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If we’ve all been jabbed and millions have had the virus at least once – why are so many of us being poleaxed by a bout of Covid? – The Mail on Sunday

‘We’d been quite careful for most of the pandemic, wearing masks and avoiding many big events. But I was pretty confident that, if I did get it, I would be fine because I’d had my jabs. But I couldn’t get out of bed for days and it took almost a month for me to fully recover.’

http://archive.today/2022.08.14-064703/https://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-11108521/Covid-19-weve-jabbed-poleaxed-virus.html

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News

Imperial College’s Fear Machine – National Review

Imperial College’s death estimates over the years have some things in common: flawed modeling, hair-raising predictions of disaster that missed the mark, and no lessons learned.

The defining event in the history of Western Covid lockdowns occurred on March 16, 2020, with the publication of the now infamous Imperial College London Covid report, which predicted that in the “absence of any control measures or spontaneous changes in individual behaviour,” there would be 510,000 Covid deaths in Great Britain and 2.2 million in the United States. This prediction sent shock waves around the world. The next day, the U.K. media announced that the country was going into lockdown.

https://web.archive.org/web/20220331073807/https://www.nationalreview.com/2022/03/imperial-colleges-fear-machine/

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Why more and more experts say lockdown didn’t prevent people dying of Covid – and call it a ‘monumental mistake on a global scale’ – The Mail on Sunday

Speaking this week on The Mail on Sunday’s Medical Minefield podcast, Prof Woolhouse said: ‘I think that lockdown will be viewed by history as a monumental mistake on a global scale, for a number of reasons.

‘The obvious one is the immense harm the lockdown, more than any other measure, did in terms of the economy, mental health and on the wellbeing of society. 

…[A study published in Science in February 2021] also found something intriguing: lockdowns could, in a worst-case scenario, actually increase transmission of the virus by up to five per cent.

…As Dr Ali puts it: ‘Some people say lockdowns were beneficial, others that they were really terrible. 

‘The reality actually is much closer to the idea that it didn’t make much difference either way.’

For those who made painful sacrifices, that won’t be an easy truth to swallow.

https://web.archive.org/web/20220326223327/https://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-10655171/Englands-lockdown-did-NOT-prevent-people-dying-Covid-say-growing-number-experts.html

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COVID-19 expert claims he was told to ‘correct his views’ after criticising ‘implausible graph’ shown during official briefing – Sky News

A senior epidemiologist who advised the government during the coronavirus pandemic claims he was told to “correct” his views after he criticised what he thought was an “implausible” graph shown at an official briefing.

Professor Mark Woolhouse has also apologised to his daughter, whose generation “has been so badly served by mine”, and believes that closing schools was “morally wrong”.

The Edinburgh University academic is deeply critical of the use of lockdown measures and says “plain common sense” was a “casualty of the crisis”.

Speaking to Sky News, Prof Woolhouse seemed concerned about a possible “big-brother” approach to the control of information about COVID.

He says he was told to watch what he was saying following a briefing given by Chief Scientific Adviser (CSA) Sir Patrick Vallance on 21 September 2020.

https://web.archive.org/web/20220307102955/https://news.sky.com/story/covid-19-expert-claims-he-was-told-to-correct-his-views-after-criticising-implausible-graph-shown-during-official-briefing-12555800

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Covid modelling that prompted first UK lockdown based on ‘inaccurate’ case numbers – The Telegraph

Scientists did not have accurate Covid case numbers, and were unsure of hospitalisation and death rates when they published models suggesting that more than 500,000 people could die if Britain took no action in the first wave of the pandemic, it has emerged.

On March 16 2020, Imperial College published its “Report 9” paper suggesting that failing to take action could overwhelm the NHS within weeks and result in hundreds of thousands of deaths.

Before the paper, the UK coronavirus strategy was to flatten the peak rather than suppress the wave, but after the modelling was made public, the Government made a rapid u-turn, which eventually led to lockdown on March 23.

However SPI-M (Scientific Pandemic Influenza Group on Modelling) minutes released to the Telegraph under a Freedom of Information request show that by March 16, modellers were still “uncertain” of case numbers “due to data limitations”.

