1/ It's hard to know the real reason for the decision to give 12-15-year-olds only a single dose of because the details of the discussion are not available. Hence the campaign for greater JCVI transparency.

@DrRCoull @cv_cev twitter.com/DrRCoull/statu…
2/ The purported reason for the decision, IIRC, is a concern about adverse reactions to the vaccine.

Myocarditis, in particular, seems to occur in an extremely small proportion of vaccine recipients.
3/ Post-vaccination cases seem to have a minor illness and make a full recovery, although some people are concerned there could be long term consequences.

Myocarditis is far more common after Covid-19 disease than after vaccination.
4/ Post-vaccination myocarditis seems most common after the second dose of vaccine. This is the reason put forward for - at present - offering 12-15-yos a single dose.
5/ Ideas about the high proportion who had been infected already - which usually seems to have a similar effect as a first dose of vaccine - and about the perceived lack of severity of disease in this age group are likely also considerations.
6/ Long Covid seems not to have been a consideration.

I think the decision was said to be an interim decision, to be kept under review; in particular, while further data on vaccine safety in this age group accumulated from countries giving two doses.
7/ My expectation was that it would change after a few weeks or months, after which a second dose would be offered.
8/ Indeed, I think it's likely, in due course, that we'll move to it being a three-dose primary course for everyone, perhaps with boosters every few years, possibly starting in infancy.

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More from @petermbenglish

14 Oct
1/ I couldn't find a link to the study in this BBC News report, but the report rehashes what we've known for a long time.


We know:
2/ PCR tests on throat swabs, done with good technique at the right time are only about 70% sensitive: 3/10 positive cases are missed.

PCR tests done late (eg a day or 2 after a positive lateral flow test) is even less sensitive.

Lateral flow tests are even less sensitive.
3/ Both types of test are extremely specific: fewer than 1% of people who do not have Covid-19 will get a false positive result.
Read 7 tweets
14 Oct
What an appalling interview from Sajid Javid starting a few minutes ago on @BBCr4today.

He is clearly incompetent, way out of his depth. I've seldom heard a minister say so many stupid things in a single interview.
@BBCr4today health inequalities are NOT caused by an unequal distribution of GPs.
@BBCr4today How, exactly, are you fighting the virus? Why are mask mandates not in place and rigorously enforced on public transport, in shops and other places, and in schools? Why is health and safety in schools and workplaces not ensuring good ventilation / air filtration?
Read 6 tweets
12 Oct
1/ . @jimalkhalili's Life Scientific on @BBCRadio4 this morning had a scientist (? @SirPaulNurse of @TheCrick ) saying:

"When [SARS-CoV-2 and the Covid-19 pandemic] arrived, we knew nothing about it."


We knew a lot about Coronaviruses.
2/ We knew a lot about the immune system, how it interacts with pathogens, and how it can overreact to cause an acute (short term) overreaction (cytokine storms…); and about long-term autoimmune disease.

We knew a lot about treatments for autoimmune diseases.
3/ We knew a lot about vaccines and how they work. (Objections to sensible decisions - like extending the prime-boost interval - were based on the fallacy that "we know nothing…", and ignored decades of work on vaccination.)
Read 10 tweets
3 Oct
The tories claim to be the economically competent.

So why do they give visas to very high earners while deporting/preventing entry of people prepared to work for low wages?
I don't know what happened to tweet 2 which I sent just after tweet 1… Will try again. It will be tweet 3, now.
2 /
That said, it pains me to agree with Johnson, but we have exploited low-paid workers for far too long.

Care and health care workers, pluckers and pickers, cleaners… particularly jobs typically done by women…
Read 11 tweets
22 Sep
1/ Regarding infections in schools, a colleague has pointed out that it is Department for Education directives that require schools to stay open, not PHE advice.

I am aware of this.
2/ Before I retired in January a complaint was made against me by the education sector for refusing to change my advice that a school or section of a school should close because of an outbreak of Covid-19 that was putting staff, other students, and their families at risk.
3/ The complaint went nowhere - I was giving the right public health advice, no matter how awkward it was.
Read 7 tweets
21 Sep
Gross incompetence on behalf of BBC?

Bad legal advice?

Surely it wasn't impossible to make full vaccination a condition of employment eg on H&S grounds?

"Strictly chaos as 'third professional dancer refuses vaccine'" metro.co.uk/2021/09/21/str… via @MetroUK
@MetroUK who are the three vaccine refuseniks?

If the BBC won't replace them now, the public should know, so we can vote them off ASAP.
@MetroUK is there anything that would prevent it being a condition of employment that Strictly Come Dancing #SCD competitors are fully vaccinated?
@AdamWagner1 @BarristerSecret @davidallengreen
Read 4 tweets

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