more likely, and inaction harder to justify. One could argue that none should have the full range until all have good basic care, but clearly the earth will not support ‘the full range’ for 8 billion people. Article 2. Objective This Agreement is specifically for pandemics (a poorly defined term but essentially a pathogen that spreads rapidly across national borders). In contrast, the IHR amendments accompanying it are broader in scope – for any public health emergencies of international concern. Article 3. Principles 2. the sovereign right of States to adopt, legislate and implement legislation The amendments to the IHR require States to undertake to follow WHO instructions ahead of time, before such instruction and context are known. These two documents must be understood, as noted later in the Agreement draft, as complementary. 3. equity as the goal and outcome of pandemic prevention, preparedness and response, ensuring the absence of unfair, avoidable or remediable differences among groups of people. This definition of equity here needs clarification. In the pandemic context, the WHO emphasized commodity (vaccine) equity during the Covid-19 response. Elimination of differences implied equal access to Covid-19 vaccines in countries with large aging, obese highly vulnerable populations (e.g. the USA or Italy), and those with young populations at minimal risk and with far more pressing health priorities (e.g. Niger or Uganda). Alternatively, but equally damaging, equal access to different age groups within a country when the risk-benefit ratio is clearly greatly different. This promotes worse health outcomes by diverting resources from where they are most useful, as it ignores heterogeneity of risk. Again, an adult approach is required in international agreements, rather than feel-good sentences, if they are going to have a positive impact. 5. …a more equitable and better prepared world to prevent, respond to and recover from pandemics As with ‘3’ above, this raises a fundamental problem: What if health equity demands that some populations divert resources to childhood nutrition and endemic diseases rather than the latest pandemic, as these are likely of far higher burden to many younger but lower-income populations? This would not be equity in the definition implied here, but would clearly lead to better and more equal health outcomes. The WHO must decide whether it is about uniform action, or minimizing poor health, as these are clearly very different. They are the difference between the WHO’s commodity equity, and true health equity. Chapter II. The world together equitably: achieving equity in, for and through pandemic prevention, preparedness and response Equity in health should imply a reasonably equal chance of overcoming or avoiding preventable sickness. The vast majority of sickness and death is due to either non-communicable diseases often related to lifestyle, such as obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus, undernutrition in childhood, and endemic infectious diseases such as tuberculosis, malaria, and HIV/AIDS. Achieving health equity would primarily mean addressing these. In this chapter of the draft Pandemic Agreement, equity is used to imply equal access to specific health commodities, particularly vaccines, for intermittent health emergencies, although these exert a small fraction of the burden of other diseases. It is, specifically, commodity-equity, and not geared to equalizing overall health burden but to enabling centrally-coordinated homogenous responses to unusual events. Article 4. Pandemic prevention and surveillance 2. The Parties shall undertake to cooperate: (b) in support of…initiatives aimed at preventing pandemics, in particular those that improve surveillance, early warning and risk assessment; .…and identify settings and activities presenting a risk of emergence and re-emergence of pathogens with pandemic potential. (c-h) [Paragraphs on water and sanitation, infection control, strengthening of biosafety, surveillance and prevention of vector-born diseases, and addressing antimicrobial resistance.] The WHO intends the Agreement to have force under international law. Therefore, countries are undertaking to put themselves under force of international law in regards to complying with the agreement’s stipulations. The provisions under this long article mostly cover general health stuff that countries try to do anyway. The difference will be that countries will be assessed on progress. Assessment can be fine if in context, less fine if it consists of entitled ‘experts’ from wealthy countries with little local knowledge or context. Perhaps such compliance is best left to national authorities, who are more in use with local needs and priorities. The justification for the international bureaucracy being built to support this, while fun for those involved, is unclear and will divert resources from actual health work. 6. The Conference of the Parties may adopt, as necessary, guidelines, recommendations and standards, including in relation to pandemic prevention capacities, to support the implementation of this Article. Here and later, the COP is invoked as a vehicle to decide on what will actually be done. The rules are explained later (Articles 21-23). While allowing more time is sensible, it begs the question of why it is not better to wait and discuss what is needed in the current INB process, before committing to a legally-binding agreement. This current article says nothing not already covered by the IHR2005 or other ongoing programs. Article 5. One Health approach to pandemic prevention, preparedness and response Nothing specific or new in this article. It seems redundant (it is advocating a holistic approach mentioned elsewhere) and so presumably is just to get the term ‘One Health’ into the agreement. (One could ask, why bother?) Some mainstream definitions of One Health (e.g. Lancet) consider that it means non-human species are on a par with humans in terms of rights and importance. If this is meant here, clearly most Member States would disagree. So we may assume that it is just words to keep someone happy (a little childish in an international document, but the term ‘One Health’ has been trending, like ‘equity,’ as if the concept of holistic approaches to public health were new). Article 6. Preparedness, health system resilience and recovery 2. Each Party commits…[to] : (a) routine and essential health services during pandemics with a focus on primary health care, routine immunization and mental health care, and with particular attention to persons in vulnerable situations (b) developing, strengthening and maintaining health infrastructure (c) developing post-pandemic health system recovery strategies (d) developing, strengthening and maintaining: health information systems This is good, and (a) seems to require avoidance of lockdowns (which inevitably cause the harms listed). Unfortunately other WHO documents lead one to assume this is not the intent…It does appear therefore that this is simply another list of fairly non-specific feel-good measures that have no useful place in a new legally-binding agreement, and which most countries are already undertaking. (e) promoting the use of social and behavioural sciences, risk communication and community engagement for pandemic prevention, preparedness and response. This requires clarification, as the use of behavioral science during the Covid-19 response involved deliberate inducement of fear to promote behaviors that people would not otherwise follow (e.g. Spi-B). It is essential here that the document clarifies how behavioral science should be used ethically in healthcare. Otherwise, this is also a quite meaningless provision. Article 7. Health and care workforce This long Article discusses health workforce, training, retention, non-discrimination, stigma, bias, adequate remuneration, and other standard provisions for workplaces. It is unclear why it is included in a legally binding pandemic agreement, except for: 4. [The Parties]…shall invest in establishing, sustaining, coordinating and mobilizing a skilled and trained multidisciplinary global public health emergency workforce…Parties having established emergency health teams should inform WHO thereof and make best efforts to respond to requests for deployment… Emergency health teams established (within capacity etc.) – are something countries already do, when they have capacity. There is no reason to have this as a legally-binding instrument, and clearly no urgency to do so. Article 8. Preparedness monitoring and functional reviews 1. The Parties shall, building on existing and relevant tools, develop and implement an inclusive, transparent, effective and efficient pandemic prevention, preparedness and response monitoring and evaluation system. 2. Each Party shall assess, every five years, with technical support from the WHO Secretariat upon request, the functioning and readiness of, and gaps in, its pandemic prevention, preparedness and response capacity, based on the relevant tools and guidelines developed by WHO in partnership with relevant organizations at international, regional and sub-regional levels. Note that this is being required of countries that are already struggling to implement monitoring systems for major endemic diseases, including tuberculosis, malaria, HIV, and nutritional deficiencies. They will be legally bound to divert resources to pandemic prevention. While there is some overlap, it will inevitably divert resources from currently underfunded programs for diseases of far higher local burdens, and so (not theoretically, but inevitably) raise mortality. Poor countries are being required to put resources into problems deemed significant by richer countries. Article 9. Research and development Various general provisions about undertaking background research that countries are generally doing anyway, but with an ’emerging disease’ slant. Again, the INB fails to justify why this diversion of resources from researching greater disease burdens should occur in all countries (why not just those with excess resources?). Article 10. Sustainable and geographically diversified production Mostly non-binding but suggested cooperation on making pandemic-related products available, including support for manufacturing in “inter-pandemic times” (a fascinating rendering of ‘normal’), when they would only be viable through subsidies. Much of this is probably unimplementable, as it would not be practical to maintain facilities in most or all countries on stand-by for rare events, at cost of resources otherwise useful for other priorities. The desire to increase production in ‘developing’ countries will face major barriers and costs in terms of maintaining quality of production, particularly as many products will have limited use outside of rare outbreak situations. Article 11. Transfer of technology and know-how This article, always problematic for large pharmaceutical corporations sponsoring much WHO outbreak activities, is now watered down to weak requirements to ‘consider,’ promote,’ provide, within capabilities’ etc. Article 12. Access and benefit sharing This Article is intended to establish the WHO Pathogen Access and Benefit-Sharing System (PABS System). PABS is intended to “ensure rapid, systematic and timely access to biological materials of pathogens with pandemic potential and the genetic sequence data.” This system is of potential high relevance and needs to be interpreted in the context that SARS-CoV-2, the pathogen causing the recent Covid-19 outbreak, was highly likely to have escaped from a laboratory. PABS is intended to expand the laboratory storage, transport, and handling of such viruses, under the oversight of the WHO, an organization outside of national jurisdiction with no significant direct experience in handling biological materials. 3. When a Party has access to a pathogen [it shall]: (a) share with WHO any pathogen sequence information as soon as it is available to the Party; (b) as soon as biological materials are available to the Party, provide the materials to one or more laboratories and/or biorepositories participating in WHO-coordinated laboratory networks (CLNs), Subsequent clauses state that benefits will be shared, and seek to prevent recipient laboratories from patenting materials received from other countries. This has been a major concern of low-and middle-income countries previously, who perceive that institutions in wealthy countries patent and benefit from materials derived from less-wealthy populations. It remains to be seen whether provisions here will be sufficient to address this. The article then becomes yet more concerning: 6. WHO shall conclude legally binding standard PABS contracts with manufacturers to provide the following, taking into account the size, nature and capacities of the manufacturer: (a) annual monetary contributions to support the PABS System and relevant capacities in countries; the determination of the annual amount, use, and approach for monitoring and accountability, shall be finalized by the Parties; (b) real-time contributions of relevant diagnostics, therapeutics or vaccines produced by the manufacturer, 10% free of charge and 10% at not-for-profit prices during public health emergencies of international concern or pandemics, … It is clearly intended that the WHO becomes directly involved in setting up legally binding manufacturing contracts, despite the WHO being outside of national jurisdictional oversight, within the territories of Member States. The PABS system, and therefore its staff and dependent entities, are also to be supported in part by funds from the manufacturers whom they are supposed to be managing. The income of the organization will be dependent on maintaining positive relationships with these private entities in a similar way in which many national regulatory agencies are dependent upon funds from pharmaceutical companies whom their staff ostensibly regulate. In this case, the regulator will be even further removed from public oversight. The clause on 10% (why 10?) products being free of charge, and similar at cost, while ensuring lower-priced commodities irrespective of actual need (the outbreak may be confined to wealthy countries). The same entity, the WHO, will determine whether the triggering emergency exists, determine the response, and manage the contracts to provide the commodities, without direct jurisdictional oversight regarding the potential for corruption or conflict of interest. It is a remarkable system to suggest, irrespective of political or regulatory environment. 8. The Parties shall cooperate…public financing of research and development, prepurchase agreements, or regulatory procedures, to encourage and facilitate as many manufacturers as possible to enter into standard PABS contracts as early as possible. The article envisions that public funding will be used to build the process, ensuring essentially no-risk private profit. 10. To support operationalization of the PABS System, WHO shall…make such contracts public, while respecting commercial confidentiality. The public may know whom contracts are made with, but not all details of the contracts. There will therefore be no independent oversight of the clauses agreed between the WHO, a body outside of national jurisdiction and dependent of commercial companies for funding some of its work and salaries, and these same companies, on ‘needs’ that the WHO itself will have sole authority, under the proposed amendments to the IHR, to determine. The Article further states that the WHO shall use its own product regulatory system (prequalification) and Emergency Use Listing Procedure to open and stimulate markets for the manufacturers of these products. It is doubtful that any national government could make such an overall agreement, yet in May 2024 they will be voting to provide this to what is essentially a foreign, and partly privately financed, entity. Article 13. Supply chain and logistics The WHO will become convenor of a ‘Global Supply Chain and Logistics Network’ for commercially-produced products, to be supplied under WHO contracts when and where the WHO determines, whilst also having the role of ensuring safety of such products. Having mutual support coordinated between countries is good. Having this run by an organization that is significantly funded directly by those gaining from the sale of these same commodities seems reckless and counterintuitive. Few countries would allow this (or at least plan for it). For this to occur safely, the WHO would logically have to forgo all private investment, and greatly restrict national specified funding contributions. Otherwise, the conflicts of interest involved would destroy confidence in the system. There is no suggestion of such divestment from the WHO, but rather, as in Article 12, private sector dependency, directly tied to contracts, will increase. Article 13bis: National procurement- and distribution-related provisions While suffering the same (perhaps unavoidable) issues regarding commercial confidentiality, this alternate Article 13 seems far more appropriate, keeping commercial issues under national jurisdiction and avoiding the obvious conflict of interests that underpin funding for WHO activities and staffing. Article 14. Regulatory systems strengthening This entire Article reflects initiatives and programs already in place. Nothing here appears likely to add to current effort. Article 15. Liability and compensation management 1. Each Party shall consider developing, as necessary and in accordance with applicable law, national strategies for managing liability in its territory related to pandemic vaccines…no-fault compensation mechanisms… 2. The Parties…shall develop recommendations for the establishment and implementation of national, regional and/or global no-fault compensation mechanisms and strategies for managing liability during pandemic emergencies, including with regard to individuals that are in a humanitarian setting or vulnerable situations. This is quite remarkable, but also reflects some national legislation, in removing any fault or liability specifically from vaccine manufacturers, for harms done in pushing out vaccines to the public. During the Covid-19 response, genetic therapeutics being developed by BioNtech and Moderna were reclassified as vaccines, on the basis that an immune response is stimulated after they have modified intracellular biochemical pathways as a medicine normally does. This enabled specific trials normally required for carcinogenicity and teratogenicity to be bypassed, despite raised fetal abnormality rates in animal trials. It will enable the CEPI 100-day vaccine program, supported with private funding to support private mRNA vaccine manufacturers, to proceed without any risk to the manufacturer should there be subsequent public harm. Together with an earlier provision on public funding of research and manufacturing readiness, and the removal of former wording requiring intellectual property sharing in Article 11, this ensures vaccine manufacturers and their investors make profit in effective absence of risk. These entities are currently heavily invested in support for WHO, and were strongly aligned with the introduction of newly restrictive outbreak responses that emphasized and sometimes mandated their products during the Covid-19 outbreak. Article 16. International collaboration and cooperation A somewhat pointless article. It suggests that countries cooperate with each other and the WHO to implement the other agreements in the Agreement. Article 17. Whole-of-government and whole-of-society approaches A list of essentially motherhood provisions related to planning for a pandemic. However, countries will legally be required to maintain a ‘national coordination multisectoral body’ for PPPR. This will essentially be an added burden on budgets, and inevitably divert further resources from other priorities. Perhaps just strengthening current infectious disease and nutritional programs would be more impactful. (Nowhere in this Agreement is nutrition discussed (essential for resilience to pathogens) and minimal wording is included on sanitation and clean water (other major reasons for reduction in infectious disease mortality over past centuries). However, the ‘community ownership’ wording is interesting (“empower and enable community ownership of, and contribution to, community readiness for and resilience [for PPPR]”), as this directly contradicts much of the rest of the Agreement, including the centralization of control under the Conference of Parties, requirements for countries to allocate resources to pandemic preparedness over other community priorities, and the idea of inspecting and assessing adherence to the centralized requirements of the Agreement. Either much of the rest of the Agreement is redundant, or this wording is purely for appearance and not to be followed (and therefore should be removed). Article 18. Communication and public awareness 1. Each Party shall promote timely access to credible and evidence-based information …with the aim of countering and addressing misinformation or disinformation… 2. The Parties shall, as appropriate, promote and/or conduct research and inform policies on factors that hinder or strengthen adherence to public health and social measures in a pandemic, as well as trust in science and public health institutions and agencies. The key word is as appropriate, given that many agencies, including the WHO, have overseen or aided policies during the Covid-19 response that have greatly increased poverty, child marriage, teenage pregnancy, and education loss. As the WHO has been shown to be significantly misrepresenting pandemic risk in the process of advocating for this Agreement and related instruments, its own communications would also fall outside the provision here related to evidence-based information, and fall within normal understandings of misinformation. It could not therefore be an arbiter of correctness of information here, so the Article is not implementable. Rewritten to recommend accurate evidence-based information being promoted, it would make good sense, but this is not an issue requiring a legally binding international agreement. Article 19. Implementation and support 3. The WHO Secretariat…organize the technical and financial assistance necessary to address such gaps and needs in implementing the commitments agreed upon under the Pandemic Agreement and the International Health Regulations (2005). As the WHO is dependent on donor support, its ability to address gaps in funding within Member States is clearly not something it can guarantee. The purpose of this article is unclear, repeating in paragraphs 1 and 2 the earlier intent for countries to generally support each other. Article 20. Sustainable financing 1. The Parties commit to working together…In this regard, each Party, within the means and resources at its disposal, shall: (a) prioritize and maintain or increase, as necessary, domestic funding for pandemic prevention, preparedness and response, without undermining other domestic public health priorities including for: (i) strengthening and sustaining capacities for the prevention, preparedness and response to health emergencies and pandemics, in particular the core capacities of the International Health Regulations (2005);… This is silly wording, as countries obviously have to prioritize within budgets, so that moving funds to one area means removing from another. The essence of public health policy is weighing and making such decisions; this reality seems to be ignored here through wishful thinking. (a) is clearly redundant, as the IHR (2005) already exists and countries have agreed to support it. 3. A Coordinating Financial Mechanism (the “Mechanism”) is hereby established to support the implementation of both the WHO Pandemic Agreement and the International Health Regulations (2005) This will be in parallel to the Pandemic Fund recently commenced by the World Bank – an issue not lost on INB delegates and so likely to change here in the final version. It will also be additive to the Global Fund to fight AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria, and other health financing mechanisms, and so require another parallel international bureaucracy, presumably based in Geneva. It is intended to have its own capacity to “conduct relevant analyses on needs and gaps, in addition to tracking cooperation efforts,” so it will not be a small undertaking. Chapter III. Institutional and final provisions Article 21. Conference of the Parties 1. A Conference of the Parties is hereby established. 2. The Conference of the Parties shall keep under regular review, every three years, the implementation of the WHO Pandemic Agreement and take the decisions necessary to promote its effective implementation. This sets up the governing body to oversee this Agreement (another body requiring a secretariat and support). It is intended to meet within a year of the Agreement coming into force, and then set its own rules on meeting thereafter. It is likely that many provisions outlined in this draft of the Agreement will be deferred to the COP for further discussion. Articles 22 – 37 These articles cover the functioning of the Conference of Parties (COP) and various administrative issues. Of note, ‘block votes’ will be allowed from regional bodies (e.g. the EU). The WHO will provide the secretariat. Under Article 24 is noted: 3. Nothing in the WHO Pandemic Agreement shall be interpreted as providing the Secretariat of the World Health Organization, including the WHO Director-General, any authority to direct, order, alter or otherwise prescribe the domestic laws or policies of any Party, or to mandate or otherwise impose any requirements that Parties take specific actions, such as ban or accept travellers, impose vaccination mandates or therapeutic or diagnostic measures, or implement lockdowns. These provisions are explicitly stated in the proposed amendments to the IHR, to be considered alongside this agreement. Article 26 notes that the IHR is to be interpreted as compatible, thereby confirming that the IHR provisions including border closures and limits on freedom of movement, mandated vaccination, and other lockdown measures are not negated by this statement. As Article 26 states: “The Parties recognize that the WHO Pandemic Agreement and the International Health Regulations should be interpreted so as to be compatible.” Some would consider this subterfuge – The Director-General recently labeled as liars those who claimed the Agreement included these powers, whilst failing to acknowledge the accompanying IHR amendments. The WHO could do better in avoiding misleading messaging, especially when this involves denigration of the public. Article 32 (Withdrawal) requires that, once adopted, Parties cannot withdraw for a total of 3 years (giving notice after a minimum of 2 years). Financial obligations undertaken under the agreement continue beyond that time. Finally, the Agreement will come into force, assuming a two-thirds majority in the WHA is achieved (Article 19, WHO Constitution), 30 days after the fortieth country has ratified it. Further reading: WHO Pandemic Agreement Intergovernmental Negotiating Board website: https://inb.who.int/ International Health Regulations Working Group website: https://apps.who.int/gb/wgihr/index.html On background to the WHO texts: Amendments to WHO’s International Health Regulations: An Annotated Guide An Unofficial Q&A on International Health Regulations On urgency and burden of pandemics: https://essl.leeds.ac.uk/downloads/download/228/rational-policy-over-panic Disease X and Davos: This is Not the Way to Evaluate and Formulate Public Health Policy Before Preparing for Pandemics, We Need Better Evidence of Risk Revised Draft of the negotiating text of the WHO Pandemic Agreement: Published under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License For reprints, please set the canonical link back to the original Brownstone Institute Article and Author. Authors David Bell David Bell, Senior Scholar at Brownstone Institute, is a public health physician and biotech consultant in global health. He is a former medical officer and scientist at the World Health Organization (WHO), Programme Head for malaria and febrile diseases at the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND) in Geneva, Switzerland, and Director of Global Health Technologies at Intellectual Ventures Global Good Fund in Bellevue, WA, USA. View all posts Thi Thuy Van Dinh Dr. Thi Thuy Van Dinh (LLM, PhD) worked on international law in the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. Subsequently, she managed multilateral organization partnerships for Intellectual Ventures Global Good Fund and led environmental health technology development efforts for low-resource settings. View all posts Your financial backing of Brownstone Institute goes to support writers, lawyers, scientists, economists, and other people of courage who have been professionally purged and displaced during the upheaval of our times. You can help get the truth out through their ongoing work. https://brownstone.org/articles/the-who-pandemic-agreement-a-guide/ https://www.minds.com/donshafi911/blog/the-who-pandemic-agreement-a-guide-1621719398509187077
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    The WHO Pandemic Agreement: A Guide ⋆ Brownstone Institute
    The commentary below concentrates on selected draft provisions of the latest publicly available version of the draft agreement that seem to be unclear or potentially problematic.
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  • The Silent Shame of Health Institutions
    J.R. Bruning
    For how much longer will health policy ignore multimorbidity, that looming, giant elephant in the room, that propagates and amplifies suffering? For how much longer will the ‘trend’ of increasing diagnoses of multiple health conditions, at younger and younger ages be rendered down by government agencies to better and more efficient services, screening modalities, and drug choices?

    Multimorbidity, the presence of many chronic conditions, is the silent shame of health policy.

    All too often chronic conditions overlap and accumulate. From cancer, to diabetes, to digestive system diseases, to high blood pressure, to skin conditions in cascades of suffering. Heartbreakingly, these conditions commonly overlap with mental illnesses or disorders. It’s increasingly common for people to be diagnosed with multiple mental conditions, such as having anxiety and depression, or anxiety and schizophrenia.

    Calls for equity tend to revolve around medical treatment, even as absurdities and injustices accrue.

    Multimorbidity occurs a decade earlier in socioeconomically deprived communities. Doctors are diagnosing multimorbidity at younger and younger ages.

    Treatment regimens for people with multiple conditions necessarily entail a polypharmacy approach – the prescribing of multiple medications. One condition may require multiple medications. Thus, with multimorbidity comes increased risk of adverse outcomes and polyiatrogenesis – ‘medical harm caused by medical treatments on multiple fronts simultaneously and in conjunction with one another.’

    Side effects, whether short-term or patients’ concerns about long-term harm, are the main reason for non-adherence to prescribed medications.

    So ‘equity’ which only implies drug treatment doesn’t involve equity at all.

    Poor diets may be foundational to the Western world’s health crisis. But are governments considering this?

    The antinomies are piling up.

    We are amid a global epidemic of metabolic syndrome. Insulin resistance, obesity, elevated triglyceride levels and low levels of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and elevated blood pressure haunt the people queuing up to see doctors.

    Research, from individual cases to clinical trials, consistently show that diets containing high levels of ultra-processed foods and carbohydrates amplify inflammation, oxidative stress, and insulin resistance. What researchers and scientists are also identifying, at the cellular level, in clinical and medical practice, and at the global level – is that insulin resistance, inflammation, oxidative stress, and nutrient deficiencies from poor diets not only drive metabolic illness, but mental illnesses, compounding suffering.

    There is also ample evidence that the metabolic and mental health epidemic that is driving years lost due to disease, reducing productivity, and creating mayhem in personal lives – may be preventable and reversible.

    Doctors generally recognise that poor diets are a problem. Ultra-processed foods are strongly associated with adult and childhood ill health. Ultra-processed foods are

    ‘formulations of ingredients, mostly of exclusive industrial use, typically created by series of industrial techniques and processes (hence ‘ultra-processed’).’

    In the USA young people under age 19 consume on average 67% of their diet, while adults consume around 60% of their diet in ultra-processed food. Ultra-processed food contributes 60% of UK children’s calories; 42% of Australian children’s calories and over half the dietary calories for children and adolescents in Canada. In New Zealand in 2009-2010, ultra-processed foods contributed to the 45% (12 months), 42% (24 months), and 51% (60 months) of energy intake to the diets of children.

    All too frequently, doctors are diagnosing both metabolic and mental illnesses.

    What may be predictable is that a person is likely to develop insulin resistance, inflammation, oxidative stress, and nutrient deficiencies from chronic exposure to ultra-processed food. How this will manifest in a disease or syndrome condition is reflective of a human equivalent of quantum entanglement.

    Cascades, feedback loops, and other interdependencies often leave doctors and patients bouncing from one condition to another, and managing medicine side effects and drug-drug relationships as they go.

    In New Zealand it is more common to have multiple conditions than a single condition. The costs of having two NCDs simultaneously is typically superadditive and ‘more so for younger adults.’

    This information is outside the ‘work programme’ of the top echelons in the Ministry of Health:

    Official Information Act (OIA) requests confirm that the Ministries’ Directors General who are responsible for setting policy and long-term strategy aren’t considering these issues. The problem of multimorbidity and the overlapping, entangled relationship with ultra-processed food is outside of the scope of the work programme of the top directorates in our health agency.

    New Zealand’s Ministry of Health’s top deputy directors general might be earning a quarter of a million dollars each, but they are ignorant of the relationship of dietary nutrition and mental health. Nor are they seemingly aware of the extent of multimorbidity and the overlap between metabolic and mental illnesses.

    Neither the Public Health Agency Deputy Director-General – Dr Andrew Old, nor the Deputy Director-General Evidence, Research and Innovation, Dean Rutherford, nor the Deputy Director-General of Strategy Policy and Legislation, Maree Roberts, nor the Clinical, Community and Mental Health Deputy Director-General Robyn Shearer have been briefed on these relationships.

    If they’re not being briefed, policy won’t be developed to address dietary nutrition. Diet will be lower-order.

    The OIA request revealed that New Zealand’s Ministry of Health ‘does not widely use the metabolic syndrome classification.’ When I asked ‘How do you classify, or what term do you use to classify the cluster of symptoms characterised by central obesity, dyslipidemia, hypertension, and insulin resistance?’, they responded:

    ‘The conditions referred to are considered either on their own or as part of a broader cardiovascular disease risk calculation.’

    This is interesting. What if governments should be calculating insulin resistance first, in order to then calculate a broader cardiovascular risk? What if insulin resistance, inflammation, and oxidative stress are appearing at younger and younger ages, and ultra-processed food is the major driver?

    Pre-diabetes and Type 2 diabetes are driven by too much blood glucose. Type 1 diabetics can’t make insulin, while Type 2 diabetics can’t make enough to compensate for their dietary intake of carbohydrates. One of insulin’s (many) jobs is to tuck away that blood glucose into cells (as fat) but when there are too many dietary carbohydrates pumping up blood glucose, the body can’t keep up. New Zealand practitioners use the HbA1c blood test, which measures the average blood glucose level over the past 2-3 months. In New Zealand, doctors diagnose pre-diabetes if HbA1c levels are 41-49 nmol/mol, and diabetes at levels of 50 nmol/mol and above.

    Type 2 diabetes management guidelines recommend that sugar intake should be reduced, while people should aim for consistent carbohydrates across the day. The New Zealand government does not recommend paleo or low-carbohydrate diets.

    If you have diabetes you are twice as likely to have heart disease or a stroke, and at a younger age. Prediabetes, which apparently 20% of Kiwis have, is also high-risk due to, as the Ministry of Health states: ‘increased risk of macrovascular complications and early death.’

    The question might become – should we be looking at insulin levels, to more sensitively gauge risk at an early stage?

    Without more sensitive screens at younger ages these opportunities to repivot to avoid chronic disease are likely to be missed. Currently, Ministry of Health policies are unlikely to justify the funding of tests for insulin resistance by using three simple blood tests: fasting insulin, fasting lipids (cholesterol and triglycerides), and fasting glucose – to estimate where children, young people, and adults stand on the insulin resistance spectrum when other diagnoses pop up.

    Yet insulin plays a powerful role in brain health.

    Insulin supports neurotransmitter function and brain energy, directly impacting mood and behaviours. Insulin resistance might arrive before mental illness. Harvard-based psychiatrist Chris Palmer recounts in the book Brain Energy, a large 15,000-participant study of young people from age 0-24:

    ‘Children who had persistently high insulin levels (a sign of insulin resistance) beginning at age nine were five times more likely to be at risk for psychosis, meaning they were showing at least some worrisome signs, and they were three times for likely to already be diagnosed with bipolar disorder or schizophrenia by the time they turned twenty-four. This study clearly demonstrated that insulin resistance comes first, then psychosis.’

    Psychiatrist Georgia Ede suggests that high blood glucose and high insulin levels act like a ‘deadly one-two punch’ for the brain, triggering waves of inflammation and oxidative stress. The blood-brain barrier becomes increasingly resistant to chronic high insulin levels. Even though the body might have higher blood insulin, the same may not be true for the brain. As Ede maintains, ‘cells deprived of adequate insulin ‘sputter and struggle to maintain normal operations.’

    Looking at the relationship between brain health and high blood glucose and high insulin simply might not be on the programme for strategists looking at long-term planning.

    Nor are Directors General in a position to assess the role of food addiction. Ultra-processed food has addictive qualities designed into the product formulations. Food addiction is increasingly recognised as pervasive and difficult to manage as any substance addiction.

    But how many children and young people have insulin resistance and are showing markers for inflammation and oxidative stress – in the body and in the brain? To what extent do young people have both insulin resistance and depression resistance or ADHD or bipolar disorder?

    This kind of thinking is completely outside the work programme. But insulin levels, inflammation, and oxidative stress may not only be driving chronic illness – but driving the global mental health tsunami.

    Metabolic disorders are involved in complex pathways and feedback loops across body systems, and doctors learn this at medical school. Patterns and relationships between hormones, the brain, the gastrointestinal system, kidneys, and liver; as well as problems with joints and bone health, autoimmunity, nerves, and sensory conditions evolve from and revolve around metabolic health.

    Nutrition and diet are downplayed in medical school. What doctors don’t learn so much – the cognitive dissonance that they must accept throughout their training – is that metabolic health is commonly (except for some instances) shaped by the quality of dietary nutrition. The aetiology of a given condition can be very different, while the evidence that common chronic and mental illnesses are accompanied by oxidative stress, inflammation, and insulin resistance are primarily driven by diet – is growing stronger and stronger.

    But without recognising the overlapping relationships, policy to support healthy diets will remain limp.

    What we witness are notions of equity that support pharmaceutical delivery – not health delivery.

    What also inevitably happens is that ‘equity’ focuses on medical treatment. When the Ministry of Health prefers to atomise the different conditions or associate them with heart disease – they become single conditions to treat with single drugs. They’re lots of small problems, not one big problem, and insulin resistance is downplayed.

    But just as insulin resistance, inflammation, and oxidative stress send cascading impacts across body systems, systemic ignorance sends cascading effects across government departments tasked with ‘improving, promoting, and protecting health.’

    It’s an injustice. The literature solidly points to lower socio-economic status driving much poorer diets and increased exposures to ultra-processed food, but the treatments exclusively involve drugs and therapy.

    Briefings to Incoming Ministers with the election of new Governments show how ignorance cascades across responsible authorities.

    Health New Zealand, Te Whatu Ora’s November 2023 Briefing to the new government outlined the agency’s obligations. However, the ‘health’ targets are medical, and the agency’s focus is on infrastructure, staff, and servicing. The promotion of health, and health equity, which can only be addressed by addressing the determinants of health, is not addressed.

    The Māori Health Authority and Health New Zealand Joint Briefing to the Incoming Minister for Mental Health does not address the role of diet and nutrition as a driver of mental illness and disorder in New Zealand. The issue of multimorbidity, the related problem of commensurate metabolic illness, and diet as a driver is outside scope. When the Briefing states that it is important to address the ‘social, cultural, environmental and economic determinants of mental health,’ without any sound policy footing, real movement to address diet will not happen, or will only happen ad hoc.

    The Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission, Te Hiringa Mahara’s November 2023 Briefing to Incoming Ministers that went to the Ministers for Health and Mental Health might use the term ‘well-being’ over 120 times – but was silent on the related and overlapping drivers of mental illness which include metabolic or multimorbidity, nutrition, or diet.

    Five years earlier, He Ara Ora, New Zealand’s 2018 Mental Health and Addiction enquiry had recognised that tāngata whaiora, people seeking wellness, or service users, also tend to have multiple health conditions. The enquiry recommended that a whole of government approach to well-being, prevention, and social determinants was required. Vague nods were made to diet and nutrition, but this was not sufficiently emphasised as to be a priority.

    He Ara Ora was followed by 2020 Long-term pathway to mental well-being viewed nutrition as being one of a range of factors. No policy framework strategically prioritised diet, nutrition, and healthy food. No governmental obligation or commitment was built into policy to improve access to healthy food or nutrition education.

    Understanding the science, the relationships, and the drivers of the global epidemic, is ‘outside the work programmes’ of New Zealand’s Ministry of Health and outside the scope of all the related authorities. There is an extraordinary amount of data in the scientific literature, so many case studies, cohort studies, and clinical trials. Popular books are being written, however government agencies remain ignorant.

    In the meantime, doctors must deal with the suffering in front of them without an adequate toolkit.

    Doctors and pharmacists are faced with a Hobson’s choice of managing multiple chronic conditions and complex drug cocktails, in patients at younger and younger ages. Ultimately, they are treating a patient whom they recognise will only become sicker, cost the health system more, and suffer more.

    Currently there is little support for New Zealand medical doctors (known as general practitioners, or GPs) in changing practices and recommendations to support non-pharmaceutical drug treatment approaches. Their medical education does not equip them to recognise the extent to which multiple co-existing conditions may be alleviated or reversed. Doctors are paid to prescribe, to inject, and to screen, not to ameliorate or reverse disease and lessen prescribing. The prescribing of nutrients is discouraged and as doctors do not have nutritional training, they hesitate to prescribe nutrients.

