By Covid-19 Up
UK Set for SECOND Booster Shot as Data Warns of Fading Protection and Wellcome Trust Director Admits Defeating Pandemic With Vaccines Will Be “Impossible”
Omicron cases have continued to surge across the UK and millions of Britons are now set for an early fourth dose of a COVID-19 vaccine as data warns of quickly fading booster shot protection.
Jeremy Farrar, a former SAGE member and head of the Wellcome Trust, warned that defeating COVID-19 with vaccines will be “impossible” if everyone in the world needs four doses a year. Such frequent boosters would rule out global COVID-19 vaccination.
“Not possible vaccinate world with such regular booster doses, talk of 4x dose in little over year. Many not had 1x dose yet. Need invest now at scale on 2nd/3rd generation vaccines to try & get sterilizing immunity & broad long lasting cross protection,” Farrar said
Deflated Health Care Workers and Desperate Patients Clash in U.S. Over COVID-19 Treatments
Dr. Jack Lyons says he remembers the pandemic’s early days when communities were grateful for medical care and honored health care workers.
But those days are long gone.
“Folks act as if they can come in the hospital and request any certain therapy they want or conversely decline any therapy they want with the idea being that somehow they can pick and choose and direct their therapy. And it doesn’t work,” Lyons told CNN from the CentraCare hospital he works at in St. Cloud, Minnesota.
According to CNN, “dangerous misinformation” has led to a slew of lawsuits being filed against hospitals demanding “unproven” COVID-19 treatments, like Ivermectin. Health care providers are reporting growing hostility between medical workers and patients and their families.
“They insult your intelligence, they insult your ability, and most hurtful, they say that by not using these therapies you are intentionally trying to harm the people we’ve given everything to save,” Lyons said.
Shocking New Study Shows Pfizer, Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine Effectiveness Against Omicron Turns Negative After Just 3 Months
A shocking new preprint from Denmark shows zero COVID-19 vaccine effectiveness against Omicron beginning two months after “peak” protection, and sharply negative protection three months out.
In other words, “fully vaccinated” people were much more likely to get Omicron than unvaccinated people beginning about 100 days after the second dose.
Pfizer customers were 76.5% more likely and Moderna customers were 39.3% more likely to be infected by Omicron than the unvaccinated.
U.S. Halts Distribution of Monoclonal Antibody Treatments for COVID-19
U.S. authorities on Thursday (Dec. 23) halted the distribution of monoclonal antibody treatments for COVID-19 from Regeneron and Eli Lilly, raising doubts over their efficacy against the Omicron variant.
The FDA and the office of Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, in a joint statement said that they believe “it is unlikely” that Eli Lilly‘s bamlanivimab and etesevimab administered together or Regeneron’s REGEN-COV “will retain activity against this variant.”
Only one option, sotrovimab, appears to be effective against Omicron, but its supply is limited. Nationwide shipments have begun, and an additional 300,000 doses of sotrovimab—made by GlaxoSmithKline—will be available for distribution in January.
Over 3,000 Christmas Flights Canceled Worldwide as Airlines Cite Staffing Issues Due to COVID-19
More than 3,000 flights scheduled for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day have been canceled globally, according to the website FlightAware.
Around 20% of those canceled for Friday (Dec. 24) involved travel within, into or out of the United States, FlightAware said.
So far, 4,604 flights have been delayed. About 500 flights are delayed within, into, or out of the United States on Friday
Faking a COVID-19 Vaccine Card in New York Can Now Get You a Year in Jail
Falsifying a COVID-19 vaccination card is now a class A misdemeanor in the state of New York, and tampering with computer records related to vaccinations is now a class E felony, after Gov. Kathy Hochul signed new legislation late Wednesday (Dec. 22).
The bill clarifies that “a COVID Vaccination Card shall be considered a written instrument for purposes of the forgery statute,” which makes faking one a crime punishable by up to 1 year in jail or 3 years’ probation.
That bill also created the felony of computer tampering in the third degree for “intentional entering, alteration or destruction of ‘computer material’ regarding COVID-19 vaccine provisions,” according to a statement from the governor’s office
Tennessee Raises COVID-19 Death Toll by Thousands as USA Today Claims “Massive Undercount” Across the Country
Officials in Tennessee have increased the state’s COVID-19 death toll by about 2,700 to 20,644 after a review.
