Prof Peter Hotez MD PhD Profile picture
Vaccine Scientist-Pediatrician-Author, Prof Dean @BCM_TropMed @TexasChildrens, Univ Prof @Baylor, Hagler Inst Advanced Study @TAMU, Founding Editor @PLOSNTDs
eDo Profile picture Howard Soule Profile picture deparko Profile picture Dianne Williams Profile picture Jerry Stock Profile picture 7 added to My Authors
6 Aug
I think in terms of published data we have the following:
Reasonable VNA or T cells on:
1. 10 volunteers with 2 doses of AZ vaccine
2. 12 volunteers with 2 doses of Pfizer vaccine
3. 15 volunteers with 2 doses of Moderna vaccine
4. 56 volunteers with 2 doses of Novovax vaccine
To go from that to say we'll vaccine millions of Americans by November 3 is unreasonable.
Read 3 tweets
3 Aug
My important but difficult interview with @AdrienneLaF @TheAtlantic

“In communities with high transmission, it’s inevitable that COVID-19 will enter the schools. Within 2 wks of opening schools, teachers will become ill...everything will shut down.”

theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/…
“The social-distancing expectations and mask requirements for the lower grades are unrealistic”
“The problem is the White House and the task force could never organize themselves to lead a federal response and bring virus transmission down to containment levels,” said Hotez, who has argued for the necessity of a federal containment plan by October.
Read 5 tweets
1 Aug
Many thanks ⁦@Christi_Paul⁩ ⁦@VictorBlackwell⁩ for hosting me ⁦⁦@NewDay⁩ discussing why I don’t feel we can safely open schools in many states in South, Midwest where virus is accelerating. Teaches, staff will get sick. I have an “October 1 Plan” to fix this
1/3: The point is: Yesterday @CDCDirector pointed out all the public health reasons why we need kids back in schools, not only the educational benefits, but also food security, mental health counseling, @AmerAcadPeds agrees. And as a pediatric-scientist I agree as well, but....
2/3: If you try to open schools in areas of high virus transmission or school districts where virus transmission is accelerating, it is inevitable that teachers, staff, bus drivers will contract #COVID19. Once that happens, things will fall apart rapidly.
Read 4 tweets
30 Jul
Thread 1/3: My take on the nation heading into August:

1. White House again reverts to discredited conspiracy theories: "Hydoxy", Chinese Communist Party, WHO

2. Executive Branch has checked out

3. Governors without the epidemiology or political cover to make good decisions
Thread 2/3:

4. Country in a confused, even chaotic state, virus accelerating, soon whole nation becomes a red zone

5. In this vacuum, teachers asked or even forced to do something unsafe for themselves, their students, parents

6. Teachers then make a good decision: "Hell No"
Thread 3/3:

7. With that, things fall further apart as parents can't return to work, businesses halt

8. But rather than implement a calm national plan similar to my October 1 plan we do this in the most chaotic, dysfunctional manner possible.

9. Homeland security under threat
Read 4 tweets
27 Jul
And we will shudder again when we see the demographics of these deaths, I predict overwhelmingly Hispanic, African Americans who perished. Many essential workers who physically had to be at work to support their families. Fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers, it's why I speak out
These are the essential workers on construction sites; family owned businesses - dry cleaners, restaurants; bus and metro drivers; librarians, those who help in churches, the kind and peaceful people who say hello and ask about our families. I won't have it, they deserve better
Read 2 tweets
20 Jul
1/4: My early read on the two @TheLancet adenovirus #COVID19 vaccine trials: AZ-Oxford, they seem to be getting virus neutralizing antibody in the 10 patients who received 2 doses, roughly similar to convalescent patients but too few patients in the PRNT arm, also T cells
2/4: Certainly worth pursuing in a phase 3, but similar to non-human primates may wind up being a partially protective vaccine, i.e., may reduce disease but not viral shedding or transmission? Critical to standardize VNA results across studies, presumably this will happen in OSW
3/4: Chinese Ad5 vaccine seems less encouraging, not everyone seroconverted, and more adverse reactions, but also may be worth pursuing in phase 3.
Read 4 tweets
15 Jul
Let’s call this out: This is an outright and full blown Antiscience disinformation campaign coming out of the White House. I’ve got the bow tie on and I’m ready for battle.... usatoday.com/story/opinion/…
See you beginning at 6 AM Eastern, 5 AM Central on @NewDay
I see this as a struggle over the human rights and dignity of people living in poor neighborhoods across the American South now being decimated by #COVID19 and a uncaring and unconcerned federal government
Read 3 tweets
9 Jul
Perhaps she was referring to a different country? Here in the US we're seeing a steep rise in hospitalizations and ICU admissions due to #COVID19
I fear we're entering new phase of coordinated misinformation, gas lighting, deflection:

1. Claiming 99% COVID19 is harmless
2. Claiming no deaths
3. Hospitalizations due to things other than COVID
4. Invoking Chinese Conspiracies
5. Blaming WHO
As someone named the "OG Villain" (original gangster) by RFK Jr + the antivax movement, I know exactly how coordinated antiscience campaigns work (my paper in
@PLOS). What we're now seeing from the White House has all those hallmarks. This is dangerous
journals.plos.org/plosbiology/ar…
Read 4 tweets
8 Jul
Totally agree with White House CoV TF priority to open schools, as articulated by @AmerAcadPeds. And the way to do this? Do the hard work over this summer to get every state back to containment mode, or close to it. In that way we can safely open schools by the fall
The problem is there is not the federal plan to make this happen. Instead their unrealistic (and tone-deaf) strategy is to push for re-openings in the middle of massive #COVID19 resurgence in 30 US states, and failing to understand why this will likely fail.
Yet another big dump on the states and local school districts to figure it out....and oh yes, if you have any questions go to the CDC website.
Read 4 tweets
8 Jul
Our Letter to Congress on ⁦@WHO⁩ Withdrawal from Public Health, Law and International Relations Leaders oneill.law.georgetown.edu/letter-to-cong…
So tragic how if the White House had owned this epidemic, even with past mistakes, we could have gone into containment mode across the nation. We could still do this in time for the fall, and safely reopen schools, colleges, even have a college football season, the NFL, NBA, NHL
But several things have to happen: 1) White House needs to explain to the American public our dire situation, 2) prioritize a federal strategy, and 3) CDC needs to operate in a different way, and take a leadership role, instead the usual the states are in charge and we advise.
Read 4 tweets
6 Jul
1/5: Talking points early this week of July 6-11:
2/5: Waiting for Monday numbers but I believe they may confirm we're in a dire public health crisis and spiral downward
3/5: I think the numbers will show particular devastation among LatinX and Native American families in low-income communities, also African American populations, confirm we're failing to protect our most vulnerable
Read 7 tweets
5 Jul
One in five patients require hospitalization according to @WHO who.int/indonesia/news…; UK NHS says one-half of those will require ongoing medical care, inpatient rehab, permanently require care from lung scarring, stroke, embolism, neurologic injury.
vox.com/2020/5/8/21251…
Statements from POTUS, advisors, task force, indicate their strategy up to the election: 1) minimize public health impact of #COVID19, 2) obfuscate its devastation in low-income areas, 3) deflect blame CCP @WHO even scientists

Will do my best to show data, refute misinformation
Read 2 tweets
30 Jun
Thread 1/6: I agree with Dr. Schuchat that our #COVID19 epidemic in America is spiraling out of control... axios.com/cdc-coronaviru…
Thread 2/6: This next phase is looking worse than the first one, with most of the rise in the American South, especially metro areas: LA, Phoenix, Houston, Dallas, San Antonio, Austin. These are not "hot spots" "embers". Deaths will follow in a few weeks + permanent injuries
Thread 3/6: Hard to glean specific info from White House CoV Task Force or Hill briefings, but it looks as though the strategy has been to allow states to take the lead and USG provides back up through PPE supplies, FEMA issues, advice from CDC. This is not working.
Read 6 tweets
28 Jun
Listening @CNNSotu this AM: 1. Positivity rates are going up in the American SW metro areas (Left). 2. Deaths lag behind cases (Right - deaths in blue). 3. We have no national plan.
My take @CNNSotu @jaketapper
1. There will be no federal plan.
2. Let it rip, let the states deal with it.
3. We'll help with PPE FEMA issues.
4. NO national road map to track, to model, to design a national intervention strategy.
5. Cases will climb, deaths to follow
Claiming "it's just the young people" = a deflection. Reality: Community transmission will become widespread across our major metro areas: LA Phoenix Austin SanAntonio Dallas Houston. All ages will be affected, esp in low-income neighborhoods where social distancing impossible.
Read 3 tweets
27 Jun
My takeaways from yesterday:

1. Denied massive resurgence, worse than April.
2. Minimized steep rise in 6/8 of our largest metro areas
3. Presented no roadmap, no epidemiologic models
4. Offered no plan for intervention
5. Offered no ideas
6. There will be no federal response
Here's what should happen:

1. They must decide whether they really care (Plan A)
2. Or if their plan is to just let this epidemic rip and leave it to the ethereal concept of herd immunity (Plan B)

Their message yesterday (which I doubt is true) is that they chose Plan B
Assuming A, now:
1. Acknowledge we face a public health crisis, maybe the worst in modern US history
2. Look at metro area models for SW affected cities:
LA Phoenix Austin Dallas San Antonio Houston
3. Model the interventions
4. Make a plan
5. Present it to the American people
Read 4 tweets
25 Jun
Thread 1/4: So tonight @BBCWorld @bbcworldservice I'm a bit freer to express my concerns for #Texas, and less time-constrained than US where everything so heavily scripted:
Thread 2/4: #COVID19 numbers going up precipitously, 1,000 new cases daily in #Houston, with @PolicyLabCHOP estimates indicating 4,000 new cases by July 4th weekend without intervention
Thread 3/4: We have a depth and breadth of poverty in #Houston and the US Gulf Coast that few understand and mostly unseen. Social distancing impossible, and high rates of diabetes HTN renal disease = toxic mix accounting for big rise in hospitalizations/ICU admissions
Read 6 tweets
23 Jun
Well NO Mr. President this is simply not true. Even if we never did another #COVID19 test across the communities of America, this won't hide a steep terrifying rise in #TexasCOVID19 hospitalizations and ICU admissions in our @TXMedCenter. We now face a public health crisis
My interpretation of this (otherwise inexplicable) email and recent actions: Is the White House telling us that they've run out of ideas and are more or less giving up on #COVID19? Are the new rallies in cities where COVID19 now accelerating the beginnings of a farewell tour?
My hope expectation is that the opposition soon articulates a detailed strategy for #COVID19 recovery including metro area predictive models, expanded contact tracing, syndromic surveillance embracing Silicon Valley technology, fixing Operation Warp Speed, & a communications plan
Read 3 tweets
21 Jun
I'm being asked about whether US Congress should convene a "911 commission" for the #COVID19 epidemic in the US?

My ANS: Certainly not now when we're still fighting the virus, maybe next year or after that. Also should it be the congress that convenes vs National Academies?
Reason I say that is because I believe the focus of a commission should be to understand what went wrong (and a few things we did right). I don't think it should focus on assigning blame or send subpoenas flying. Here are the questions I think we might consider:
1. By January we knew what this virus was and that it was spreading through asymptomatic individuals. What did we do in January to get our public health infrastructure ready, and our nursing homes and meat packing plants prepared?
Read 13 tweets
19 Jun
1/6 Thread: In time to mess with your weekend and (my) Father's Day: Latest #COVID19 numbers for Harris County (#Houston) #Texas (@HoustonChron @bcmhouston @TXMedCenter) show numbers climbing rapidly in terms of cases, hospitalizations, ICU admissions. Let's start with #Texas:
2/6 Thread: Harris County #COVID19 Cases
3/6 Thread: #COVID19 hospitalizations in our @TXMedCenter (world's largest medical center where I work)
Read 6 tweets
17 Jun
Thread 1/5: Harris County #Houston #Texas #COVID19 numbers continue to rise sharply (from @HoustonChron)
2/5: And it's not only cases but paralleled by an increase in hospitalizations in our @TXMedCenter
3/5: And the models from @PolicyLabCHOP for Harris County #Houston #Texas looking a bit apocalyptic
Read 5 tweets
13 Jun
I’m quite optimistic about this approach, both as Rx and short term pre-exposure or post-exposure prophylaxis. More thoughtful in its design than some of the vaccine candidates cnn.com/2020/06/11/hea…
Might help us navigate and manage the next couple of years until we have truly effective and safe vaccines
Hopefully we’ll keep the costs down, lots of potential for abuse given past price gouging of mabs
Read 6 tweets