    Many do not want to risk going outside treatment guidelines. Recent surges in protocols and guidelines for medical doctors reduce flexibility and narrow treatment choices for doctors. If they were to be reported to the Medical Council of New Zealand, they would risk losing their medical license. They would then be unable to practice.

    Inevitably, without Ministry of Health leadership, medical doctors in New Zealand are unlikely to voluntarily prescribe non-drug modalities such as nutritional options to any meaningful extent, for fear of being reported.

    Yet some doctors are proactive, such as Dr Glen Davies in Taupo, New Zealand. Some doctors are in a better ‘place’ to work to alleviate and reverse long-term conditions. They may be later in their career, with 10-20 years of research into metabolism, dietary nutrition, and patient care, and motivated to guide a patient through a personal care regime which might alleviate or reverse a patient’s suffering.

    Barriers include resourcing. Doctors aren’t paid for reversing disease and taking patients off medications.

    Doctors witness daily the hopelessness felt by their patients in dealing with chronic conditions in their short 15-minute consultations, and the vigilance required for dealing with adverse drug effects. Drug non-compliance is associated with adverse effects suffered by patients. Yet without wrap-around support changing treatments, even if it has potential to alleviate multiple conditions, to reduce symptoms, lower prescribing and therefore lessen side effects, is just too uncertain.

    They saw what happened to disobedient doctors during Covid-19.

    Given such context, what are we to do?

    Have open public discussions about doctor-patient relationships and trust. Inform and overlay such conversations by drawing attention to the foundational Hippocratic Oath made by doctors, to first do no harm.

    Questions can be asked. If patients were to understand that diet may be an underlying driver of multiple conditions, and a change in diet and improvement in micronutrient status might alleviate suffering – would patients be more likely to change?

    Economically, if wrap-around services were provided in clinics to support dietary change, would less harm occur to patients from worsening conditions that accompany many diseases (such as Type 2 diabetes) and the ever-present problem of drug side-effects? Would education and wrap-around services in early childhood and youth delay or prevent the onset of multimorbid diagnoses?

    Is it more ethical to give young people a choice of treatment? Could doctors prescribe dietary changes and multinutrients and support change with wrap-around support when children and young people are first diagnosed with a mental health condition – from the clinic, to school, to after school? If that doesn’t work, then prescribe pharmaceutical drugs.

    Should children and young people be educated to appreciate the extent to which their consumption of ultra-processed food likely drives their metabolic and mental health conditions? Not just in a blithe ‘eat healthy’ fashion that patently avoids discussing addiction. Through deeper policy mechanisms, including cooking classes and nutritional biology by the implementation of nourishing, low-carbohydrate cooked school lunches.

    With officials uninformed, it’s easy to see why funding for Green Prescriptions that would support dietary changes have sputtered out. It’s easy to understand why neither the Ministry of Health nor Pharmac have proactively sourced multi-nutrient treatments that improve resilience to stress and trauma for low-income young people. Why there’s no discussion on a lower side-effect risk for multinutrient treatments. Why are there no policies in the education curriculum diving into the relationship between ultra-processed food and mental and physical health? It’s not in the work programme.

    There’s another surfacing dilemma.

    Currently, if doctors tell their patients that there is very good evidence that their disease or syndrome could be reversed, and this information is not held as factual information by New Zealand’s Ministry of Health – do doctors risk being accused of spreading misinformation?

    Government agencies have pivoted in the past 5 years to focus intensively on the problem of dis- and misinformation. New Zealand’s disinformation project states that

    Disinformation is false or modified information knowingly and deliberately shared to cause harm or achieve a broader aim.
    Misinformation is information that is false or misleading, though not created or shared with the direct intention of causing harm.
    Unfortunately, as we see, there is no division inside the Ministry of Health that reviews the latest evidence in the scientific literature, to ensure that policy decisions correctly reflect the latest evidence.

    There is no scientific agency outside the Ministry of Health that has flexibility and the capacity to undertake autonomous, long-term monitoring and research in nutrition, diet, and health. There is no independent, autonomous, public health research facility with sufficient long-term funding to translate dietary and nutritional evidence into policy, particularly if it contradicted current policy positions.

    Despite excellent research being undertaken, it is highly controlled, ad hoc, and frequently short-term. Problematically, there is no resourcing for those scientists to meaningfully feedback that information to either the Ministry of Health or to Members of Parliament and government Ministers.

    Dietary guidelines can become locked in, and contradictions can fail to be chewed over. Without the capacity to address errors, information can become outdated and misleading. Government agencies and elected members – from local councils all the way up to government Ministers, are dependent on being informed by the Ministry of Health, when it comes to government policy.

    When it comes to complex health conditions, and alleviating and reversing metabolic or mental illness, based on different patient capacity – from socio-economic, to cultural, to social, and taking into account capacity for change, what is sound, evidence-based information and what is misinformation?

    In the impasse, who can we trust?

    Published under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
    For reprints, please set the canonical link back to the original Brownstone Institute Article and Author.

    Author

    J.R. Bruning is a consultant sociologist (B.Bus.Agribusiness; MA Sociology) based in New Zealand. Her work explores governance cultures, policy and the production of scientific and technical knowledge. Her Master’s thesis explored the ways science policy creates barriers to funding, stymying scientists’ efforts to explore upstream drivers of harm. Bruning is a trustee of Physicians & Scientists for Global Responsibility (PSGR.org.nz). Papers and writing can be found at TalkingRisk.NZ and at JRBruning.Substack.com and at Talking Risk on Rumble.

    View all posts
    Your financial backing of Brownstone Institute goes to support writers, lawyers, scientists, economists, and other people of courage who have been professionally purged and displaced during the upheaval of our times. You can help get the truth out through their ongoing work.

    https://brownstone.org/articles/the-silent-shame-of-health-institutions/
    The Silent Shame of Health Institutions J.R. Bruning For how much longer will health policy ignore multimorbidity, that looming, giant elephant in the room, that propagates and amplifies suffering? For how much longer will the ‘trend’ of increasing diagnoses of multiple health conditions, at younger and younger ages be rendered down by government agencies to better and more efficient services, screening modalities, and drug choices? Multimorbidity, the presence of many chronic conditions, is the silent shame of health policy. All too often chronic conditions overlap and accumulate. From cancer, to diabetes, to digestive system diseases, to high blood pressure, to skin conditions in cascades of suffering. Heartbreakingly, these conditions commonly overlap with mental illnesses or disorders. It’s increasingly common for people to be diagnosed with multiple mental conditions, such as having anxiety and depression, or anxiety and schizophrenia. Calls for equity tend to revolve around medical treatment, even as absurdities and injustices accrue. Multimorbidity occurs a decade earlier in socioeconomically deprived communities. Doctors are diagnosing multimorbidity at younger and younger ages. Treatment regimens for people with multiple conditions necessarily entail a polypharmacy approach – the prescribing of multiple medications. One condition may require multiple medications. Thus, with multimorbidity comes increased risk of adverse outcomes and polyiatrogenesis – ‘medical harm caused by medical treatments on multiple fronts simultaneously and in conjunction with one another.’ Side effects, whether short-term or patients’ concerns about long-term harm, are the main reason for non-adherence to prescribed medications. So ‘equity’ which only implies drug treatment doesn’t involve equity at all. Poor diets may be foundational to the Western world’s health crisis. But are governments considering this? The antinomies are piling up. We are amid a global epidemic of metabolic syndrome. Insulin resistance, obesity, elevated triglyceride levels and low levels of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and elevated blood pressure haunt the people queuing up to see doctors. Research, from individual cases to clinical trials, consistently show that diets containing high levels of ultra-processed foods and carbohydrates amplify inflammation, oxidative stress, and insulin resistance. What researchers and scientists are also identifying, at the cellular level, in clinical and medical practice, and at the global level – is that insulin resistance, inflammation, oxidative stress, and nutrient deficiencies from poor diets not only drive metabolic illness, but mental illnesses, compounding suffering. There is also ample evidence that the metabolic and mental health epidemic that is driving years lost due to disease, reducing productivity, and creating mayhem in personal lives – may be preventable and reversible. Doctors generally recognise that poor diets are a problem. Ultra-processed foods are strongly associated with adult and childhood ill health. Ultra-processed foods are ‘formulations of ingredients, mostly of exclusive industrial use, typically created by series of industrial techniques and processes (hence ‘ultra-processed’).’ In the USA young people under age 19 consume on average 67% of their diet, while adults consume around 60% of their diet in ultra-processed food. Ultra-processed food contributes 60% of UK children’s calories; 42% of Australian children’s calories and over half the dietary calories for children and adolescents in Canada. In New Zealand in 2009-2010, ultra-processed foods contributed to the 45% (12 months), 42% (24 months), and 51% (60 months) of energy intake to the diets of children. All too frequently, doctors are diagnosing both metabolic and mental illnesses. What may be predictable is that a person is likely to develop insulin resistance, inflammation, oxidative stress, and nutrient deficiencies from chronic exposure to ultra-processed food. How this will manifest in a disease or syndrome condition is reflective of a human equivalent of quantum entanglement. Cascades, feedback loops, and other interdependencies often leave doctors and patients bouncing from one condition to another, and managing medicine side effects and drug-drug relationships as they go. In New Zealand it is more common to have multiple conditions than a single condition. The costs of having two NCDs simultaneously is typically superadditive and ‘more so for younger adults.’ This information is outside the ‘work programme’ of the top echelons in the Ministry of Health: Official Information Act (OIA) requests confirm that the Ministries’ Directors General who are responsible for setting policy and long-term strategy aren’t considering these issues. The problem of multimorbidity and the overlapping, entangled relationship with ultra-processed food is outside of the scope of the work programme of the top directorates in our health agency. New Zealand’s Ministry of Health’s top deputy directors general might be earning a quarter of a million dollars each, but they are ignorant of the relationship of dietary nutrition and mental health. Nor are they seemingly aware of the extent of multimorbidity and the overlap between metabolic and mental illnesses. Neither the Public Health Agency Deputy Director-General – Dr Andrew Old, nor the Deputy Director-General Evidence, Research and Innovation, Dean Rutherford, nor the Deputy Director-General of Strategy Policy and Legislation, Maree Roberts, nor the Clinical, Community and Mental Health Deputy Director-General Robyn Shearer have been briefed on these relationships. If they’re not being briefed, policy won’t be developed to address dietary nutrition. Diet will be lower-order. The OIA request revealed that New Zealand’s Ministry of Health ‘does not widely use the metabolic syndrome classification.’ When I asked ‘How do you classify, or what term do you use to classify the cluster of symptoms characterised by central obesity, dyslipidemia, hypertension, and insulin resistance?’, they responded: ‘The conditions referred to are considered either on their own or as part of a broader cardiovascular disease risk calculation.’ This is interesting. What if governments should be calculating insulin resistance first, in order to then calculate a broader cardiovascular risk? What if insulin resistance, inflammation, and oxidative stress are appearing at younger and younger ages, and ultra-processed food is the major driver? Pre-diabetes and Type 2 diabetes are driven by too much blood glucose. Type 1 diabetics can’t make insulin, while Type 2 diabetics can’t make enough to compensate for their dietary intake of carbohydrates. One of insulin’s (many) jobs is to tuck away that blood glucose into cells (as fat) but when there are too many dietary carbohydrates pumping up blood glucose, the body can’t keep up. New Zealand practitioners use the HbA1c blood test, which measures the average blood glucose level over the past 2-3 months. In New Zealand, doctors diagnose pre-diabetes if HbA1c levels are 41-49 nmol/mol, and diabetes at levels of 50 nmol/mol and above. Type 2 diabetes management guidelines recommend that sugar intake should be reduced, while people should aim for consistent carbohydrates across the day. The New Zealand government does not recommend paleo or low-carbohydrate diets. If you have diabetes you are twice as likely to have heart disease or a stroke, and at a younger age. Prediabetes, which apparently 20% of Kiwis have, is also high-risk due to, as the Ministry of Health states: ‘increased risk of macrovascular complications and early death.’ The question might become – should we be looking at insulin levels, to more sensitively gauge risk at an early stage? Without more sensitive screens at younger ages these opportunities to repivot to avoid chronic disease are likely to be missed. Currently, Ministry of Health policies are unlikely to justify the funding of tests for insulin resistance by using three simple blood tests: fasting insulin, fasting lipids (cholesterol and triglycerides), and fasting glucose – to estimate where children, young people, and adults stand on the insulin resistance spectrum when other diagnoses pop up. Yet insulin plays a powerful role in brain health. Insulin supports neurotransmitter function and brain energy, directly impacting mood and behaviours. Insulin resistance might arrive before mental illness. Harvard-based psychiatrist Chris Palmer recounts in the book Brain Energy, a large 15,000-participant study of young people from age 0-24: ‘Children who had persistently high insulin levels (a sign of insulin resistance) beginning at age nine were five times more likely to be at risk for psychosis, meaning they were showing at least some worrisome signs, and they were three times for likely to already be diagnosed with bipolar disorder or schizophrenia by the time they turned twenty-four. This study clearly demonstrated that insulin resistance comes first, then psychosis.’ Psychiatrist Georgia Ede suggests that high blood glucose and high insulin levels act like a ‘deadly one-two punch’ for the brain, triggering waves of inflammation and oxidative stress. The blood-brain barrier becomes increasingly resistant to chronic high insulin levels. Even though the body might have higher blood insulin, the same may not be true for the brain. As Ede maintains, ‘cells deprived of adequate insulin ‘sputter and struggle to maintain normal operations.’ Looking at the relationship between brain health and high blood glucose and high insulin simply might not be on the programme for strategists looking at long-term planning. Nor are Directors General in a position to assess the role of food addiction. Ultra-processed food has addictive qualities designed into the product formulations. Food addiction is increasingly recognised as pervasive and difficult to manage as any substance addiction. But how many children and young people have insulin resistance and are showing markers for inflammation and oxidative stress – in the body and in the brain? To what extent do young people have both insulin resistance and depression resistance or ADHD or bipolar disorder? This kind of thinking is completely outside the work programme. But insulin levels, inflammation, and oxidative stress may not only be driving chronic illness – but driving the global mental health tsunami. Metabolic disorders are involved in complex pathways and feedback loops across body systems, and doctors learn this at medical school. Patterns and relationships between hormones, the brain, the gastrointestinal system, kidneys, and liver; as well as problems with joints and bone health, autoimmunity, nerves, and sensory conditions evolve from and revolve around metabolic health. Nutrition and diet are downplayed in medical school. What doctors don’t learn so much – the cognitive dissonance that they must accept throughout their training – is that metabolic health is commonly (except for some instances) shaped by the quality of dietary nutrition. The aetiology of a given condition can be very different, while the evidence that common chronic and mental illnesses are accompanied by oxidative stress, inflammation, and insulin resistance are primarily driven by diet – is growing stronger and stronger. But without recognising the overlapping relationships, policy to support healthy diets will remain limp. What we witness are notions of equity that support pharmaceutical delivery – not health delivery. What also inevitably happens is that ‘equity’ focuses on medical treatment. When the Ministry of Health prefers to atomise the different conditions or associate them with heart disease – they become single conditions to treat with single drugs. They’re lots of small problems, not one big problem, and insulin resistance is downplayed. But just as insulin resistance, inflammation, and oxidative stress send cascading impacts across body systems, systemic ignorance sends cascading effects across government departments tasked with ‘improving, promoting, and protecting health.’ It’s an injustice. The literature solidly points to lower socio-economic status driving much poorer diets and increased exposures to ultra-processed food, but the treatments exclusively involve drugs and therapy. Briefings to Incoming Ministers with the election of new Governments show how ignorance cascades across responsible authorities. Health New Zealand, Te Whatu Ora’s November 2023 Briefing to the new government outlined the agency’s obligations. However, the ‘health’ targets are medical, and the agency’s focus is on infrastructure, staff, and servicing. The promotion of health, and health equity, which can only be addressed by addressing the determinants of health, is not addressed. The Māori Health Authority and Health New Zealand Joint Briefing to the Incoming Minister for Mental Health does not address the role of diet and nutrition as a driver of mental illness and disorder in New Zealand. The issue of multimorbidity, the related problem of commensurate metabolic illness, and diet as a driver is outside scope. When the Briefing states that it is important to address the ‘social, cultural, environmental and economic determinants of mental health,’ without any sound policy footing, real movement to address diet will not happen, or will only happen ad hoc. The Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission, Te Hiringa Mahara’s November 2023 Briefing to Incoming Ministers that went to the Ministers for Health and Mental Health might use the term ‘well-being’ over 120 times – but was silent on the related and overlapping drivers of mental illness which include metabolic or multimorbidity, nutrition, or diet. Five years earlier, He Ara Ora, New Zealand’s 2018 Mental Health and Addiction enquiry had recognised that tāngata whaiora, people seeking wellness, or service users, also tend to have multiple health conditions. The enquiry recommended that a whole of government approach to well-being, prevention, and social determinants was required. Vague nods were made to diet and nutrition, but this was not sufficiently emphasised as to be a priority. He Ara Ora was followed by 2020 Long-term pathway to mental well-being viewed nutrition as being one of a range of factors. No policy framework strategically prioritised diet, nutrition, and healthy food. No governmental obligation or commitment was built into policy to improve access to healthy food or nutrition education. Understanding the science, the relationships, and the drivers of the global epidemic, is ‘outside the work programmes’ of New Zealand’s Ministry of Health and outside the scope of all the related authorities. There is an extraordinary amount of data in the scientific literature, so many case studies, cohort studies, and clinical trials. Popular books are being written, however government agencies remain ignorant. In the meantime, doctors must deal with the suffering in front of them without an adequate toolkit. Doctors and pharmacists are faced with a Hobson’s choice of managing multiple chronic conditions and complex drug cocktails, in patients at younger and younger ages. Ultimately, they are treating a patient whom they recognise will only become sicker, cost the health system more, and suffer more. Currently there is little support for New Zealand medical doctors (known as general practitioners, or GPs) in changing practices and recommendations to support non-pharmaceutical drug treatment approaches. Their medical education does not equip them to recognise the extent to which multiple co-existing conditions may be alleviated or reversed. Doctors are paid to prescribe, to inject, and to screen, not to ameliorate or reverse disease and lessen prescribing. The prescribing of nutrients is discouraged and as doctors do not have nutritional training, they hesitate to prescribe nutrients. Many do not want to risk going outside treatment guidelines. Recent surges in protocols and guidelines for medical doctors reduce flexibility and narrow treatment choices for doctors. If they were to be reported to the Medical Council of New Zealand, they would risk losing their medical license. They would then be unable to practice. Inevitably, without Ministry of Health leadership, medical doctors in New Zealand are unlikely to voluntarily prescribe non-drug modalities such as nutritional options to any meaningful extent, for fear of being reported. Yet some doctors are proactive, such as Dr Glen Davies in Taupo, New Zealand. Some doctors are in a better ‘place’ to work to alleviate and reverse long-term conditions. They may be later in their career, with 10-20 years of research into metabolism, dietary nutrition, and patient care, and motivated to guide a patient through a personal care regime which might alleviate or reverse a patient’s suffering. Barriers include resourcing. Doctors aren’t paid for reversing disease and taking patients off medications. Doctors witness daily the hopelessness felt by their patients in dealing with chronic conditions in their short 15-minute consultations, and the vigilance required for dealing with adverse drug effects. Drug non-compliance is associated with adverse effects suffered by patients. Yet without wrap-around support changing treatments, even if it has potential to alleviate multiple conditions, to reduce symptoms, lower prescribing and therefore lessen side effects, is just too uncertain. They saw what happened to disobedient doctors during Covid-19. Given such context, what are we to do? Have open public discussions about doctor-patient relationships and trust. Inform and overlay such conversations by drawing attention to the foundational Hippocratic Oath made by doctors, to first do no harm. Questions can be asked. If patients were to understand that diet may be an underlying driver of multiple conditions, and a change in diet and improvement in micronutrient status might alleviate suffering – would patients be more likely to change? Economically, if wrap-around services were provided in clinics to support dietary change, would less harm occur to patients from worsening conditions that accompany many diseases (such as Type 2 diabetes) and the ever-present problem of drug side-effects? Would education and wrap-around services in early childhood and youth delay or prevent the onset of multimorbid diagnoses? Is it more ethical to give young people a choice of treatment? Could doctors prescribe dietary changes and multinutrients and support change with wrap-around support when children and young people are first diagnosed with a mental health condition – from the clinic, to school, to after school? If that doesn’t work, then prescribe pharmaceutical drugs. Should children and young people be educated to appreciate the extent to which their consumption of ultra-processed food likely drives their metabolic and mental health conditions? Not just in a blithe ‘eat healthy’ fashion that patently avoids discussing addiction. Through deeper policy mechanisms, including cooking classes and nutritional biology by the implementation of nourishing, low-carbohydrate cooked school lunches. With officials uninformed, it’s easy to see why funding for Green Prescriptions that would support dietary changes have sputtered out. It’s easy to understand why neither the Ministry of Health nor Pharmac have proactively sourced multi-nutrient treatments that improve resilience to stress and trauma for low-income young people. Why there’s no discussion on a lower side-effect risk for multinutrient treatments. Why are there no policies in the education curriculum diving into the relationship between ultra-processed food and mental and physical health? It’s not in the work programme. There’s another surfacing dilemma. Currently, if doctors tell their patients that there is very good evidence that their disease or syndrome could be reversed, and this information is not held as factual information by New Zealand’s Ministry of Health – do doctors risk being accused of spreading misinformation? Government agencies have pivoted in the past 5 years to focus intensively on the problem of dis- and misinformation. New Zealand’s disinformation project states that Disinformation is false or modified information knowingly and deliberately shared to cause harm or achieve a broader aim. Misinformation is information that is false or misleading, though not created or shared with the direct intention of causing harm. Unfortunately, as we see, there is no division inside the Ministry of Health that reviews the latest evidence in the scientific literature, to ensure that policy decisions correctly reflect the latest evidence. There is no scientific agency outside the Ministry of Health that has flexibility and the capacity to undertake autonomous, long-term monitoring and research in nutrition, diet, and health. There is no independent, autonomous, public health research facility with sufficient long-term funding to translate dietary and nutritional evidence into policy, particularly if it contradicted current policy positions. Despite excellent research being undertaken, it is highly controlled, ad hoc, and frequently short-term. Problematically, there is no resourcing for those scientists to meaningfully feedback that information to either the Ministry of Health or to Members of Parliament and government Ministers. Dietary guidelines can become locked in, and contradictions can fail to be chewed over. Without the capacity to address errors, information can become outdated and misleading. Government agencies and elected members – from local councils all the way up to government Ministers, are dependent on being informed by the Ministry of Health, when it comes to government policy. When it comes to complex health conditions, and alleviating and reversing metabolic or mental illness, based on different patient capacity – from socio-economic, to cultural, to social, and taking into account capacity for change, what is sound, evidence-based information and what is misinformation? In the impasse, who can we trust? Published under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License For reprints, please set the canonical link back to the original Brownstone Institute Article and Author. Author J.R. Bruning is a consultant sociologist (B.Bus.Agribusiness; MA Sociology) based in New Zealand. Her work explores governance cultures, policy and the production of scientific and technical knowledge. Her Master’s thesis explored the ways science policy creates barriers to funding, stymying scientists’ efforts to explore upstream drivers of harm. Bruning is a trustee of Physicians & Scientists for Global Responsibility (PSGR.org.nz). Papers and writing can be found at TalkingRisk.NZ and at JRBruning.Substack.com and at Talking Risk on Rumble. View all posts Your financial backing of Brownstone Institute goes to support writers, lawyers, scientists, economists, and other people of courage who have been professionally purged and displaced during the upheaval of our times. You can help get the truth out through their ongoing work. https://brownstone.org/articles/the-silent-shame-of-health-institutions/
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    There is no scientific agency outside the Ministry of Health that has flexibility and the capacity to undertake autonomous, long-term monitoring and research in nutrition, diet and health.
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  • The WHO Wants to Rule the World
    Ramesh Thakur
    The World Health Organisation (WHO) will present two new texts for adoption by its governing body, the World Health Assembly comprising delegates from 194 member states, in Geneva on 27 May–1 June. The new pandemic treaty needs a two-thirds majority for approval and, if and once adopted, will come into effect after 40 ratifications.

    The amendments to the International Health Regulations (IHR) can be adopted by a simple majority and will be binding on all states unless they recorded reservations by the end of last year. Because they will be changes to an existing agreement that states have already signed, the amendments do not require any follow-up ratification. The WHO describes the IHR as ‘an instrument of international law that is legally-binding’ on its 196 states parties, including the 194 WHO member states, even if they voted against it. Therein lies its promise and its threat.

    The new regime will change the WHO from a technical advisory organisation into a supra-national public health authority exercising quasi-legislative and executive powers over states; change the nature of the relationship between citizens, business enterprises, and governments domestically, and also between governments and other governments and the WHO internationally; and shift the locus of medical practice from the doctor-patient consultation in the clinic to public health bureaucrats in capital cities and WHO headquarters in Geneva and its six regional offices.

    From net zero to mass immigration and identity politics, the ‘expertocracy’ elite is in alliance with the global technocratic elite against majority national sentiment. The Covid years gave the elites a valuable lesson in how to exercise effective social control and they mean to apply it across all contentious issues.

    The changes to global health governance architecture must be understood in this light. It represents the transformation of the national security, administrative, and surveillance state into a globalised biosecurity state. But they are encountering pushback in Italy, the Netherlands, Germany, and most recently Ireland. We can but hope that the resistance will spread to rejecting the WHO power grab.

    Addressing the World Governments Summit in Dubai on 12 February, WHO Director-General (DG) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus attacked ‘the litany of lies and conspiracy theories’ about the agreement that ‘are utterly, completely, categorically false. The pandemic agreement will not give WHO any power over any state or any individual, for that matter.’ He insisted that critics are ‘either uninformed or lying.’ Could it be instead that, relying on aides, he himself has either not read or not understood the draft? The alternative explanation for his spray at the critics is that he is gaslighting us all.

    The Gostin, Klock, and Finch Paper

    In the Hastings Center Report “Making the World Safer and Fairer in Pandemics,” published on 23 December, Lawrence Gostin, Kevin Klock, and Alexandra Finch attempt to provide the justification to underpin the proposed new IHR and treaty instruments as ‘transformative normative and financial reforms that could reimagine pandemic prevention, preparedness, and response.’

    The three authors decry the voluntary compliance under the existing ‘amorphous and unenforceable’ IHR regulations as ‘a critical shortcoming.’ And they concede that ‘While advocates have pressed for health-related human rights to be included in the pandemic agreement, the current draft does not do so.’ Directly contradicting the DG’s denial as quoted above, they describe the new treaty as ‘legally binding’. This is repeated several pages later:

    …the best way to contain transnational outbreaks is through international cooperation, led multilaterally through the WHO. That may require all states to forgo some level of sovereignty in exchange for enhanced safety and fairness.

    What gives their analysis significance is that, as explained in the paper itself, Gostin is ‘actively involved in WHO processes for a pandemic agreement and IHR reform’ as the director of the WHO Collaborating Center on National and Global Health Law and a member of the WHO Review Committee on IHR amendments.

    The WHO as the World’s Guidance and Coordinating Authority

    The IHR amendments will expand the situations that constitute a public health emergency, grant the WHO additional emergency powers, and extend state duties to build ‘core capacities’ of surveillance to detect, assess, notify, and report events that could constitute an emergency.

    Under the new accords, the WHO would function as the guidance and coordinating authority for the world. The DG will become more powerful than the UN Secretary-General. The existing language of ‘should’ is replaced in many places by the imperative ‘shall,’ of non-binding recommendations with countries will ‘undertake to follow’ the guidance. And ‘full respect for the dignity, human rights and fundamental freedoms of persons’ will be changed to principles of ‘equity’ and ‘inclusivity’ with different requirements for rich and poor countries, bleeding financial resources and pharmaceutical products from industrialised to developing countries.

    The WHO is first of all an international bureaucracy and only secondly a collective body of medical and health experts. Its Covid performance was not among its finest. Its credibility was badly damaged by tardiness in raising the alarm; by its acceptance and then rejection of China’s claim that there was no risk of human-human transmission; by the failure to hold China accountable for destroying evidence of the pandemic’s origins; by the initial investigation that whitewashed the origins of the virus; by flip-flops on masks and lockdowns; by ignoring the counterexample of Sweden that rejected lockdowns with no worse health outcomes and far better economic, social, and educational outcomes; and by the failure to stand up for children’s developmental, educational, social, and mental health rights and welfare.

    With a funding model where 87 percent of the budget comes from voluntary contributions from the rich countries and private donors like the Gates Foundation, and 77 percent is for activities specified by them, the WHO has effectively ‘become a system of global public health patronage’, write Ben and Molly Kingsley of the UK children’s rights campaign group UsForThem. Human Rights Watch says the process has been ‘disproportionately guided by corporate demands and the policy positions of high-income governments seeking to protect the power of private actors in health including the pharmaceutical industry.’ The victims of this Catch-22 lack of accountability will be the peoples of the world.

    Much of the new surveillance network in a model divided into pre-, in, and post-pandemic periods will be provided by private and corporate interests that will profit from the mass testing and pharmaceutical interventions. According to Forbes, the net worth of Bill Gates jumped by one-third from $96.5 billion in 2019 to $129 billion in 2022: philanthropy can be profitable. Article 15.2 of the draft pandemic treaty requires states to set up ‘no fault vaccine-injury compensation schemes,’ conferring immunity on Big Pharma against liability, thereby codifying the privatisation of profits and the socialisation of risks.

    The changes would confer extraordinary new powers on the WHO’s DG and regional directors and mandate governments to implement their recommendations. This will result in a major expansion of the international health bureaucracy under the WHO, for example new implementation and compliance committees; shift the centre of gravity from the common deadliest diseases (discussed below) to relatively rare pandemic outbreaks (five including Covid in the last 120 years); and give the WHO authority to direct resources (money, pharmaceutical products, intellectual property rights) to itself and to other governments in breach of sovereign and copyright rights.

    Considering the impact of the amendments on national decision-making and mortgaging future generations to internationally determined spending obligations, this calls for an indefinite pause in the process until parliaments have done due diligence and debated the potentially far-reaching obligations.

    Yet disappointingly, relatively few countries have expressed reservations and few parliamentarians seem at all interested. We may pay a high price for the rise of careerist politicians whose primary interest is self-advancement, ministers who ask bureaucrats to draft replies to constituents expressing concern that they often sign without reading either the original letter or the reply in their name, and officials who disdain the constraints of democratic decision-making and accountability. Ministers relying on technical advice from staffers when officials are engaged in a silent coup against elected representatives give power without responsibility to bureaucrats while relegating ministers to being in office but not in power, with political accountability sans authority.

    US President Donald Trump and Australian and UK Prime Ministers Scott Morrison and Boris Johnson were representative of national leaders who had lacked the science literacy, intellectual heft, moral clarity, and courage of conviction to stand up to their technocrats. It was a period of Yes, Prime Minister on steroids, with Sir Humphrey Appleby winning most of the guerrilla campaign waged by the permanent civil service against the transient and clueless Prime Minister Jim Hacker.

    At least some Australian, American, British, and European politicians have recently expressed concern at the WHO-centred ‘command and control’ model of a public health system, and the public spending and redistributive implications of the two proposed international instruments. US Representatives Chris Smith (R-NJ) and Brad Wenstrup (R-OH) warned on 5 February that ‘far too little scrutiny has been given, far too few questions asked as to what this legally binding agreement or treaty means to health policy in the United States and elsewhere.’

    Like Smith and Wenstrup, the most common criticism levelled has been that this represents a power grab at the cost of national sovereignty. Speaking in parliament in November, Australia’s Liberal Senator Alex Antic dubbed the effort a ‘WHO d’etat’.

    A more accurate reading may be that it represents collusion between the WHO and the richest countries, home to the biggest pharmaceutical companies, to dilute accountability for decisions, taken in the name of public health, that profit a narrow elite. The changes will lock in the seamless rule of the technocratic-managerial elite at both the national and the international levels. Yet the WHO edicts, although legally binding in theory, will be unenforceable against the most powerful countries in practice.

    Moreover, the new regime aims to eliminate transparency and critical scrutiny by criminalising any opinion that questions the official narrative from the WHO and governments, thereby elevating them to the status of dogma. The pandemic treaty calls for governments to tackle the ‘infodemics’ of false information, misinformation, disinformation, and even ‘too much information’ (Article 1c). This is censorship. Authorities have no right to be shielded from critical questioning of official information. Freedom of information is a cornerstone of an open and resilient society and a key means to hold authorities to public scrutiny and accountability.

    The changes are an effort to entrench and institutionalise the model of political, social, and messaging control trialled with great success during Covid. The foundational document of the international human rights regime is the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Pandemic management during Covid and in future emergencies threaten some of its core provisions regarding privacy, freedom of opinion and expression, and rights to work, education, peaceful assembly, and association.

    Worst of all, they will create a perverse incentive: the rise of an international bureaucracy whose defining purpose, existence, powers, and budgets will depend on more frequent declarations of actual or anticipated pandemic outbreaks.

    It is a basic axiom of politics that power that can be abused, will be abused – some day, somewhere, by someone. The corollary holds that power once seized is seldom surrendered back voluntarily to the people. Lockdowns, mask and vaccine mandates, travel restrictions, and all the other shenanigans and theatre of the Covid era will likely be repeated on whim. Professor Angus Dalgliesh of London’s St George’s Medical School warns that the WHO ‘wants to inflict this incompetence on us all over again but this time be in total control.’

    Covid in the Context of Africa’s Disease Burden

    In the Hastings Center report referred to earlier, Gostin, Klock, and Finch claim that ‘lower-income countries experienced larger losses and longer-lasting economic setbacks.’ This is a casual elision that shifts the blame for harmful downstream effects away from lockdowns in the futile quest to eradicate the virus, to the virus itself. The chief damage to developing countries was caused by the worldwide shutdown of social life and economic activities and the drastic reduction in international trade.

    The discreet elision aroused my curiosity on the authors’ affiliations. It came as no surprise to read that they lead the O’Neill Institute–Foundation for the National Institutes of Health project on an international instrument for pandemic prevention and preparedness.

    Gostin et al. grounded the urgency for the new accords in the claim that ‘Zoonotic pathogens…are occurring with increasing frequency, enhancing the risk of new pandemics’ and cite research to suggest a threefold increase in ‘extreme pandemics’ over the next decade. In a report entitled “Rational Policy Over Panic,” published by Leeds University in February, a team that included our own David Bell subjected claims of increasing pandemic frequency and disease burden behind the drive to adopt the new treaty and amend the existing IHR to critical scrutiny.

