There follows a guest post by Dr. Elizabeth Evans, the Director of the U.K. Medical Freedom Alliance. It is a transcript of a speech given at the Children’s Covid Vaccine Advisory Group (CCVAG) Press Conference on Thursday February 24th 2022.
In February 2021, the U.K. Medical Freedom Alliance wrote our first of several Open Letters to the JCVI and MHRA, raising serious ethical concerns over any future use of COVID-19 vaccines in healthy children. I will highlight these ethical issues over the next few minutes.
When we are considering any medical intervention for an individual, it must be proportionate, necessary, and given under strict ethical principles. There is important wisdom in the Hippocratic Oath, upheld by doctors around the world for over two millennia, which states: “First, do no harm.” As all medical interventions carry a risk of harm, we have a professional duty to act with care and proportionality.
In addition, a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach is a dangerous and unethical way to practise medicine. At the heart of the practice of safe and ethical medicine is the doctor-patient relationship, where the patient’s unique medical history, his or her individual risk-profile and personal philosophy/wishes should always be the prime concern of the doctor administering a treatment.
When it comes to children, it is clear that the risk/benefit calculation does not support administering Covid vaccines to healthy children, who are at no risk (statistically) from COVID-19 and who have, in any case, mostly acquired robust and durable natural immunity by now. It is important to remember that these vaccines are not traditional vaccines but use a completely novel, gene-based technology and are still in Phase 3 trials.
Without long-term safety data (on either the mRNA technology or the specific COVID-19 vaccines) we cannot know yet what, if any, long-term effects on health or fertility may become apparent over the next five to 10 years. The vaccines have not been inside any adult for more than 21 months, and for even less time in children. We also now have emerging safety signals and acknowledged side-effects, some serious, like myocarditis, clotting/bleeding disorders and neurological conditions, many of which appear to affect younger people disproportionately.
The possibility of detrimental health effects coming to light after a few years was raised by a spokesperson for AstraZeneca in August 2020, when the company was granted full immunity from liability for harms because: “This is a unique situation where we as a company simply cannot take the risk if in… four years the vaccine is showing side-effects.” If this risk is considered too high for the manufacturers economically, surely, we cannot allow our children to take the same level of risk with their long-term health, especially for a disease that is of negligible risk to them.
Medical history is littered with drugs and vaccines that were once considered safe and effective, that were subsequently withdrawn from the market, months or years after their use was started as unforeseen harms were identified. For example, the Swine Flu vaccine Pandemrix, rushed to market in the 2009 pandemic, was withdrawn two years later, after millions of doses had been given, when over a thousand children suffered the serious brain injury narcolepsy, not picked up in the trials. An essential part of the safe practice of medicine involves adapting and adjusting to new data and safety signals.
It is unprecedented that a pharmaceutical product still in the clinical trial phase is being recommended and administered to children on such a mass scale. That this is being done without full transparency and disclosure of the known and unknown risks to children and young people, and with aggressive marketing, seriously undermines the ability of parents and teenagers to give full, voluntary, and informed consent – a legal and ethical requirement for all medical treatments under U.K. and International Law and professional guidelines.
It is vital that we maintain the ethical principles that underpin any civilised society and that we put the safety of children as our top priority. There is no scientific or ethical justification to support any further rollout of COVID-19 vaccines to children. Therefore, we must urgently pause the programme.
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