Vaccinating Children

Sajid Javid Must Halt Child Covid Vaccination Immediately and Investigate the Cause of the Spike in Child Deaths

In recent months, a trend has been noted in the England and Wales all-cause mortality data, which has rung some alarm bells. Young males aged 15-19 have shown a rising death rate compared to the five-year average 2015-2019. At the same time, a large insurance company in the U.S. has reported a significant increase in deaths in the under 40s. This is obviously of concern, whatever the cause, but one possible factor which needs to be urgently excluded is any link to vaccine injury. The association between myocarditis and the mRNA vaccines, especially in younger age groups and in males, is already well established. It is particularly urgent as second doses and boosters are being rolled out, possibly putting adolescents at even higher risk, and at a time when the Omicron variant is much milder.

Members of HART, the Health Advisory and Recovery Team, have joined with other senior academics and health professionals to call for an immediate investigation into the increasing death rate amongst 15-19-year-old males since May of this year. 

At the High Court on Thursday 13th January, the ONS (Office for National Statistics) confirmed that there has been a significant rise in the death rate for adolescent males over the last eight months, compared to the same time period of 2015-2019. There have been at least 65 extra deaths in England and Wales, though the figure may be higher due to reporting delays for coroners’ cases. During the same time frame there were only two deaths involving Covid.

The concern is that this time period coincides with the rollout of vaccinations to this age group, who are known to be at an increased risk of myocarditis (heart inflammation), especially after the second dose. Far from rushing to investigate these deaths as they have arisen, ONS has stated it intends to undertake that work “when more reliable data are available”.

The rollout of vaccinations in this age group was always controversial, with risks and benefits finely balanced, but the Chief Medical Officers overturned the original advice, not on health grounds but to “reduce disruption to schools”.  Any marginal benefit of vaccination for the young must be considered outweighed by even a marginal increase in mortality. With the reduced risk from Omicron, and with increased risk from second doses, the balance will have tipped still further. 

An open letter to Sajid Javid, Chris Whitty, Patrick Vallance and the relevant public health bodies has been signed by over 80 scientists and health professionals, demanding there be an urgent investigation.

We and the other authors call on Sajid Javid and his advisors urgently and thoroughly to investigate these deaths, and to halt any doses for children or young people until vaccination has been ruled out as a cause.  

The full letter is available here: “Open Letter to the MHRA Regarding Child Death Data“.

Dr. Clare Craig is a Diagnostic Pathologist and Dr. Ros Jones is a retired Paediatrician.

Why Won’t They Release the Data on Child Deaths Following Covid Vaccination?

Parents of children in the 12-17 age group want Government officials to release real-time safety data for Covid vaccines. One mother is so concerned about the possibility that her three children could suffer serious adverse events that she asked the High Court on their behalf to force full public disclosure.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) admits it holds the figures but has not revealed them publicly, so last Thursday parent EF, who cannot be named for legal reasons, put her concerns to Mr Justice Jonathan Swift and asked him to direct the ONS to release the data. Her request was denied.

She said: “I’m not surprised. I feel as though the judge had already made up his mind.”

To those of us in court, it certainly felt as though he had and that no one dared question Health Secretary Sajid Javid’s decisions.

Television and radio presenter Beverley Turner, who helped raise over £100,000 to fund the action and who has been vilified for asking questions about the vaccines’ safety, was also there. She said: “It felt that the judge had already decided the outcome. He was hostile to the plaintiffs and convivial to the defendants. All we’re doing is fighting for transparency and for that, we got a hostile response.”

It is known that Pfizer and Moderna’s mRNA Covid vaccines can cause the inflammatory heart conditions myocarditis and pericarditis, mostly in young males, while the Oxford/AstraZeneca can cause blood clots and strokes. We do not know to what extent, and whether children have died or been permanently disabled as the result of a Covid vaccination.

End Covid Vaccination Campaign, Says Ex-Head of Vaccine Taskforce

Covid should be treated as an endemic virus similar to flu, and ministers should end mass-vaccination after the current booster campaign, Dr. Clive Dix the former Chairman of the U.K.’s vaccine taskforce has said. The Guardian has the story.

With health chiefs and senior Tories also lobbying for a post-pandemic plan for a straining NHS, Dr. Clive Dix called for a major rethink of the U.K.’s Covid strategy, in effect reversing the approach of the past two years and returning to a “new normality”.