    Specifically, they examined and found wanting a number of assumptions and several references in eight G20, World Bank, and WHO policy documents. On the one hand, the reported increase in natural outbreaks is best explained by technologically more sophisticated diagnostic testing equipment, while the disease burden has been effectively reduced with improved surveillance, response mechanisms, and other public health interventions. Consequently there is no real urgency to rush into the new accords. Instead, governments should take all the time they need to situate pandemic risk in the wider healthcare context and formulate policy tailored to the more accurate risk and interventions matrix.


    The lockdowns were responsible for reversals of decades worth of gains in critical childhood immunisations. UNICEF and WHO estimate that 7.6 million African children under 5 missed out on vaccination in 2021 and another 11 million were under-immunised, ‘making up over 40 percent of the under-immunised and missed children globally.’ How many quality adjusted life years does that add up to, I wonder? But don’t hold your breath that anyone will be held accountable for crimes against African children.

    Earlier this month the Pan-African Epidemic and Pandemic Working Group argued that lockdowns were a ‘class-based and unscientific instrument.’ It accused the WHO of trying to reintroduce ‘classical Western colonialism through the backdoor’ in the form of the new pandemic treaty and the IHR amendments. Medical knowledge and innovations do not come solely from Western capitals and Geneva, but from people and groups who have captured the WHO agenda.

    Lockdowns had caused significant harm to low-income countries, the group said, yet the WHO wanted legal authority to compel member states to comply with its advice in future pandemics, including with respect to vaccine passports and border closures. Instead of bowing to ‘health imperialism,’ it would be preferable for African countries to set their own priorities in alleviating the disease burden of their major killer diseases like cholera, malaria, and yellow fever.

    Europe and the US, comprising a little under ten and over four percent of world population, account for nearly 18 and 17 percent, respectively, of all Covid-related deaths in the world. By contrast Asia, with nearly 60 percent of the world’s people, accounts for 23 percent of all Covid-related deaths. Meantime Africa, with more than 17 percent of global population, has recorded less than four percent of global Covid deaths (Table 1).

    According to a report on the continent’s disease burden published last year by the WHO Regional Office for Africa, Africa’s leading causes of death in 2021 were malaria (593,000 deaths), tuberculosis (501,000), and HIV/AIDS (420,000). The report does not provide the numbers for diarrhoeal deaths for Africa. There are 1.6 million such deaths globally per year, including 440,000 children under 5. And we know that most diarrhoeal deaths occur in Africa and South Asia.

    If we perform a linear extrapolation of 2021 deaths to estimate ballpark figures for the three years 2020–22 inclusive for numbers of Africans killed by these big three, approximately 1.78 million died from malaria, 1.5 million from TB, and 1.26 million from HIV/AIDS. (I exclude 2023 as Covid had faded by then, as can be seen in Table 1). By comparison, the total number of Covid-related deaths across Africa in the three years was 259,000.

    Whether or not the WHO is pursuing a policy of health colonialism, therefore, the Pan-African Epidemic and Pandemic Working Group has a point regarding the grossly exaggerated threat of Covid in the total picture of Africa’s disease burden.

    A shorter version of this was published in The Australian on 11 March

    Published under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
    For reprints, please set the canonical link back to the original Brownstone Institute Article and Author.

    Author

    Ramesh Thakur, a Brownstone Institute Senior Scholar, is a former United Nations Assistant Secretary-General, and emeritus professor in the Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.

    View all posts
    Your financial backing of Brownstone Institute goes to support writers, lawyers, scientists, economists, and other people of courage who have been professionally purged and displaced during the upheaval of our times. You can help get the truth out through their ongoing work.

    https://brownstone.org/articles/the-who-wants-to-rule-the-world/
    The WHO Wants to Rule the World Ramesh Thakur The World Health Organisation (WHO) will present two new texts for adoption by its governing body, the World Health Assembly comprising delegates from 194 member states, in Geneva on 27 May–1 June. The new pandemic treaty needs a two-thirds majority for approval and, if and once adopted, will come into effect after 40 ratifications. The amendments to the International Health Regulations (IHR) can be adopted by a simple majority and will be binding on all states unless they recorded reservations by the end of last year. Because they will be changes to an existing agreement that states have already signed, the amendments do not require any follow-up ratification. The WHO describes the IHR as ‘an instrument of international law that is legally-binding’ on its 196 states parties, including the 194 WHO member states, even if they voted against it. Therein lies its promise and its threat. The new regime will change the WHO from a technical advisory organisation into a supra-national public health authority exercising quasi-legislative and executive powers over states; change the nature of the relationship between citizens, business enterprises, and governments domestically, and also between governments and other governments and the WHO internationally; and shift the locus of medical practice from the doctor-patient consultation in the clinic to public health bureaucrats in capital cities and WHO headquarters in Geneva and its six regional offices. From net zero to mass immigration and identity politics, the ‘expertocracy’ elite is in alliance with the global technocratic elite against majority national sentiment. The Covid years gave the elites a valuable lesson in how to exercise effective social control and they mean to apply it across all contentious issues. The changes to global health governance architecture must be understood in this light. It represents the transformation of the national security, administrative, and surveillance state into a globalised biosecurity state. But they are encountering pushback in Italy, the Netherlands, Germany, and most recently Ireland. We can but hope that the resistance will spread to rejecting the WHO power grab. Addressing the World Governments Summit in Dubai on 12 February, WHO Director-General (DG) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus attacked ‘the litany of lies and conspiracy theories’ about the agreement that ‘are utterly, completely, categorically false. The pandemic agreement will not give WHO any power over any state or any individual, for that matter.’ He insisted that critics are ‘either uninformed or lying.’ Could it be instead that, relying on aides, he himself has either not read or not understood the draft? The alternative explanation for his spray at the critics is that he is gaslighting us all. The Gostin, Klock, and Finch Paper In the Hastings Center Report “Making the World Safer and Fairer in Pandemics,” published on 23 December, Lawrence Gostin, Kevin Klock, and Alexandra Finch attempt to provide the justification to underpin the proposed new IHR and treaty instruments as ‘transformative normative and financial reforms that could reimagine pandemic prevention, preparedness, and response.’ The three authors decry the voluntary compliance under the existing ‘amorphous and unenforceable’ IHR regulations as ‘a critical shortcoming.’ And they concede that ‘While advocates have pressed for health-related human rights to be included in the pandemic agreement, the current draft does not do so.’ Directly contradicting the DG’s denial as quoted above, they describe the new treaty as ‘legally binding’. This is repeated several pages later: …the best way to contain transnational outbreaks is through international cooperation, led multilaterally through the WHO. That may require all states to forgo some level of sovereignty in exchange for enhanced safety and fairness. What gives their analysis significance is that, as explained in the paper itself, Gostin is ‘actively involved in WHO processes for a pandemic agreement and IHR reform’ as the director of the WHO Collaborating Center on National and Global Health Law and a member of the WHO Review Committee on IHR amendments. The WHO as the World’s Guidance and Coordinating Authority The IHR amendments will expand the situations that constitute a public health emergency, grant the WHO additional emergency powers, and extend state duties to build ‘core capacities’ of surveillance to detect, assess, notify, and report events that could constitute an emergency. Under the new accords, the WHO would function as the guidance and coordinating authority for the world. The DG will become more powerful than the UN Secretary-General. The existing language of ‘should’ is replaced in many places by the imperative ‘shall,’ of non-binding recommendations with countries will ‘undertake to follow’ the guidance. And ‘full respect for the dignity, human rights and fundamental freedoms of persons’ will be changed to principles of ‘equity’ and ‘inclusivity’ with different requirements for rich and poor countries, bleeding financial resources and pharmaceutical products from industrialised to developing countries. The WHO is first of all an international bureaucracy and only secondly a collective body of medical and health experts. Its Covid performance was not among its finest. Its credibility was badly damaged by tardiness in raising the alarm; by its acceptance and then rejection of China’s claim that there was no risk of human-human transmission; by the failure to hold China accountable for destroying evidence of the pandemic’s origins; by the initial investigation that whitewashed the origins of the virus; by flip-flops on masks and lockdowns; by ignoring the counterexample of Sweden that rejected lockdowns with no worse health outcomes and far better economic, social, and educational outcomes; and by the failure to stand up for children’s developmental, educational, social, and mental health rights and welfare. With a funding model where 87 percent of the budget comes from voluntary contributions from the rich countries and private donors like the Gates Foundation, and 77 percent is for activities specified by them, the WHO has effectively ‘become a system of global public health patronage’, write Ben and Molly Kingsley of the UK children’s rights campaign group UsForThem. Human Rights Watch says the process has been ‘disproportionately guided by corporate demands and the policy positions of high-income governments seeking to protect the power of private actors in health including the pharmaceutical industry.’ The victims of this Catch-22 lack of accountability will be the peoples of the world. Much of the new surveillance network in a model divided into pre-, in, and post-pandemic periods will be provided by private and corporate interests that will profit from the mass testing and pharmaceutical interventions. According to Forbes, the net worth of Bill Gates jumped by one-third from $96.5 billion in 2019 to $129 billion in 2022: philanthropy can be profitable. Article 15.2 of the draft pandemic treaty requires states to set up ‘no fault vaccine-injury compensation schemes,’ conferring immunity on Big Pharma against liability, thereby codifying the privatisation of profits and the socialisation of risks. The changes would confer extraordinary new powers on the WHO’s DG and regional directors and mandate governments to implement their recommendations. This will result in a major expansion of the international health bureaucracy under the WHO, for example new implementation and compliance committees; shift the centre of gravity from the common deadliest diseases (discussed below) to relatively rare pandemic outbreaks (five including Covid in the last 120 years); and give the WHO authority to direct resources (money, pharmaceutical products, intellectual property rights) to itself and to other governments in breach of sovereign and copyright rights. Considering the impact of the amendments on national decision-making and mortgaging future generations to internationally determined spending obligations, this calls for an indefinite pause in the process until parliaments have done due diligence and debated the potentially far-reaching obligations. Yet disappointingly, relatively few countries have expressed reservations and few parliamentarians seem at all interested. We may pay a high price for the rise of careerist politicians whose primary interest is self-advancement, ministers who ask bureaucrats to draft replies to constituents expressing concern that they often sign without reading either the original letter or the reply in their name, and officials who disdain the constraints of democratic decision-making and accountability. Ministers relying on technical advice from staffers when officials are engaged in a silent coup against elected representatives give power without responsibility to bureaucrats while relegating ministers to being in office but not in power, with political accountability sans authority. US President Donald Trump and Australian and UK Prime Ministers Scott Morrison and Boris Johnson were representative of national leaders who had lacked the science literacy, intellectual heft, moral clarity, and courage of conviction to stand up to their technocrats. It was a period of Yes, Prime Minister on steroids, with Sir Humphrey Appleby winning most of the guerrilla campaign waged by the permanent civil service against the transient and clueless Prime Minister Jim Hacker. At least some Australian, American, British, and European politicians have recently expressed concern at the WHO-centred ‘command and control’ model of a public health system, and the public spending and redistributive implications of the two proposed international instruments. US Representatives Chris Smith (R-NJ) and Brad Wenstrup (R-OH) warned on 5 February that ‘far too little scrutiny has been given, far too few questions asked as to what this legally binding agreement or treaty means to health policy in the United States and elsewhere.’ Like Smith and Wenstrup, the most common criticism levelled has been that this represents a power grab at the cost of national sovereignty. Speaking in parliament in November, Australia’s Liberal Senator Alex Antic dubbed the effort a ‘WHO d’etat’. A more accurate reading may be that it represents collusion between the WHO and the richest countries, home to the biggest pharmaceutical companies, to dilute accountability for decisions, taken in the name of public health, that profit a narrow elite. The changes will lock in the seamless rule of the technocratic-managerial elite at both the national and the international levels. Yet the WHO edicts, although legally binding in theory, will be unenforceable against the most powerful countries in practice. Moreover, the new regime aims to eliminate transparency and critical scrutiny by criminalising any opinion that questions the official narrative from the WHO and governments, thereby elevating them to the status of dogma. The pandemic treaty calls for governments to tackle the ‘infodemics’ of false information, misinformation, disinformation, and even ‘too much information’ (Article 1c). This is censorship. Authorities have no right to be shielded from critical questioning of official information. Freedom of information is a cornerstone of an open and resilient society and a key means to hold authorities to public scrutiny and accountability. The changes are an effort to entrench and institutionalise the model of political, social, and messaging control trialled with great success during Covid. The foundational document of the international human rights regime is the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Pandemic management during Covid and in future emergencies threaten some of its core provisions regarding privacy, freedom of opinion and expression, and rights to work, education, peaceful assembly, and association. Worst of all, they will create a perverse incentive: the rise of an international bureaucracy whose defining purpose, existence, powers, and budgets will depend on more frequent declarations of actual or anticipated pandemic outbreaks. It is a basic axiom of politics that power that can be abused, will be abused – some day, somewhere, by someone. The corollary holds that power once seized is seldom surrendered back voluntarily to the people. Lockdowns, mask and vaccine mandates, travel restrictions, and all the other shenanigans and theatre of the Covid era will likely be repeated on whim. Professor Angus Dalgliesh of London’s St George’s Medical School warns that the WHO ‘wants to inflict this incompetence on us all over again but this time be in total control.’ Covid in the Context of Africa’s Disease Burden In the Hastings Center report referred to earlier, Gostin, Klock, and Finch claim that ‘lower-income countries experienced larger losses and longer-lasting economic setbacks.’ This is a casual elision that shifts the blame for harmful downstream effects away from lockdowns in the futile quest to eradicate the virus, to the virus itself. The chief damage to developing countries was caused by the worldwide shutdown of social life and economic activities and the drastic reduction in international trade. The discreet elision aroused my curiosity on the authors’ affiliations. It came as no surprise to read that they lead the O’Neill Institute–Foundation for the National Institutes of Health project on an international instrument for pandemic prevention and preparedness. Gostin et al. grounded the urgency for the new accords in the claim that ‘Zoonotic pathogens…are occurring with increasing frequency, enhancing the risk of new pandemics’ and cite research to suggest a threefold increase in ‘extreme pandemics’ over the next decade. In a report entitled “Rational Policy Over Panic,” published by Leeds University in February, a team that included our own David Bell subjected claims of increasing pandemic frequency and disease burden behind the drive to adopt the new treaty and amend the existing IHR to critical scrutiny. Specifically, they examined and found wanting a number of assumptions and several references in eight G20, World Bank, and WHO policy documents. On the one hand, the reported increase in natural outbreaks is best explained by technologically more sophisticated diagnostic testing equipment, while the disease burden has been effectively reduced with improved surveillance, response mechanisms, and other public health interventions. Consequently there is no real urgency to rush into the new accords. Instead, governments should take all the time they need to situate pandemic risk in the wider healthcare context and formulate policy tailored to the more accurate risk and interventions matrix. The lockdowns were responsible for reversals of decades worth of gains in critical childhood immunisations. UNICEF and WHO estimate that 7.6 million African children under 5 missed out on vaccination in 2021 and another 11 million were under-immunised, ‘making up over 40 percent of the under-immunised and missed children globally.’ How many quality adjusted life years does that add up to, I wonder? But don’t hold your breath that anyone will be held accountable for crimes against African children. Earlier this month the Pan-African Epidemic and Pandemic Working Group argued that lockdowns were a ‘class-based and unscientific instrument.’ It accused the WHO of trying to reintroduce ‘classical Western colonialism through the backdoor’ in the form of the new pandemic treaty and the IHR amendments. Medical knowledge and innovations do not come solely from Western capitals and Geneva, but from people and groups who have captured the WHO agenda. Lockdowns had caused significant harm to low-income countries, the group said, yet the WHO wanted legal authority to compel member states to comply with its advice in future pandemics, including with respect to vaccine passports and border closures. Instead of bowing to ‘health imperialism,’ it would be preferable for African countries to set their own priorities in alleviating the disease burden of their major killer diseases like cholera, malaria, and yellow fever. Europe and the US, comprising a little under ten and over four percent of world population, account for nearly 18 and 17 percent, respectively, of all Covid-related deaths in the world. By contrast Asia, with nearly 60 percent of the world’s people, accounts for 23 percent of all Covid-related deaths. Meantime Africa, with more than 17 percent of global population, has recorded less than four percent of global Covid deaths (Table 1). According to a report on the continent’s disease burden published last year by the WHO Regional Office for Africa, Africa’s leading causes of death in 2021 were malaria (593,000 deaths), tuberculosis (501,000), and HIV/AIDS (420,000). The report does not provide the numbers for diarrhoeal deaths for Africa. There are 1.6 million such deaths globally per year, including 440,000 children under 5. And we know that most diarrhoeal deaths occur in Africa and South Asia. If we perform a linear extrapolation of 2021 deaths to estimate ballpark figures for the three years 2020–22 inclusive for numbers of Africans killed by these big three, approximately 1.78 million died from malaria, 1.5 million from TB, and 1.26 million from HIV/AIDS. (I exclude 2023 as Covid had faded by then, as can be seen in Table 1). By comparison, the total number of Covid-related deaths across Africa in the three years was 259,000. Whether or not the WHO is pursuing a policy of health colonialism, therefore, the Pan-African Epidemic and Pandemic Working Group has a point regarding the grossly exaggerated threat of Covid in the total picture of Africa’s disease burden. A shorter version of this was published in The Australian on 11 March Published under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License For reprints, please set the canonical link back to the original Brownstone Institute Article and Author. Author Ramesh Thakur, a Brownstone Institute Senior Scholar, is a former United Nations Assistant Secretary-General, and emeritus professor in the Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University. View all posts Your financial backing of Brownstone Institute goes to support writers, lawyers, scientists, economists, and other people of courage who have been professionally purged and displaced during the upheaval of our times. You can help get the truth out through their ongoing work. https://brownstone.org/articles/the-who-wants-to-rule-the-world/
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    The World Health Organisation (WHO) will present two new texts for adoption by its governing body, the World Health Assembly comprising delegates from 194 member states, in Geneva on 27 May–1 June.
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  • The story of Yazan Kafarneh, the boy who starved to death in Gaza
    Tareq S. HajjajMarch 25, 2024
    Yazan Kafarneh after dying of starvation. (Photo: Rabee' Abu Naqirah)
    Yazan Kafarneh after dying of starvation. (Photo: Rabee’ Abu Naqirah)
    This is not a photo of a mummy or an embalmed body retrieved from one of Gaza’s ancient cemeteries. This is a photo of Yazan Kafarneh, a child who died of severe malnutrition during Israel’s genocidal war on the Gaza Strip.

    Yazan’s family now lives in the Rab’a School in the Tal al-Sultan neighborhood in Rafah City. His father, Sharif Kafarneh, along with his mother, Marwa, and his three younger brothers, had fled Beit Hanoun in northern Gaza early on in the war.

    Yazan Kafarneh died at the age of nine, the eldest of four brothers — Mouin, 6, Ramzi, 4, and Muhammad, born during the war in a shelter four months ago.

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    Living in conditions not fit for human habitation, the grieving family had witnessed Yazan’s death before their eyes. It didn’t happen all at once but unfolded gradually over time, his frail body wasting away one day after another until there was nothing left of Yazan but skin and bones.

    Sharif was unable to do anything for his son. He died due to a congenital illness that required a special dietary regimen to keep him healthy. Israel’s systematic prevention of food from reaching the civilian population in Gaza meant that severe malnutrition — suffered by most children in the besieged enclave — in the case of Yazan meant death.

    “We first left from Beit Hanoun to Jabalia refugee camp,” Sharif told Mondoweiss. “Then the occupation called us again and warned us against staying where we were. So we left for Gaza City. Then, the occupation forced us to flee further south, and we did.”

    Yazan Kafarneh's parents and three brothers in their shelter in Rafah. (Photo: Tareq Hajjaj/Mondoweiss)
    Sharif Kafarneh’ (left), his wife Marwa (right), and their three surviving sons (center) in their shelter in Rafah. (Photo: Tareq Hajjaj/Mondoweiss)
    “If it weren’t for Yazan, I would have never left my home,” Sharif maintained. “Yazan required special care and nutrition.”

    Yazan suffered from a congenital form of muscular atrophy that made movement and speech difficult, but Sharif said that it never caused him much grief in his nine short years before the war.

    “He just had advanced nutritional needs,” Sharif explained. “But getting that food for him was never an issue before the war.”

    It was a point of pride for Sharif that he, a taxi driver, had never left his child wanting or deprived.

    “That changed in the war. The specific foods that he needed were cut off,” he said. “For instance, Yazan had to have milk and bananas for dinner every day. He can’t go a day without it, and sometimes he can have only bananas. This is what the doctors told us.”

    “After the war, I couldn’t get a single banana,” Sharif continued. “And for lunch, he had to have boiled vegetables and fruits that were pureed in a blender. We had no electricity for the blender, and there were no fruits or vegetables anymore.”

    As for breakfast, Yazan’s regimen demanded that he eat eggs. “Of course, there aren’t any more eggs in Rafah City,” Sharif said. “No fruits, no vegetables, no eggs, no bananas, nothing.”

    “But our child’s needs were never a problem for us,” Sharif rushed to add. “We loved taking care of him. He was the spoiled child of the family, and his younger brothers loved him and took care of him, too. God gave me a living so I could take care of him.”

    Due to his special needs, charitable societies used to visit Yazan’s home in Beit Hanoun before the war, providing various treatments such as physical therapy and speech therapy. All in all, Yazan had a functional, happy childhood.

    ‘He got thinner and thinner’

    The family continued to take care of Yazan throughout the war. They tried to make do with what they could find, trying as much as possible to find alternatives to the foods Yazan required. “I replaced bananas with halawa [a tahini-based confection], and I replaced eggs with bread soaked in tea,” Sharif said. “But these foods did not contain the nutrients that Yazan needed.”

    In addition to his nutritional needs, Yazan had specific medicines to take. Sharif used to bring him brain and muscle stimulants that helped him stay alive and mobile, allowing him to move around and crawl throughout their home. Those medicines ran out during the second week of the war.

    With the lack of nutrition and medication, his health took a turn for the worse. “I noticed him getting sick, and his body was becoming emaciated,” Sharif recounts. “He got thinner and thinner.”

    His family took him to al-Najjar Hospital in Rafah, where his health continued to deteriorate over the course of eleven days.

    “Even after we took him to the hospital, they couldn’t do anything for him,” Sharif continued. “All they were able to give him were IV fluids, and when his situation got worse, the hospital staff placed a feeding tube in his nose.”

    “My son required a tube with a 14-unit measurement, but all the hospital had was an 8-unit,” he added.

    When asked what was the most important factor that led to the deterioration of his son’s condition, Sharif said that it was the environment he lived in. “Before the war, he was in the right environment. After, everything was wrong. He was in his own home, but then he was uprooted to a shelter in Rafah.”

    “The situation we’re living in isn’t fit for humans, let alone a sick child,” Sharif explained. “In the camps, people would light fires to keep themselves warm, but the smoke would cause Yazan to cough and suffocate, and we weren’t able to tell them to turn their fires off because everyone was so cold.”

    Dr. Muhammad al-Sabe’, a pediatric surgeon in Rafah who works at the al-Awda, al-Najjar, and al-Kuwaiti hospitals, took a special interest in Yazan’s case.

    “The harsh conditions Yazan had to endure, including malnutrition, were the main factors contributing to the deterioration of his health and his ultimate death,” Dr. al-Sabe’ told Mondoweiss. “This is a genetic and congenital illness, and it requires special care every day, including specific proteins, IV medicines, and daily physical therapy, which isn’t available at Rafah.”

    “If things don’t change, if they stay the way they are, we’re going to witness mass death among children.”
    Dr. Muhammad al-Sabe’normal
    Dr. al-Sabe’ said that most foods administered to patients who cannot feed themselves through feeding tubes are unavailable in Gaza. “The occupation prevents these specific foods and medicines from coming in,” he explained. “Including a medicine called Ensure.”

    Ensure is a special nutritional supplement used in medical settings for what is called “enteral nutrition” — feeding patients through a nasal tube.

    “Special treatment for patients, especially children, is nonexistent,” Dr. al-Sabe’ added. “We don’t even have diapers, let alone baby formula and nutritional supplements.”

    “If things don’t change, if they stay the way they are, we’re going to witness mass death among children,” he stressed. “If any child doesn’t receive nutrition for an entire week, that child will eventually die. And even if malnourished children are eventually provided with nutrition, they will likely suffer lifelong health consequences.”

    “If medicine is cut off from children who need it for one week, this will also likely lead to their death,” he continued.

    Yazan Kafarneh after dying of starvation. (Photo: Rabee' Abu Naqirah)
    Images of Yazan Kafarneh’s emaciated body circulated widely on social media. (Photo: Rabee’ Abu Naqirah)
    Children disproportionately affected by famine

    According to a UNICEF humanitarian situation report on March 22, 2.23 million people in Gaza suffer at least from “acute food insecurity,” while half of that population (1.1 million people) suffers from “catastrophic food insecurity,” meaning that “famine is imminent for half of the population.”

    An earlier report in December 2023 had already concluded that all children in Gaza under five years old (estimated to be 335,000 children) are “at high risk of severe malnutrition and preventable death.” UNICEF’s most recent March 22 report estimates that the famine threshold for “acute food insecurity” has already been “far exceeded,” while it is highly likely that the famine threshold for “acute malnutrition” has also been exceeded. Moreover, UNICEF said that the Famine Review Committee predicted that famine would manifest in Gaza anywhere between March and May of this year.

    Dr. al-Sabe’ stresses that such dire conditions disproportionately affect children, who have advanced nutritional needs compared to adults.

    “Their bodies are weak, and they don’t have large stores of muscle and fat,” he explained. “Even one day of no food for a young child will lead to consequences that are difficult to control in the future.”

    “An adult male may go a week without food before signs of malnutrition begin to show,” he continued. “Not so with children. Their muscle mass increases whenever they eat, which in turn leads to a greater need for nutrients.”

    The lack of nutrients means that children will grow weak, the pediatric surgeon said, and that they will quickly begin to exhibit symptoms such as fatigue, sleepiness, diarrhea, vomiting, anemia, sunken eyes, and joint pains. For the same reason, Dr. al-Sabe maintained, children also respond to treatment fairly quickly — but “on the condition that they have not experienced malnutrition for more than a week.”

    After one week, reversing the effects of malnutrition becomes much more difficult. Al-Sabe’ asserts that children’s digestive tracts will slow down, they might begin to suffer from kidney failure, and their bellies can swell with fluids.

    That is what is particularly devastating for Gaza — over 335,000 children have undergone varying degrees of extreme malnutrition for months on end. The consequences are difficult to fathom on a population-wide level and for future generations. As of the time of writing, over 30 children have already died due to malnutrition in northern Gaza, but the real number is likely much higher given the lack of reporting in many areas in the north.

    ‘He didn’t need a miracle to save him’

    Yazan’s mother, Marwa Kafarneh, could barely contain her tears as she spoke of her son.

    “He was a normal boy despite his illness,” she told Mondoweiss. “He played with his brothers. He crawled and moved about, and he could open closets and use the phone, and he would watch things on it for hours.”

    “He could have lived a long life, a normal life,” she continued. “His father would have brought him everything that he needed. He wouldn’t have had to feel hungry for even a single day.”

    When she saw that the images of her son’s emaciated body had gone viral on social media, Marwa said that she preferred death over looking at the photos. “My eldest son died in front of my eyes, in front of all of our eyes,” she said. “We weren’t able to save him. And he didn’t need a miracle to save him either. All he needed was the food that we’ve always been able to provide for him.”

    Reflecting as she cried, she added: “But finding that food in Gaza today takes nothing less than a miracle.”

    Tareq S. Hajjaj
    Tareq S. Hajjaj is the Mondoweiss Gaza Correspondent and a member of the Palestinian Writers Union. He studied English Literature at Al-Azhar University in Gaza. He started his career in journalism in 2015, working as a news writer and translator for the local newspaper Donia al-Watan. He has reported for Elbadi, Middle East Eye, and Al-Monitor. Follow him on Twitter at @Tareqshajjaj.

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    https://mondoweiss.net/2024/03/the-story-of-yazan-kafarneh-the-boy-who-starved-to-death-in-gaza/
    The story of Yazan Kafarneh, the boy who starved to death in Gaza Tareq S. HajjajMarch 25, 2024 Yazan Kafarneh after dying of starvation. (Photo: Rabee' Abu Naqirah) Yazan Kafarneh after dying of starvation. (Photo: Rabee’ Abu Naqirah) This is not a photo of a mummy or an embalmed body retrieved from one of Gaza’s ancient cemeteries. This is a photo of Yazan Kafarneh, a child who died of severe malnutrition during Israel’s genocidal war on the Gaza Strip. Yazan’s family now lives in the Rab’a School in the Tal al-Sultan neighborhood in Rafah City. His father, Sharif Kafarneh, along with his mother, Marwa, and his three younger brothers, had fled Beit Hanoun in northern Gaza early on in the war. Yazan Kafarneh died at the age of nine, the eldest of four brothers — Mouin, 6, Ramzi, 4, and Muhammad, born during the war in a shelter four months ago. Advertisement Watch now: ANGELA DAVIS on Witnessing Palestine with Frank Barat Living in conditions not fit for human habitation, the grieving family had witnessed Yazan’s death before their eyes. It didn’t happen all at once but unfolded gradually over time, his frail body wasting away one day after another until there was nothing left of Yazan but skin and bones. Sharif was unable to do anything for his son. He died due to a congenital illness that required a special dietary regimen to keep him healthy. Israel’s systematic prevention of food from reaching the civilian population in Gaza meant that severe malnutrition — suffered by most children in the besieged enclave — in the case of Yazan meant death. “We first left from Beit Hanoun to Jabalia refugee camp,” Sharif told Mondoweiss. “Then the occupation called us again and warned us against staying where we were. So we left for Gaza City. Then, the occupation forced us to flee further south, and we did.” Yazan Kafarneh's parents and three brothers in their shelter in Rafah. (Photo: Tareq Hajjaj/Mondoweiss) Sharif Kafarneh’ (left), his wife Marwa (right), and their three surviving sons (center) in their shelter in Rafah. (Photo: Tareq Hajjaj/Mondoweiss) “If it weren’t for Yazan, I would have never left my home,” Sharif maintained. “Yazan required special care and nutrition.” Yazan suffered from a congenital form of muscular atrophy that made movement and speech difficult, but Sharif said that it never caused him much grief in his nine short years before the war. “He just had advanced nutritional needs,” Sharif explained. “But getting that food for him was never an issue before the war.” It was a point of pride for Sharif that he, a taxi driver, had never left his child wanting or deprived. “That changed in the war. The specific foods that he needed were cut off,” he said. “For instance, Yazan had to have milk and bananas for dinner every day. He can’t go a day without it, and sometimes he can have only bananas. This is what the doctors told us.” “After the war, I couldn’t get a single banana,” Sharif continued. “And for lunch, he had to have boiled vegetables and fruits that were pureed in a blender. We had no electricity for the blender, and there were no fruits or vegetables anymore.” As for breakfast, Yazan’s regimen demanded that he eat eggs. “Of course, there aren’t any more eggs in Rafah City,” Sharif said. “No fruits, no vegetables, no eggs, no bananas, nothing.” “But our child’s needs were never a problem for us,” Sharif rushed to add. “We loved taking care of him. He was the spoiled child of the family, and his younger brothers loved him and took care of him, too. God gave me a living so I could take care of him.” Due to his special needs, charitable societies used to visit Yazan’s home in Beit Hanoun before the war, providing various treatments such as physical therapy and speech therapy. All in all, Yazan had a functional, happy childhood. ‘He got thinner and thinner’ The family continued to take care of Yazan throughout the war. They tried to make do with what they could find, trying as much as possible to find alternatives to the foods Yazan required. “I replaced bananas with halawa [a tahini-based confection], and I replaced eggs with bread soaked in tea,” Sharif said. “But these foods did not contain the nutrients that Yazan needed.” In addition to his nutritional needs, Yazan had specific medicines to take. Sharif used to bring him brain and muscle stimulants that helped him stay alive and mobile, allowing him to move around and crawl throughout their home. Those medicines ran out during the second week of the war. With the lack of nutrition and medication, his health took a turn for the worse. “I noticed him getting sick, and his body was becoming emaciated,” Sharif recounts. “He got thinner and thinner.” His family took him to al-Najjar Hospital in Rafah, where his health continued to deteriorate over the course of eleven days. “Even after we took him to the hospital, they couldn’t do anything for him,” Sharif continued. “All they were able to give him were IV fluids, and when his situation got worse, the hospital staff placed a feeding tube in his nose.” “My son required a tube with a 14-unit measurement, but all the hospital had was an 8-unit,” he added. When asked what was the most important factor that led to the deterioration of his son’s condition, Sharif said that it was the environment he lived in. “Before the war, he was in the right environment. After, everything was wrong. He was in his own home, but then he was uprooted to a shelter in Rafah.” “The situation we’re living in isn’t fit for humans, let alone a sick child,” Sharif explained. “In the camps, people would light fires to keep themselves warm, but the smoke would cause Yazan to cough and suffocate, and we weren’t able to tell them to turn their fires off because everyone was so cold.” Dr. Muhammad al-Sabe’, a pediatric surgeon in Rafah who works at the al-Awda, al-Najjar, and al-Kuwaiti hospitals, took a special interest in Yazan’s case. “The harsh conditions Yazan had to endure, including malnutrition, were the main factors contributing to the deterioration of his health and his ultimate death,” Dr. al-Sabe’ told Mondoweiss. “This is a genetic and congenital illness, and it requires special care every day, including specific proteins, IV medicines, and daily physical therapy, which isn’t available at Rafah.” “If things don’t change, if they stay the way they are, we’re going to witness mass death among children.” Dr. Muhammad al-Sabe’normal Dr. al-Sabe’ said that most foods administered to patients who cannot feed themselves through feeding tubes are unavailable in Gaza. “The occupation prevents these specific foods and medicines from coming in,” he explained. “Including a medicine called Ensure.” Ensure is a special nutritional supplement used in medical settings for what is called “enteral nutrition” — feeding patients through a nasal tube. “Special treatment for patients, especially children, is nonexistent,” Dr. al-Sabe’ added. “We don’t even have diapers, let alone baby formula and nutritional supplements.” “If things don’t change, if they stay the way they are, we’re going to witness mass death among children,” he stressed. “If any child doesn’t receive nutrition for an entire week, that child will eventually die. And even if malnourished children are eventually provided with nutrition, they will likely suffer lifelong health consequences.” “If medicine is cut off from children who need it for one week, this will also likely lead to their death,” he continued. Yazan Kafarneh after dying of starvation. (Photo: Rabee' Abu Naqirah) Images of Yazan Kafarneh’s emaciated body circulated widely on social media. (Photo: Rabee’ Abu Naqirah) Children disproportionately affected by famine According to a UNICEF humanitarian situation report on March 22, 2.23 million people in Gaza suffer at least from “acute food insecurity,” while half of that population (1.1 million people) suffers from “catastrophic food insecurity,” meaning that “famine is imminent for half of the population.” An earlier report in December 2023 had already concluded that all children in Gaza under five years old (estimated to be 335,000 children) are “at high risk of severe malnutrition and preventable death.” UNICEF’s most recent March 22 report estimates that the famine threshold for “acute food insecurity” has already been “far exceeded,” while it is highly likely that the famine threshold for “acute malnutrition” has also been exceeded. Moreover, UNICEF said that the Famine Review Committee predicted that famine would manifest in Gaza anywhere between March and May of this year. Dr. al-Sabe’ stresses that such dire conditions disproportionately affect children, who have advanced nutritional needs compared to adults. “Their bodies are weak, and they don’t have large stores of muscle and fat,” he explained. “Even one day of no food for a young child will lead to consequences that are difficult to control in the future.” “An adult male may go a week without food before signs of malnutrition begin to show,” he continued. “Not so with children. Their muscle mass increases whenever they eat, which in turn leads to a greater need for nutrients.” The lack of nutrients means that children will grow weak, the pediatric surgeon said, and that they will quickly begin to exhibit symptoms such as fatigue, sleepiness, diarrhea, vomiting, anemia, sunken eyes, and joint pains. For the same reason, Dr. al-Sabe maintained, children also respond to treatment fairly quickly — but “on the condition that they have not experienced malnutrition for more than a week.” After one week, reversing the effects of malnutrition becomes much more difficult. Al-Sabe’ asserts that children’s digestive tracts will slow down, they might begin to suffer from kidney failure, and their bellies can swell with fluids. That is what is particularly devastating for Gaza — over 335,000 children have undergone varying degrees of extreme malnutrition for months on end. The consequences are difficult to fathom on a population-wide level and for future generations. As of the time of writing, over 30 children have already died due to malnutrition in northern Gaza, but the real number is likely much higher given the lack of reporting in many areas in the north. ‘He didn’t need a miracle to save him’ Yazan’s mother, Marwa Kafarneh, could barely contain her tears as she spoke of her son. “He was a normal boy despite his illness,” she told Mondoweiss. “He played with his brothers. He crawled and moved about, and he could open closets and use the phone, and he would watch things on it for hours.” “He could have lived a long life, a normal life,” she continued. “His father would have brought him everything that he needed. He wouldn’t have had to feel hungry for even a single day.” When she saw that the images of her son’s emaciated body had gone viral on social media, Marwa said that she preferred death over looking at the photos. “My eldest son died in front of my eyes, in front of all of our eyes,” she said. “We weren’t able to save him. And he didn’t need a miracle to save him either. All he needed was the food that we’ve always been able to provide for him.” Reflecting as she cried, she added: “But finding that food in Gaza today takes nothing less than a miracle.” Tareq S. Hajjaj Tareq S. Hajjaj is the Mondoweiss Gaza Correspondent and a member of the Palestinian Writers Union. He studied English Literature at Al-Azhar University in Gaza. He started his career in journalism in 2015, working as a news writer and translator for the local newspaper Donia al-Watan. He has reported for Elbadi, Middle East Eye, and Al-Monitor. Follow him on Twitter at @Tareqshajjaj. BEFORE YOU GO – At Mondoweiss, we understand the power of telling Palestinian stories. For 17 years, we have pushed back when the mainstream media published lies or echoed politicians’ hateful rhetoric. Now, Palestinian voices are more important than ever. Our traffic has increased ten times since October 7, and we need your help to cover our increased expenses. Support our journalists with a donation today. https://mondoweiss.net/2024/03/the-story-of-yazan-kafarneh-the-boy-who-starved-to-death-in-gaza/
    MONDOWEISS.NET
    The story of Yazan Kafarneh, the boy who starved to death in Gaza
    9-year-old Yazan Kafarneh died of a congenital illness turned deadly by severe malnutrition under Israel’s genocidal siege. “He didn’t need a miracle to save him,” cries his mother. “All he needed was the food we’ve always been able to provide him.”
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  • Kindergarten Genius w/ Unrestricted PLR Review

    Greetings from the “Kindergarten Genius w/ Unrestricted PLR” universe! This is where you can begin exploring the amazing field of early childhood education!
    Envision an immense collection of more than 4000 fascinating tasks, painstakingly designed to captivate and instruct young students ranging from preschool to kindergarten. This bundle offers a learning playground with activities ranging from learning the alphabet to mastering numbers, shapes, and colors.
    The best part is that you may truly personalize this product thanks to the Unrestricted Private Label Rights. Whether you’re a parent, teacher, or aspiring business owner, feel free to customize, brand, and resell to your heart’s delight.
    Come along on a journey to spark young minds and influence schooling going forward. The journey starts today with “Kindergarten Genius w/ Unrestricted PLR,” where the options are unlimited!


