Brief thread on vaccine passports and combatting hesitancy:

There’s been lots of chatter lately about vaccine passports. I get why lots of people think they’re a good idea, but one thing in particular strikes me as a big problem:

The stark racial divide in vaccine hesitancy.
Knowing what we do about rates of hesitancy (and measured vaccination rates 👇) among different ethnic groups, vaccine passports would amount to telling lots of non-white people "sorry you can’t come in here".

I don’t know about you, but that feels ... not good.
This is not to condone vaccine hesitancy, or to condescend and say "well it’s okay for them, considering everything".

Obviously we need to continue combatting vax hesitancy wherever we find it, *especially* among ethnic minorities among whom infection risk is also higher
But it’s not good enough to say "Well it’s up to them, they just need to educate themselves, then they get a passport."

As we’re finding with more and more cases of mistaken beliefs, you don’t solve this by punishing people, nor by just brute-force "educating them" out of it.
In many cases, people in these groups are being fed huge amounts of misinformation.

Combatting that is about carefully rebuilding trust so as to solve both this any other related problems. Not just saying "get the jab or you’re not coming in".
So let’s keep doing everything we can to ensure as many people as possible get vaccinated, but let’s be smart about how we do that.

If we’re following the science on vaccines, let’s also follow the science on how to change minds.

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More from @jburnmurdoch

22 Feb
NEW: data from Scotland shows a single dose offers very strong protection from hospitalisation, including among people aged 80 and over.

Vaccinated elderly people 81% less likely to be admitted to hospital than their unvaccinated peers

This is very good news(!)
More good news: data from @PHE_uk on people in England aged 80+ shows solid and rising protection from a first dose of BioNTech/Pfizer, with second dose boosting efficacy to over 85%

These data are for protection against infection, not hospital. The latter will be even higher 😀
Finally, more PHE data, this time from healthcare workers (aged under 65) shows very strong and long-lasting protection from infection among this age group after a single dose.

As before, protection against hospitalisation will be even stronger.
Read 5 tweets
21 Feb
NEW with @ChrisGiles_:

UK vaccine effect is now clear in data on hospital admissions & deaths, but harder to see in cases

Some have seen this as a worrying sign, but I’m here to tell you it’s the opposite: a sign of how effective UK lockdown has been…
Israel’s vaccine effect is as clear as it is because cases and hospital admissions among younger, un-vaccinated groups kept rising there despite restrictions, or fell more stubbornly.

Low adherence to Israel’s current restrictions has been well-documented.
Overall, cases in the UK have actually fallen further and faster than in Israel despite that elusive vaccine effect being less clear over here.

So what’s going on?
Read 8 tweets
17 Feb
NEW: the UK is currently on course to deliver a first dose to all over-50s by the end of March, even assuming no increase in vaccine supply or pace of delivery.

At current rates *all adults* could have 1st dose in August, and 2nd dose early Sept.

Even with very modest increases in supply and delivery, that date comes forward considerably, with all adults fully vaccinated in July.

The scenario shown below assumes a 2.5% weekly increase.
This echoes comments made to @SamCoatesSky by the head of the UK's Vaccine Taskforce, saying all adults could be double-dosed by Sept, or maybe Aug, or even sooner if needed
Read 6 tweets
5 Feb

Cases & hospital admissions in Israel are falling steeply among vaccinated age groups, in the first clear sign worldwide that Covid-19 jabs are preventing illness 💉🎉

Rates are falling much more slowly (if at all) among under-vaccinated groups.…
We’ve seen very promising data from trials, but this is first evidence 'in the wild' that vaccines are working as hoped.

Data are from @segal_eran’s team at @weizmannscience, who compared case & hospital rates in 60+ age group (heavily vaccinated) and under-60s (less vaccinated)
That age group split is especially useful because of how Israel has phased its vaccination roll-out.

Between Dec 20 And Feb 2, vaccination rates rocketed from zero to 80% at age 60+. Rollout among under-60s began later and is climbing more slowly.
Read 7 tweets
2 Feb
NEW: fresh data from trials in Brazil, South Africa and the UK shows the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine is highly effective with a 12 week gap between doses.

Efficacy is in fact much higher with a 12 week interval than a shorter gap

Story by @donatopmancini:…
The data also show that a single dose delivers strong protection that — crucially — does not wane quickly.

12 weeks after the first dose, efficacy is still well above 70%.
And perhaps most importantly of all, the data found that not even one recipient of the vaccine became severely ill with Covid-19 requiring hospitalisation

Every single participant who was admitted to hospital with Covid-19 was in the placebo group

Read 4 tweets
30 Jan
Lazy, rainy Saturdays are for making paella
And here's a pupdate from someone who's had a long day
Think that's actually my first paella since the food zone at Coachella 2019. Right now the world of music festivals seems like ancient history, but I have faith for a big comeback in 2022 🤞🤞🤞
Read 4 tweets

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