The minutes show that members were waiting for comprehensive mortality data from Public Health England (PHE) and said that current best estimates for the infection fatality rate, hospitalisation rates, and the number of people needing intensive care were still uncertain.

They also believed that modelling only showed “proof of concept” that lockdowns could help, and warned that “further work would be required”.

https://web.archive.org/web/20220226190045/https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2022/02/26/covid-modelling-prompted-first-uk-lockdown-based-inaccurate/

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Did the Covid modellers get it wrong? – The Times

It is more than a rebuke to Medley and the modellers though. This pandemic began, for many, with an announcement from Imperial College, whose study predicted 500,000 deaths if we did nothing. We locked down and never tested the prediction.

This time, in the face of what the public saw as dire predictions, we didn’t lock down and the apocalypse never came. The unspoken — and sometimes spoken — implication is clear: are we all fools?

http://archive.today/2022.02.12-105548/https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/b7b928e6-8b4c-11ec-8600-c48a9935f856

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Publications

Cross-reactive memory T cells associate with protection against SARS-CoV-2 infection in COVID-19 contacts – Nature Communications

Cross-reactive immune responses to SARS-CoV-2 have been observed in pre-pandemic cohorts and proposed to contribute to host protection. Here we assess 52 COVID-19 household contacts to capture immune responses at the earliest timepoints after SARS-CoV-2 exposure. Using a dual cytokine FLISpot assay on peripheral blood mononuclear cells, we enumerate the frequency of T cells specific for spike, nucleocapsid, membrane, envelope and ORF1 SARS-CoV-2 epitopes that cross-react with human endemic coronaviruses. We observe higher frequencies of cross-reactive (p = 0.0139), and nucleocapsid-specific (p = 0.0355) IL-2-secreting memory T cells in contacts who remained PCR-negative despite exposure (n = 26), when compared with those who convert to PCR-positive (n = 26); no significant difference in the frequency of responses to spike is observed, hinting at a limited protective function of spike-cross-reactive T cells. Our results are thus consistent with pre-existing non-spike cross-reactive memory T cells protecting SARS-CoV-2-naïve contacts from infection, thereby supporting the inclusion of non-spike antigens in second-generation vaccines.

http://archive.today/2022.01.10-120437/https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-021-27674-x

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COVID-19: T cells from common colds can protect against coronavirus infection, study finds – Sky News

People with high levels of T cells from common colds are less likely to catch COVID, according to a new peer-reviewed study.

Researchers said the findings could help provide the blueprint for the production of new vaccines which give longer-lasting immunity and would protect against current and future coronavirus variants such as Omicron and Delta.

http://archive.today/2022.01.10-095512/https://news.sky.com/story/covid-19-t-cells-from-common-colds-can-protect-against-coronavirus-infection-study-finds-12512900

Archive of study: https://evidencenotfear.com/cross-reactive-memory-t-cells-associate-with-protection-against-sars-cov-2-infection-in-covid-19-contacts-nature-communications/

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Opinion

Prof Lockdown’s ‘apocalyptic’ omicron claims undermine faith in vaccines and have fuelled unnecessary shutdowns – The Telegraph

The Covid modellers at Imperial College have begun to back down. About time too. Over the past few weeks, they have made extreme claims about the omicron variant that cannot be fully justified by fundamental science, let alone by clinical observation.

http://archive.today/2021.12.23-131846/https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2021/12/23/prof-lockdowns-apocalyptic-omicron-claims-undermine-faith-vaccines/

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News

Why didn’t doctors listen to women about the link between Covid vaccines and periods? – The Telegraph

Part of the rush to dismiss women on the basis of little to no evidence comes – no doubt – from a well-meaning, but ultimately misguided effort to reduce vaccine hesitancy in young women, although if anything will drive hesitancy it is surely exactly this kind of medical gaslighting. More broadly, being disbelieved and dismissed by the medical establishment is nothing new for women, who are used to being, for example, prescribed antidepressants when they present to doctors in pain (men who present with similar symptoms are more likely to be prescribed painkillers). Women are simply not considered to be reliable narrators of their own bodies.

http://archive.today/2021.09.17-102646/https://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/life/didnt-doctors-listen-women-link-covid-vaccines-periods/

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£37billion Test and Trace scheme may have only prevented as few as 6% of Covid cases, Government’s own study finds – Daily Mail

No10’s Test and Trace system has had barely any impact on thwarting the spread of Covid, according to official estimates.