    WHAT DO YOU GET INSIDE THIS PACKAGE?
    Inside this package, you’ll discover a comprehensive toolkit tailored to revolutionize early childhood education:
    ♦ Over 4000 Engaging Activities:
    Dive into a vast collection of meticulously crafted activities designed to captivate young minds and foster holistic development.
    ♦ Unrestricted Private Label Rights: Enjoy complete ownership and flexibility to customize, brand, and resell the materials according to your vision and target audience.
    ♦ Customizable Content: Tailor the content to your specific needs by editing, modifying, or rebranding the materials to align with your brand identity or educational objectives.
    ♦ Profit-Maximizing Opportunities:
    Seize the opportunity to sell the product with private label rights and retain 100% of the profits, diversifying your income streams and maximizing your returns.
    ♦ Digital Format: Access all materials in a digital format, accompanied by fully customizable source files in PDF format, providing unparalleled flexibility for personalization and adaptation.
    ♦ Endless Benefits in a Thriving Niche: Establish brand authority and tap into the lucrative early education market with a product that’s here to stay, offering endless benefits and opportunities for growth.
    With “Kindergarten Genius,” you’re not just investing in a product – you’re unlocking a world of possibilities to inspire, educate, and innovate in the realm of early childhood education.

    Read More >>
    https://dilip-review.com/kindergarten-genius/
    Kindergarten Genius w/ Unrestricted PLR Review Greetings from the “Kindergarten Genius w/ Unrestricted PLR” universe! This is where you can begin exploring the amazing field of early childhood education! Envision an immense collection of more than 4000 fascinating tasks, painstakingly designed to captivate and instruct young students ranging from preschool to kindergarten. This bundle offers a learning playground with activities ranging from learning the alphabet to mastering numbers, shapes, and colors. The best part is that you may truly personalize this product thanks to the Unrestricted Private Label Rights. Whether you’re a parent, teacher, or aspiring business owner, feel free to customize, brand, and resell to your heart’s delight. Come along on a journey to spark young minds and influence schooling going forward. The journey starts today with “Kindergarten Genius w/ Unrestricted PLR,” where the options are unlimited! WHAT DO YOU GET INSIDE THIS PACKAGE? Inside this package, you’ll discover a comprehensive toolkit tailored to revolutionize early childhood education: ♦ Over 4000 Engaging Activities: Dive into a vast collection of meticulously crafted activities designed to captivate young minds and foster holistic development. ♦ Unrestricted Private Label Rights: Enjoy complete ownership and flexibility to customize, brand, and resell the materials according to your vision and target audience. ♦ Customizable Content: Tailor the content to your specific needs by editing, modifying, or rebranding the materials to align with your brand identity or educational objectives. ♦ Profit-Maximizing Opportunities: Seize the opportunity to sell the product with private label rights and retain 100% of the profits, diversifying your income streams and maximizing your returns. ♦ Digital Format: Access all materials in a digital format, accompanied by fully customizable source files in PDF format, providing unparalleled flexibility for personalization and adaptation. ♦ Endless Benefits in a Thriving Niche: Establish brand authority and tap into the lucrative early education market with a product that’s here to stay, offering endless benefits and opportunities for growth. With “Kindergarten Genius,” you’re not just investing in a product – you’re unlocking a world of possibilities to inspire, educate, and innovate in the realm of early childhood education. Read More >> https://dilip-review.com/kindergarten-genius/
    DILIP-REVIEW.COM
    Kindergarten Genius w/ Unrestricted PLR Review
    Kindergarten Genius w/ Unrestricted PLR, This is where you can begin exploring the amazing field of early childhood education!
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  • BREAKING: West Virginia Will Now Have an Exemption to its K-12 School Vaccine Mandates
    March 10, 2024


    Yesterday, a bill that exempts private and parochial schools from the state’s childhood vaccine mandates passed in West Virginia and is expected to become law.

    ICAN is pleased to announce that West Virginia private and parochial schools will now be able to offer an exemption to the state’s vaccine mandate for school children! ICAN recently supported a monumental lawsuit in Mississippi that restored a religious exemption for all elementary and secondary schools in that state. It then supported a lawsuit in West Virginia to do the same that is still ongoing but is already clearly having an impact. Rest assured, ICAN does not intend to stop until public school students in West Virginia also have an exemption available to them and ICAN will continue its legal efforts in the other four remaining states that do not yet have a non-medical exemption. Thank you for supporting this groundbreaking and critical work!

    To support future legal action like this, click here to donate!

    https://info.icandecide.org/rd/9z4z71749hbric9q63fia8g58c4fmrim4fefn2qsc7o_rp22sh2s8h6epr1c5i61pr24no
    BREAKING: West Virginia Will Now Have an Exemption to its K-12 School Vaccine Mandates March 10, 2024 Yesterday, a bill that exempts private and parochial schools from the state’s childhood vaccine mandates passed in West Virginia and is expected to become law. ICAN is pleased to announce that West Virginia private and parochial schools will now be able to offer an exemption to the state’s vaccine mandate for school children! ICAN recently supported a monumental lawsuit in Mississippi that restored a religious exemption for all elementary and secondary schools in that state. It then supported a lawsuit in West Virginia to do the same that is still ongoing but is already clearly having an impact. Rest assured, ICAN does not intend to stop until public school students in West Virginia also have an exemption available to them and ICAN will continue its legal efforts in the other four remaining states that do not yet have a non-medical exemption. Thank you for supporting this groundbreaking and critical work! To support future legal action like this, click here to donate! https://info.icandecide.org/rd/9z4z71749hbric9q63fia8g58c4fmrim4fefn2qsc7o_rp22sh2s8h6epr1c5i61pr24no
    INFO.ICANDECIDE.ORG
    BREAKING: West Virginia Will Now Have an Exemption to its K-12 School Vaccine Mandates - ICAN - Informed Consent Action Network
    A bill exempting private & parochial schools from the state’s childhood vaccine mandates passed in West Virginia & is expected to become law.
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  • CDC’s Own Scientists Found Masks Ineffective for Covid-19 but Recommended Them Anyway
    Officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention openly questioned the findings of its own scientists’ studies contradicting the agency’s public messaging about mask effectiveness

    World Council for Health
    This article was originally published by The Defender — Children’s Health Defense’s News & Views Website.

    cdc masks ineffective covid feature
    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) own scientists conducted studies showing N95 respirators are no more effective at stopping viruses than surgical masks — yet the agency issued guidance contradicting those and other studies showing both types of masks are ineffective at stopping the spread of COVID-19, according to an investigation by independent journalist Paul D. Thacker.

    The investigation, published this week in two parts on The Disinformation Chronicle, details how CDC leadership openly questioned the findings of CDC scientists’ studies contradicting the agency’s public messaging about mask effectiveness.

    During the pandemic, mask advocates “shifted goalposts and demanded N95 respirators,” Thacker said, claiming they perform better than surgical masks at stopping the virus.

    If this content is important to you, share it!

    Share

    However, Thacker said CDC scientists found no difference between N95 and surgical masks in the ability to stop the spread of respiratory viruses. The findings of the CDC studies are consistent with other peer-reviewed studies on the efficacy of masks in preventing COVID-19, according to Thacker.

    “But the CDC responded by saying people can’t say that,” Thacker told The Defender.

    To shut down the controversy, the CDC, in its Jan. 23 post on preventing the transmission of pathogens in healthcare settings, warned researchers that to suggest facemasks and respirators are the same “is not scientifically correct,” Thacker wrote.

    CDC ignores own studies questioning N95, mask effectiveness

    According to Thacker, CDC guidance for controlling the spread of infections had not been updated since 2007. This prompted the CDC, in 2022, to select “a bunch of science experts,” and ask them “to update the agency’s scientific guidance to hospitals on how to control infections.”

    In November 2023, the experts produced an 80-page systematic review and meta-analysis, examining whether N95 respirators were more effective than surgical masks. The review found that while N95 respirators are better at filtering particles, the finding that they are more effective at stopping viruses “has been less conclusive.”

    The systematic review also examined the “effectiveness” of N95 respirators and surgical masks “under ‘real world’” conditions and found “no difference” between the two.

    The review also found numerous symptoms reported by N95 mask users, including: “difficulty breathing, headaches, and dizziness; skin barrier damage and itching; fatigue; and difficulty talking.”

    According to Thacker, the CDC is not pleased with these findings, suggesting in its recent update that its own scientists were wrong.

    “Although masks can provide some level of filtration, the level of filtration is not comparable to NIOSH Approved respirators,” the CDC said.

    The post also stated, “The COVID-19 pandemic has forever changed the approach we take in healthcare settings to protect healthcare personnel, patients, and others from transmission of respiratory infections.”

    More evidence contradicting the CDC’s public position came at a June 2023 CDC meeting in Atlanta, when Erin Stone, MPH, a public health analyst in the agency’s Office of Guidelines and Evidence Review, presented the findings of a meta-analysis on the effectiveness of N95 respirators and surgical masks.

    According to Stone, the data “suggests no difference” in their effectiveness.

    Yet, in November 2023 testimony before the U.S. House of Representatives’ Energy and Commerce Committee, CDC Director Mandy Cohen sidestepped questions regarding mask effectiveness and refused to deny she would reinstate mask mandates for children.

    According to Thacker, in December 2023, just six days after Cohen’s testimony, The BMJ’s Archives of Disease in Childhood journal published a study finding that “mask recommendations for children are not supported by scientific evidence.”

    “Recommending child masking does not meet the accepted practice of promulgating only medical interventions where benefits clearly outweigh harms,” the study authors noted.

    Thacker: CDC guidance based on politics, not science

    Thacker said the CDC contradicted its own findings on mask efficacy even in the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic.

    “Soon after the pandemic started, the CDC began promoting masks to stop the spread of COVID,” Thacker wrote. “And it did so despite CDC publishing a May 2020 policy study in their own journal, ‘Emerging Infectious Diseases,’ that did not find a ‘substantial effect’ for masks in stopping the transmission of respiratory viruses.”


    twitter.com/CDCgov/status/1378462317109731334
    That same month, the CDC began publicly promoting N95 respirators as a more effective means of controlling the spread of COVID-19.

    However, on its webpage promoting the superiority of N95 respirators, the CDC admitted “there’s not a whole lot of evidence that N95 respirators do in fact work better than masks at stopping viruses,” Thacker wrote.

    “Laboratory studies have demonstrated that FFRs [filtering facepiece respirators] provide greater protection against aerosols compared with surgical masks … however, the results of clinical studies have been inconclusive,” the CDC wrote, citing a 2019 study in JAMA comparing N95 respirators to masks.

    “Among outpatient health care personnel, N95 respirators vs medical masks as worn by participants in this trial resulted in no significant difference in the incidence of laboratory-confirmed influenza,” the JAMA study noted.


    twitter.com/CDCgov/status/1256655451195715585
    According to Thacker, the results of these studies confirm the widely accepted pre-COVID-19 scientific consensus on the ineffectiveness of masks of any kind in stopping the spread of viruses. Thacker cited statements the World Health Organization made in 2019 and the CDC’s guidance on virus control.

    In a 2020 appearance on CBS’ “60 Minutes,” Dr. Anthony Fauci said that while a mask might “block a droplet” and “make people feel a little better,” it does not provide “the perfect protection that people think it is.”



    According to Thacker, “For some reason, a ‘masks work’ political movement began to grow,” despite Fauci’s statements and the findings of these studies.

    “I’m not really sure what happened or what we do next,” Thacker wrote. “But something weird took place in America where liberal elites began messaging among themselves ‘masks work.’ They then grew this into a crusade.”

    The movement was effective in getting the CDC on board with issuing mask guidance, Thacker said.

    Four years after the onset of the pandemic, the CDC now openly cheerleads for masks, despite research the agency published showing that masks don’t really protect people from catching viruses, he said.

    “And this is why the experts advising the CDC are getting all this pushback: they didn’t tell the CDC what the CDC wanted to hear,” Thacker wrote.

    Harvey Risch, M.D., Ph.D., professor emeritus and senior research scientist in epidemiology (chronic diseases) at the Yale School of Public Health, told The Disinformation Chronicle the CDC “has succumbed to political influences.”

    Risch said:

    “It made policies for school closures in order to please the teachers’ union. Its charitable organization allows pharma to feed it hundreds of millions of dollars that would be illegal to go directly to the agency, and this gives pharma major influence on CDC policies.”

    According to Thacker, the CDC has continued to double down on guidance promoting mask efficacy. A Jan. 23 letter the agency sent to its own advisers appears to encourage them to add more mask guidance to the agency’s new guidelines for the spread of pathogens, based on the conclusion that N95 respirators are effective.

    “Too much science is forcing CDC to request a science do over,” Thacker wrote, referring to the CDC’s Jan. 23 post, which states that its new recommendations should not “be misread to suggest equivalency between facemasks and NIOSH Approved respirators, which is not scientifically correct nor the intent of the draft language.”

    Thacker said his investigation shows that “in their guidance to the CDC, experts do recommend masks as part of what they call ‘transmission-based guidance’ which the CDC defines as a second tier of infection control.” However, the CDC’s own guidance also finds that masks are effective only for “source control” — preventing an already infected person from infecting others.

    “But this isn’t what the CDC wants,” Thacker wrote. “They want the experts to write guidelines that recommend healthy people wear masks, even though research shows masks won’t really stop healthy people from getting sick.”

    “The CDC has caught the ‘masks work’ political wave and is now demanding that independent experts conform to their preferred mask dictates,” he added.

    In doing so, the CDC is rejecting science it doesn’t like, including several other non-CDC studies that have questioned mask effectiveness.

    A study published in Annals of Internal Medicine in November 2022 found no difference between N95 respirators and surgical masks in stopping the spread of COVID-19. These findings were mirrored in a January 2023 Cochrane meta-analysis on mask effectiveness.

    According to the Cochrane report, “The use of a N95/P2 respirators compared to medical/surgical masks probably makes little or no difference for the objective and more precise outcome of laboratory‐confirmed influenza infection.”

    A May 2023 study published in Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety suggests N95 respirators may expose wearers to dangerous levels of toxic compounds linked to seizures and cancer.

    A September 2023 meta-analysis published in Clinical Research Study examined mask studies published since 2019 in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR).

    According to the findings of the meta-analysis:

    “MMWR publications pertaining to masks drew positive conclusions about mask effectiveness >75% of the time despite only 30% testing masks and <15% having statistically significant results. No studies were randomized, yet over half drew causal conclusions.

    “The level of evidence generated was low and the conclusions were most often unsupported by the data. Our findings raise concern about the reliability of the journal for informing health policy.”

    Real-world examples also call into question narratives regarding mask efficacy.

    Sweden, for instance, did not mandate or recommend masks for the general public during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, and only did so in certain situations in the later stages of the pandemic, according to The Conversation. Yet, its total excess deaths during the first two years of the pandemic were among the lowest in Europe.”

    In 2020, Swedish state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell said, “We see no point in wearing a face mask in Sweden, not even on public transport,” adding there were “at least three heavyweight reports … which all state that the scientific evidence is weak.”

    A Swedish government commission noted low levels of excess mortality in 2020 and 2021 and said that, at most, masks should have been “recommended.”

    Soon after the report was released, a Feb. 25, 2022, Boston Herald op-ed stated that Sweden “got it right.”

    “I don’t understand what is driving the ‘masks work’ political movement,” Thacker told The Defender. “There were plenty of stories written pointing out that there isn’t much scientific evidence that masks stop respiratory virus spread.”

    “Maybe people were just scared and wanted to believe masks provide protection?” he said.

    Thacker also cited the historical precedent of the Spanish Flu epidemic in 1918, when the Red Cross campaigned for masks all across America.

    “California’s state board of health ran a study comparing towns that had mask mandates against those that did not. They found that there was no difference and published the study in the American Journal of Public Health in 1920,” Thacker said.

    “Maybe these mask campaigners need to read a little history,” he added.

    Thacker is now calling on whistleblowers inside the CDC to contact him “to discuss what is going on inside the agency.”

    “I’m talking to CDC people and hope to learn what is going on inside the agency. I plan to write more on this,” Thacker told The Defender.

    “CDC Director Mandy Cohen wants to restore trust in the agency, but that won’t happen if she keeps putting politics ahead of scientific evidence,” he said.

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    This article was written by Michael Nevradakis, Ph.D. and originally published by The Defender — Children’s Health Defense’s News & Views Website under Creative Commons license CC BY-NC-ND 4.0. Please consider subscribing to The Defender or donating to Children’s Health Defense.


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    https://worldcouncilforhealth.substack.com/p/cdcs-own-scientists-found-masks-ineffective

    https://donshafi911.blogspot.com/2024/02/cdcs-own-scientists-found-masks_16.html
    CDC’s Own Scientists Found Masks Ineffective for Covid-19 but Recommended Them Anyway Officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention openly questioned the findings of its own scientists’ studies contradicting the agency’s public messaging about mask effectiveness World Council for Health This article was originally published by The Defender — Children’s Health Defense’s News & Views Website. cdc masks ineffective covid feature The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) own scientists conducted studies showing N95 respirators are no more effective at stopping viruses than surgical masks — yet the agency issued guidance contradicting those and other studies showing both types of masks are ineffective at stopping the spread of COVID-19, according to an investigation by independent journalist Paul D. Thacker. The investigation, published this week in two parts on The Disinformation Chronicle, details how CDC leadership openly questioned the findings of CDC scientists’ studies contradicting the agency’s public messaging about mask effectiveness. During the pandemic, mask advocates “shifted goalposts and demanded N95 respirators,” Thacker said, claiming they perform better than surgical masks at stopping the virus. If this content is important to you, share it! Share However, Thacker said CDC scientists found no difference between N95 and surgical masks in the ability to stop the spread of respiratory viruses. The findings of the CDC studies are consistent with other peer-reviewed studies on the efficacy of masks in preventing COVID-19, according to Thacker. “But the CDC responded by saying people can’t say that,” Thacker told The Defender. To shut down the controversy, the CDC, in its Jan. 23 post on preventing the transmission of pathogens in healthcare settings, warned researchers that to suggest facemasks and respirators are the same “is not scientifically correct,” Thacker wrote. CDC ignores own studies questioning N95, mask effectiveness According to Thacker, CDC guidance for controlling the spread of infections had not been updated since 2007. This prompted the CDC, in 2022, to select “a bunch of science experts,” and ask them “to update the agency’s scientific guidance to hospitals on how to control infections.” In November 2023, the experts produced an 80-page systematic review and meta-analysis, examining whether N95 respirators were more effective than surgical masks. The review found that while N95 respirators are better at filtering particles, the finding that they are more effective at stopping viruses “has been less conclusive.” The systematic review also examined the “effectiveness” of N95 respirators and surgical masks “under ‘real world’” conditions and found “no difference” between the two. The review also found numerous symptoms reported by N95 mask users, including: “difficulty breathing, headaches, and dizziness; skin barrier damage and itching; fatigue; and difficulty talking.” According to Thacker, the CDC is not pleased with these findings, suggesting in its recent update that its own scientists were wrong. “Although masks can provide some level of filtration, the level of filtration is not comparable to NIOSH Approved respirators,” the CDC said. The post also stated, “The COVID-19 pandemic has forever changed the approach we take in healthcare settings to protect healthcare personnel, patients, and others from transmission of respiratory infections.” More evidence contradicting the CDC’s public position came at a June 2023 CDC meeting in Atlanta, when Erin Stone, MPH, a public health analyst in the agency’s Office of Guidelines and Evidence Review, presented the findings of a meta-analysis on the effectiveness of N95 respirators and surgical masks. According to Stone, the data “suggests no difference” in their effectiveness. Yet, in November 2023 testimony before the U.S. House of Representatives’ Energy and Commerce Committee, CDC Director Mandy Cohen sidestepped questions regarding mask effectiveness and refused to deny she would reinstate mask mandates for children. According to Thacker, in December 2023, just six days after Cohen’s testimony, The BMJ’s Archives of Disease in Childhood journal published a study finding that “mask recommendations for children are not supported by scientific evidence.” “Recommending child masking does not meet the accepted practice of promulgating only medical interventions where benefits clearly outweigh harms,” the study authors noted. Thacker: CDC guidance based on politics, not science Thacker said the CDC contradicted its own findings on mask efficacy even in the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. “Soon after the pandemic started, the CDC began promoting masks to stop the spread of COVID,” Thacker wrote. “And it did so despite CDC publishing a May 2020 policy study in their own journal, ‘Emerging Infectious Diseases,’ that did not find a ‘substantial effect’ for masks in stopping the transmission of respiratory viruses.” twitter.com/CDCgov/status/1378462317109731334 That same month, the CDC began publicly promoting N95 respirators as a more effective means of controlling the spread of COVID-19. However, on its webpage promoting the superiority of N95 respirators, the CDC admitted “there’s not a whole lot of evidence that N95 respirators do in fact work better than masks at stopping viruses,” Thacker wrote. “Laboratory studies have demonstrated that FFRs [filtering facepiece respirators] provide greater protection against aerosols compared with surgical masks … however, the results of clinical studies have been inconclusive,” the CDC wrote, citing a 2019 study in JAMA comparing N95 respirators to masks. “Among outpatient health care personnel, N95 respirators vs medical masks as worn by participants in this trial resulted in no significant difference in the incidence of laboratory-confirmed influenza,” the JAMA study noted. twitter.com/CDCgov/status/1256655451195715585 According to Thacker, the results of these studies confirm the widely accepted pre-COVID-19 scientific consensus on the ineffectiveness of masks of any kind in stopping the spread of viruses. Thacker cited statements the World Health Organization made in 2019 and the CDC’s guidance on virus control. In a 2020 appearance on CBS’ “60 Minutes,” Dr. Anthony Fauci said that while a mask might “block a droplet” and “make people feel a little better,” it does not provide “the perfect protection that people think it is.” According to Thacker, “For some reason, a ‘masks work’ political movement began to grow,” despite Fauci’s statements and the findings of these studies. “I’m not really sure what happened or what we do next,” Thacker wrote. “But something weird took place in America where liberal elites began messaging among themselves ‘masks work.’ They then grew this into a crusade.” The movement was effective in getting the CDC on board with issuing mask guidance, Thacker said. Four years after the onset of the pandemic, the CDC now openly cheerleads for masks, despite research the agency published showing that masks don’t really protect people from catching viruses, he said. “And this is why the experts advising the CDC are getting all this pushback: they didn’t tell the CDC what the CDC wanted to hear,” Thacker wrote. Harvey Risch, M.D., Ph.D., professor emeritus and senior research scientist in epidemiology (chronic diseases) at the Yale School of Public Health, told The Disinformation Chronicle the CDC “has succumbed to political influences.” Risch said: “It made policies for school closures in order to please the teachers’ union. Its charitable organization allows pharma to feed it hundreds of millions of dollars that would be illegal to go directly to the agency, and this gives pharma major influence on CDC policies.” According to Thacker, the CDC has continued to double down on guidance promoting mask efficacy. A Jan. 23 letter the agency sent to its own advisers appears to encourage them to add more mask guidance to the agency’s new guidelines for the spread of pathogens, based on the conclusion that N95 respirators are effective. “Too much science is forcing CDC to request a science do over,” Thacker wrote, referring to the CDC’s Jan. 23 post, which states that its new recommendations should not “be misread to suggest equivalency between facemasks and NIOSH Approved respirators, which is not scientifically correct nor the intent of the draft language.” Thacker said his investigation shows that “in their guidance to the CDC, experts do recommend masks as part of what they call ‘transmission-based guidance’ which the CDC defines as a second tier of infection control.” However, the CDC’s own guidance also finds that masks are effective only for “source control” — preventing an already infected person from infecting others. “But this isn’t what the CDC wants,” Thacker wrote. “They want the experts to write guidelines that recommend healthy people wear masks, even though research shows masks won’t really stop healthy people from getting sick.” “The CDC has caught the ‘masks work’ political wave and is now demanding that independent experts conform to their preferred mask dictates,” he added. In doing so, the CDC is rejecting science it doesn’t like, including several other non-CDC studies that have questioned mask effectiveness. A study published in Annals of Internal Medicine in November 2022 found no difference between N95 respirators and surgical masks in stopping the spread of COVID-19. These findings were mirrored in a January 2023 Cochrane meta-analysis on mask effectiveness. According to the Cochrane report, “The use of a N95/P2 respirators compared to medical/surgical masks probably makes little or no difference for the objective and more precise outcome of laboratory‐confirmed influenza infection.” A May 2023 study published in Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety suggests N95 respirators may expose wearers to dangerous levels of toxic compounds linked to seizures and cancer. A September 2023 meta-analysis published in Clinical Research Study examined mask studies published since 2019 in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR). According to the findings of the meta-analysis: “MMWR publications pertaining to masks drew positive conclusions about mask effectiveness >75% of the time despite only 30% testing masks and <15% having statistically significant results. No studies were randomized, yet over half drew causal conclusions. “The level of evidence generated was low and the conclusions were most often unsupported by the data. Our findings raise concern about the reliability of the journal for informing health policy.” Real-world examples also call into question narratives regarding mask efficacy. Sweden, for instance, did not mandate or recommend masks for the general public during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, and only did so in certain situations in the later stages of the pandemic, according to The Conversation. Yet, its total excess deaths during the first two years of the pandemic were among the lowest in Europe.” In 2020, Swedish state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell said, “We see no point in wearing a face mask in Sweden, not even on public transport,” adding there were “at least three heavyweight reports … which all state that the scientific evidence is weak.” A Swedish government commission noted low levels of excess mortality in 2020 and 2021 and said that, at most, masks should have been “recommended.” Soon after the report was released, a Feb. 25, 2022, Boston Herald op-ed stated that Sweden “got it right.” “I don’t understand what is driving the ‘masks work’ political movement,” Thacker told The Defender. “There were plenty of stories written pointing out that there isn’t much scientific evidence that masks stop respiratory virus spread.” “Maybe people were just scared and wanted to believe masks provide protection?” he said. Thacker also cited the historical precedent of the Spanish Flu epidemic in 1918, when the Red Cross campaigned for masks all across America. “California’s state board of health ran a study comparing towns that had mask mandates against those that did not. They found that there was no difference and published the study in the American Journal of Public Health in 1920,” Thacker said. “Maybe these mask campaigners need to read a little history,” he added. Thacker is now calling on whistleblowers inside the CDC to contact him “to discuss what is going on inside the agency.” “I’m talking to CDC people and hope to learn what is going on inside the agency. I plan to write more on this,” Thacker told The Defender. “CDC Director Mandy Cohen wants to restore trust in the agency, but that won’t happen if she keeps putting politics ahead of scientific evidence,” he said. If this content is important to you, share it with your network! Share This article was written by Michael Nevradakis, Ph.D. and originally published by The Defender — Children’s Health Defense’s News & Views Website under Creative Commons license CC BY-NC-ND 4.0. Please consider subscribing to The Defender or donating to Children’s Health Defense. If you find value in this Substack and have the means, please consider making a contribution to support the World Council for Health. Thank you. Upgrade to Paid Subscription Refer a friend Donate Subscriptions Give Direct to WCH https://worldcouncilforhealth.substack.com/p/cdcs-own-scientists-found-masks-ineffective https://donshafi911.blogspot.com/2024/02/cdcs-own-scientists-found-masks_16.html
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    CDC’s Own Scientists Found Masks Ineffective for Covid-19 but Recommended Them Anyway
    Officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention openly questioned the findings of its own scientists’ studies contradicting the agency’s public messaging about mask effectiveness
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  • CDC'S own scientists conducted studies showing N95 respirators are no more effective at stopping viruses than surgical masks — yet the agency issued guidance contradicting those and other studies showing both types of masks are ineffective at stopping the spread of COVID-19, according to an investigation by Paul D. Thacker.


    CDC’s Own Scientists Found Masks Ineffective for COVID — But Agency Recommended Them Anyway
    According to an investigation by independent journalist Paul D. Thacker published this week in The Disinformation Chronicle, officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention openly questioned the findings of its own scientists’ studies contradicting the agency’s public messaging about mask effectiveness

    Michael Nevradakis, Ph.D.
    cdc masks ineffective covid feature
    Miss a day, miss a lot. Subscribe to The Defender's Top News of the Day. It's free.

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) own scientists conducted studies showing N95 respirators are no more effective at stopping viruses than surgical masks — yet the agency issued guidance contradicting those and other studies showing both types of masks are ineffective at stopping the spread of COVID-19, according to an investigation by independent journalist Paul D. Thacker.

    The investigation, published this week in two parts on The Disinformation Chronicle, details how CDC leadership openly questioned the findings of CDC scientists’ studies contradicting the agency’s public messaging about mask effectiveness.

    During the pandemic, mask advocates “shifted goalposts and demanded N95 respirators,” Thacker said, claiming they perform better than surgical masks at stopping the virus.

    However, Thacker said CDC scientists found no difference between N95 and surgical masks in the ability to stop the spread of respiratory viruses. The findings of the CDC studies are consistent with other peer-reviewed studies on the efficacy of masks in preventing COVID-19, according to Thacker.

    “But the CDC responded by saying people can’t say that,” Thacker told The Defender.

    To shut down the controversy, the CDC, in its Jan. 23 post on preventing the transmission of pathogens in healthcare settings, warned researchers that to suggest facemasks and respirators are the same “is not scientifically correct,” Thacker wrote.

    CDC ignores own studies questioning N95, mask effectiveness

    According to Thacker, CDC guidance for controlling the spread of infections had not been updated since 2007. This prompted the CDC, in 2022, to select “a bunch of science experts,” and ask them “to update the agency’s scientific guidance to hospitals on how to control infections.”

    In November 2023, the experts produced an 80-page systematic review and meta-analysis, examining whether N95 respirators were more effective than surgical masks. The review found that while N95 respirators are better at filtering particles, the finding that they are more effective at stopping viruses “has been less conclusive.”

    The systematic review also examined the “effectiveness” of N95 respirators and surgical masks “under ‘real world’” conditions and found “no difference” between the two.

    The review also found numerous symptoms reported by N95 mask users, including: “difficulty breathing, headaches, and dizziness; skin barrier damage and itching; fatigue; and difficulty talking.”

    According to Thacker, the CDC is not pleased with these findings, suggesting in its recent update that its own scientists were wrong.

    “Although masks can provide some level of filtration, the level of filtration is not comparable to NIOSH Approved respirators,” the CDC said.

