By Guy Hatchard PhD
For over a year the Ardern Government had successfully pursued a Covid elimination strategy through tight border controls. Then in August 2021, the Skegg report let them off the leash. A naive reading of the report led the Government to believe that universal vaccination could be a stand alone solution to the Covid crisis. The small print was missed.
The Skegg Committee was well aware that there are some big risks that would require the issue to be frequently revisited scientifically.
“The recommendations in the Skegg report should be considered in the light of their recommendation for frequent review ie. the possibility that what we know in November might lead to a significant change of timing or content of the response in 2022.”
Michael Baker, epidemiologist and government advisor wrote:
“I am hoping that the intense surveillance of adverse events following immunisation will give us a good steer about the risk of adverse events.”
Despite this, a relieved government ramped up a publicity drive of unprecedented cost and coercion. The ensuing publicity gave the general public the assurance that all was well and wisely put. As a result we have ended up with a majority of the population (and also the media) holding strong opinions about issues they haven’t had the time to study scientifically in isolation from the government’s public relations onslaught.
The very word ‘vaccination’ was tremendously soothing balm for troubled souls, carrying as it did the connotation of safety and effectiveness. Even more reassuring for the general public, there were some scapegoats that the government identified who were deserving of being shunned and punished. These were labelled as anti vaxxers, yet among their number were serious scientists whose experience extended not only to the ‘management of public risk’, but also included some giants of the vaccine research and development industry such as the former VP of Pfizer itself.
After August, it became government policy to dismiss safety questions and to turn a blind eye to voices other than their own. Nothing was done to shore up the defects in our reporting and recording systems which might serve as an early warning that the wheels were coming off the government’s strategy.
Now November has arrived, and with it a sudden rush of mainstream science reservations. Among these:
The prestigious BMJ exposes deficiencies and data falsification in Pfizer vaccine trials.
Leading journal Viruses reveals that mRNA vaccines impair DNA repair and undermine immunity in vitro – Viruses 2021, 13,2056.
The data out of Public Health England (PHE), one of the most comprehensive publicly available databases, is so obviously out of step with the public narrative of vaccination effectiveness as to shake even the most ‘Ardernt’ supporter’s faith.
One picture is worth a thousand words, the import of the combination of high UK vaccination rates and high cases is unmistakable, not to say glaringly obvious.
More worrying still, there is a nagging trend in the PHE data of all cause mortality among the vaccinated which has prompted a number of mathematically competent observers to suggest that rapidly waning vaccine effectiveness leaves the recipient with deficiencies in their immune protection. The jury is still out on this one, but the implication is obvious: meticulous reporting of data is essential if government policy is to be safe.
What did the government do wrong and what can now be done to correct it?
1. Vaccination adverse event reporting should be mandatory, not voluntary as it now is. All events need tabulation and analysis.
2. Death certificates from all causes of mortality should note vaccination status and be compared to population norms.
3. Child vaccination should be paused because of elevated risks of heart inflammation.
4. Vaccine mandates should be paused pending the availability of reliable adverse event data. Since there is little that vaccination does to stop transmission (https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2021.07.31.21261387v4.full.pdf), there is no public health downside to this.
5. Importantly, the government needs to conduct a scientific reality check by honestly comparing its message to the ‘science’.
The ethical fault line in the government’s current mandate policy should be obvious: Yes, Covid poses a grave risk ( even though a lot less than originally feared: https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lanwpc/article/PIIS2666-6065(21)00102-4/fulltext), but the replacement of this risk with another unquantified risk—the unknown short and long term health impact of vaccination—cannot be justified without ongoing scientific evaluation.
Guy Hatchard PhD has expertise in the statistical management of risk. He previously worked for Genetic ID, a global company which tested and certified bulk food shipments as safe.