The controversial £37billion scheme has been heavily criticised over the past year for being ineffective at breaking the chains of transmission.

New Government modelling found the programme – which critics have described as being the biggest ever waste of taxpayer money – may have only slashed cases by as little as six per cent.

http://archive.today/2021.09.14-122644/https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9988617/37billion-Test-Trace-scheme-cut-6-Covid-cases.html

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Israel is now the world’s Covid hotspot: Cases soar despite country’s trail-blazing vaccine roll-out – sparking fears other highly-vaccinated countries will be hit by another wave due to jabs’ waning immunity – Daily Mail

Israel has become the Covid capital of the world just months after leading the charge on vaccines, according to data that shows jab protection is waning. Stats compiled by an Oxford University-based research platform show Israel recorded 1,892 cases per million people on Wednesday — nearly 0.2 per cent of the entire population in a single day. That was significantly higher than second worst-hit Mongolia where the rate was 1,119 per million and double the figures for Kosovo (980), Georgia (976) and Montenegro (909), which rounded out the top five

http://archive.today/2021.09.02-232457/https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9951117/Israel-worlds-Covid-hotspot-0-2-population-catching-yesterday.html

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Covid: Children’s extremely low risk confirmed by study – BBC

The overall risk of children becoming severely ill or dying from Covid is extremely low, a new analysis of Covid infection data confirms.

Scientists from University College London, and the Universities of York, Bristol and Liverpool say their studies of children are the most comprehensive yet anywhere in the world.

They checked England’s public health data and found most of the young people who had died of Covid-19 had underlying health conditions:

Around 15 had life-limiting or underlying conditions, including 13 living with complex neuro-disabilities

Six had no underlying conditions recorded in the last five years – though researchers caution some illnesses may have been missed

A further 36 children had a positive Covid test at the time of their death but died from other causes, the analysis suggests

Though the overall risks were still low, children and young people who died were more likely to be over the age of 10 and of Black and Asian ethnicity.

Researchers estimate that 25 deaths in a population of some 12 million children in England gives a broad, overall mortality rate of 2 per million children.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-57766717
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Publications

Deaths in Children and Young People in England following SARS-CoV-2 infection during the first pandemic year: a national study using linked mandatory child death reporting data – Research Square

25 CYP died of SARS-CoV-2 during the first pandemic year in England, equivalent to an infection fatality rate of 5 per 100,000 and a mortality rate of 2 per million. Most had an underlying comorbidity, particularly neurodisability and life-limiting conditions. The CYP who died were mainly >10 years and of Asian and Black ethnicity, compared to other causes of the death, but their absolute risk of death was still extremely low. 

https://www.researchsquare.com/article/rs-689684/v1

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News

Modelling that delayed lockdown lifting was flawed, admits scientist – The Telegraph

Modelling that helped persuade the Government to delay the June 21 reopening was overly pessimistic and the lockdown lifting should “possibly” have gone ahead on time, a government adviser has admitted.

Dr Mike Tildesley, an epidemiologist from Warwick University, said Britain had been in a “much better situation than we thought” when his group released models suggesting third wave deaths could hit 72,000.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/07/01/lockdown-lifting-could-have-gone-ahead-flawed-modelling-admits/

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Opinion

Flawed modelling is condemning Britain to lockdown – The Telegraph

As Sarah Knapton has revealed in these pages, the brutal postponement of Freedom Day coincided with the release of a bunch of alarmist models predicting a huge new wave of deaths. The most pessimistic, inevitably from Imperial College, forecast 203,824 deaths over the next year. It did so by assuming just a 77-87 per cent reduction in hospitalisations following two vaccinations, despite the fact that real world data shows two vaccinations to be between 92 per cent (AstraZeneca) and 96 per cent (Pfizer) effective in preventing hospitalisation. That would cut the Imperial forecast of deaths by a gob-smacking 90 per cent to 26,854.