Health Commissioner Lisa Piercey said that the revision was due to lagging data, such as manual death reporting by many health care providers and increased home deaths that are confirmed by investigations. The state health department also announced that it is looking into ways to improve its reporting of at-home deaths and is investigating why more of them are occurring.
Piercey said that 70% of the deaths in the state occurred during the Delta variant surge that began in August.
Meanwhile, USA Today published an article on Wednesday (Dec. 22) claiming that inaccurate death certificates across the country have led to a “massive undercount” of COVID-19 deaths.
Florida, CDC Refuse to Release State’s Breakthrough COVID-19 Case Data — Why?
For more than two months, the Tampa Bay Times and other news organizations have been asking Florida for data that breaks down how many vaccinated people have been infected, hospitalized or died of COVID-19.
They are called “breakthrough” cases, data that would show how effectively the COVID-19 vaccine has protected Floridians. But the Florida Department of Health has repeatedly refused those requests.
The CDC also refuses to release that data, deferring to the state on whether to share it publicly.
“It’s the number one thing that people ask me for,” said University of South Florida epidemiologist Jason Salemi. That data may be more important than ever, he said, because it’s “especially pertinent to how Omicron may or may not spread.”
Japan Rules Out Any New Restrictions in Face of Omicron After Rejecting Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccination
Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno said on Thursday (Dec. 23) that the government is not considering any changes to its current COVID-19 protocols despite the fact that local transmission of the Omicron variant has been detected in the country.
“Now that the Omicron strain has been confirmed as a community-acquired infection, there are concerns that it may spread further, so please be cautious when holding year-end or New Year’s parties,” Shigeru Omi, the nation’s top health advisor, told reporters.
Japan’s Ministry of Health recently rejected mandatory COVID-19 vaccination, recognized the risk of side effects, encouraged informed consent, and told its citizens to not discriminate against the unvaccinated.
Barely Half of Positive Antigen Test Results in Ireland Have Been Confirmed by PCR Testing
Barely half of the positive results from antigen tests carried out on close contacts of COVID-19 cases have been confirmed by further PCR testing.
A daily average of almost 4,000 antigen tests have been carried out on close contacts of COVID-19 cases who are fully vaccinated and have no symptoms since the measure was introduced at the end of October.
In the first month, 31,850 antigen test results were reported by close contacts—21,579 “not detected” and 10,271 “detected” or positive. Only 54% of those “detected” antigen test results were confirmed positive with subsequent PCR testing.
Demand for testing in Ireland is higher than it has been at any point in the pandemic and continues to increase.
Indian Court Urges delay in State Elections Amid Omicron Spread
Judges of the Allahabad High Court in India’s most populous Uttar Pradesh (UP) state said on Thursday (Dec. 23) the number of people infected with Omicron is on the rise and could result in a third wave of the coronavirus, and urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government to suspend political rallies and election campaigns in poll-bound states.
Elections to the state assembly in UP, home to over 220 million people, are scheduled for early next year but final dates are yet to declared. Three other states are also scheduled to hold local elections at the same time.
The judges said, if possible, the elections that are expected to be held in February next year be postponed by a couple of months.
“The court requests the honourable prime minister that looking at the situation of this frightening pandemic, to take strong steps and stop rallies, gatherings and cancel or postpone (the) upcoming election,” the judges said.
India’s overall tally of the fast-spreading Omicron variant has reached 358 cases, across 17 states, authorities said on Friday (Dec. 24), although no deaths have been reported so far.
China Reports Fall in New COVID-19 Cases vs Day Earlier
China reported 87 new confirmed coronavirus cases for Dec. 23, down from 100 a day earlier, its health authority said on Friday (Dec. 24).
Of the new infections, 55 were locally transmitted, according to a statement by the National Health Commission, compared with 71 from a day earlier. Most of the new local cases were in the northwestern province of Shaanxi.
China reported 26 new asymptomatic cases, which it classifies separately from confirmed cases, up from 19 a day earlier.
There were no new deaths, leaving the death toll at 4,636. Mainland China had 100,731 confirmed cases as of Dec. 23.