“We need to analyse whether we use the current booster campaign to ensure the vulnerable are protected, if this is seen to be necessary,” he said. “Mass population-based vaccination in the U.K. should now end.”

He said ministers should urgently back research into Covid immunity beyond antibodies to include B-cells and T-cells (white blood cells). This could help create vaccines for vulnerable people specific to Covid variants, he said, adding: “We now need to manage disease, not virus spread. So stopping progression to severe disease in vulnerable groups is the future objective.”

A rare moment of sanity at a time when policy seems increasingly to be driven by something other than the evidence. May it signal a change in the wind.

Worth reading in full.

End Covid Vaccination of Children Because the Risks Outweigh the Benefits, Government Told By MPs and Scientists

The risks of vaccinating children against Covid now clearly outweigh the benefits, the Government has been told by a group of MPs and scientists.

In an open letter to the Government’s vaccination advisory committee – the JCVI – the MPs including Miriam Cates, Esther McVey and Sir Desmond Swayne and scientists including Professor Allyson Pollock, Dr Roland Salmon and Professor Brent Taylor write that “the risk to benefit ratio for child Covid vaccination has worsened since September”.

They continue:

The risks of adverse events (including but not limited to myocarditis) increase as more doses are given, and any advantages are reduced as vaccine effectiveness in suppressing Omicron transmission decreases (especially given widespread natural immunity). Given that any potential benefits of vaccinating children were calculated to be marginal at best in the first place, we suspect that this margin has not only evaporated but actually reversed in light of the characteristics of the new and dominant Omicron variant and the increase in robust and durable naturally-acquired immunity. …

Unlike the elderly and clinically vulnerable population – for whom the potentially life-saving benefits of vaccination substantially outweigh any risks from vaccination – our children face no such threat from COVID-19 yet have 50 or more years of healthy life expectancy ahead of them that could be compromised by long-term vaccine harms. It is crucial that, if we are to proceed with the mass double vaccination of healthy children, we are absolutely certain that this policy will do more good than harm. Furthermore, we need to give consideration to what precedent is being set for triple or even continuous and regular vaccination for this age group.

We believe that the benefit to risk ratio of child vaccination should be reassessed in light of the Omicron variant and new evidence on both vaccine harms and superior natural immunity. We urge the JCVI to review this new evidence and provide updated advice to the Government with regards to the mass vaccination of healthy 12-15 year olds.

Brent Taylor, Professor Emeritus of Community Child Health at UCL Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health and formerly a JCVI member for eight years, said: 

Boris Calls For Vaccination of Children to Keep Schools Open – But Why When Almost All of Them Have Had the Virus?

Boris Johnson yesterday called for all children to be vaccinated in order to keep schools open. He told a Downing Street press conference: “We know how crucial it is to keep children in school, so let’s all make sure our children and young people are vaccinated before they go back next term.”

But why is this a good idea when most schoolchildren have had the virus already and have natural immunity? According to the MRC Biostatistics Unit at the University of Cambridge, nearly half of children in England under 15 caught the virus between the beginning of September and mid-October, bringing the total infected at that point to 76%, with more having caught it since. These estimates, while modelled, are also broadly in line with ONS Infection Survey estimates, which show a large outbreak in schoolchildren this autumn.

Noah Carl has highlighted three recent large studies which show that immunity via infection is much stronger and more durable than immunity via vaccination. In the chart below from a Danish study, the green line is protection over time from vaccine only, the orange line is from infection only and the yellow line is from infection plus vaccine.

Scientists Demand Primary School Children be Vaccinated as a Condition of Remaining Open

Worried about the spread of the Omicron variant, some scientific experts have said that primary school children, aged between five and 11 years-old, must be vaccinated otherwise in-person teaching will inevitably face major disruptions next year. For example, Deepti Gurdasani, a Clinical Epidemiologist at Queen Mary University of London, points to data showing that Covid is spreading more quickly in younger age groups, therefore in-person teaching in primary schools will “not be feasible” if this age group remains unjabbed. The Guardian has the story.

Professor Peter Openshaw, a member of the Government’s New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (NERVTAG), said that without vaccinating children there could be further huge disruption to education and that health concerns about infection now outweighed initial justified caution in extending vaccination to five to 11 year-olds.