This keeps happening. In April the modellers assumed a 30 per cent effectiveness for the vaccine at preventing the spread of the virus. This was described as “a pessimistic view – but it is plausible, it’s not extreme”, by Professor Graham Medley, chairman of the SPI-M sub-group of Sage. It turns out it was far from plausible. At the end of March the BBC’s favourite modeller, Imperial College’s Neil Ferguson, was forecasting that by June 21, even with “optimistic” assumptions, less than half of Britain would be protected against severe disease by vaccination. The true figure is over 80 per cent.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/06/21/flawed-modelling-condemning-britain-lockdown/

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So what about Sweden, huh? – The Spectator

It’s amazing how often Sweden still crops up in conversations. It didn’t impose tough lockdown, kept primary schools and core economic activities functioning, issued clear guidelines and relied on voluntary social distancing and personal hygiene practices to manage the crisis. For harsh lockdowns to be justified elsewhere, Sweden had to be discredited. Hence the harsh criticisms of Sweden’s approach last year by the New York TimesNewsweekUSA Today, CBS News and others.

But with Sweden’s demonstrable success, goalposts have shifted. Every time it’s mentioned as a counter to Europe’s high Covid-toll lockdown countries, the response now is: ‘But their Nordic neighbours did much better. Look at Denmark’. Let’s ‘interrogate’ this argument.

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Opinion

Social distancing and face masks should stay FOREVER says Communist SAGE committee member Professor Susan Michie – Daily Mail

Social distancing and wearing face masks should stay forever, a Communist-supporting SAGE scientist has claimed.

Professor Susan Michie, of University College London, said she thinks the draconian restrictions should become part of people’s every day routine.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9672347/Social-distancing-stay-FOREVER-says-Communist-supporting-SAGE-Covid-scientist-Susan-Michie.html?ito=social-twitter_dailymailUK

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Death rate in England is lowest since records began – The Telegraph

Just 851.2 people per 100,000 died last month – the lowest figure since the ONS started recording mortality rates in 2001. At the height of the first wave of the Covid pandemic last April, death rates were 1,859 per 100,000.

The latest figures show that 38,899 people died in April – 6.1 per cent fewer than the five-year average.

Just 2.4 per cent of all deaths mentioned Covid on the death certificate, a 77.6 per cent decrease from March and the largest month-on-month decline since the pandemic began.

The new data provide more evidence that the NHS is in little danger of being overwhelmed in the near future, with deaths from most causes lower than normal. Covid is now the ninth most common cause of death in England and Wales, behind conditions including heart disease, dementia, several cancers and influenza.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/05/20/death-rate-england-lowest-since-records-began/

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Opinion

We really need an inquiry into how Sage forced Britain into lockdown – The Telegraph

The case for the prosecution of Johnson is likely to be heard in a parliamentary inquiry (with Dominic Cummings as the star witness) which should bring scrutiny of the Imperial College cliff-edge hypothesis. This suggests that Covid cases surged every day until lockdown, so Prime Ministerial dither cost thousands of lives. Only when he eventually agreed to lock down on March 23, says Imperial, did cases collapse. This theory is one of the most influential ever deployed in government – and now looks as if it could be bunkum.

We don’t have to guess anymore, given how much Covid data exists. The ONS, Zoe/King’s College, the React-2 study run by a different team at Imperial: none support Neil Ferguson’s cliff-edge theory. All show Covid cases falling before lockdowns. So what forced the virus into retreat, if not stay-at-home orders? We can look at another form of contagion: news, spread digitally. People saw how things were getting dangerous and stayed home of their own accord. This is more than theory. Mobile phone data offers rich detail of this worldwide trend.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/05/13/really-need-inquiry-sage-forced-britain-lockdown/