    The post also stated, “The COVID-19 pandemic has forever changed the approach we take in healthcare settings to protect healthcare personnel, patients, and others from transmission of respiratory infections.”

    More evidence contradicting the CDC’s public position came at a June 2023 CDC meeting in Atlanta, when Erin Stone, MPH, a public health analyst in the agency’s Office of Guidelines and Evidence Review, presented the findings of a meta-analysis on the effectiveness of N95 respirators and surgical masks.

    RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker Vax-Unvax
    RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker’s New Book: “Vax-Unvax”

    Order Now

    According to Stone, the data “suggests no difference” in their effectiveness.

    Yet, in November 2023 testimony before the U.S. House of Representatives’ Energy and Commerce Committee, CDC Director Mandy Cohen sidestepped questions regarding mask effectiveness and refused to deny she would reinstate mask mandates for children.

    According to Thacker, in December 2023, just six days after Cohen’s testimony, The BMJ’s Archives of Disease in Childhood journal published a study finding that “mask recommendations for children are not supported by scientific evidence.”

    “Recommending child masking does not meet the accepted practice of promulgating only medical interventions where benefits clearly outweigh harms,” the study authors noted.

    Thacker: CDC guidance based on politics, not science

    Thacker said the CDC contradicted its own findings on mask efficacy even in the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic.

    “Soon after the pandemic started, the CDC began promoting masks to stop the spread of COVID,” Thacker wrote. “And it did so despite CDC publishing a May 2020 policy study in their own journal, ‘Emerging Infectious Diseases,’ that did not find a ‘substantial effect’ for masks in stopping the transmission of respiratory viruses.”


    That same month, the CDC began publicly promoting N95 respirators as a more effective means of controlling the spread of COVID-19.

    However, on its webpage promoting the superiority of N95 respirators, the CDC admitted “there’s not a whole lot of evidence that N95 respirators do in fact work better than masks at stopping viruses,” Thacker wrote.

    “Laboratory studies have demonstrated that FFRs [filtering facepiece respirators] provide greater protection against aerosols compared with surgical masks … however, the results of clinical studies have been inconclusive,” the CDC wrote, citing a 2019 study in JAMA comparing N95 respirators to masks.

    “Among outpatient health care personnel, N95 respirators vs medical masks as worn by participants in this trial resulted in no significant difference in the incidence of laboratory-confirmed influenza,” the JAMA study noted.


    According to Thacker, the results of these studies confirm the widely accepted pre-COVID-19 scientific consensus on the ineffectiveness of masks of any kind in stopping the spread of viruses. Thacker cited statements the World Health Organization made in 2019 and the CDC’s guidance on virus control.

    In a 2020 appearance on CBS’ “60 Minutes,” Dr. Anthony Fauci said that while a mask might “block a droplet” and “make people feel a little better,” it does not provide “the perfect protection that people think it is.”



    According to Thacker, “For some reason, a ‘masks work’ political movement began to grow,” despite Fauci’s statements and the findings of these studies.

    “I’m not really sure what happened or what we do next,” Thacker wrote. “But something weird took place in America where liberal elites began messaging among themselves ‘masks work.’ They then grew this into a crusade.”

    The movement was effective in getting the CDC on board with issuing mask guidance, Thacker said.

    Four years after the onset of the pandemic, the CDC now openly cheerleads for masks, despite research the agency published showing that masks don’t really protect people from catching viruses, he said.

    “And this is why the experts advising the CDC are getting all this pushback: they didn’t tell the CDC what the CDC wanted to hear,” Thacker wrote.

    Harvey Risch, M.D., Ph.D., professor emeritus and senior research scientist in epidemiology (chronic diseases) at the Yale School of Public Health, told The Disinformation Chronicle the CDC “has succumbed to political influences.”

    Risch said:

    “It made policies for school closures in order to please the teachers’ union. Its charitable organization allows pharma to feed it hundreds of millions of dollars that would be illegal to go directly to the agency, and this gives pharma major influence on CDC policies.”

    According to Thacker, the CDC has continued to double down on guidance promoting mask efficacy. A Jan. 23 letter the agency sent to its own advisers appears to encourage them to add more mask guidance to the agency’s new guidelines for the spread of pathogens, based on the conclusion that N95 respirators are effective.

    “Too much science is forcing CDC to request a science do over,” Thacker wrote, referring to the CDC’s Jan. 23 post, which states that its new recommendations should not “be misread to suggest equivalency between facemasks and NIOSH Approved respirators, which is not scientifically correct nor the intent of the draft language.”

    Thacker said his investigation shows that “in their guidance to the CDC, experts do recommend masks as part of what they call ‘transmission-based guidance’ which the CDC defines as a second tier of infection control.” However, the CDC’s own guidance also finds that masks are effective only for “source control” — preventing an already infected person from infecting others.

    “But this isn’t what the CDC wants,” Thacker wrote. “They want the experts to write guidelines that recommend healthy people wear masks, even though research shows masks won’t really stop healthy people from getting sick.”

    “The CDC has caught the ‘masks work’ political wave and is now demanding that independent experts conform to their preferred mask dictates,” he added.

    In doing so, the CDC is rejecting science it doesn’t like, including several other non-CDC studies that have questioned mask effectiveness.

    A study published in Annals of Internal Medicine in November 2022 found no difference between N95 respirators and surgical masks in stopping the spread of COVID-19. These findings were mirrored in a January 2023 Cochrane meta-analysis on mask effectiveness.

    According to the Cochrane report, “The use of a N95/P2 respirators compared to medical/surgical masks probably makes little or no difference for the objective and more precise outcome of laboratory‐confirmed influenza infection.”

    A May 2023 study published in Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety suggests N95 respirators may expose wearers to dangerous levels of toxic compounds linked to seizures and cancer.

    A September 2023 meta-analysis published in Clinical Research Study examined mask studies published since 2019 in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR).

    According to the findings of the meta-analysis:

    “MMWR publications pertaining to masks drew positive conclusions about mask effectiveness >75% of the time despite only 30% testing masks and <15% having statistically significant results. No studies were randomized, yet over half drew causal conclusions.

    “The level of evidence generated was low and the conclusions were most often unsupported by the data. Our findings raise concern about the reliability of the journal for informing health policy.”

    Real-world examples also call into question narratives regarding mask efficacy.

    Sweden, for instance, did not mandate or recommend masks for the general public during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, and only did so in certain situations in the later stages of the pandemic, according to The Conversation. Yet, its total excess deaths during the first two years of the pandemic were among the lowest in Europe.”

    In 2020, Swedish state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell said, “We see no point in wearing a face mask in Sweden, not even on public transport,” adding there were “at least three heavyweight reports … which all state that the scientific evidence is weak.”

    A Swedish government commission noted low levels of excess mortality in 2020 and 2021 and said that, at most, masks should have been “recommended.”

    Soon after the report was released, a Feb. 25, 2022, Boston Herald op-ed stated that Sweden “got it right.”

    “I don’t understand what is driving the ‘masks work’ political movement,” Thacker told The Defender. “There were plenty of stories written pointing out that there isn’t much scientific evidence that masks stop respiratory virus spread.”

    “Maybe people were just scared and wanted to believe masks provide protection?” he said.

    Thacker also cited the historical precedent of the Spanish Flu epidemic in 1918, when the Red Cross campaigned for masks all across America.

    “California’s state board of health ran a study comparing towns that had mask mandates against those that did not. They found that there was no difference and published the study in the American Journal of Public Health in 1920,” Thacker said.

    “Maybe these mask campaigners need to read a little history,” he added.

    Thacker is now calling on whistleblowers inside the CDC to contact him “to discuss what is going on inside the agency.”

    “I’m talking to CDC people and hope to learn what is going on inside the agency. I plan to write more on this,” Thacker told The Defender.

    “CDC Director Mandy Cohen wants to restore trust in the agency, but that won’t happen if she keeps putting politics ahead of scientific evidence,” he said.

    DETAILS
    https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/cdc-scientists-masks-ineffective-covid-agency-recommended/

    Join @ShankaraChetty


    https://donshafi911.blogspot.com/2024/02/cdcs-own-scientists-found-masks.html
    CDC'S own scientists conducted studies showing N95 respirators are no more effective at stopping viruses than surgical masks — yet the agency issued guidance contradicting those and other studies showing both types of masks are ineffective at stopping the spread of COVID-19, according to an investigation by Paul D. Thacker. CDC’s Own Scientists Found Masks Ineffective for COVID — But Agency Recommended Them Anyway According to an investigation by independent journalist Paul D. Thacker published this week in The Disinformation Chronicle, officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention openly questioned the findings of its own scientists’ studies contradicting the agency’s public messaging about mask effectiveness Michael Nevradakis, Ph.D. cdc masks ineffective covid feature Miss a day, miss a lot. Subscribe to The Defender's Top News of the Day. It's free. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) own scientists conducted studies showing N95 respirators are no more effective at stopping viruses than surgical masks — yet the agency issued guidance contradicting those and other studies showing both types of masks are ineffective at stopping the spread of COVID-19, according to an investigation by independent journalist Paul D. Thacker. The investigation, published this week in two parts on The Disinformation Chronicle, details how CDC leadership openly questioned the findings of CDC scientists’ studies contradicting the agency’s public messaging about mask effectiveness. During the pandemic, mask advocates “shifted goalposts and demanded N95 respirators,” Thacker said, claiming they perform better than surgical masks at stopping the virus. However, Thacker said CDC scientists found no difference between N95 and surgical masks in the ability to stop the spread of respiratory viruses. The findings of the CDC studies are consistent with other peer-reviewed studies on the efficacy of masks in preventing COVID-19, according to Thacker. “But the CDC responded by saying people can’t say that,” Thacker told The Defender. To shut down the controversy, the CDC, in its Jan. 23 post on preventing the transmission of pathogens in healthcare settings, warned researchers that to suggest facemasks and respirators are the same “is not scientifically correct,” Thacker wrote. CDC ignores own studies questioning N95, mask effectiveness According to Thacker, CDC guidance for controlling the spread of infections had not been updated since 2007. This prompted the CDC, in 2022, to select “a bunch of science experts,” and ask them “to update the agency’s scientific guidance to hospitals on how to control infections.” In November 2023, the experts produced an 80-page systematic review and meta-analysis, examining whether N95 respirators were more effective than surgical masks. The review found that while N95 respirators are better at filtering particles, the finding that they are more effective at stopping viruses “has been less conclusive.” The systematic review also examined the “effectiveness” of N95 respirators and surgical masks “under ‘real world’” conditions and found “no difference” between the two. The review also found numerous symptoms reported by N95 mask users, including: “difficulty breathing, headaches, and dizziness; skin barrier damage and itching; fatigue; and difficulty talking.” According to Thacker, the CDC is not pleased with these findings, suggesting in its recent update that its own scientists were wrong. “Although masks can provide some level of filtration, the level of filtration is not comparable to NIOSH Approved respirators,” the CDC said. The post also stated, “The COVID-19 pandemic has forever changed the approach we take in healthcare settings to protect healthcare personnel, patients, and others from transmission of respiratory infections.” More evidence contradicting the CDC’s public position came at a June 2023 CDC meeting in Atlanta, when Erin Stone, MPH, a public health analyst in the agency’s Office of Guidelines and Evidence Review, presented the findings of a meta-analysis on the effectiveness of N95 respirators and surgical masks. RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker Vax-Unvax RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker’s New Book: “Vax-Unvax” Order Now According to Stone, the data “suggests no difference” in their effectiveness. Yet, in November 2023 testimony before the U.S. House of Representatives’ Energy and Commerce Committee, CDC Director Mandy Cohen sidestepped questions regarding mask effectiveness and refused to deny she would reinstate mask mandates for children. According to Thacker, in December 2023, just six days after Cohen’s testimony, The BMJ’s Archives of Disease in Childhood journal published a study finding that “mask recommendations for children are not supported by scientific evidence.” “Recommending child masking does not meet the accepted practice of promulgating only medical interventions where benefits clearly outweigh harms,” the study authors noted. Thacker: CDC guidance based on politics, not science Thacker said the CDC contradicted its own findings on mask efficacy even in the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. “Soon after the pandemic started, the CDC began promoting masks to stop the spread of COVID,” Thacker wrote. “And it did so despite CDC publishing a May 2020 policy study in their own journal, ‘Emerging Infectious Diseases,’ that did not find a ‘substantial effect’ for masks in stopping the transmission of respiratory viruses.” That same month, the CDC began publicly promoting N95 respirators as a more effective means of controlling the spread of COVID-19. However, on its webpage promoting the superiority of N95 respirators, the CDC admitted “there’s not a whole lot of evidence that N95 respirators do in fact work better than masks at stopping viruses,” Thacker wrote. “Laboratory studies have demonstrated that FFRs [filtering facepiece respirators] provide greater protection against aerosols compared with surgical masks … however, the results of clinical studies have been inconclusive,” the CDC wrote, citing a 2019 study in JAMA comparing N95 respirators to masks. “Among outpatient health care personnel, N95 respirators vs medical masks as worn by participants in this trial resulted in no significant difference in the incidence of laboratory-confirmed influenza,” the JAMA study noted. According to Thacker, the results of these studies confirm the widely accepted pre-COVID-19 scientific consensus on the ineffectiveness of masks of any kind in stopping the spread of viruses. Thacker cited statements the World Health Organization made in 2019 and the CDC’s guidance on virus control. In a 2020 appearance on CBS’ “60 Minutes,” Dr. Anthony Fauci said that while a mask might “block a droplet” and “make people feel a little better,” it does not provide “the perfect protection that people think it is.” According to Thacker, “For some reason, a ‘masks work’ political movement began to grow,” despite Fauci’s statements and the findings of these studies. “I’m not really sure what happened or what we do next,” Thacker wrote. “But something weird took place in America where liberal elites began messaging among themselves ‘masks work.’ They then grew this into a crusade.” The movement was effective in getting the CDC on board with issuing mask guidance, Thacker said. Four years after the onset of the pandemic, the CDC now openly cheerleads for masks, despite research the agency published showing that masks don’t really protect people from catching viruses, he said. “And this is why the experts advising the CDC are getting all this pushback: they didn’t tell the CDC what the CDC wanted to hear,” Thacker wrote. Harvey Risch, M.D., Ph.D., professor emeritus and senior research scientist in epidemiology (chronic diseases) at the Yale School of Public Health, told The Disinformation Chronicle the CDC “has succumbed to political influences.” Risch said: “It made policies for school closures in order to please the teachers’ union. Its charitable organization allows pharma to feed it hundreds of millions of dollars that would be illegal to go directly to the agency, and this gives pharma major influence on CDC policies.” According to Thacker, the CDC has continued to double down on guidance promoting mask efficacy. A Jan. 23 letter the agency sent to its own advisers appears to encourage them to add more mask guidance to the agency’s new guidelines for the spread of pathogens, based on the conclusion that N95 respirators are effective. “Too much science is forcing CDC to request a science do over,” Thacker wrote, referring to the CDC’s Jan. 23 post, which states that its new recommendations should not “be misread to suggest equivalency between facemasks and NIOSH Approved respirators, which is not scientifically correct nor the intent of the draft language.” Thacker said his investigation shows that “in their guidance to the CDC, experts do recommend masks as part of what they call ‘transmission-based guidance’ which the CDC defines as a second tier of infection control.” However, the CDC’s own guidance also finds that masks are effective only for “source control” — preventing an already infected person from infecting others. “But this isn’t what the CDC wants,” Thacker wrote. “They want the experts to write guidelines that recommend healthy people wear masks, even though research shows masks won’t really stop healthy people from getting sick.” “The CDC has caught the ‘masks work’ political wave and is now demanding that independent experts conform to their preferred mask dictates,” he added. In doing so, the CDC is rejecting science it doesn’t like, including several other non-CDC studies that have questioned mask effectiveness. A study published in Annals of Internal Medicine in November 2022 found no difference between N95 respirators and surgical masks in stopping the spread of COVID-19. These findings were mirrored in a January 2023 Cochrane meta-analysis on mask effectiveness. According to the Cochrane report, “The use of a N95/P2 respirators compared to medical/surgical masks probably makes little or no difference for the objective and more precise outcome of laboratory‐confirmed influenza infection.” A May 2023 study published in Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety suggests N95 respirators may expose wearers to dangerous levels of toxic compounds linked to seizures and cancer. A September 2023 meta-analysis published in Clinical Research Study examined mask studies published since 2019 in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR). According to the findings of the meta-analysis: “MMWR publications pertaining to masks drew positive conclusions about mask effectiveness >75% of the time despite only 30% testing masks and <15% having statistically significant results. No studies were randomized, yet over half drew causal conclusions. “The level of evidence generated was low and the conclusions were most often unsupported by the data. Our findings raise concern about the reliability of the journal for informing health policy.” Real-world examples also call into question narratives regarding mask efficacy. Sweden, for instance, did not mandate or recommend masks for the general public during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, and only did so in certain situations in the later stages of the pandemic, according to The Conversation. Yet, its total excess deaths during the first two years of the pandemic were among the lowest in Europe.” In 2020, Swedish state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell said, “We see no point in wearing a face mask in Sweden, not even on public transport,” adding there were “at least three heavyweight reports … which all state that the scientific evidence is weak.” A Swedish government commission noted low levels of excess mortality in 2020 and 2021 and said that, at most, masks should have been “recommended.” Soon after the report was released, a Feb. 25, 2022, Boston Herald op-ed stated that Sweden “got it right.” “I don’t understand what is driving the ‘masks work’ political movement,” Thacker told The Defender. “There were plenty of stories written pointing out that there isn’t much scientific evidence that masks stop respiratory virus spread.” “Maybe people were just scared and wanted to believe masks provide protection?” he said. Thacker also cited the historical precedent of the Spanish Flu epidemic in 1918, when the Red Cross campaigned for masks all across America. “California’s state board of health ran a study comparing towns that had mask mandates against those that did not. They found that there was no difference and published the study in the American Journal of Public Health in 1920,” Thacker said. “Maybe these mask campaigners need to read a little history,” he added. Thacker is now calling on whistleblowers inside the CDC to contact him “to discuss what is going on inside the agency.” “I’m talking to CDC people and hope to learn what is going on inside the agency. I plan to write more on this,” Thacker told The Defender. “CDC Director Mandy Cohen wants to restore trust in the agency, but that won’t happen if she keeps putting politics ahead of scientific evidence,” he said. DETAILS ⬇️ https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/cdc-scientists-masks-ineffective-covid-agency-recommended/ Join ➡️ @ShankaraChetty https://donshafi911.blogspot.com/2024/02/cdcs-own-scientists-found-masks.html
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    CDC’s Own Scientists Found Masks Ineffective for COVID — But Agency Recommended Them Anyway
    According to an investigation by independent journalist Paul D. Thacker published this week in The Disinformation Chronicle, officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention openly questioned the findings of its own scientists’ studies contradicting the agency’s public messaging about mask effectiveness
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  • 62% of Nursing Home Residents REFUSE COVID-19 Injections
    Even though according to HHS, seniors are 5 times more likely to die from COVID-19 than the flu, the CDC reports that 62% of nursing home residents are REFUSING COVID-19 boosters.

    January 30, 2024: While COVID-19 shots made their way onto the CDC’s recommended childhood vaccine schedule and some colleges are still mandating the mRNA injections for the healthiest demographic of adults, the majority of nursing home residents across America are refusing to take the COVID-19 mRNA injections.



    https://karenkingston.substack.com/p/62-of-nursing-home-residents-refuse
    62% of Nursing Home Residents REFUSE COVID-19 Injections Even though according to HHS, seniors are 5 times more likely to die from COVID-19 than the flu, the CDC reports that 62% of nursing home residents are REFUSING COVID-19 boosters. January 30, 2024: While COVID-19 shots made their way onto the CDC’s recommended childhood vaccine schedule and some colleges are still mandating the mRNA injections for the healthiest demographic of adults, the majority of nursing home residents across America are refusing to take the COVID-19 mRNA injections. https://karenkingston.substack.com/p/62-of-nursing-home-residents-refuse
    KARENKINGSTON.SUBSTACK.COM
    62% of Nursing Home Residents REFUSE COVID-19 Injections
    Even though according to HHS, seniors are 5 times more likely to die from COVID-19 than the flu, the CDC reports that 62% of nursing home residents are REFUSING COVID-19 boosters.
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  • The Truth About HPV Vaccination, Part 2: Studies Link the Vaccines to Neurological, Autoimmune Disorders
    Researchers who looked closely into the Gardasil HPV vaccine concluded the risks from the vaccine seem to significantly outweigh the as-yet-unproven long-term benefits.

    The Epoch Times

    Miss a day, miss a lot. Subscribe to The Defender's Top News of the Day. It's free.

    By Dr. Yuhong Dong

    Editor’s Note: This second installment in a multi-part series about the human papillomavirus, or HPV, vaccine examines studies that link the vaccines to increased risk of serious neurological and autoimmune disorders. Read Part 1 here.

    Summary of key facts

    A Danish review of 79,102 female and 16,568 male subjects, found human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines had significantly increased rates of serious nervous system disorders. Postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS) and complex regional pain syndrome were judged “definitely associated” with the HPV vaccine.
    A large Danish and Swedish study including nearly 300,000 girls found a significant association between the HPV vaccine and increased rates of Bechet’s syndrome (rate ratio 3.37), Raynaud’s disease (1.67) and type 1 diabetes (1.29).
    A large study including 3 million Danish and Swedish women aged 18 to 44, identified seven adverse events with statistically significant increased risks following HPV vaccination: Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, celiac disease, lupus erythematosus, pemphigus vulgaris, Addison’s disease, Raynaud’s disease and encephalitis, myelitis, or encephalomyelitis.
    A 2017 French study of over 2.2 million young girls found evidence of a 3.78-fold increased risk of Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS). A 2011 U.S. study found nearly a two-and-a-half to 10 times greater risk of acquiring GBS within six weeks post-Gardasil vaccination.
    While the underlying mechanisms causing these autoimmune reactions are not yet fully understood, some researchers speculate that the sizable overlap in protein sequences between the HPV and the human genome may cause the immune system to attack itself. Others are concerned that the adjuvants (such as aluminum) used to attract the attention of the immune system may be causing harm.
    Neurological and autoimmune disorders

    Danish review found increased nervous system disorder

    In 2020, a group of Danish scientists conducted a systematic review of the overall benefits and harms of HPV vaccines.

    Twenty-four eligible randomized controlled clinical studies were obtained, with a total of 95,670 participants, mostly women, and 49 months mean weighted follow-up.

    Almost all controls were given an active comparator vaccine (typically a hepatitis vaccine with a comparable aluminum-based adjuvant).

    Given that the adjuvant is highly immunogenic by design (it is meant to grab the attention of the immune system), this trial design makes it difficult to detect an excess risk with the HPV vaccines.

    Without true controls (such as a saline placebo), the real risks of HPV vaccination cannot be accurately assessed.

    In the vaccine group, 367 cancers were detected, compared to 490 in the comparator group.

    Younger participants (15 to 29) seemed to benefit more from the vaccine concerning preventing moderate HPV-related intraepithelial neoplasia compared to older participants (ages 21 to 72). Younger participants also had fewer fatal harms.

    Even though the studies were flawed in their design, at four years post-vaccination, those who had received the HPV vaccines had significantly increased rates of serious nervous system disorders: 49%, as well as general harms totaling 7%.

    The serious harms that were judged “definitely associated” with HPV vaccines were postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome and complex regional pain syndrome. POTS had a nearly twofold increase in the vaccinated group.

    By July 2017, only two-thirds of the results from HPV vaccine trials had been published, and only about half the results had been posted, due to manuscript length limitations, reporting bias and confounding journal articles offering a limited view of trial outcomes.

    This Danish systematic review compiled data from all the HPV trials to offer a summary of the evidence thus far.

    Nevertheless, the investigators acknowledged that despite three years of work, the limitations of their analysis remained. These included reporting bias, incomplete reporting, data fragmentation and limited trial follow-up.

    These investigators similarly note that the trials were powered to assess the benefits of HPV vaccination, not rare harms. The degree to which benefits outweigh risks is therefore unknown.

    They concluded that future research should carefully evaluate the harms following Gardasil 9 compared to Gardasil because the former contains more than double the virus proteins and aluminum-containing adjuvant than the same dose of Gardasil.

    RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker Vax-Unvax
    RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker’s New Book: “Vax-Unvax”

    Order Now

    Large studies reveal autoimmune events

    In 2009, the HPV4 vaccine was integrated into the Danish childhood vaccination program. Since then, two large cohort studies on the HPV4 vaccine adverse events have been carried out using the hospital-based healthcare registries of Denmark and Sweden.

    The first study in Denmark and Sweden included 296,826 girls aged 10 to 17 who received a total of 696,420 HPV4 vaccine doses.

    The scientists evaluated rate ratios for autoimmune events and found no significant association for 20 out of 23 events.

    They found a significant association between the HPV4 vaccine and Bechet’s syndrome (rate ratio 3.37), Raynaud’s disease (1.67) and type 1 diabetes (1.29).

    But after further review, they concluded that there was insufficient evidence for a causal association, because of the weakness of the signal and the lack of an underlying mechanism to explain biological plausibility.

    In a second large cohort study, the same team expanded their research to more than 3 million Danish and Swedish adult women aged 18 to 44.

    The authors identified seven adverse events with statistically significant increased risks following HPV4 vaccination: Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, celiac disease, lupus erythematosus, pemphigus vulgaris, Addison’s disease, Raynaud’s disease and encephalitis, myelitis or encephalomyelitis.

    After sensitivity analyses, the association between HPV4 vaccination and celiac disease was the most robust finding.

    Celiac disease is a condition where a person’s immune system attacks the body’s own gut after eating gluten.

    As the graph below shows, the scientists used two risk periods after HPV4 vaccination: the first 180 days and after.

    1 time since first dose HPV4 vaccine coeliac cases
    Time since the first dose of the HPV4 vaccine for vaccinated coeliac cases in a cohort of Danish and Swedish women. Credit: Journal of Internal Medicine
    The authors noted that the observed 56% increased risk of celiac disease “was strong, and the increase was strikingly similar in both risk periods after vaccination.”

    Celiac disease is underdiagnosed in Denmark.

    So one possible explanation is that vaccination visits allow a chance for this and other conditions to be diagnosed and explored.

    This explanation suggests that the association between the HPV vaccine and autoimmune disorders may be coincidental.

    However, given the lack of any real control groups in these studies, as well as the growing body of scientific literature from countries around the world showing problems with the HPV vaccine, dismissing these safety signals as coincidence seems short-sighted.

    Large French study and U.S. VAERS study identify risks of Guillain-Barré Syndrome

    The concern about autoimmune disease adverse events has contributed to low HPV vaccination uptake in France.

    A 2017 study of over 2.2 million young girls in France found troubling evidence of a link with Guillain-Barré syndrome. GBS is a condition that arises when our own antibodies attack the nerves.

    The incidence of GBS was found to be 1.4 per 100,000 person-years among the vaccinated girls compared to 0.4 per 100,000 among the unvaccinated, resulting in an increased risk of GBS of more than 200%.

    The association appeared to be “particularly marked in the first months following vaccination.”

    This finding is corroborated by the pattern of adverse reactions reported worldwide. Data from a large number of case reports document similar serious adverse events associated with Gardasil administration, with nervous system disorders of autoimmune origin being the most frequently reported.

    A 2011 U.S. study found that the estimated weekly reporting rate of post-Gardasil GBS within the first six weeks (6.6 per 10,000,000) was higher than in the general population, and higher than post-Menactra and post-influenza vaccinations.

    In particular, there was nearly a two-and-a-half to 10 times greater risk of acquiring GBS within six weeks after vaccination, compared to the general population.

    Additionally, the study found Gardasil vaccination was associated with approximately eight-and-a-half times more emergency department visits, 12.5 times more hospitalizations, 10 times more life-threatening events and 26.5 times more disability than the Menactra vaccination.

    Plausible mechanisms of harm

    Despite the conflicting data in the scientific literature to date, it is clear that the HPV vaccines can cause autoimmune disorders in susceptible people. But how?

    Autoimmunity has been reported as a complication of natural infection as well as virus vaccination. This phenomenon has been observed with many viruses, including the Epstein-Barr virus, COVID-19 and HPV.

    According to a 2019 study, the HPV vaccine contains epitopes — portions of the virus proteins — that overlap with the human proteins.

    This means that if we develop antibodies to those viruses, we may also generate autoantibodies to our own cells, which is the root cause of autoimmune dysfunction.

    The study showed that most of the immunoreactive HPV L1 epi­topes are overlapping peptides present in human proteins.

    The authors explained that this “unexpected enormous size of the peptide overlap between the HPV epitopes and human proteins” is relevant, and may be why a wide variety of autoimmune diseases have been reported post-HPV vaccination, including ovarian failure, systemic lupus erythematosus, breast cancer and sudden death, among others.

    Why some people develop these conditions and others do not is unclear.

    The authors suggest that vaccines should target the few peptides that do not overlap with human proteins, but which do overlap with the other HPVs.

    Despite this overlap and the potential for causing autoimmune disease, medical doctors usually ignore or dismiss the connection. We are told that these diseases are rare.

    The human body has something called immune tolerance. This protects a person’s immune system against attacking itself. Therefore, HPV infection is also “immune tolerated,” which means it lays dormant for some time until it becomes cancerous.

    HPV vaccination was actually designed with this immune tolerance in mind.

    Given the human body’s built-in defenses against autoimmune conditions, vaccinology requires an immunogenic catalyst to get the body’s attention. This is the job of an adjuvant.

    An adjuvant is an ingredient used in a vaccine that the body recognizes as foreign. It is added to vaccines so that the body will mount a stronger immune response.

    The idea is that in attacking the adjuvant, the body will also recognize other vaccine ingredients (in this case, purified HPV proteins).

    In addition, the antigen dose is much higher than in natural infections and the capsids in the vaccine are directly exposed to systemic immune responses as opposed to the virus staying relatively hidden within the natural barrier of the skin following infection.

    The vaccine was well-designed to trigger an immune response, but this advantage may come at a cost: Generating antibodies to HPV proteins through vaccination could, theoretically, set the stage for an autoimmune attack.

    Link between HPV-vaccine-associated nervous system dysfunction and autoimmunity

    A December 2022 Danish and German study was designed to elucidate a possible mechanism of harm.

    The lead author, Dr. Jesper Mehlsen, a specialist in treating autoimmune conditions, noted that the HPV major capsid L1s antigen resembles human autonomic nerve receptors, including G-protein coupled receptors (GPCR).

    According to the researchers, in the past several years, case series of suspected vaccination side effects have pointed to three disease entities: POTS, myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) and complex regional pain syndrome. These syndromes may be associated with neuroendocrine GPCR antibodies.

    From 2011 to 2018, researchers saw 845 patients (839 females, six males) with suspected side effects following the HPV4 vaccine. The control group included vaccinated people without side effects.

    Moderate to severe fatigue was recorded in 83.3% of the patients but in none of the controls.

    A high prevalence of symptoms, such as dizziness (91%), heart palpitations (71%), nausea (80%) and hyperactive bladder suggested that the patients were experiencing some kind of autonomic dysfunction.

    Autonomic dysfunction occurs when the part of the nervous system that controls well-being and balance does not function properly.

    2 most frequent symptoms hpv vaccine
    Most frequent symptoms reported by 612 patients in Denmark. Credit: Journal of Autoimmunity
    Twenty-four percent higher antinuclear antibodies (ANA, a common type of autoantibodies) were found in patients, suggesting possible autoimmunity.

    3 antinuclear antibodies HPV vaccines
    A larger proportion of the symptomatic patients were found with a common type of autoantibodies compared to healthy controls. Credit: Journal of Autoimmunity
    Antibodies against the adrenergic ß-2-receptor and muscarinic M-2 receptors were also found significantly higher in patients.

    Many of the symptoms, including immune activation and autonomic dysregulation, could be mediated or aggravated by dysregulated autoantibodies against adrenergic receptors and impaired peripheral adrenergic function.

    The authors suggested that girls and women with probable side effects of HPV vaccination have symptoms and biological markers compatible with an autoimmune disease closely resembling that seen in ME/CFS.

    Interestingly, people who already had HPV infections at some point appeared to be at greater risk for adverse events following vaccination.

    The authors noted that “prior disease may precondition some individuals for vaccine-related adverse events.”

    They also noted that some of the adverse events resembled long-COVID symptoms.

    Universal HPV vaccination called into question

    Academic researcher at the University of British Columbia, Lucija Tomljenovic, and neuroscientist Christopher Shaw, who have closely looked into Gardasil, have argued that the risks from the vaccine seem to significantly outweigh the as-yet-unproven long-term benefits.

    In a 2012 comment published in the American Journal of Public Health, they took issue with “incomplete and inaccurate” data and poorly designed trials.

    Vaccination is unjustified if the vaccine carries any substantial risk, as healthy teenagers face little to no risk of dying from cervical cancer.

    Risk-benefit analyses must be conducted to ascertain the overall balance of benefits and harms on both individual and societal levels.

    Reprinted with permission from The Epoch Times. Dr. Yuhong Dong, a medical doctor who also holds a doctorate in infectious diseases in China, is the chief scientific officer and co-founder of a Swiss biotech company and former senior medical scientific expert for antiviral drug development at Novartis Pharma in Switzerland.

    If you or your child suffered harm after receiving the Gardasil HPV vaccine, you may have a legal claim. Please visit Wisner Baum for a free case evaluation. Click here to watch a Gardasil litigation update interview with Wisner Baum Senior Partner Bijan Esfandiari.