“There was more uncertainty earlier. It’s now becoming clearer that vaccination is generally safe and that it’s better to be vaccinated than to be infected,” he said. “To my mind it’s clear: the safest option is to be vaccinated.”

Deepti Gurdasani, Clinical Epidemiologist and Senior Lecturer at Queen Mary University of London, said that schooling would “not be feasible” next year without extending the vaccination programme to primary school age groups. “There’s been no discussion of how we’re going to protect children in January when schools reopen,” she said…

Openshaw said that there is some evidence that Omicron is reproducing more efficiently in younger age groups, meaning that the vaccination of children could be especially important. It is not clear whether extending vaccination to primary school children would be able to happen quickly enough to affect the oncoming wave of cases, which is expected to peak early next year. But Openshaw added: “The ‘too late’ argument is not a good one. We’d always prefer to have done something three months ago. The second best time is now.”

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) is currently reviewing data on Covid jabs for children over five as a “matter of urgency” and expected to give a recommendation if the U.K.’s medicine regulator gives the green light for vaccines to be administered to younger age groups. June Raine, Chief Executive of the MHRA, has said that it is “very likely” an assessment of whether to approve the Pfizer vaccine for children as young as five would be concluded before Christmas.

Worth reading in full.

Canadian Vaccine Advocates Offer Secret Ride to Children to Bypass Parental Authority

Vaccine advocates in Canada have offered to secretly take children to a vaccination clinic if they desire to be jabbed. A community organiser called Julian Wotherspoon tweeted her support for ignoring parental consent and authority, and her willingness to take anyone aged between 13 to 17 years-old to get vaccinated, despite the recommendation from the health authorities that families should discuss the issue with their children before coming to a firm decision. RT has the story.

The row began on Friday, after a Saskatchewan community organizer named Julian Wotherspoon posted a Twitter message offering to assist any 13 to 17 year-olds who wanted to get vaccinated despite opposition from their parents. “I’m your ride to the clinic,” she said. “If anyone asks, I’m taking you and my kids to a movie. Let’s do this.”

According to the Saskatchewan Health Authority, children aged 13 years-old and older “who are able to understand the benefits and possible reactions” of a vaccine do not need a parent’s permission to be jabbed. Equally, teens can refuse immunisation by giving “mature minor” consent to their health provider.

The authorities recommend families discuss the issue together with their children before they make the decision, however.

Wotherspoon’s tweet caused quite a stir online, eliciting both praise and outrage. She has since made her account private.

Another proponent of children’s vaccination, self-described “mummy blogger” Tenille Lafontaine, also of Saskatchewan, called Wotherspoon’s offer “amazing”. She added, “I’ve heard of a few teens getting the vaccine on their own because their parents are insane in the membrane. The kids are gonna be alright. Side note: I’m available to drive anytime.”

Other commenters pushed back, telling the two women to “stay away from other people’s children.” Some went as far as to liken their secret transport offer to kidnapping. 

Worth reading in full.

Republic of Ireland to Begin Vaccinating Children as Soon as Possible

Paul Reid, the head of the Republic of Ireland’s Health Service Executive (HSE), has said that the Government has already begun planning a child vaccination campaign which he hopes begins “as quickly as possible”. Yesterday, the the European Medicines Agency (EMA) approved use of the Pfizer jab for five to 11 year-olds, with the vaccine now waiting approval from the country’s National Immunisation Advisory Committee, which will most likely follow the EMA’s original decision. The Times has the story.

Reid said delivery of the children’s vaccine across Europe was scheduled towards the end of December. “What we would be doing in the meantime is mobilising a plan and the channels in which we would prepare the vaccination of those younger age groups,” he said at a HSE weekly briefing.

The EMA said that a lower dose of the vaccine would be administered to primary school children (10 µg compared with 30 µg), with research showing that younger children produced a comparable immune response with the lower dose to that seen in people who received the higher dose.

The agency said the most common side effects in children aged five to 11 year-olds were mild or moderate, and similar to those recorded in older age groups. It said the benefits of vaccinating younger children outweighed the risks, particularly among those with conditions that increase the risk of severe forms of the disease.

