Pandemic Preparedness Strategy

WHO to Make Lockdowns Part of Official Pandemic Guidance

The World Health Organisation is to make lockdowns and other non-pharmaceutical interventions intended to curb viral spread part of official pandemic guidance.

The revelation comes in a report scheduled to go to the WHO’s World Health Assembly later this month. This is not part of a new pandemic treaty and does not require the endorsement of member states. The report says the implementation is already underway.

Many have raised the alarm about a new WHO pandemic treaty. However, as I’ve noted previously (and as Michael Senger notes here), there isn’t a new pandemic treaty on the table. Rather, there are amendments to the existing treaty, the International Health Regulations 2005, plus other recommendations (131 in all) put forward in a report from the Working Group on Strengthening WHO Preparedness and Response to Health Emergencies.

Most of these amendments and recommendations relate to information and resource sharing and preparation for future pandemics; none of them directly interferes with state sovereignty in the sense of allowing the WHO to impose or lift measures. However, that doesn’t mean they’re not dangerous, as they endorse and codify the appalling errors of the last two years, which began with China’s Hubei lockdown on January 23rd 2020.

U.K. Covid Inquiry Proposes to Examine Vaccine Deaths

The Chair of the U.K. independent public Covid inquiry, Baroness Heather Hallett, has told the Prime Minister she wants her inquiry to cover vaccine side-effects and fatalities. The Mail has the story.

Very rare yet serious side-effects from the Covid vaccine could be explored in the forthcoming public inquiry into the pandemic.

It may also look into the struggle which affected families have faced in getting compensation.

Probe chairwoman Baroness Heather Hallett wrote to the Prime Minister last Thursday outlining the key areas under scrutiny – including pandemic preparedness, lockdowns, testing, PPE and care homes – which he will have to sign off before the inquiry can begin.

The Mail on Sunday has learned that she also asked if her inquiry can cover deaths and life-changing side-effects from the jabs.

While multiple studies have shown Covid vaccines to be safe – with more than 53 million Britons having had at least one dose and nearly 40 million receiving three – a small minority of people suffered serious health problems including blood clots and inflammation in the heart.

In the U.K., medical regulators have reported 438 blood clot cases and 79 deaths linked to the AstraZeneca vaccine. 

More than 900 applications have now been filed for compensation over death or injury due to vaccines, with the total claims reaching £110 million. However, not a single payment has been made.

The inquiry seems unlikely to explore this issue properly if only because the data collected and published on it to date are so limited and poor. But it is reassuring at least that the head of the inquiry wants to cover it, and presumably the Prime Minister will not refuse permission. Good also to see pandemic preparedness in there – it will be interesting to see what the inquiry makes of the Government’s performance when assessed against its own plans.

Worth reading in full.

“The Government Does Not Plan to Close Borders or Stop Mass Gatherings During Any Pandemic” – Why Did Britain Throw Away its Pandemic Plan?

Of the many myths that have taken hold during the pandemic, perhaps none is more central than that the Government was caught out by Covid with no idea about how it ought to respond. Thus the extreme and unprecedented response of lockdown appears to many to be justified by this notion that ministers had little choice but to ‘play it safe’, and the subsequent experiments in social restrictions as we awaited and delivered a rushed vaccine and beyond are imagined as a heroic voyage into the unknown of how a government ought to respond to an ‘unprecedented’ disease.

In fact, though, the Government had a plan for what it should do, the U.K. Influenza Pandemic Preparedness Strategy 2011, and COVID-19 was well within the bounds of what the plan anticipated. As Dr. Noah Carl has noted, this was the plan the Government was following until mid-March 2020, with SAGE re-affirming at a meeting on February 4th 2020 that officials “should continue to plan using current influenza pandemic assumptions”.

While the strategy was focused on influenza, it expressly anticipated the possibility of a new SARS virus:

A pandemic is most likely to be caused by a new subtype of the Influenza A virus but the plans could be adapted and deployed for scenarios such as an outbreak of another infectious disease, e.g. Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in health care settings, with an altogether different pattern of infectivity.

How Did the Pro-Lockdown Consensus Emerge?

Today we’re publishing an original piece by a Russell Group university-trained epidemiologist looking at why a consensus emerged across the West so quickly last spring that the only way to manage the burgeoning coronavirus outbreak was to lock everyone in their homes. Why did governments around the world abandon their pandemic preparedness strategies, which had been honed over decades, in favour of a completely untried policy that has had disastrous consequences? The epidemiologist’s explanation is the inexorable rise of woke-ism.

Over the past several decades society has become predominantly secular. Simultaneously left-wing progressivism (‘woke-ism’) has become entrenched in academia and the mainstream media, ramping up to full volume the past few years. Progressivism has permeated public consciousness through activism by the mainstream media, social media and popular culture, filling the void once occupied by orthodox religion. As a consequence, victimhood, safety-ism and lockdown (and other Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions [NPIs]) adherence are prevailing narratives, with much of the public looking to big-government to ‘save them’ from any risk of SARS-CoV-2 through lockdown. This is particularly evident in the USA where support for NPIs tends to split down party lines. A signature of progressivism is the abuse and (attempted) ‘cancellation’ of anyone who objects to its ‘truth’. This now includes anyone who dares mention the scientific orthodoxy set out in the pandemic preparedness guidelines, other perfectly rational and feasible alternative strategies to the management of SARS-CoV-2, such as the Great Barrington Declaration, or actual facts that counter the lockdown dogma. This has been exacerbated by government failure to set up advisory committees comprising diverse academic opinion on all aspects of lockdown, including its detrimental effects. Consequently, lockdown ideology persists with few voices willing or able to contest it. The vitriol dished out to anyone who questions the wisdom of lockdown has been extraordinary, particularly on social media but also by mainstream journalists who insinuate that any opposing view is not valid. Lockdown ideology has also been corroborated by big tech which positions itself as progressive, with the removal or shadow banning of material contradicting the lockdown and NPI mantra from its platforms. Even the WHO has kowtowed to appease the lockdown ideologues by temporarily changing the established definition of herd immunity, and defining a confirmed ‘case’ as “a person with a positive Nucleic Acid Amplification Test (NAAT [PCR])” including in the absence of symptoms. Big-government lockdown, propagated as the only virtuous and effective response to SARS-CoV-2 by a vociferous media and biased government advisers, has been bought hook, line and sinker by a risk-averse public (and politicians).

Worth reading in full.