    The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Children's Health Defense.

    https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/truth-hpv-vaccine-part-2-et/

    https://donshafi911.blogspot.com/2024/01/the-truth-about-hpv-vaccination-part-2.html
    The Truth About HPV Vaccination, Part 2: Studies Link the Vaccines to Neurological, Autoimmune Disorders Researchers who looked closely into the Gardasil HPV vaccine concluded the risks from the vaccine seem to significantly outweigh the as-yet-unproven long-term benefits. The Epoch Times Miss a day, miss a lot. Subscribe to The Defender's Top News of the Day. It's free. By Dr. Yuhong Dong Editor’s Note: This second installment in a multi-part series about the human papillomavirus, or HPV, vaccine examines studies that link the vaccines to increased risk of serious neurological and autoimmune disorders. Read Part 1 here. Summary of key facts A Danish review of 79,102 female and 16,568 male subjects, found human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines had significantly increased rates of serious nervous system disorders. Postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS) and complex regional pain syndrome were judged “definitely associated” with the HPV vaccine. A large Danish and Swedish study including nearly 300,000 girls found a significant association between the HPV vaccine and increased rates of Bechet’s syndrome (rate ratio 3.37), Raynaud’s disease (1.67) and type 1 diabetes (1.29). A large study including 3 million Danish and Swedish women aged 18 to 44, identified seven adverse events with statistically significant increased risks following HPV vaccination: Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, celiac disease, lupus erythematosus, pemphigus vulgaris, Addison’s disease, Raynaud’s disease and encephalitis, myelitis, or encephalomyelitis. A 2017 French study of over 2.2 million young girls found evidence of a 3.78-fold increased risk of Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS). A 2011 U.S. study found nearly a two-and-a-half to 10 times greater risk of acquiring GBS within six weeks post-Gardasil vaccination. While the underlying mechanisms causing these autoimmune reactions are not yet fully understood, some researchers speculate that the sizable overlap in protein sequences between the HPV and the human genome may cause the immune system to attack itself. Others are concerned that the adjuvants (such as aluminum) used to attract the attention of the immune system may be causing harm. Neurological and autoimmune disorders Danish review found increased nervous system disorder In 2020, a group of Danish scientists conducted a systematic review of the overall benefits and harms of HPV vaccines. Twenty-four eligible randomized controlled clinical studies were obtained, with a total of 95,670 participants, mostly women, and 49 months mean weighted follow-up. Almost all controls were given an active comparator vaccine (typically a hepatitis vaccine with a comparable aluminum-based adjuvant). Given that the adjuvant is highly immunogenic by design (it is meant to grab the attention of the immune system), this trial design makes it difficult to detect an excess risk with the HPV vaccines. Without true controls (such as a saline placebo), the real risks of HPV vaccination cannot be accurately assessed. In the vaccine group, 367 cancers were detected, compared to 490 in the comparator group. Younger participants (15 to 29) seemed to benefit more from the vaccine concerning preventing moderate HPV-related intraepithelial neoplasia compared to older participants (ages 21 to 72). Younger participants also had fewer fatal harms. Even though the studies were flawed in their design, at four years post-vaccination, those who had received the HPV vaccines had significantly increased rates of serious nervous system disorders: 49%, as well as general harms totaling 7%. The serious harms that were judged “definitely associated” with HPV vaccines were postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome and complex regional pain syndrome. POTS had a nearly twofold increase in the vaccinated group. By July 2017, only two-thirds of the results from HPV vaccine trials had been published, and only about half the results had been posted, due to manuscript length limitations, reporting bias and confounding journal articles offering a limited view of trial outcomes. This Danish systematic review compiled data from all the HPV trials to offer a summary of the evidence thus far. Nevertheless, the investigators acknowledged that despite three years of work, the limitations of their analysis remained. These included reporting bias, incomplete reporting, data fragmentation and limited trial follow-up. These investigators similarly note that the trials were powered to assess the benefits of HPV vaccination, not rare harms. The degree to which benefits outweigh risks is therefore unknown. They concluded that future research should carefully evaluate the harms following Gardasil 9 compared to Gardasil because the former contains more than double the virus proteins and aluminum-containing adjuvant than the same dose of Gardasil. RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker Vax-Unvax RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker’s New Book: “Vax-Unvax” Order Now Large studies reveal autoimmune events In 2009, the HPV4 vaccine was integrated into the Danish childhood vaccination program. Since then, two large cohort studies on the HPV4 vaccine adverse events have been carried out using the hospital-based healthcare registries of Denmark and Sweden. The first study in Denmark and Sweden included 296,826 girls aged 10 to 17 who received a total of 696,420 HPV4 vaccine doses. The scientists evaluated rate ratios for autoimmune events and found no significant association for 20 out of 23 events. They found a significant association between the HPV4 vaccine and Bechet’s syndrome (rate ratio 3.37), Raynaud’s disease (1.67) and type 1 diabetes (1.29). But after further review, they concluded that there was insufficient evidence for a causal association, because of the weakness of the signal and the lack of an underlying mechanism to explain biological plausibility. In a second large cohort study, the same team expanded their research to more than 3 million Danish and Swedish adult women aged 18 to 44. The authors identified seven adverse events with statistically significant increased risks following HPV4 vaccination: Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, celiac disease, lupus erythematosus, pemphigus vulgaris, Addison’s disease, Raynaud’s disease and encephalitis, myelitis or encephalomyelitis. After sensitivity analyses, the association between HPV4 vaccination and celiac disease was the most robust finding. Celiac disease is a condition where a person’s immune system attacks the body’s own gut after eating gluten. As the graph below shows, the scientists used two risk periods after HPV4 vaccination: the first 180 days and after. 1 time since first dose HPV4 vaccine coeliac cases Time since the first dose of the HPV4 vaccine for vaccinated coeliac cases in a cohort of Danish and Swedish women. Credit: Journal of Internal Medicine The authors noted that the observed 56% increased risk of celiac disease “was strong, and the increase was strikingly similar in both risk periods after vaccination.” Celiac disease is underdiagnosed in Denmark. So one possible explanation is that vaccination visits allow a chance for this and other conditions to be diagnosed and explored. This explanation suggests that the association between the HPV vaccine and autoimmune disorders may be coincidental. However, given the lack of any real control groups in these studies, as well as the growing body of scientific literature from countries around the world showing problems with the HPV vaccine, dismissing these safety signals as coincidence seems short-sighted. Large French study and U.S. VAERS study identify risks of Guillain-Barré Syndrome The concern about autoimmune disease adverse events has contributed to low HPV vaccination uptake in France. A 2017 study of over 2.2 million young girls in France found troubling evidence of a link with Guillain-Barré syndrome. GBS is a condition that arises when our own antibodies attack the nerves. The incidence of GBS was found to be 1.4 per 100,000 person-years among the vaccinated girls compared to 0.4 per 100,000 among the unvaccinated, resulting in an increased risk of GBS of more than 200%. The association appeared to be “particularly marked in the first months following vaccination.” This finding is corroborated by the pattern of adverse reactions reported worldwide. Data from a large number of case reports document similar serious adverse events associated with Gardasil administration, with nervous system disorders of autoimmune origin being the most frequently reported. A 2011 U.S. study found that the estimated weekly reporting rate of post-Gardasil GBS within the first six weeks (6.6 per 10,000,000) was higher than in the general population, and higher than post-Menactra and post-influenza vaccinations. In particular, there was nearly a two-and-a-half to 10 times greater risk of acquiring GBS within six weeks after vaccination, compared to the general population. Additionally, the study found Gardasil vaccination was associated with approximately eight-and-a-half times more emergency department visits, 12.5 times more hospitalizations, 10 times more life-threatening events and 26.5 times more disability than the Menactra vaccination. Plausible mechanisms of harm Despite the conflicting data in the scientific literature to date, it is clear that the HPV vaccines can cause autoimmune disorders in susceptible people. But how? Autoimmunity has been reported as a complication of natural infection as well as virus vaccination. This phenomenon has been observed with many viruses, including the Epstein-Barr virus, COVID-19 and HPV. According to a 2019 study, the HPV vaccine contains epitopes — portions of the virus proteins — that overlap with the human proteins. This means that if we develop antibodies to those viruses, we may also generate autoantibodies to our own cells, which is the root cause of autoimmune dysfunction. The study showed that most of the immunoreactive HPV L1 epi­topes are overlapping peptides present in human proteins. The authors explained that this “unexpected enormous size of the peptide overlap between the HPV epitopes and human proteins” is relevant, and may be why a wide variety of autoimmune diseases have been reported post-HPV vaccination, including ovarian failure, systemic lupus erythematosus, breast cancer and sudden death, among others. Why some people develop these conditions and others do not is unclear. The authors suggest that vaccines should target the few peptides that do not overlap with human proteins, but which do overlap with the other HPVs. Despite this overlap and the potential for causing autoimmune disease, medical doctors usually ignore or dismiss the connection. We are told that these diseases are rare. The human body has something called immune tolerance. This protects a person’s immune system against attacking itself. Therefore, HPV infection is also “immune tolerated,” which means it lays dormant for some time until it becomes cancerous. HPV vaccination was actually designed with this immune tolerance in mind. Given the human body’s built-in defenses against autoimmune conditions, vaccinology requires an immunogenic catalyst to get the body’s attention. This is the job of an adjuvant. An adjuvant is an ingredient used in a vaccine that the body recognizes as foreign. It is added to vaccines so that the body will mount a stronger immune response. The idea is that in attacking the adjuvant, the body will also recognize other vaccine ingredients (in this case, purified HPV proteins). In addition, the antigen dose is much higher than in natural infections and the capsids in the vaccine are directly exposed to systemic immune responses as opposed to the virus staying relatively hidden within the natural barrier of the skin following infection. The vaccine was well-designed to trigger an immune response, but this advantage may come at a cost: Generating antibodies to HPV proteins through vaccination could, theoretically, set the stage for an autoimmune attack. Link between HPV-vaccine-associated nervous system dysfunction and autoimmunity A December 2022 Danish and German study was designed to elucidate a possible mechanism of harm. The lead author, Dr. Jesper Mehlsen, a specialist in treating autoimmune conditions, noted that the HPV major capsid L1s antigen resembles human autonomic nerve receptors, including G-protein coupled receptors (GPCR). According to the researchers, in the past several years, case series of suspected vaccination side effects have pointed to three disease entities: POTS, myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) and complex regional pain syndrome. These syndromes may be associated with neuroendocrine GPCR antibodies. From 2011 to 2018, researchers saw 845 patients (839 females, six males) with suspected side effects following the HPV4 vaccine. The control group included vaccinated people without side effects. Moderate to severe fatigue was recorded in 83.3% of the patients but in none of the controls. A high prevalence of symptoms, such as dizziness (91%), heart palpitations (71%), nausea (80%) and hyperactive bladder suggested that the patients were experiencing some kind of autonomic dysfunction. Autonomic dysfunction occurs when the part of the nervous system that controls well-being and balance does not function properly. 2 most frequent symptoms hpv vaccine Most frequent symptoms reported by 612 patients in Denmark. Credit: Journal of Autoimmunity Twenty-four percent higher antinuclear antibodies (ANA, a common type of autoantibodies) were found in patients, suggesting possible autoimmunity. 3 antinuclear antibodies HPV vaccines A larger proportion of the symptomatic patients were found with a common type of autoantibodies compared to healthy controls. Credit: Journal of Autoimmunity Antibodies against the adrenergic ß-2-receptor and muscarinic M-2 receptors were also found significantly higher in patients. Many of the symptoms, including immune activation and autonomic dysregulation, could be mediated or aggravated by dysregulated autoantibodies against adrenergic receptors and impaired peripheral adrenergic function. The authors suggested that girls and women with probable side effects of HPV vaccination have symptoms and biological markers compatible with an autoimmune disease closely resembling that seen in ME/CFS. Interestingly, people who already had HPV infections at some point appeared to be at greater risk for adverse events following vaccination. The authors noted that “prior disease may precondition some individuals for vaccine-related adverse events.” They also noted that some of the adverse events resembled long-COVID symptoms. Universal HPV vaccination called into question Academic researcher at the University of British Columbia, Lucija Tomljenovic, and neuroscientist Christopher Shaw, who have closely looked into Gardasil, have argued that the risks from the vaccine seem to significantly outweigh the as-yet-unproven long-term benefits. In a 2012 comment published in the American Journal of Public Health, they took issue with “incomplete and inaccurate” data and poorly designed trials. Vaccination is unjustified if the vaccine carries any substantial risk, as healthy teenagers face little to no risk of dying from cervical cancer. Risk-benefit analyses must be conducted to ascertain the overall balance of benefits and harms on both individual and societal levels. Reprinted with permission from The Epoch Times. Dr. Yuhong Dong, a medical doctor who also holds a doctorate in infectious diseases in China, is the chief scientific officer and co-founder of a Swiss biotech company and former senior medical scientific expert for antiviral drug development at Novartis Pharma in Switzerland. If you or your child suffered harm after receiving the Gardasil HPV vaccine, you may have a legal claim. Please visit Wisner Baum for a free case evaluation. Click here to watch a Gardasil litigation update interview with Wisner Baum Senior Partner Bijan Esfandiari. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Children's Health Defense. https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/truth-hpv-vaccine-part-2-et/ https://donshafi911.blogspot.com/2024/01/the-truth-about-hpv-vaccination-part-2.html
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    The Truth About HPV Vaccination, Part 2: Studies Link the Vaccines to Neurological, Autoimmune Disorders
    Researchers who looked closely into the Gardasil HPV vaccine concluded the risks from the vaccine seem to significantly outweigh the as-yet-unproven long-term benefits.
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  • The Truth About HPV Vaccination, Part 1: How Safe Is It, Really?
    This first installment in a multi-part series about the human papillomavirus, or HPV, vaccine explores peer-reviewed scientific literature that reveals serious safety concerns about a vaccine widely regarded as safe.

    The Epoch Times

    Miss a day, miss a lot. Subscribe to The Defender's Top News of the Day. It's free.

    By Yuhong Dong

    The decline of public trust in COVID-19 vaccines significantly impacts vaccination rates against routine childhood diseases. This multiple-part series explores the international research done over the past two decades on the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine — believed to be one of the most effective vaccines developed to date.

    Summary of Key Facts

    This multiple-part series offers a thorough analysis of concerns raised about HPV vaccination following the global HPV campaign, which commenced in 2006.
    In the U.S., the HPV vaccine was reported to have a disproportionately higher percentage of adverse events of fainting and blood clots in the veins. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) acknowledges that fainting can happen following the HPV vaccine, and recommends sitting or lying down to get the shot, then waiting for 15 minutes afterward.
    International scientists found that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) logged a substantial increase in reports of premature ovarian failure from 1.4 per year before 2006 to 22.2 per year after the HPV vaccine approval, yielding a Proportional Reporting Ratio of 46.1.
    The HPV vaccine is widely regarded as one of the most effective vaccines developed to date. Nevertheless, safety issues have been raised following its approval, and in response, additional research has been published and litigation has been brought on behalf of those with a vaccine injury.

    In this HPV vaccine series, Parts I and II explain how the vaccine works and the evidence suggesting there may be legitimate safety concerns. The remaining parts present questions about real-world vaccine effectiveness and identify specific ingredients which may pose harm.

    The information presented here is drawn from peer-reviewed scientific literature from the U.S., Australia, Denmark, Sweden, France and Japan, as well as statistics published by public health agencies in each of these countries.

    More than 100 hours of research and internal peer review among scientists with experience in infectious diseases, virology, clinical trials and vaccine epidemiology have been invested in presenting this summary of the evidence.

    Large registry-based studies have identified plausible associations between HPV vaccination and autoimmune conditions, including premature ovarian insufficiency or premature ovarian failure, Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS), postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome and chronic regional pain syndrome.

    While it is easy to be enthusiastic about recent advances in human vaccine technology, we should keep in mind that achieving real and lasting good health is much more than just the absence of a certain virus.

    RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker Vax-Unvax
    RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker’s New Book: “Vax-Unvax”

    Order Now

    What is HPV?

    According to the CDC, HPV is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the U.S.

    HPV is a small DNA virus infecting human cutaneous epithelial cells in the mucosa and skin. More than 150 strains of the HPV virus have been identified.

    HPV infection is so common that the majority of sexually active people will get it at some point in their lives, even if they have only one or very few sexual partners. It can spread through sexual intercourse and oral sex. It can also pass between people through skin-to-skin contact, even by people who have no symptoms.

    HPV infection causes genital warts, some of which can turn into cancer. For the most part, however, HPV infection is benign. More than 90% of HPV infections cause no clinical symptoms and are self-limited, meaning the virus is cleared by the body via natural immunological defenses.

    HPV-associated cancers

    High-risk HPV types (types 16, 18 and others) can cause cervical cell abnormalities that are precursors to cancers.

    Type 16 is associated with approximately 50% of cervical cancers worldwide, and types 16 and 18 together are linked to 66% of cervical cancers.

    An additional five high-risk types, 31, 33, 45, 52 and 58, are linked with another 15% of cervical cancers and 11% of all HPV-associated cancers.

    Infection with a high-risk HPV type is associated with a higher chance of the development of cervical cancer but, by itself, HPV infection is not the sole risk factor to cause cancer. There are many other reasons, as discussed in this paper.

    Given the prevalence of infection, it is unsurprising that globally, cervical cancer is the fourth most common cancer in women. In 2018, an estimated 570,000 women were diagnosed with cervical cancer worldwide and more than 300,000 died of the disease.

    In the U.S., nearly 50,000 new HPV-associated cancers occur annually, with women infected at a slightly higher rate than men.

    But in 9 out of 10 cases, HPV goes away within two years without causing health problems.

    Only persistent HPV infections may lead to cancer. These infections evade the immune system’s innate cell-mediated defenses.

    The incidence of cervical cancer can be controlled as a result of the implementation of routine testing and screening, including Pap and DNA tests.

    HPV vaccines

    Three HPV vaccines — bivalent HPV vaccine (Cervarix, 2vHPV), quadrivalent HPV vaccine (Gardasil, 4vHPV or HPV4) and 9-valent HPV vaccine (Gardasil 9, 9vHPV) — have been licensed by the FDA.

    The HPV vaccine uses recombinant technology to assemble the shell of the virus — L1 capsid protein. These viral-like particles do not contain the virus genome and are not infectious.

    Cervarix, developed by GlaxoSmithKline, is a bivalent vaccine against HPV types 16 and 18, that was pulled from the U.S. market in 2016 due to “very low market demand.”

    Merck’s original Gardasil vaccine was designed to prevent infections from four strains (types 6, 11, 16 and 18).

    On June 8, 2006, after the FDA’s fast-tracked review, Gardasil was approved for use in females ages 9 to 26 for the prevention of cervical, vulvar and vaginal cancers.

    According to the label accompanying the vaccine, the ingredients in Merck’s first Gardasil vaccine were proteins of HPV, amorphous aluminum hydroxyphosphate sulfate, yeast protein, sodium chloride, L-histidine, polysorbate 80, sodium borate and water for injection.

    On Oct. 16, 2009, the FDA approved Gardasil (HPV4) for use in boys ages 9 through 26 for the prevention of genital warts caused by HPV types 6 and 11, but not for cancer.

    In 2010, it approved Gardasil for the prevention of anal cancer in males and females ages 9 to 26.

    Four years later, the FDA approved an updated vaccine, Merck’s Gardasil 9, for use in girls ages 9 to 26 and boys ages 9 to 15 for the prevention of cervical, vaginal and anal cancers.

    Gardasil 9 contains the same ingredients as Gardasil, but offers protection against nine HPV strains, adding five additional types (HPV types 31, 33, 45, 52 and 58).

    The current HPV vaccination schedule recommended by the CDC is two doses for both boys and girls aged 11 or 12. However, it is approved for children as young as 9. The second dose is given 6 to 12 months after the first.

    For those aged 15 and above, a three-dose schedule is implemented at one- to two-month and six-month intervals, although antibody-level studies suggest that two doses are sufficient.

    The vaccine prompts the body to produce neutralizing antibodies against HPV. Antibody responses appear to peak seven months after the first dose (or one month after the third dose). The vaccine-induced antibody levels appear to be 10 to 100 times higher than those after natural infection.

    The high vaccine effectiveness (90 to 98%) against the fast-growing, abnormal cells which may cause precancerous lesions in people ages 16 to 26 suggested that the best timing for vaccination was to give it to patients before they became sexually active.

    HPV VAERS reports from 2 large countries

    U.S. HPV vaccine adverse events

    On Aug. 19, 2009, the Journal of the American Medical Association published an article authored by scientists from the FDA and CDC that reviewed the safety data for Gardasil for adverse events reported to VAERS between June 2006 through December 2008.

    During that time, there were 12,424 reports of adverse events. Of these, 772 (6.2%) were serious.

    VAERS is a passive surveillance system, which is subject to multiple limitations, including underreporting, unconfirmed diagnosis, lack of denominator data and no unbiased comparison groups.

    Nevertheless, it is a useful and important tool for detecting postmarket safety issues with vaccines.

    A disproportionately high percentage of Gardasil VAERS reports were of syncope (fainting) and venous thromboembolic events (blood clots in the veins) compared with other vaccines. There were 8.2 syncope events per 100,000 HPV doses and 0.2 venous thromboembolic events per 100,000 HPV doses reported, respectively.

    The Gardasil package insert includes a warning about fainting, fever, dizziness, nausea and headaches (page 1) and notes at least the following adverse reactions reported during postmarketing surveillance (section 6.2): Guillain-Barré syndrome, transverse myelitis, motor neuron disease, venous thromboembolic events, pancreatitis and autoimmune disorders.

    Australia HPV vaccines adverse events

    In 2007, Australia reported an annual adverse drug reaction rate of 7.3/100,000, the highest since 2003, representing an 85% increase from 2006.

    Per the analysis of the Adverse Drug Reactions System database by the Australian Department of Health and Aging, this increase was “almost entirely due to” reports following the national rollout of the three-dose HPV vaccination program for young females in April 2007; 705 of the 1,538 adverse drug reactions reported that year were from the Gardasil vaccine.

    1 vaccine adverse events australia chart
    In Australia, the ADR increase in 2007 was almost entirely due to the three-dose HPV vaccination program for females aged 12 to 26 years in April 2007. Credit: Australian Government Department of Health and Aged Care.
    Moreover, though people may take different vaccines other than HPV, the HPV vaccine was the only suspected vaccine to cause adverse reactions in 96% of records. Twenty-nine percent had causality ratings of “certain” or “probable” and 6% were defined as “serious.”

    2 vaccine types vaccine suspected chart
    In these HPV-induced ADRs, 674 were suspected to be related to HPV vaccines, 203 had causality ratings of “certain” or “probable,” and 43 were defined as “serious.” Credit: Australian Government Department of Health and Aged Care.
    Japan withdraws recommendation, vaccine acceptance plunged

    In 2013, the Japanese raised concerns about a variety of widely reported post-vaccination serious adverse events. This led the government to suspend recommending the HPV vaccine for six years. Vaccine acceptance of HPV in Japan plunged significantly after 2013, from 42.9% to 14.3%, or from 65.4% to 3.9%.

    Researchers around the world also started to investigate HPV safety. A World Health Organization (WHO) position paper released on July 14, 2017, concluded that the HPV vaccines were “extremely safe.”

    The same report estimated approximately 1.7 cases of anaphylaxis per million HPV doses, that no association with GBS was found, and that syncope (fainting) was “established as a common anxiety or stress-related reaction to the injection.”

    In the spring of 2022, Japan announced it was relaunching its HPV vaccination drive. Mainstream news outlets reported that for thousands of women, the cost of caution may have led to preventable HPV-induced cancers and an estimated 5,000 to 5,700 deaths.

    However, a true risk-benefit analysis would also consider the number of serious adverse events prevented by putting the program on hold. The question remains: Was Japan’s caution warranted, or should their national vaccination program have continued?

    Ovarian insufficiency

    Concerns that the vaccine may be negatively affecting fertility have been detailed in the scientific literature.

    In 2014, a peer-reviewed case series describing premature ovarian failure among Australian women following HPV vaccination was published in the Journal of Investigative Medicine.

    This prompted other researchers to systematically examine the VAERS data to see if there was a connection between premature ovarian failure and Gardasil. Their study found a “potential safety signal” and concluded that “further investigations are warranted.”

    VAERS analysis on ovarian failure

    Two recent publications based on VAERS reports (first study, second study) found that events with a probable autoimmune background were significantly more frequent after HPV vaccination compared to other vaccinations.

    The team of international scientists that did the second study evaluated reports between 1990 and 2018. They found that among the 228,341 premature ovarian failure reports, 0.1% was considered to be associated with HPV vaccination with a median age of 15 years and the time to onset was 20.5 days following vaccination.

    The primary symptoms were amenorrhea (80.4%) and premature menopause (15.3%).

    Most strikingly, the mean number of premature ovarian failure cases increased significantly from 1.4 per year prior to 2006 to 22.2 per year after the HPV vaccine was approved, with a proportional reporting ratio of 46.

    The investigators noted that the WHO and CDC declared the HPV vaccine safe regardless of lacking adequate research into safety concerns.

    For example, the authors note that in a CDC-sponsored VAERS study, 17 cases of premature ovarian failure were identified but 15 were excluded due to insufficient information to confirm the diagnosis. A separate observational study using the Vaccine Safety Datalink found no increased risk.

    But this study was too underpowered to detect a signal. In addition, a cross-sectional survey study using National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey data relied on an inaccurate measurement of premature ovarian failure and self-reported HPV vaccination.

    In summary, the researchers detected a strong safety signal even after accounting for a potential upswing in reports due to media coverage after the product launch (they refer to this as “notoriety bias”).

    Because VAERS is a passive reporting system, the data may be incomplete and are often unconfirmed by physicians. Therefore, this study cannot provide a definitive link between HPV vaccination and premature ovarian insufficiency or premature ovarian failure but does generate a hypothetical link.

    The authors of the second study conclude by insisting that “this signal warrants well-designed and appropriate epidemiological research.” They note that “if the signal is confirmed, the risk is small compared to the lifetime risk of cervical cancer.”

    However, the benefit-risk profile on an individual level is not uniform.

    Given the health impacts of premature ovarian insufficiency and premature ovarian failure — some of which may be irreversible — and the declining mortality rate for cervical cancer even in the prevaccine era, the risk-benefit profile for HPV vaccination remains unclear.

    3 case reports on ovarian insufficiency

    In the 2014 investigation mentioned above, a general practitioner in Australia noticed that three girls developed premature ovarian insufficiency following HPV4 vaccination.

    As a result of vaccination, each of the girls (ages 16, 16 and 18) had been prescribed oral contraception to treat menstrual cycle irregularities. Typically, women present with amenorrhea (no periods) or oligomenorrhea (infrequent periods) as the initial symptom of premature ovarian insufficiency.

    One girl had irregular periods following three doses of HPV vaccination. She then became amenorrheic and was diagnosed with premature ovarian insufficiency.

    Another girl’s periods were “like clockwork” until after the third HPV dose, which she received at age 15. Her first cycle after being vaccinated for the third time started two weeks late, and her next cycle was two months late. The final cycle began nine months later. The patient had no family history of early menopause.

    She was diagnosed with premature ovarian failure at 16. Lab work found hormone levels consistent with those of postmenopausal women, but her bone mineral density was normal.

    The authors of this case series noted that in preclinical studies of HPV4, the five-week-old rats only conceived one litter and the only available toxicology studies appear to be on the male rodent reproductive system.

    However, only two of three doses were administered prior to mating, and the overall fecundity was 95%, slightly lower than the control rats (98%) that received no vaccination prior to mating.

    The dose tolerance recommendations were based on an average weight of 50 kilograms for an adolescent girl but failed to take into account that HPV4 is administered to girls ages 9 to 13 years, who range in weight from 28 to 46 kilograms.

    Danish retrospective cohort study finds no link

    A 2021 study also evaluated premature ovarian insufficiency in a nationwide cohort of nearly 1 million Danish females ages 11 to 34 years.

    The researchers used Cox proportional hazard regression to detect an increased risk of premature ovarian insufficiency diagnosis by HPV4 vaccination status during the years 2007-2016. The hazard ratio for premature ovarian insufficiency (vaccinated versus unvaccinated) was 0.96.

    One limitation was that data on age at menarche (first menstruation) and oral contraceptive use were not available. Girls who had not yet reached menarche would not be at risk for premature ovarian insufficiency, of course.

    The authors excluded girls under age 15 in a sensitivity analysis and still found no signal, concluding that no association was found between HPV4 vaccination and premature ovarian insufficiency.

    Reprinted with permission from The Epoch Times. Dr. Yuhong Dong, a medical doctor who also holds a doctorate in infectious diseases from China, is the chief scientific officer and co-founder of a Swiss biotech company and a former senior medical scientific expert for antiviral drug development at Novartis Pharma in Switzerland.

    If you or your child suffered harm after receiving the Gardasil HPV vaccine, you may have a legal claim. Please visit Wisner Baum for a free case evaluation. Click here to watch a Gardasil litigation update interview with Wisner Baum Senior Partner Bijan Esfandiari.

    The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Children's Health Defense.

    https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/hpv-vaccine-safety-concerns-part-1-et/