Reid told yesterday’s briefing that there was a “really serious and continued escalation” of Covid transmission in the community. He noted that the public had responded to calls to work from home and curb social activities, but said this needed to be sustained because transmission levels were “still far too high” and putting severe pressure on the health system.

“We are still in a very volatile position overall in terms of where the virus is at,” he said.

There were 4,764 new Covid cases reported yesterday, with 598 people in hospital (down 13 from Wednesday) including 126 in intensive care (up six). The briefing was told that in the past week 395 Covid patients were admitted to hospital, an increase of 29% on the previous week. The five-day moving average of daily cases is at 4,665 compared with a peak of 6,867 in January.

Reid acknowledged the recent delays in accessing PCR tests during a week in which there has been no availability for testing in many counties across the country. The briefing was told that the HSE had increased its testing capacity and that 210,000 tests were completed in the past week. Three more PCR test centres are expected to open over the next week, including one in the Midlands and two on the east coast.

Reid said the healthcare system was “not elastic” and “not infinite” in terms of the demands it could meet. He said it would be misleading to suggest it could keep “surging up” and that there would be some testing delays.

“We put in the capacity but there are limits as to what capacity we can keep pumping into a system at these levels,” he said. “There does come a point where we have to be up-front, and we have been up-front, to set out that there will be people who experience some delays in terms of getting their test.

“Those who have been clinically prioritised are receiving tests in a very timely manner on either the same day or next day. But we do acknowledge some people are waiting with the significant numbers that we have coming through in terms of self referrals.”

Worth reading in full.

Hong Kong Approves China’s Covid Vaccine for Three to 17 Year-Olds

The territory of Hong Kong has approved the use of China’s Sinovac Biotech Covid vaccine for three to 17 years-olds, with the Secretary for Food and Health, who believes that the benefits of the vaccine outweigh the risks posed to this group, announcing that “adolescents aged 12 to 17 years-old will be accorded priority”. The Guardian has the story.

Hong Kong has approved lowering the age limit for the Covid vaccine from China’s Sinovac Biotech to three, down from 18 years of age.

Hong Kong’s Secretary for Food and Health, Sophia Chan, said in a statement published on Saturday: “Adolescents aged 12 to 17 will be accorded priority to receive the vaccine, with a view to extending to children of a younger age group at a later stage.”

She considered the benefits of approving the extension of the age eligibility to cover those aged three to 17 years-old outweighed the risks, the statement said.

A Hong Kong Government advisory panel on Covid vaccines had earlier recommended that the Minister approved the new age limit, it said.

The extension of the age eligibility comes after Hong Kong’s vaccination campaign, which started in February, has lagged behind many other developed economies. About 67% of the population have received two shots of either Sinovac or Germany’s BioNTech vaccine.

Hong Kong’s Government said in separate statement on Friday that it had purchased 1 million extra doses of BioNTech vaccine for third dose Covid vaccinations.

Worth reading in full.

Secret NHS Plan to Give Covid Vaccines to Children as Young as Five

Kids as young as five are set to be offered Covid jabs within months under secret NHS plans in spite of Covid posing close to zero risk to children. The Sun has more.

Leaked proposals show health bosses are preparing to vaccinate children aged between five and 11 next spring.

Officials fear Covid will continue to rage until 2024 – making it necessary to immunise younger Brits.

The U.S. has already begun vaccinating kids as young as five, with Israel set to follow suit within days.

Health bosses have been sworn to secrecy about the spring campaign, with officials concerned the move could spark a backlash from some parents.

Before the rollout can go ahead, U.K. regulators must still green light it for use in under-12s.

And experts on the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation must also approve use in those aged five to 11.

Under the latest “planning scenario”, NHS chiefs predict a regular Covid booster programme will also be needed to protect vulnerable Brits. It forecasts that outbreaks of the virus will continue to 2023/24.

A senior source revealed: “Top secret plans reveal what is at stake if we are to achieve a meaningful victory over Covid. Asking parents for permission to jab kids as young as five is in the schedule.

“It is controversial, but will help us reach our goal.

“Nothing is in the public domain yet, and the plans could change, but jabbing young children is backed by many scientists.” Although youngsters are at much lower risk of falling ill from Covid, they can still spread the virus to vulnerable adults.”

Worth reading in full.