Harvard epidemiologist Martin Kulldorff said the conclusion undermines the case for vaccine passports.
Matt Lamb Tue Aug 31, 2021 – 4:38 pm EDT
ISRAEL (LifeSiteNews) – A new study out of Israel on the efficiency of COVID vaccines compared to natural immunity has weakened the argument for vaccine passports, according to a Harvard University epidemiologist.
“Prior COVID disease (many working class) provides better immunity than vaccines (many professionals),” Harvard Medical School’s Professor Martin Kulldorff wrote on Twitter Friday, “so vaccine mandates are not only scientific nonsense, they are also discriminatory and unethical.”
He was commenting on a study published on August 24 by Israeli researchers who found that “natural immunity confers longer lasting and stronger protection against infection, symptomatic disease and hospitalization caused by the Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2” when compared to people who had received two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. It looked at over 670,000 individuals, both vaccinated and unvaccinated.
Various countries, including Israel, have implemented vaccine passport systems, under which people must prove they have been vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to access places such as restaurants, trains, and busses. American cities such as New York have also implemented such passport systems.
Kulldorff explained that “vaccinated individuals had 27 times higher risk of symptomatic COVID infection compared to those with natural immunity from prior COVID disease,” based on his summary of the paper. Kulldorff is generally an advocate of vaccination, having served on a federal vaccine safety committee, but he has been a critic of massive lockdowns and quarantine measures.
“Even a slight risk of a serious vaccine adverse reaction could tip the benefit-risk calculation, making the vaccine more harmful than beneficial,” he previously warned in an explanation of why children should not be vaccinated for COVID-19.
The researchers, who are primarily associated with Israeli hospitals and medical universities, noted there has been a “short-term effectiveness of a two-dose regimen” of the Pfizer shots. The team found that the earlier someone received the vaccine in Israel, the more likely they were to contract the Delta variant, an indication of waning effectiveness.
Prior data from Israel’s health department found that “Israelis with immunity from natural infection were far less likely to become infected again in comparison to Israelis who only had immunity via vaccination.”
U.S. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) said the latest research proves his arguments in support of natural immunity and against vaccine mandates.
“To every snot-nosed ‘journalist’ who accosted me in the halls of Congress and spouted Fauci-isms denigrating natural immunity— read the science!” Paul tweeted.
Fellow libertarian Kentucky Rep. Thomas Massie added, “We don’t want apologies. Just acknowledge natural immunity from prior infection exists and it outperforms vaccine immunity.”
“There should be no mandates. But if you insist on them, you should exempt from mandates anyone who had a prior infection,” the Republican congressman said.
The Israeli study adds to a growing body of research that indicates the jabs do not offer better protection against the novel coronavirus than natural immunity.
An August 10 paper in The Lancet concluded that vaccinated people had 251 times the viral load of unvaccinated individuals. “Breakthrough Delta variant infections are associated with high viral loads, prolonged PCR positivity, and low levels of vaccine-induced neutralizing antibodies, explaining the transmission between the vaccinated people,” concluded the preprint paper, which still has to undergo further vetting.
Israel has been hailed as a model for how quickly it vaccinated its population, but a recent increase in the Delta variant has raised further concerns about the effectiveness of the vaccine.
“Israel reported 9,831 new diagnosed cases on [August 24], a hairbreadth away from the worst daily figure ever recorded in the country—10,000—at the peak of the third wave,” the liberal Daily Beast reported last week. “More than 350 people have died of the disease in the first three weeks of August.”
All this happened despite the fact that “80 percent of citizens above the age of 12 [are] fully inoculated.”
“There are so many breakthrough infections that they dominate and most of the hospitalized patients are actually vaccinated,” Uri Shalit, a statistician, told Science.
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