    https://donshafi911.blogspot.com/2024/01/the-truth-about-hpv-vaccination-part-1.html
    The Truth About HPV Vaccination, Part 1: How Safe Is It, Really? This first installment in a multi-part series about the human papillomavirus, or HPV, vaccine explores peer-reviewed scientific literature that reveals serious safety concerns about a vaccine widely regarded as safe. The Epoch Times Miss a day, miss a lot. Subscribe to The Defender's Top News of the Day. It's free. By Yuhong Dong The decline of public trust in COVID-19 vaccines significantly impacts vaccination rates against routine childhood diseases. This multiple-part series explores the international research done over the past two decades on the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine — believed to be one of the most effective vaccines developed to date. Summary of Key Facts This multiple-part series offers a thorough analysis of concerns raised about HPV vaccination following the global HPV campaign, which commenced in 2006. In the U.S., the HPV vaccine was reported to have a disproportionately higher percentage of adverse events of fainting and blood clots in the veins. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) acknowledges that fainting can happen following the HPV vaccine, and recommends sitting or lying down to get the shot, then waiting for 15 minutes afterward. International scientists found that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) logged a substantial increase in reports of premature ovarian failure from 1.4 per year before 2006 to 22.2 per year after the HPV vaccine approval, yielding a Proportional Reporting Ratio of 46.1. The HPV vaccine is widely regarded as one of the most effective vaccines developed to date. Nevertheless, safety issues have been raised following its approval, and in response, additional research has been published and litigation has been brought on behalf of those with a vaccine injury. In this HPV vaccine series, Parts I and II explain how the vaccine works and the evidence suggesting there may be legitimate safety concerns. The remaining parts present questions about real-world vaccine effectiveness and identify specific ingredients which may pose harm. The information presented here is drawn from peer-reviewed scientific literature from the U.S., Australia, Denmark, Sweden, France and Japan, as well as statistics published by public health agencies in each of these countries. More than 100 hours of research and internal peer review among scientists with experience in infectious diseases, virology, clinical trials and vaccine epidemiology have been invested in presenting this summary of the evidence. Large registry-based studies have identified plausible associations between HPV vaccination and autoimmune conditions, including premature ovarian insufficiency or premature ovarian failure, Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS), postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome and chronic regional pain syndrome. While it is easy to be enthusiastic about recent advances in human vaccine technology, we should keep in mind that achieving real and lasting good health is much more than just the absence of a certain virus. RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker Vax-Unvax RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker’s New Book: “Vax-Unvax” Order Now What is HPV? According to the CDC, HPV is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the U.S. HPV is a small DNA virus infecting human cutaneous epithelial cells in the mucosa and skin. More than 150 strains of the HPV virus have been identified. HPV infection is so common that the majority of sexually active people will get it at some point in their lives, even if they have only one or very few sexual partners. It can spread through sexual intercourse and oral sex. It can also pass between people through skin-to-skin contact, even by people who have no symptoms. HPV infection causes genital warts, some of which can turn into cancer. For the most part, however, HPV infection is benign. More than 90% of HPV infections cause no clinical symptoms and are self-limited, meaning the virus is cleared by the body via natural immunological defenses. HPV-associated cancers High-risk HPV types (types 16, 18 and others) can cause cervical cell abnormalities that are precursors to cancers. Type 16 is associated with approximately 50% of cervical cancers worldwide, and types 16 and 18 together are linked to 66% of cervical cancers. An additional five high-risk types, 31, 33, 45, 52 and 58, are linked with another 15% of cervical cancers and 11% of all HPV-associated cancers. Infection with a high-risk HPV type is associated with a higher chance of the development of cervical cancer but, by itself, HPV infection is not the sole risk factor to cause cancer. There are many other reasons, as discussed in this paper. Given the prevalence of infection, it is unsurprising that globally, cervical cancer is the fourth most common cancer in women. In 2018, an estimated 570,000 women were diagnosed with cervical cancer worldwide and more than 300,000 died of the disease. In the U.S., nearly 50,000 new HPV-associated cancers occur annually, with women infected at a slightly higher rate than men. But in 9 out of 10 cases, HPV goes away within two years without causing health problems. Only persistent HPV infections may lead to cancer. These infections evade the immune system’s innate cell-mediated defenses. The incidence of cervical cancer can be controlled as a result of the implementation of routine testing and screening, including Pap and DNA tests. HPV vaccines Three HPV vaccines — bivalent HPV vaccine (Cervarix, 2vHPV), quadrivalent HPV vaccine (Gardasil, 4vHPV or HPV4) and 9-valent HPV vaccine (Gardasil 9, 9vHPV) — have been licensed by the FDA. The HPV vaccine uses recombinant technology to assemble the shell of the virus — L1 capsid protein. These viral-like particles do not contain the virus genome and are not infectious. Cervarix, developed by GlaxoSmithKline, is a bivalent vaccine against HPV types 16 and 18, that was pulled from the U.S. market in 2016 due to “very low market demand.” Merck’s original Gardasil vaccine was designed to prevent infections from four strains (types 6, 11, 16 and 18). On June 8, 2006, after the FDA’s fast-tracked review, Gardasil was approved for use in females ages 9 to 26 for the prevention of cervical, vulvar and vaginal cancers. According to the label accompanying the vaccine, the ingredients in Merck’s first Gardasil vaccine were proteins of HPV, amorphous aluminum hydroxyphosphate sulfate, yeast protein, sodium chloride, L-histidine, polysorbate 80, sodium borate and water for injection. On Oct. 16, 2009, the FDA approved Gardasil (HPV4) for use in boys ages 9 through 26 for the prevention of genital warts caused by HPV types 6 and 11, but not for cancer. In 2010, it approved Gardasil for the prevention of anal cancer in males and females ages 9 to 26. Four years later, the FDA approved an updated vaccine, Merck’s Gardasil 9, for use in girls ages 9 to 26 and boys ages 9 to 15 for the prevention of cervical, vaginal and anal cancers. Gardasil 9 contains the same ingredients as Gardasil, but offers protection against nine HPV strains, adding five additional types (HPV types 31, 33, 45, 52 and 58). The current HPV vaccination schedule recommended by the CDC is two doses for both boys and girls aged 11 or 12. However, it is approved for children as young as 9. The second dose is given 6 to 12 months after the first. For those aged 15 and above, a three-dose schedule is implemented at one- to two-month and six-month intervals, although antibody-level studies suggest that two doses are sufficient. The vaccine prompts the body to produce neutralizing antibodies against HPV. Antibody responses appear to peak seven months after the first dose (or one month after the third dose). The vaccine-induced antibody levels appear to be 10 to 100 times higher than those after natural infection. The high vaccine effectiveness (90 to 98%) against the fast-growing, abnormal cells which may cause precancerous lesions in people ages 16 to 26 suggested that the best timing for vaccination was to give it to patients before they became sexually active. HPV VAERS reports from 2 large countries U.S. HPV vaccine adverse events On Aug. 19, 2009, the Journal of the American Medical Association published an article authored by scientists from the FDA and CDC that reviewed the safety data for Gardasil for adverse events reported to VAERS between June 2006 through December 2008. During that time, there were 12,424 reports of adverse events. Of these, 772 (6.2%) were serious. VAERS is a passive surveillance system, which is subject to multiple limitations, including underreporting, unconfirmed diagnosis, lack of denominator data and no unbiased comparison groups. Nevertheless, it is a useful and important tool for detecting postmarket safety issues with vaccines. A disproportionately high percentage of Gardasil VAERS reports were of syncope (fainting) and venous thromboembolic events (blood clots in the veins) compared with other vaccines. There were 8.2 syncope events per 100,000 HPV doses and 0.2 venous thromboembolic events per 100,000 HPV doses reported, respectively. The Gardasil package insert includes a warning about fainting, fever, dizziness, nausea and headaches (page 1) and notes at least the following adverse reactions reported during postmarketing surveillance (section 6.2): Guillain-Barré syndrome, transverse myelitis, motor neuron disease, venous thromboembolic events, pancreatitis and autoimmune disorders. Australia HPV vaccines adverse events In 2007, Australia reported an annual adverse drug reaction rate of 7.3/100,000, the highest since 2003, representing an 85% increase from 2006. Per the analysis of the Adverse Drug Reactions System database by the Australian Department of Health and Aging, this increase was “almost entirely due to” reports following the national rollout of the three-dose HPV vaccination program for young females in April 2007; 705 of the 1,538 adverse drug reactions reported that year were from the Gardasil vaccine. 1 vaccine adverse events australia chart In Australia, the ADR increase in 2007 was almost entirely due to the three-dose HPV vaccination program for females aged 12 to 26 years in April 2007. Credit: Australian Government Department of Health and Aged Care. Moreover, though people may take different vaccines other than HPV, the HPV vaccine was the only suspected vaccine to cause adverse reactions in 96% of records. Twenty-nine percent had causality ratings of “certain” or “probable” and 6% were defined as “serious.” 2 vaccine types vaccine suspected chart In these HPV-induced ADRs, 674 were suspected to be related to HPV vaccines, 203 had causality ratings of “certain” or “probable,” and 43 were defined as “serious.” Credit: Australian Government Department of Health and Aged Care. Japan withdraws recommendation, vaccine acceptance plunged In 2013, the Japanese raised concerns about a variety of widely reported post-vaccination serious adverse events. This led the government to suspend recommending the HPV vaccine for six years. Vaccine acceptance of HPV in Japan plunged significantly after 2013, from 42.9% to 14.3%, or from 65.4% to 3.9%. Researchers around the world also started to investigate HPV safety. A World Health Organization (WHO) position paper released on July 14, 2017, concluded that the HPV vaccines were “extremely safe.” The same report estimated approximately 1.7 cases of anaphylaxis per million HPV doses, that no association with GBS was found, and that syncope (fainting) was “established as a common anxiety or stress-related reaction to the injection.” In the spring of 2022, Japan announced it was relaunching its HPV vaccination drive. Mainstream news outlets reported that for thousands of women, the cost of caution may have led to preventable HPV-induced cancers and an estimated 5,000 to 5,700 deaths. However, a true risk-benefit analysis would also consider the number of serious adverse events prevented by putting the program on hold. The question remains: Was Japan’s caution warranted, or should their national vaccination program have continued? Ovarian insufficiency Concerns that the vaccine may be negatively affecting fertility have been detailed in the scientific literature. In 2014, a peer-reviewed case series describing premature ovarian failure among Australian women following HPV vaccination was published in the Journal of Investigative Medicine. This prompted other researchers to systematically examine the VAERS data to see if there was a connection between premature ovarian failure and Gardasil. Their study found a “potential safety signal” and concluded that “further investigations are warranted.” VAERS analysis on ovarian failure Two recent publications based on VAERS reports (first study, second study) found that events with a probable autoimmune background were significantly more frequent after HPV vaccination compared to other vaccinations. The team of international scientists that did the second study evaluated reports between 1990 and 2018. They found that among the 228,341 premature ovarian failure reports, 0.1% was considered to be associated with HPV vaccination with a median age of 15 years and the time to onset was 20.5 days following vaccination. The primary symptoms were amenorrhea (80.4%) and premature menopause (15.3%). Most strikingly, the mean number of premature ovarian failure cases increased significantly from 1.4 per year prior to 2006 to 22.2 per year after the HPV vaccine was approved, with a proportional reporting ratio of 46. The investigators noted that the WHO and CDC declared the HPV vaccine safe regardless of lacking adequate research into safety concerns. For example, the authors note that in a CDC-sponsored VAERS study, 17 cases of premature ovarian failure were identified but 15 were excluded due to insufficient information to confirm the diagnosis. A separate observational study using the Vaccine Safety Datalink found no increased risk. But this study was too underpowered to detect a signal. In addition, a cross-sectional survey study using National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey data relied on an inaccurate measurement of premature ovarian failure and self-reported HPV vaccination. In summary, the researchers detected a strong safety signal even after accounting for a potential upswing in reports due to media coverage after the product launch (they refer to this as “notoriety bias”). Because VAERS is a passive reporting system, the data may be incomplete and are often unconfirmed by physicians. Therefore, this study cannot provide a definitive link between HPV vaccination and premature ovarian insufficiency or premature ovarian failure but does generate a hypothetical link. The authors of the second study conclude by insisting that “this signal warrants well-designed and appropriate epidemiological research.” They note that “if the signal is confirmed, the risk is small compared to the lifetime risk of cervical cancer.” However, the benefit-risk profile on an individual level is not uniform. Given the health impacts of premature ovarian insufficiency and premature ovarian failure — some of which may be irreversible — and the declining mortality rate for cervical cancer even in the prevaccine era, the risk-benefit profile for HPV vaccination remains unclear. 3 case reports on ovarian insufficiency In the 2014 investigation mentioned above, a general practitioner in Australia noticed that three girls developed premature ovarian insufficiency following HPV4 vaccination. As a result of vaccination, each of the girls (ages 16, 16 and 18) had been prescribed oral contraception to treat menstrual cycle irregularities. Typically, women present with amenorrhea (no periods) or oligomenorrhea (infrequent periods) as the initial symptom of premature ovarian insufficiency. One girl had irregular periods following three doses of HPV vaccination. She then became amenorrheic and was diagnosed with premature ovarian insufficiency. Another girl’s periods were “like clockwork” until after the third HPV dose, which she received at age 15. Her first cycle after being vaccinated for the third time started two weeks late, and her next cycle was two months late. The final cycle began nine months later. The patient had no family history of early menopause. She was diagnosed with premature ovarian failure at 16. Lab work found hormone levels consistent with those of postmenopausal women, but her bone mineral density was normal. The authors of this case series noted that in preclinical studies of HPV4, the five-week-old rats only conceived one litter and the only available toxicology studies appear to be on the male rodent reproductive system. However, only two of three doses were administered prior to mating, and the overall fecundity was 95%, slightly lower than the control rats (98%) that received no vaccination prior to mating. The dose tolerance recommendations were based on an average weight of 50 kilograms for an adolescent girl but failed to take into account that HPV4 is administered to girls ages 9 to 13 years, who range in weight from 28 to 46 kilograms. Danish retrospective cohort study finds no link A 2021 study also evaluated premature ovarian insufficiency in a nationwide cohort of nearly 1 million Danish females ages 11 to 34 years. The researchers used Cox proportional hazard regression to detect an increased risk of premature ovarian insufficiency diagnosis by HPV4 vaccination status during the years 2007-2016. The hazard ratio for premature ovarian insufficiency (vaccinated versus unvaccinated) was 0.96. One limitation was that data on age at menarche (first menstruation) and oral contraceptive use were not available. Girls who had not yet reached menarche would not be at risk for premature ovarian insufficiency, of course. The authors excluded girls under age 15 in a sensitivity analysis and still found no signal, concluding that no association was found between HPV4 vaccination and premature ovarian insufficiency. Reprinted with permission from The Epoch Times. Dr. Yuhong Dong, a medical doctor who also holds a doctorate in infectious diseases from China, is the chief scientific officer and co-founder of a Swiss biotech company and a former senior medical scientific expert for antiviral drug development at Novartis Pharma in Switzerland. If you or your child suffered harm after receiving the Gardasil HPV vaccine, you may have a legal claim. Please visit Wisner Baum for a free case evaluation. Click here to watch a Gardasil litigation update interview with Wisner Baum Senior Partner Bijan Esfandiari. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Children's Health Defense. https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/hpv-vaccine-safety-concerns-part-1-et/ https://donshafi911.blogspot.com/2024/01/the-truth-about-hpv-vaccination-part-1.html
    CHILDRENSHEALTHDEFENSE.ORG
    The Truth About HPV Vaccination, Part 1: How Safe Is It, Really?
    This first installment in a multi-part series about the human papillomavirus, or HPV, vaccine explores peer-reviewed scientific literature that reveals serious safety concerns about a vaccine widely regarded as safe.
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  • Scientists Call for Global Moratorium on mRNA Vaccines, Immediate Removal From Childhood Schedule
    A review paper published last week in the journal Cureus is the first peer-reviewed paper to call for a global moratorium on the COVID-19 mRNA vaccines. The authors say that reanalyzed data from the vaccine makers’ trials and high rates of serious post-injection injuries indicate the mRNA gene therapy vaccines should not have been authorized for use.

    Brenda Baletti, Ph.D.
    global moratorium mrna covid vaccine feature
    Miss a day, miss a lot. Subscribe to The Defender's Top News of the Day. It's free.

    Governments should endorse a global moratorium on mRNA vaccines until all questions about their safety have been thoroughly investigated, according to the authors of a new, peer-reviewed article on the COVID-19 vaccine trials and the global vaccination campaign published last week in Cureus, Journal of Medical Science.

    Cureus is a web-based peer-reviewed open-access general medical journal using prepublication peer review.

    The authors surveyed published research on the pharmaceutical companies’ vaccine trials and related adverse events. They also called for the COVID-19 vaccines to be removed immediately from the childhood immunization schedule.

    After the first reports from vaccine trials claimed they were 95% effective in preventing COVID-19, serious problems with method, execution and reporting in the trials became public, which the paper reviewed in detail.

    Evidence also shows the products never underwent adequate safety and toxicological testing, and since the vaccine rollout, researchers have identified a significant number of adverse events (AEs) and serious adverse events (SAEs).

    Authors M. Nathaniel Mead, Stephanie Seneff, Ph.D., Russ Wolfinger, Ph.D., Jessica Rose, Ph.D., Kris Denhaerynck, Ph.D., Steve Kirsch and Dr. Peter McCullough detailed the vaccines’ potential serious harms to humans, vaccine control and processing issues, the mechanisms behind AEs, the immunological reasons for vaccine inefficacy and the mortality data from the registrational trials.

    They concluded, “Federal agency approval of the COVID-19 mRNA injectable products on a blanket-coverage population-wide basis had no support from an honest assessment of all relevant registrational data and commensurate consideration of risks versus benefits.”

    They also called for the vaccines to be immediately removed from the childhood immunization schedule and for the suspension of the boosters.

    “It is unethical and unconscionable to administer an experimental vaccine to a child who has a near-zero risk of dying from COVID-19 (IFR, 0.0003%) but a well-established 2.2% risk of permanent heart damage based on the best prospective data available,” they wrote.

    Finally, the authors called for a full investigation into misconduct by the pharmaceutical companies and the regulatory agencies.

    It is the first peer-reviewed study to call for a moratorium on the COVID-19 mRNA products, Rose told The Defender.

    “Once a proper assessment of the safety and efficacy claims was made herein — upon which the emergency use authorization (EUA)’s and ultimate final authorizations were granted — it was found that the COVID-19 injectable products were neither safe nor effective,” she added.

    According to McCollough, “mRNA should never have been authorized for human use.”

    Lead author Mead told The Defender, “Our view is that any risk-benefit analysis must consider how much the presumed benefit in terms of reduced COVID-19 related mortality is offset by the potential increase in vaccine-induced mortality.”

    Here are six takeaways from the review:

    1. The COVID-19 ‘vaccines’ are reclassified gene therapies that were rushed through the regulatory process in a historically unprecedented manner

    Before the seven-month authorization process for the mRNA vaccines, no vaccine had ever gone to market without undergoing testing of at least four years, with typical timelines averaging 10 years.

    To speed the process, the companies skipped preclinical studies of potential toxicity from multiple doses and cut the typical 6-12 month observation period for identifying longer-term adverse effects and the established 10-15-year period for monitoring for long-term effects such as cancer and autoimmune disorders, the authors wrote.

    The trials prioritized documenting effective symptom reduction over SAE and mortality. This was particularly concerning, the authors argued, because mRNA products are gene therapy products reclassified as vaccines and then given EUA for the first time ever for use against a viral disease.

    However, the gene therapies’ components have not been thoroughly evaluated for safety for use as vaccines.

    There is an uninvestigated and major concern that the mRNA could transform body cells into viral protein factories — with no off-switch — that produce the spike protein for a prolonged period causing chronic systemic inflammation and immune dysfunction.

    The spike protein in the vaccine, the authors said, is associated with more severe immunopathology and other AEs than the spike protein in the virus itself.

    The authors suggested that massive government investment in mRNA technology, including hundreds of millions before the pandemic and tens of billions once it began, meant, “U.S. federal agencies were strongly biased toward successful outcomes for the registrational trials.”

    The financial incentives along with political pressures to deliver a rapid solution likely influenced a series of flawed decisions that compromised the integrity of the trials and downplayed serious scientific concerns about risks with the technology, they added.

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    2. Steps were taken in trials to overestimate vaccine efficacy

    Because the trials were designed to assess whether the mRNA vaccine reduced symptoms, they did not measure whether the vaccines prevented severe disease and death. Yet the vaccine makers repeatedly claimed that they do.

    “No large randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trials have ever demonstrated reductions in SARS-CoV-2 transmission, hospitalization, or death,” the authors wrote.

    Additionally, the number of people who contracted clinical COVID-19 in both the placebo and intervention groups was “too small to draw meaningful, pragmatic, or broad-sweeping conclusions with regard to COVID-19 morbidity and mortality.”

    Pfizer’s 95 % efficacy claims were based on 162 of 22,000 placebo recipients contracting PCR-confirmed COVID-19 compared to eight of 22,000 in the vaccine group. None of the placebo recipients died from COVID-19. In the Moderna trials, only one placebo death was attributed to COVID-19.

    There was also a much larger percentage of “suspected COVID-19 cases” in both groups, with participants showing COVID-19 symptoms but a negative PCR test. When factoring in those cases, measures of vaccine efficacy drop to about 19%.

    The trial subject pool was comprised of largely young and healthy individuals, excluding key groups — children, pregnant women, elderly and immunocompromised people — which can also obscure the vaccine’s actual efficacy and safety.

    Findings from reanalyses of data from the Pfizer trials can be interpreted as showing the vaccines made “no significant difference” in reducing all-cause mortality in the vaccinated versus unvaccinated groups at 20 weeks into the trial, the authors wrote.

    Even the six-month post-marketing data Pfizer presented to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) showed no reduction in all-cause mortality from the vaccine.

    The authors reanalyzed that data, adjusting the analysis of deaths to better account for the fact that when Pfizer unblinded the study people from the placebo group took the vaccine, and found the vaccine group had a higher mortality rate (0.105%) than the unvaccinated group (0.0799%), which they said was a conservative estimate.

    One of the most glaring issues with the registrational trials, they noted, was that they exclusively focused on measuring risk reduction — the ratio of COVID-19 symptom rates in the vaccine group versus the placebo group — rather than measuring absolute risk reduction, which is the likelihood someone will show COVID-19 symptoms relative to people in the population at large.

    According to FDA guidelines, accounting for both approaches is crucial to avoid the misguided use of pharmaceutical products — but the data were omitted, leading to an overestimation of an intervention’s clinical utility.

    While both vaccines touted an approximately 95% risk reduction figure as their efficacy figure, the absolute risk reductions for Pfizer and Moderna’s vaccines were 0.7% and 1.1% respectively.

    “A substantial number of individuals would need to be injected in order to prevent a single mild-to-moderate case of COVID-19,” the authors wrote.

    As an example, using a conservative estimate that 119 people would need to be vaccinated to prevent infection, and assuming that COVID-19 had a 0.23% infection fatality rate, they wrote that approximately 52,000 vaccinations would be necessary to prevent a single COVID-19-related death.

    However, “Given trial misconduct and data integrity problems … the true benefit is likely to be much lower,” they wrote.

    And, they added, one would need to assess that benefit along with harms, which they estimate to be 27 deaths per 100,000 doses of Pfizer. That means, using the most conservative estimates, “for every life saved, there were 14 times more deaths caused by the modified mRNA injections.”

    They also noted that post-rollout evidence confirmed the efficacy claims were overstated. For example, two large cohort Cleveland clinic studies showed the vaccine could not confer protection against COVID-19 — instead, in those trials, more vaccinated people were more likely to contract COVID-19.

    One study showed the risk of “breakthrough” infection was significantly higher among people who were boosted and that more vaccinations resulted in a greater risk of COVID-19.

    A second study showed adults who were not “up-to-date” with their shots had a 23% lower incidence of COVID-19 than their “up-to-date” colleagues.

    3. The trials underestimated the adverse events, including death, despite evidence in the data.

    Harms were also underreported and underestimated for a number of reasons, according to the authors, a practice that tends to be common in randomized industry-sponsored vaccine trials in general and “exceptionally evident” here.

    First, because Pfizer unblinded the trial within just a few weeks of the emergency use authorization and allowed people in the placebo group to take the vaccine, there was not sufficient time to identify late-occurring harms because there was no longer a control group.

    “Was this necessary, given that none of the deaths in the Pfizer trial were attributed to COVID-19 as the primary cause, and given the very low IFR [infection fatality rate] for a relatively healthy population?” they asked.

    Also, trial coordinators were “haphazard” in their approach to monitoring AEs. They prioritized documenting events thought to be related to COVID-19 rather than to the vaccines for the first seven days and only recorded “unsolicited” AEs for 30-60 days. After that period, even very SAEs, like death, were not recorded. Even for the AEs recorded in the first seven days, they only solicited data from 20% of the population.

    None of the trial data was independently verified. “Such secrecy may have enabled the industry to more easily present an inflated and distorted estimate of the genetic injections’ benefits, along with a gross underestimation of potential harms,” they wrote.

    Subsequent analysis by Michels et al. revealed that deaths and other SAEs — like life-threatening conditions, inpatient hospitalization or extension of hospitalization, persistent or significant disability/incapacity, a congenital anomaly, or a medically significant event — did occur after the cutoff period and before the FDA advisory meeting where emergency authorization was recommended.

    During the first 33 weeks of the Pfizer trials, 38 subjects died, according to Pfizer’s own data, although independent research by Michels et al. estimated that that number is only approximately 17% of the actual projected number due to missing data.

    And after that, the rate of deaths continued to increase. Michaels et al. found Pfizer failed to report a substantial increase in the number of deaths due to cardiovascular events. They also found a consistent pattern of reporting delays on the date of the death on subjects’ case reports.

    Overall, the review authors reported that there were “twice as many cardiac deaths proportionately among vaccinated compared to unvaccinated subjects in the Pfizer trials.”

    In their discussion, the authors wrote “Based on the extended Pfizer trial findings, our person-years estimate yielded a 31% increase in overall mortality among vaccine recipients, a clear trend in the wrong direction.”

    This raises serious red flags about how the registrational trials were conducted, Mead said. “Assessments of the safety profile of the COVID-19 modified mRNA injections warrant an objective precautionary perspective, any substantial upward trend in all cause mortality within the intervention arm of the trial population reflects badly on the intervention.”

    4. Numbers of SAEs in the trials and post-rollout reporting are well-documented, despite claims to the contrary.

    Both Pfizer and Moderna found about 125 SAEs per 100,000 vaccine recipients, or one SAE for every 800 vaccines. However, because the trials excluded more vulnerable people, the authors note, even higher proportions of SAEs would be expected in the general population.

    The Fraiman et al. reanalysis of the Pfizer trial data found a significant 36% higher risk of SAEs, which included deaths and many life-threatening conditions in the vaccinated participants.

    Official SAEs for other vaccines average around only 1-2 per million. Fraiman et alestimated 1,250 SEAs per million vaccines, exceeding that benchmark by “at least 600-fold.”

    After the vaccine rollout, analyses of two large drug safety reporting systems in the U.S. and Europe identified signals for myocardial infarction, pulmonary embolism, cardio-respiratory arrest, cerebral infarction, and cerebral hemorrhage associated with both mRNA vaccines, along with ischemic stroke.

    And millions of AEs have been reported to those systems.

    Another study by Skidmore et al. estimated the total number of fatalities from the vaccines in 2021 alone was 289,789. Autopsy studies have also provided additional evidence of serious harms, including evidence that most COVID-19 mRNA vaccine-related deaths resulted from injury to the cardiovascular system.

    In multiple autopsy studies, German pathologist Aren Burkhardt documented the presence of vaccine-mRNA-produced spike proteins in blood vessel walls and brain tissues. This research helps to explain documented vaccine-induced toxicities affecting the nervous, immune, reproductive and other systems.

    The Pfizer data also showed an overwhelming number of adverse effects. According to a confidential document released in August 2022, Pfizer had documented approximately 1.6 million AEs affecting nearly every organ system, and one-third of them were classified as serious.

    In Pfizer’s trial, Michels and colleagues found a nearly 4-fold increase (OR 3.7, 95%CI 1.02-13.2, p = 0.03) in serious cardiac events (e.g., heart attack, acute coronary syndrome) in the vaccine group. Neither the original trial report nor Pfizer’s Summary Clinical Safety report acknowledged or commented on this safety signal.

    “The serious adverse events are all well documented,” Mead said. “Yet it’s surprising to see so many in the medical field continue to ignore or dismiss outright the latter half of the equation when considering all cause mortality trends.”

    5. The failure to appropriately test for safety and toxicity poses serious problems.

    Researchers have raised concerns that the mRNA technology is inherently unstable and difficult to store, which leads to batch variability and contamination linked to different rates of AEs.

    Recent findings by McKernan et al. that found Pfizers’ mRNA vaccines are contaminated with plasmid DNA that shouldn’t be present — and wasn’t present in the vaccines used in the trials – raising serious safety issues.

    That’s because “Process 1,” used in the trials to generate the vaccines involved in vitro transcription of synthetic DNA — essentially a “clean” process. However, that process isn’t viable for mass production, so the manufacturers used “Process 2,” which involves using E. coli bacteria to replicate the plasmids.

    Removing plasmids E coli. can result in residual plasmids in the vaccines and the effects of their presence is unknown.

    McKernan’s work also revealed the presence of DNA from simian virus 40 (SV40), an oncogenic DNA virus originally isolated in 1960 from contaminated polio vaccines, induces lymphomas, brain tumors, and other malignancies in laboratory animals, raising other safety concerns.

    Researchers from Cambridge published a paper in Nature in December 2023, where they found an inherent defect in the modified RNA instructions for the spike protein in COVID-19 immunizations that causes the machinery that translates the gene to the spike protein to “slip” about 10% of the time

    This process creates “frameshifts” that cause cells to produce “off-target” proteins in addition to the spike. These proteins, which developers either failed to look for or did not report to regulators, cause undesirable immune responses whose long-term effects are unknown.

    6. There are many different possible biological mechanisms that cause AEs and vaccine ineffectiveness.

    The review points readers to a series of papers that explain a number of different theories to explain the high number of AEs from the COVID-19 mRNA vaccines.

    “The mechanisms of molecular mimicry, antigen cross-reactivity, pathogenic priming, viral reactivation, immune exhaustion, and other factors related to immune dysfunction all reinforce the biological plausibility for vaccine-induced pathogenesis of malignant and autoimmune diseases,” they wrote. And these mechanisms of immune activation are distinct from the body’s response to a viral infection.

    They also note the toxic effects of the primary adjuvant, PEG, and of the spike protein itself.

    They close their analysis of the vaccines with a complex explanation for the different immunological basis for protection provided by the vaccines versus natural immunity through infection. They explain the mechanisms for vaccine failure and problems generated by the ability for the mRNA vaccines to perpetuate the emergence of new variants.

    https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/scientists-global-moratorium-mrna-vaccines-removal-childhood-schedule/


    https://donshafi911.blogspot.com/2024/01/scientists-call-for-global-moratorium.html
    Scientists Call for Global Moratorium on mRNA Vaccines, Immediate Removal From Childhood Schedule A review paper published last week in the journal Cureus is the first peer-reviewed paper to call for a global moratorium on the COVID-19 mRNA vaccines. The authors say that reanalyzed data from the vaccine makers’ trials and high rates of serious post-injection injuries indicate the mRNA gene therapy vaccines should not have been authorized for use. Brenda Baletti, Ph.D. global moratorium mrna covid vaccine feature Miss a day, miss a lot. Subscribe to The Defender's Top News of the Day. It's free. Governments should endorse a global moratorium on mRNA vaccines until all questions about their safety have been thoroughly investigated, according to the authors of a new, peer-reviewed article on the COVID-19 vaccine trials and the global vaccination campaign published last week in Cureus, Journal of Medical Science. Cureus is a web-based peer-reviewed open-access general medical journal using prepublication peer review. The authors surveyed published research on the pharmaceutical companies’ vaccine trials and related adverse events. They also called for the COVID-19 vaccines to be removed immediately from the childhood immunization schedule. After the first reports from vaccine trials claimed they were 95% effective in preventing COVID-19, serious problems with method, execution and reporting in the trials became public, which the paper reviewed in detail. Evidence also shows the products never underwent adequate safety and toxicological testing, and since the vaccine rollout, researchers have identified a significant number of adverse events (AEs) and serious adverse events (SAEs). Authors M. Nathaniel Mead, Stephanie Seneff, Ph.D., Russ Wolfinger, Ph.D., Jessica Rose, Ph.D., Kris Denhaerynck, Ph.D., Steve Kirsch and Dr. Peter McCullough detailed the vaccines’ potential serious harms to humans, vaccine control and processing issues, the mechanisms behind AEs, the immunological reasons for vaccine inefficacy and the mortality data from the registrational trials. They concluded, “Federal agency approval of the COVID-19 mRNA injectable products on a blanket-coverage population-wide basis had no support from an honest assessment of all relevant registrational data and commensurate consideration of risks versus benefits.” They also called for the vaccines to be immediately removed from the childhood immunization schedule and for the suspension of the boosters. “It is unethical and unconscionable to administer an experimental vaccine to a child who has a near-zero risk of dying from COVID-19 (IFR, 0.0003%) but a well-established 2.2% risk of permanent heart damage based on the best prospective data available,” they wrote. Finally, the authors called for a full investigation into misconduct by the pharmaceutical companies and the regulatory agencies. It is the first peer-reviewed study to call for a moratorium on the COVID-19 mRNA products, Rose told The Defender. “Once a proper assessment of the safety and efficacy claims was made herein — upon which the emergency use authorization (EUA)’s and ultimate final authorizations were granted — it was found that the COVID-19 injectable products were neither safe nor effective,” she added. According to McCollough, “mRNA should never have been authorized for human use.” Lead author Mead told The Defender, “Our view is that any risk-benefit analysis must consider how much the presumed benefit in terms of reduced COVID-19 related mortality is offset by the potential increase in vaccine-induced mortality.” Here are six takeaways from the review: 1. The COVID-19 ‘vaccines’ are reclassified gene therapies that were rushed through the regulatory process in a historically unprecedented manner Before the seven-month authorization process for the mRNA vaccines, no vaccine had ever gone to market without undergoing testing of at least four years, with typical timelines averaging 10 years. To speed the process, the companies skipped preclinical studies of potential toxicity from multiple doses and cut the typical 6-12 month observation period for identifying longer-term adverse effects and the established 10-15-year period for monitoring for long-term effects such as cancer and autoimmune disorders, the authors wrote. The trials prioritized documenting effective symptom reduction over SAE and mortality. This was particularly concerning, the authors argued, because mRNA products are gene therapy products reclassified as vaccines and then given EUA for the first time ever for use against a viral disease. However, the gene therapies’ components have not been thoroughly evaluated for safety for use as vaccines. There is an uninvestigated and major concern that the mRNA could transform body cells into viral protein factories — with no off-switch — that produce the spike protein for a prolonged period causing chronic systemic inflammation and immune dysfunction. The spike protein in the vaccine, the authors said, is associated with more severe immunopathology and other AEs than the spike protein in the virus itself. The authors suggested that massive government investment in mRNA technology, including hundreds of millions before the pandemic and tens of billions once it began, meant, “U.S. federal agencies were strongly biased toward successful outcomes for the registrational trials.” The financial incentives along with political pressures to deliver a rapid solution likely influenced a series of flawed decisions that compromised the integrity of the trials and downplayed serious scientific concerns about risks with the technology, they added. RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker Vax-Unvax RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker’s New Book: “Vax-Unvax” Order Now 2. Steps were taken in trials to overestimate vaccine efficacy Because the trials were designed to assess whether the mRNA vaccine reduced symptoms, they did not measure whether the vaccines prevented severe disease and death. Yet the vaccine makers repeatedly claimed that they do. “No large randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trials have ever demonstrated reductions in SARS-CoV-2 transmission, hospitalization, or death,” the authors wrote. Additionally, the number of people who contracted clinical COVID-19 in both the placebo and intervention groups was “too small to draw meaningful, pragmatic, or broad-sweeping conclusions with regard to COVID-19 morbidity and mortality.” Pfizer’s 95 % efficacy claims were based on 162 of 22,000 placebo recipients contracting PCR-confirmed COVID-19 compared to eight of 22,000 in the vaccine group. None of the placebo recipients died from COVID-19. In the Moderna trials, only one placebo death was attributed to COVID-19. There was also a much larger percentage of “suspected COVID-19 cases” in both groups, with participants showing COVID-19 symptoms but a negative PCR test. When factoring in those cases, measures of vaccine efficacy drop to about 19%. The trial subject pool was comprised of largely young and healthy individuals, excluding key groups — children, pregnant women, elderly and immunocompromised people — which can also obscure the vaccine’s actual efficacy and safety. Findings from reanalyses of data from the Pfizer trials can be interpreted as showing the vaccines made “no significant difference” in reducing all-cause mortality in the vaccinated versus unvaccinated groups at 20 weeks into the trial, the authors wrote. Even the six-month post-marketing data Pfizer presented to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) showed no reduction in all-cause mortality from the vaccine. The authors reanalyzed that data, adjusting the analysis of deaths to better account for the fact that when Pfizer unblinded the study people from the placebo group took the vaccine, and found the vaccine group had a higher mortality rate (0.105%) than the unvaccinated group (0.0799%), which they said was a conservative estimate. One of the most glaring issues with the registrational trials, they noted, was that they exclusively focused on measuring risk reduction — the ratio of COVID-19 symptom rates in the vaccine group versus the placebo group — rather than measuring absolute risk reduction, which is the likelihood someone will show COVID-19 symptoms relative to people in the population at large. According to FDA guidelines, accounting for both approaches is crucial to avoid the misguided use of pharmaceutical products — but the data were omitted, leading to an overestimation of an intervention’s clinical utility. While both vaccines touted an approximately 95% risk reduction figure as their efficacy figure, the absolute risk reductions for Pfizer and Moderna’s vaccines were 0.7% and 1.1% respectively. “A substantial number of individuals would need to be injected in order to prevent a single mild-to-moderate case of COVID-19,” the authors wrote. As an example, using a conservative estimate that 119 people would need to be vaccinated to prevent infection, and assuming that COVID-19 had a 0.23% infection fatality rate, they wrote that approximately 52,000 vaccinations would be necessary to prevent a single COVID-19-related death. However, “Given trial misconduct and data integrity problems … the true benefit is likely to be much lower,” they wrote. And, they added, one would need to assess that benefit along with harms, which they estimate to be 27 deaths per 100,000 doses of Pfizer. That means, using the most conservative estimates, “for every life saved, there were 14 times more deaths caused by the modified mRNA injections.” They also noted that post-rollout evidence confirmed the efficacy claims were overstated. For example, two large cohort Cleveland clinic studies showed the vaccine could not confer protection against COVID-19 — instead, in those trials, more vaccinated people were more likely to contract COVID-19. One study showed the risk of “breakthrough” infection was significantly higher among people who were boosted and that more vaccinations resulted in a greater risk of COVID-19. A second study showed adults who were not “up-to-date” with their shots had a 23% lower incidence of COVID-19 than their “up-to-date” colleagues. 3. The trials underestimated the adverse events, including death, despite evidence in the data. Harms were also underreported and underestimated for a number of reasons, according to the authors, a practice that tends to be common in randomized industry-sponsored vaccine trials in general and “exceptionally evident” here. First, because Pfizer unblinded the trial within just a few weeks of the emergency use authorization and allowed people in the placebo group to take the vaccine, there was not sufficient time to identify late-occurring harms because there was no longer a control group. “Was this necessary, given that none of the deaths in the Pfizer trial were attributed to COVID-19 as the primary cause, and given the very low IFR [infection fatality rate] for a relatively healthy population?” they asked. Also, trial coordinators were “haphazard” in their approach to monitoring AEs. They prioritized documenting events thought to be related to COVID-19 rather than to the vaccines for the first seven days and only recorded “unsolicited” AEs for 30-60 days. After that period, even very SAEs, like death, were not recorded. Even for the AEs recorded in the first seven days, they only solicited data from 20% of the population. None of the trial data was independently verified. “Such secrecy may have enabled the industry to more easily present an inflated and distorted estimate of the genetic injections’ benefits, along with a gross underestimation of potential harms,” they wrote. Subsequent analysis by Michels et al. revealed that deaths and other SAEs — like life-threatening conditions, inpatient hospitalization or extension of hospitalization, persistent or significant disability/incapacity, a congenital anomaly, or a medically significant event — did occur after the cutoff period and before the FDA advisory meeting where emergency authorization was recommended. During the first 33 weeks of the Pfizer trials, 38 subjects died, according to Pfizer’s own data, although independent research by Michels et al. estimated that that number is only approximately 17% of the actual projected number due to missing data. And after that, the rate of deaths continued to increase. Michaels et al. found Pfizer failed to report a substantial increase in the number of deaths due to cardiovascular events. They also found a consistent pattern of reporting delays on the date of the death on subjects’ case reports. Overall, the review authors reported that there were “twice as many cardiac deaths proportionately among vaccinated compared to unvaccinated subjects in the Pfizer trials.” In their discussion, the authors wrote “Based on the extended Pfizer trial findings, our person-years estimate yielded a 31% increase in overall mortality among vaccine recipients, a clear trend in the wrong direction.” This raises serious red flags about how the registrational trials were conducted, Mead said. “Assessments of the safety profile of the COVID-19 modified mRNA injections warrant an objective precautionary perspective, any substantial upward trend in all cause mortality within the intervention arm of the trial population reflects badly on the intervention.” 4. Numbers of SAEs in the trials and post-rollout reporting are well-documented, despite claims to the contrary. Both Pfizer and Moderna found about 125 SAEs per 100,000 vaccine recipients, or one SAE for every 800 vaccines. However, because the trials excluded more vulnerable people, the authors note, even higher proportions of SAEs would be expected in the general population. The Fraiman et al. reanalysis of the Pfizer trial data found a significant 36% higher risk of SAEs, which included deaths and many life-threatening conditions in the vaccinated participants. Official SAEs for other vaccines average around only 1-2 per million. Fraiman et alestimated 1,250 SEAs per million vaccines, exceeding that benchmark by “at least 600-fold.” After the vaccine rollout, analyses of two large drug safety reporting systems in the U.S. and Europe identified signals for myocardial infarction, pulmonary embolism, cardio-respiratory arrest, cerebral infarction, and cerebral hemorrhage associated with both mRNA vaccines, along with ischemic stroke. And millions of AEs have been reported to those systems. Another study by Skidmore et al. estimated the total number of fatalities from the vaccines in 2021 alone was 289,789. Autopsy studies have also provided additional evidence of serious harms, including evidence that most COVID-19 mRNA vaccine-related deaths resulted from injury to the cardiovascular system. In multiple autopsy studies, German pathologist Aren Burkhardt documented the presence of vaccine-mRNA-produced spike proteins in blood vessel walls and brain tissues. This research helps to explain documented vaccine-induced toxicities affecting the nervous, immune, reproductive and other systems. The Pfizer data also showed an overwhelming number of adverse effects. According to a confidential document released in August 2022, Pfizer had documented approximately 1.6 million AEs affecting nearly every organ system, and one-third of them were classified as serious. In Pfizer’s trial, Michels and colleagues found a nearly 4-fold increase (OR 3.7, 95%CI 1.02-13.2, p = 0.03) in serious cardiac events (e.g., heart attack, acute coronary syndrome) in the vaccine group. Neither the original trial report nor Pfizer’s Summary Clinical Safety report acknowledged or commented on this safety signal. “The serious adverse events are all well documented,” Mead said. “Yet it’s surprising to see so many in the medical field continue to ignore or dismiss outright the latter half of the equation when considering all cause mortality trends.” 5. The failure to appropriately test for safety and toxicity poses serious problems. Researchers have raised concerns that the mRNA technology is inherently unstable and difficult to store, which leads to batch variability and contamination linked to different rates of AEs. Recent findings by McKernan et al. that found Pfizers’ mRNA vaccines are contaminated with plasmid DNA that shouldn’t be present — and wasn’t present in the vaccines used in the trials – raising serious safety issues. That’s because “Process 1,” used in the trials to generate the vaccines involved in vitro transcription of synthetic DNA — essentially a “clean” process. However, that process isn’t viable for mass production, so the manufacturers used “Process 2,” which involves using E. coli bacteria to replicate the plasmids. Removing plasmids E coli. can result in residual plasmids in the vaccines and the effects of their presence is unknown. McKernan’s work also revealed the presence of DNA from simian virus 40 (SV40), an oncogenic DNA virus originally isolated in 1960 from contaminated polio vaccines, induces lymphomas, brain tumors, and other malignancies in laboratory animals, raising other safety concerns. Researchers from Cambridge published a paper in Nature in December 2023, where they found an inherent defect in the modified RNA instructions for the spike protein in COVID-19 immunizations that causes the machinery that translates the gene to the spike protein to “slip” about 10% of the time This process creates “frameshifts” that cause cells to produce “off-target” proteins in addition to the spike. These proteins, which developers either failed to look for or did not report to regulators, cause undesirable immune responses whose long-term effects are unknown. 6. There are many different possible biological mechanisms that cause AEs and vaccine ineffectiveness. The review points readers to a series of papers that explain a number of different theories to explain the high number of AEs from the COVID-19 mRNA vaccines. “The mechanisms of molecular mimicry, antigen cross-reactivity, pathogenic priming, viral reactivation, immune exhaustion, and other factors related to immune dysfunction all reinforce the biological plausibility for vaccine-induced pathogenesis of malignant and autoimmune diseases,” they wrote. And these mechanisms of immune activation are distinct from the body’s response to a viral infection. They also note the toxic effects of the primary adjuvant, PEG, and of the spike protein itself. They close their analysis of the vaccines with a complex explanation for the different immunological basis for protection provided by the vaccines versus natural immunity through infection. They explain the mechanisms for vaccine failure and problems generated by the ability for the mRNA vaccines to perpetuate the emergence of new variants. https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/scientists-global-moratorium-mrna-vaccines-removal-childhood-schedule/ https://donshafi911.blogspot.com/2024/01/scientists-call-for-global-moratorium.html
    CHILDRENSHEALTHDEFENSE.ORG
    Scientists Call for Global Moratorium on mRNA Vaccines, Immediate Removal From Childhood Schedule
    A review paper published last week in the journal Cureus is the first peer-reviewed paper to call for a global moratorium on the COVID-19 mRNA vaccines. The authors say that reanalyzed data from the vaccine makers’ trials and high rates of serious post-injection injuries indicate the mRNA gene therapy vaccines should not have been authorized for use.
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  • MMR Vaccine Debate Heats Up as Media Claim ‘Vaccine Hesitancy’ to Blame for Recent Outbreaks
    As major news outlets linked reports of measles cases in the U.S. and U.K. to declining vaccine rates, experts told The Defender that case numbers in the U.S. have been extremely low for decades and the very minor variations in vaccination rates do not make a difference.

    Brenda Baletti, Ph.D.
    mmr vaccine media outbreaks feature
    Miss a day, miss a lot. Subscribe to The Defender's Top News of the Day. It's free.

    Measles outbreaks are in the news again.

    In the U.S., local health departments and media reported about 16 cases of measles between December 2023 and January. The outbreaks occurred in Philadelphia, New Jersey, Georgia and Washington.

    In the United Kingdom, the UK Health Security Agency reported 209 cases between January and November 2023 and about 319 cases between October 2023 and the present.

    Media blamed international travel and declining vaccination rates among children as “probably” behind the outbreaks.

    But Dr. Liz Mumper, a pediatrician, told The Defender it doesn’t make sense to assume the unvaccinated are to blame. She said cyclical outbreaks still occur even in populations with nearly 100% vaccination, such as college students.

    Dr. Paul Thomas, a retired pediatrician and author of “The Vaccine-Friendly Plan: Dr. Paul’s Safe and Effective Approach to Immunity and Health-from Pregnancy Through Your Child’s Teen Years Paperback,” told The Defender some cases of measles are reported every year. Despite the hype around the recent outbreaks, he said, “There have not been any significant measles outbreaks in the U.S. for decades.”

    The largest recent national spike in measles cases occurred in 2019 when 1,274 cases were reported, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). It was the worst year for measles in the U.S. since 1992.

    Since 2019, the number of cases reported has been significantly lower: In 2020, there were 13 cases, in 2021, 49 cases, in 2022 there were 121 cases and in 2023, there were 56 cases. The post-2019 numbers also tend to be lower than the numbers from 2000-2018, which averaged around 200 per year.


    Credit: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
    Measles is a contagious childhood viral disease characterized by a cough, runny nose and fever, followed by a generalized rash.

    It was declared to be eliminated in the U.S. in 2000 — meaning there was no continuous transmission.

    Mortality from measles in the U.S. declined significantly during the 20th century — 98% from 1900 to 1963, before the measles vaccine was introduced — due to advances in living conditions, healthcare and nutrition, according to Physicians for Informed Consent.

    Since 2000, there have been only four measles deaths in the Americas — three in 2000 and one in 2022, according to a November 2023 CDC report.

    The overwhelming majority of the approximately 130,000 measles deaths annually occur in countries in the global south that have weak health infrastructures, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Those deaths, along with measles hospitalizations in the global north, are associated with vitamin A deficiency.

    “Measles can be deadly if a child does not have access to safe water and medical care,” Mumper said. “In developed countries, fatalities from measles are very rare.”

    Effective treatments include vitamin A in high doses and attention to hydration status, Mumper said.

    “Many natural methods to help the body fight viruses, like extra vitamin D and vitamin C are effective but not widely recommended by mainstream medicine,” she added.

    Prior to the introduction of the vaccine in the U.S. in 1963, most people contracted measles and gained lifetime immunity, and the number of deaths had dropped to 0.9 per 100,000 for children under age 10.

    The vaccines significantly reduced the number of reported measles cases, with efficacy rates that can be upwards of 95%, Thomas said. However, he added immunity from the vaccines wanes over time.

    “From a mechanistic standpoint, the lifelong 100% natural immunity comes when measles is caught through respiratory spread. Giving a vaccine by injection may be an inherently poor substitute for Mother Nature,” Mumper said.

    Approximately 83% of children globally received one dose of the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine by their first birthday in 2022.

    RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker Vax-Unvax
    RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker’s New Book: “Vax-Unvax”

    Order Now

    Hotez, Offit blame the ‘anti-vaxers’ for measles outbreaks

    Although case numbers have declined in the U.S. since 2020, and the recently reported cases were either among adults or children who may be too young to have completed the MMR vaccine schedule, news reports about the outbreaks consistently link them to lower post-pandemic vaccination rates among kindergarteners.

    The CDC recommends two doses of the MMR vaccine, with the first dose at 12 to 15 months old and the second dose between ages 4 and 6.

    The agency reported that from the 2019-20 school year to the 2021-22 school year vaccination rates for state-required vaccines among kindergarten children declined from approximately 95% to approximately 93%, and the exemption rate increased to 3.0%.

    CDC data going back to 2011 show that rates typically vary from year-to-year, but consistently stay above 93%.

    Thomas said the drop has been minimal and “given the loss of immunity in both children and adults in the vaccinated, this minor reduction in MMR uptake by children is not going to make a difference [in infection rates].”

    Dr. Peter Hotez, a go-to “expert” for mainstream media on vaccines — and a vaccine developer and patent holder himself, who has repeatedly smeared vaccine safety advocates as “anti-science aggressors” — told ABC and CBS News that he thought the sporadic outbreaks were likely a result of lowered vaccination rates and that they were going to get worse.

    “We’re just seeing now, this is the tip of the iceberg,” Hotez said. “We’re going to be seeing this in communities across the United States in the coming weeks and months because of the spillover of the U.S. anti-vaccine movement of childhood immunizations.”

    According to ABC — quoting Hotez, Dr. Paul Offit and the Mayo Clinic’s Dr. Gregory Poland — this is due to vaccine “misinformation” linking vaccines and autism, combined with the politicization of the COVID-19 vaccines, which Hotez said caused “an acceleration of anti-vaccine sentiments.”

    Hotez has been making these arguments for years, writing a New York Times op-ed in 2020 claiming there is no link between vaccines and autism and blaming unvaccinated people for infectious disease outbreaks.

    Offit said given the vaccine’s efficacy, it was “unconscionable” for parents to forgo vaccination for their children.

    But there is a significant and growing body of evidence suggesting the MMR vaccine can cause autism in certain susceptible children. That includes evidence that U.S. Department of Justice lawyers suppressed testimony by their own expert witness making the link, and evidence from whistleblower William Thompson, Ph.D., that the CDC covered up its own data showing a link between vaccines and autism.

    In a Substack post from 2022, Dr. Peter McCullough evaluated a study on the “Association Between Vaccine Refusal and Vaccine-Preventable Diseases in the United States,” namely measles and pertussis.

    The study indicated that since measles was declared eradicated in 2000, there have been 18 published studies of 1,416 measles cases — 43.2% of the cases occurred in vaccinated people and no hospitalizations or deaths were reported.

    McCullough concluded:

    “Large fractions of ‘preventable disease outbreaks’ involving measles and pertussis occur because vaccines fail to provide adequate protection. Given the neuropsychiatric concerns over the MMR vaccine and the stochastic risk of allergic/immunologic reactions to any injection including components of (DTaP, Tdap) or MMR, the parental movement for vaccine choice is well justified.

    “For measles and pertussis, the vaccines convey imperfect protection and breakthrough infection (vaccine failure) should receive considerable ‘blame’ by public health researchers.”

    Mumper said the vaccine schedule has changed, lowering efficacy. “Vaccine efficacy was calculated to be ~94% when the first dose was given at 15 months,” she said.

    “Now babies are scheduled to get the first dose at 12 months (only 85% efficacy) and their second dose at kindergarten.”

    Mumper added, “People with different genotypes respond differently to MMR vaccines, so there is variable measles transmission depending on the individual’s immune response. Up to 10% of the population does not develop enough protective antibodies.”

    New outbreaks lead push for adults to get another MMR

    Derek Gatherer, Ph.D., a lecturer in biomedical and life sciences at Lancaster University who is funded by the U.K. government to study “vaccine hesitancy,” said the solution to the problem of measles outbreaks is more vaccination — for adults.

    Gatherer published a recent article in The Conversation blaming the vaccine-hesitant for the outbreaks. He argued that even adults who are already vaccinated should consider getting more MMR jabs.

    “Measles is the most infectious disease known to science — adults should consider getting another MMR vaccine,” he declared.

    Gatherer conceded that the measles risk to adults is extremely small, but said “adult MMR is still worthwhile as it goes beyond just protecting the person who receives the vaccination,” stopping asymptomatic infections from spreading.

    Thomas said it is not common to recommend booster shots to adults for illnesses they were vaccinated for as children. “However,” he added, “the pharmaceutical industry, backed by the CDC, has been looking at the adult population as an untapped resource to expand market share and penetration.”

    Reports of cases rising in the UK

    In the U.K., measles was considered eliminated in 2016, but it resurfaced in 2018.

    U.K. MMR vaccination rates average 85%, down from a peak of 88.6% in 2014, with some locations reporting rates as low as 74%.

    According to The Guardian, “Most experts agree that misinformation about the MMR jab is very unlikely to play a significant role in declining vaccination rates.

    “It is too easy to blame anti-vaccine sentiment for the measles outbreaks,” Helen Bedford, professor of children’s health at the University College London Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health told the paper. “Although some mistrust of vaccines may play a small part, research shows that parental vaccine confidence remains high.”

    Experts there pointed to pandemic disruptions in vaccination, concerns among Muslim and Jewish communities about the use of porcine gelatin in the vaccine, and also the fact that because the disease is so rare, people are less concerned about possible risks.

    England’s National Health Service is launching an MMR vaccination campaign, the BBC reported, contacting 4 million parents via text, email or letter to inform them their child has not had one or two doses of the vaccine.




    MMR Vaccine Debate Heats Up as Media Claim ‘Vaccine Hesitancy’ to Blame for Recent Outbreaks
    “Many natural methods to help the body fight viruses, like extra vitamin D + vitamin C are effective but not widely recommended by mainstream medicine." — Dr. Liz Mumper
    https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/mmr-vaccine-media-measles-outbreaks
    MMR Vaccine Debate Heats Up as Media Claim ‘Vaccine Hesitancy’ to Blame for Recent Outbreaks As major news outlets linked reports of measles cases in the U.S. and U.K. to declining vaccine rates, experts told The Defender that case numbers in the U.S. have been extremely low for decades and the very minor variations in vaccination rates do not make a difference. Brenda Baletti, Ph.D. mmr vaccine media outbreaks feature Miss a day, miss a lot. Subscribe to The Defender's Top News of the Day. It's free. Measles outbreaks are in the news again. In the U.S., local health departments and media reported about 16 cases of measles between December 2023 and January. The outbreaks occurred in Philadelphia, New Jersey, Georgia and Washington. In the United Kingdom, the UK Health Security Agency reported 209 cases between January and November 2023 and about 319 cases between October 2023 and the present. Media blamed international travel and declining vaccination rates among children as “probably” behind the outbreaks. But Dr. Liz Mumper, a pediatrician, told The Defender it doesn’t make sense to assume the unvaccinated are to blame. She said cyclical outbreaks still occur even in populations with nearly 100% vaccination, such as college students. Dr. Paul Thomas, a retired pediatrician and author of “The Vaccine-Friendly Plan: Dr. Paul’s Safe and Effective Approach to Immunity and Health-from Pregnancy Through Your Child’s Teen Years Paperback,” told The Defender some cases of measles are reported every year. Despite the hype around the recent outbreaks, he said, “There have not been any significant measles outbreaks in the U.S. for decades.” The largest recent national spike in measles cases occurred in 2019 when 1,274 cases were reported, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). It was the worst year for measles in the U.S. since 1992. Since 2019, the number of cases reported has been significantly lower: In 2020, there were 13 cases, in 2021, 49 cases, in 2022 there were 121 cases and in 2023, there were 56 cases. The post-2019 numbers also tend to be lower than the numbers from 2000-2018, which averaged around 200 per year. Credit: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Measles is a contagious childhood viral disease characterized by a cough, runny nose and fever, followed by a generalized rash. It was declared to be eliminated in the U.S. in 2000 — meaning there was no continuous transmission. Mortality from measles in the U.S. declined significantly during the 20th century — 98% from 1900 to 1963, before the measles vaccine was introduced — due to advances in living conditions, healthcare and nutrition, according to Physicians for Informed Consent. Since 2000, there have been only four measles deaths in the Americas — three in 2000 and one in 2022, according to a November 2023 CDC report. The overwhelming majority of the approximately 130,000 measles deaths annually occur in countries in the global south that have weak health infrastructures, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Those deaths, along with measles hospitalizations in the global north, are associated with vitamin A deficiency. “Measles can be deadly if a child does not have access to safe water and medical care,” Mumper said. “In developed countries, fatalities from measles are very rare.” Effective treatments include vitamin A in high doses and attention to hydration status, Mumper said. “Many natural methods to help the body fight viruses, like extra vitamin D and vitamin C are effective but not widely recommended by mainstream medicine,” she added. Prior to the introduction of the vaccine in the U.S. in 1963, most people contracted measles and gained lifetime immunity, and the number of deaths had dropped to 0.9 per 100,000 for children under age 10. The vaccines significantly reduced the number of reported measles cases, with efficacy rates that can be upwards of 95%, Thomas said. However, he added immunity from the vaccines wanes over time. “From a mechanistic standpoint, the lifelong 100% natural immunity comes when measles is caught through respiratory spread. Giving a vaccine by injection may be an inherently poor substitute for Mother Nature,” Mumper said. Approximately 83% of children globally received one dose of the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine by their first birthday in 2022. RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker Vax-Unvax RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker’s New Book: “Vax-Unvax” Order Now Hotez, Offit blame the ‘anti-vaxers’ for measles outbreaks Although case numbers have declined in the U.S. since 2020, and the recently reported cases were either among adults or children who may be too young to have completed the MMR vaccine schedule, news reports about the outbreaks consistently link them to lower post-pandemic vaccination rates among kindergarteners. The CDC recommends two doses of the MMR vaccine, with the first dose at 12 to 15 months old and the second dose between ages 4 and 6. The agency reported that from the 2019-20 school year to the 2021-22 school year vaccination rates for state-required vaccines among kindergarten children declined from approximately 95% to approximately 93%, and the exemption rate increased to 3.0%. CDC data going back to 2011 show that rates typically vary from year-to-year, but consistently stay above 93%. Thomas said the drop has been minimal and “given the loss of immunity in both children and adults in the vaccinated, this minor reduction in MMR uptake by children is not going to make a difference [in infection rates].” Dr. Peter Hotez, a go-to “expert” for mainstream media on vaccines — and a vaccine developer and patent holder himself, who has repeatedly smeared vaccine safety advocates as “anti-science aggressors” — told ABC and CBS News that he thought the sporadic outbreaks were likely a result of lowered vaccination rates and that they were going to get worse. “We’re just seeing now, this is the tip of the iceberg,” Hotez said. “We’re going to be seeing this in communities across the United States in the coming weeks and months because of the spillover of the U.S. anti-vaccine movement of childhood immunizations.” According to ABC — quoting Hotez, Dr. Paul Offit and the Mayo Clinic’s Dr. Gregory Poland — this is due to vaccine “misinformation” linking vaccines and autism, combined with the politicization of the COVID-19 vaccines, which Hotez said caused “an acceleration of anti-vaccine sentiments.” Hotez has been making these arguments for years, writing a New York Times op-ed in 2020 claiming there is no link between vaccines and autism and blaming unvaccinated people for infectious disease outbreaks. Offit said given the vaccine’s efficacy, it was “unconscionable” for parents to forgo vaccination for their children. But there is a significant and growing body of evidence suggesting the MMR vaccine can cause autism in certain susceptible children. That includes evidence that U.S. Department of Justice lawyers suppressed testimony by their own expert witness making the link, and evidence from whistleblower William Thompson, Ph.D., that the CDC covered up its own data showing a link between vaccines and autism. In a Substack post from 2022, Dr. Peter McCullough evaluated a study on the “Association Between Vaccine Refusal and Vaccine-Preventable Diseases in the United States,” namely measles and pertussis. The study indicated that since measles was declared eradicated in 2000, there have been 18 published studies of 1,416 measles cases — 43.2% of the cases occurred in vaccinated people and no hospitalizations or deaths were reported. McCullough concluded: “Large fractions of ‘preventable disease outbreaks’ involving measles and pertussis occur because vaccines fail to provide adequate protection. Given the neuropsychiatric concerns over the MMR vaccine and the stochastic risk of allergic/immunologic reactions to any injection including components of (DTaP, Tdap) or MMR, the parental movement for vaccine choice is well justified. “For measles and pertussis, the vaccines convey imperfect protection and breakthrough infection (vaccine failure) should receive considerable ‘blame’ by public health researchers.” Mumper said the vaccine schedule has changed, lowering efficacy. “Vaccine efficacy was calculated to be ~94% when the first dose was given at 15 months,” she said. “Now babies are scheduled to get the first dose at 12 months (only 85% efficacy) and their second dose at kindergarten.” Mumper added, “People with different genotypes respond differently to MMR vaccines, so there is variable measles transmission depending on the individual’s immune response. Up to 10% of the population does not develop enough protective antibodies.” New outbreaks lead push for adults to get another MMR Derek Gatherer, Ph.D., a lecturer in biomedical and life sciences at Lancaster University who is funded by the U.K. government to study “vaccine hesitancy,” said the solution to the problem of measles outbreaks is more vaccination — for adults. Gatherer published a recent article in The Conversation blaming the vaccine-hesitant for the outbreaks. He argued that even adults who are already vaccinated should consider getting more MMR jabs. “Measles is the most infectious disease known to science — adults should consider getting another MMR vaccine,” he declared. Gatherer conceded that the measles risk to adults is extremely small, but said “adult MMR is still worthwhile as it goes beyond just protecting the person who receives the vaccination,” stopping asymptomatic infections from spreading. Thomas said it is not common to recommend booster shots to adults for illnesses they were vaccinated for as children. “However,” he added, “the pharmaceutical industry, backed by the CDC, has been looking at the adult population as an untapped resource to expand market share and penetration.” Reports of cases rising in the UK In the U.K., measles was considered eliminated in 2016, but it resurfaced in 2018. U.K. MMR vaccination rates average 85%, down from a peak of 88.6% in 2014, with some locations reporting rates as low as 74%. According to The Guardian, “Most experts agree that misinformation about the MMR jab is very unlikely to play a significant role in declining vaccination rates. “It is too easy to blame anti-vaccine sentiment for the measles outbreaks,” Helen Bedford, professor of children’s health at the University College London Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health told the paper. “Although some mistrust of vaccines may play a small part, research shows that parental vaccine confidence remains high.” Experts there pointed to pandemic disruptions in vaccination, concerns among Muslim and Jewish communities about the use of porcine gelatin in the vaccine, and also the fact that because the disease is so rare, people are less concerned about possible risks. England’s National Health Service is launching an MMR vaccination campaign, the BBC reported, contacting 4 million parents via text, email or letter to inform them their child has not had one or two doses of the vaccine. 🚨 MMR Vaccine Debate Heats Up as Media Claim ‘Vaccine Hesitancy’ to Blame for Recent Outbreaks “Many natural methods to help the body fight viruses, like extra vitamin D + vitamin C are effective but not widely recommended by mainstream medicine." — Dr. Liz Mumper https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/mmr-vaccine-media-measles-outbreaks
    CHILDRENSHEALTHDEFENSE.ORG
    MMR Vaccine Debate Heats Up as Media Claim ‘Vaccine Hesitancy’ to Blame for Recent Outbreaks
    As major news outlets linked reports of measles cases in the U.S. and U.K. to declining vaccine rates, experts told The Defender that case numbers in the U.S. have been extremely low for decades and the very minor variations in vaccination rates do not make a difference.
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  • U.S. Government Still Requires COVID Shots for Legal Immigrants — Even Kids
    With the COVID-19 shots long proven unable to prevent infection or transmission, why does U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services still mandate them for anyone legally immigrating to the U.S.?

    Jeffrey A. Tucker

    Miss a day, miss a lot. Subscribe to The Defender's Top News of the Day. It's free.

    It’s helpful to think of a COVID-19 experience as a never-ending house of horrors, with room after room of scandal and outrage, so much so that you never quite get through it. There simply are not enough researchers or column inches to cover it all.

    In the past, any one of these outrages would be enough to call forth enormous public debate. Introduce them all at once — starting March 2020 — and gradually unfold and codify them over a few years and many features slip through the cracks.

    Consider, for example, the continued requirement that any legally immigrating person coming to the U.S. from another country and seeking residency is absolutely required to get the COVID-19 vaccine, a shot widely admitted not to protect against infection or spread and is associated with injury on a scale without pharmaceutical precedent.

    And yet the U.S. government requires it. The evidence is here from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.



    Note the language: “To prevent the following diseases.”

    That is completely untrue. You cannot make it true simply by claiming that it prevents something. It does nothing of the kind, despite its moniker of being a vaccine.

    All the others are indeed vaccines that generally prevent the disease because they are sterilizing shots. The COVID-19 shot is not. And yet there it is, riding the coattails of public health valor from past ages.

    It is generally not possible to avoid the requirement.

    You can appeal for a religious exemption, which involves several rounds of correspondence and documentation. They have variously been granted after much headache, bureaucracy and expense. Very few will go to the trouble.

    Meanwhile, the U.S. is currently experiencing a wave of immigration from asylum seekers which this country has never seen in raw numbers before.

    There is no requirement that these people coming across the Southern border and then shipped around the country face any such requirement of COVID-19 vaccination. That only kicks in if you seek to immigrate the old-fashioned way, which is to say, by seeking legal permission.

    Based on reports from archive.org, it appears that the addition of the COVID-19 shot was in the first week of October 2021. It was not there and then it was, by pure bureaucratic edict. Edit file, submit, done.

    This was long after it was well known that the vaccine did not stop infection or transmission, and long after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) was aware of the health risks of the vaccine.

    It was also a time when vaccine uptake was dramatically dropping from the levels of the initial enthusiasm from earlier that year.

    By this time, vast numbers had grown skeptical and were willing to take their chances. The market for shots was headed south.

    RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker Vax-Unvax
    RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker’s New Book: “Vax-Unvax”

    Order Now

    It appears that immigrant populations — who had not been required to get it for the first 10 months of 2021 — were roped into the market as mandates began to invade private workplaces and cities.

    In other words, this was a forced recruitment of immigrant populations to boost the demand for the shots.

    The Biden administration attempted to impose such mandates on the whole of the private sector. The Supreme Court blocked that measure in January 2022. So most were repealed. But the one for legal immigration stayed and has not been challenged in court.

    There is a darker way to understand this policy move too. It serves as a filtering mechanism. Many people around the world were fleeing shot mandates from their home countries.

    Adding this one to the list of required injections was a way to signal to the world: the U.S. would not provide any sanctuary to shot refuseniks, so don’t bother even trying.

    It also operates as a culling mechanism against anti-lockdown and anti-mandate opinions. It assured that the U.S. would not be allowing people to work here who think for themselves, look at the evidence or otherwise refuse to bow to the pharma agenda.

    The CDC further elaborates on the regulation: it must be within 12 months and it does pertain to children too. There is a narrow range of exemptions for repeated shots but that requires additional paperwork.



    There is simply no basis for this mandate at all. The vaccine is not efficacious in the normal sense of that term. Nor is it necessary for healthy adults, much less children, who face a near-zero risk of medically significant outcomes.

    There is the additional peculiarity that whatever immune response occurs from the shot fades quickly, and even less pertains to the existing strain in the community of this fast-mutating virus.

    In other words, there is nothing defensible about this policy at all. It is keeping untold families apart and preventing U.S. citizens from moving to the U.S. with children and spouses from other countries who decline the shots.

    They have worked to get back but the vaccine mandate here bars them from doing so. Sadly, there are few in Congress willing to take up the causes and do something about this.

    It’s the sort of rule that is enforced with no rationality at all but which benefits powerful pharmaceutical companies.

    The issue has been barely covered in the media at all, and there are currently no real efforts ongoing to push back because the victims are powerless and much of the world has moved on.

    Meanwhile, this COVID-19 vaccine is being gradually added to every list of requirements that is available, from immigration to the childhood schedule to school attendance.

    This is despite how the shot has completely failed to perform up to the promise of the first year.

    This is fully known by vast swaths of the world’s population, and yet U.S. bureaucracies persist in their impositions without the slightest sense that they ought to acquiesce to the reality that everyone knows.

    Originally published by Brownstone Institute.

    The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Children's Health Defense.

    U.S Government Still Requires COVID Shots for Legal Immigrants — Even Kids

    Meanwhile, the U.S. is currently experiencing a wave of immigration from asylum seekers which this country has never seen in raw numbers before.

    There is no requirement that these people coming across the Southern border and then shipped around the country face any such requirement of COVID-19 vaccination.

    https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/u-s-government-covid-shots-legal-immigrants/

    Join @DrPaulMarik
    U.S. Government Still Requires COVID Shots for Legal Immigrants — Even Kids With the COVID-19 shots long proven unable to prevent infection or transmission, why does U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services still mandate them for anyone legally immigrating to the U.S.? Jeffrey A. Tucker Miss a day, miss a lot. Subscribe to The Defender's Top News of the Day. It's free. It’s helpful to think of a COVID-19 experience as a never-ending house of horrors, with room after room of scandal and outrage, so much so that you never quite get through it. There simply are not enough researchers or column inches to cover it all. In the past, any one of these outrages would be enough to call forth enormous public debate. Introduce them all at once — starting March 2020 — and gradually unfold and codify them over a few years and many features slip through the cracks. Consider, for example, the continued requirement that any legally immigrating person coming to the U.S. from another country and seeking residency is absolutely required to get the COVID-19 vaccine, a shot widely admitted not to protect against infection or spread and is associated with injury on a scale without pharmaceutical precedent. And yet the U.S. government requires it. The evidence is here from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Note the language: “To prevent the following diseases.” That is completely untrue. You cannot make it true simply by claiming that it prevents something. It does nothing of the kind, despite its moniker of being a vaccine. All the others are indeed vaccines that generally prevent the disease because they are sterilizing shots. The COVID-19 shot is not. And yet there it is, riding the coattails of public health valor from past ages. It is generally not possible to avoid the requirement. You can appeal for a religious exemption, which involves several rounds of correspondence and documentation. They have variously been granted after much headache, bureaucracy and expense. Very few will go to the trouble. Meanwhile, the U.S. is currently experiencing a wave of immigration from asylum seekers which this country has never seen in raw numbers before. There is no requirement that these people coming across the Southern border and then shipped around the country face any such requirement of COVID-19 vaccination. That only kicks in if you seek to immigrate the old-fashioned way, which is to say, by seeking legal permission. Based on reports from archive.org, it appears that the addition of the COVID-19 shot was in the first week of October 2021. It was not there and then it was, by pure bureaucratic edict. Edit file, submit, done. This was long after it was well known that the vaccine did not stop infection or transmission, and long after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) was aware of the health risks of the vaccine. It was also a time when vaccine uptake was dramatically dropping from the levels of the initial enthusiasm from earlier that year. By this time, vast numbers had grown skeptical and were willing to take their chances. The market for shots was headed south. RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker Vax-Unvax RFK Jr. and Brian Hooker’s New Book: “Vax-Unvax” Order Now It appears that immigrant populations — who had not been required to get it for the first 10 months of 2021 — were roped into the market as mandates began to invade private workplaces and cities. In other words, this was a forced recruitment of immigrant populations to boost the demand for the shots. The Biden administration attempted to impose such mandates on the whole of the private sector. The Supreme Court blocked that measure in January 2022. So most were repealed. But the one for legal immigration stayed and has not been challenged in court. There is a darker way to understand this policy move too. It serves as a filtering mechanism. Many people around the world were fleeing shot mandates from their home countries. Adding this one to the list of required injections was a way to signal to the world: the U.S. would not provide any sanctuary to shot refuseniks, so don’t bother even trying. It also operates as a culling mechanism against anti-lockdown and anti-mandate opinions. It assured that the U.S. would not be allowing people to work here who think for themselves, look at the evidence or otherwise refuse to bow to the pharma agenda. The CDC further elaborates on the regulation: it must be within 12 months and it does pertain to children too. There is a narrow range of exemptions for repeated shots but that requires additional paperwork. There is simply no basis for this mandate at all. The vaccine is not efficacious in the normal sense of that term. Nor is it necessary for healthy adults, much less children, who face a near-zero risk of medically significant outcomes. There is the additional peculiarity that whatever immune response occurs from the shot fades quickly, and even less pertains to the existing strain in the community of this fast-mutating virus. In other words, there is nothing defensible about this policy at all. It is keeping untold families apart and preventing U.S. citizens from moving to the U.S. with children and spouses from other countries who decline the shots. They have worked to get back but the vaccine mandate here bars them from doing so. Sadly, there are few in Congress willing to take up the causes and do something about this. It’s the sort of rule that is enforced with no rationality at all but which benefits powerful pharmaceutical companies. The issue has been barely covered in the media at all, and there are currently no real efforts ongoing to push back because the victims are powerless and much of the world has moved on. Meanwhile, this COVID-19 vaccine is being gradually added to every list of requirements that is available, from immigration to the childhood schedule to school attendance. This is despite how the shot has completely failed to perform up to the promise of the first year. This is fully known by vast swaths of the world’s population, and yet U.S. bureaucracies persist in their impositions without the slightest sense that they ought to acquiesce to the reality that everyone knows. Originally published by Brownstone Institute. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Children's Health Defense. 🚨 U.S Government Still Requires COVID Shots for Legal Immigrants — Even Kids Meanwhile, the U.S. is currently experiencing a wave of immigration from asylum seekers which this country has never seen in raw numbers before. There is no requirement that these people coming across the Southern border and then shipped around the country face any such requirement of COVID-19 vaccination. https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/u-s-government-covid-shots-legal-immigrants/ Join 👉 @DrPaulMarik
    CHILDRENSHEALTHDEFENSE.ORG
    U.S. Government Still Requires COVID Shots for Legal Immigrants — Even Kids
    With the COVID-19 shots long proven unable to prevent infection or transmission, why does U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services still mandate them for anyone legally immigrating to the U.S.?
    Angry
    1
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