I know it, antivaccine groups redoubling efforts to scare pregnant women (and parents about their adolescent kids). The prediction is that many pregnant women (and adolescents) could contract the delta variant as it accelerates (currently >13% of virus isolates)
Earlier this year I had the opportunity to speak with @KatyTurNBC about her COVID19 vaccination. I think by doing this publicly she may have saved a lot of lives. Also good on @MSNBC@NBCNewsPR@TODAYshow for strong public health messaging
Yes but there’s more. I’m realizing that phony #LabLeak arguments have morphed into justifications to bully and intimidate prominent American scientists. The far right (but increasingly the mainstream GOP) are adopting antiscience as a major platform. I’m working to stop this
For instance, where is the condemnation of @DailyMailUK@DailyMail for their disgusting and unjustified hit piece on @PeterDaszak it’s nothing more than their capitulation to far right extremism and promotion of an antiscience agenda in order to sell newspapers
Or the condemnation of the attacks I’ve experienced from the “army of patriots” who say they will “hunt” me down? I’m looking at models like the Southern Poverty Law @splcenter but an organization to defend biomedical scientists vs far right (or even not so far right) attacks
1/3 Many thanks @yasminv for hosting me today. Apologies for throwing some cold water on the vaccination “victory lap” today, but there are some stark realities to consider...
2/3 first I don’t know where that 70% of adults goal comes from, but it’s not adequate. Yes the Biden Admin deserves credit for great successes, but we need 75-80% of entire US pop vaccinated, all of the adults adolescents. The South looks terrible, we’ll see a surge this summer
3/3 also there’s a humanitarian tragedy underway in South America, the Biden Admin needs to take some leadership here and help our neighbors. We must scale up and distribute vaccine for Latin America now, and ultimately all the LMICs. US State Dept invisible
Nationally yes Dr Jha, but here in the South we’re woefully behind. Very few getting vaccinated, Louisiana Mississippi Alabama, literally at one-half the vaccination rate of Vermont or Massachusetts. Our nation’s vaccination heat map looks like a Union-Confederacy map from 1861
This observation may have important USA implications, especially for American kids. Given how B.1617.2 is accelerating in the US affecting especially among the unvaccinated, including children. This may require us to accelerate the urgency immunize younger groups
1/5: In 2021, I've written a series of articles describing the globalization of antivaccine/antiscience movement that rose out of Texas in 2015, now a triple-headed monster: 1) Far right extremism/white nationalism 2) Organized and funded US groups, 3) Russian disinformation
1/10 Many thanks @chrislhayes for hosting me tonight @allinwithchris on the very important problem of Covid vaccine immunogenicity and takes on people receiving immunosuppressive Rx or with immune deficiencies.
2/10 it’s now a significant % of US population as much as 3-5% and increasing annually
3/10 includes those with 1) primary immunodeficiency, 2) leukemias lymphomas, 3) solid organ malignancies and chemotherapy, 4) bone marrow transplants, 5) solid organ transplants, 6) B cell mab Rx, 7) corticosteroids Rx, 8) CAR-T Rx, 9) splenectomy, 10) primary immunodeficiency
80 million doses is a "drop in the bucket," and the U.S. should pledge to manufacture and export 4-5-billion doses by the end of the year, Peter Hotez, professor of pediatrics and dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine, Baylor Coll Med, told CNN. axios.com/wealthy-countr…
Equally important, I also said that this should be done in an overarching frame work of coherent US foreign policy around vaccine diplomacy. We're not getting that out of Foggy Bottom (State Department).
Of course, I understand State Dept is up to its eyeballs this week in Middle East issues, but somehow we need to advance a foreign policy and approach to vaccinating the world with the following elements....
Talk about great men: I’ve gotten to know @drsanjaygupta even pre-pandemic. Honest to god, there’s no one who has worked harder and tirelessly to get it right and speak to the American 🇺🇸 people, a true tzaddik
Many thanks @AlisynCamerota @VictorBlackwell for hosting me with @celinegounder on new mask rules, based on 1) steep declines in virus transmission, 2) vaccine availability, 3) the science showing reductions in asymptomatic transmission and virus shedding
That’s ridiculous @joshrogin I never said it doesn’t matter. I said we need an international team to investigate the origins in Hubei Province, collecting samples of blood from local animal reservoirs, people across a wider area. Also I said...
Also I said after the first pandemic CoV emerged from Southern China in 2002, we and others in the scientific community began working on coronavirus vaccines, because we knew this would not be the last. And we were right
The point is China is the perfect mixing bowl of animal reservoirs and dense human populations that gives rise to coronaviruses and influenza viruses, something known for a very long time
For me one takeaway from this morning’s testimony: the US Govt has no overarching coherent COVID19 vaccine policy for global health: a few million dose donations here, some patent waiver action, but no comprehensive roadmap for vaccine diplomacy
Also I’m not hearing much of a plan for how to best combat vaccine refusal in order to reach the last mile and get the country fully vaccinated
I thought @US_FDA did a good job articulating how they worked to approximate the BLA during the emergency use process
Lots of discussion about Tucker Carlson or Laura Ing. or other Fox News anchors. I have a slightly different view. I don’t think this is coming from any of them. This is an executive decision by Fox News and News Corps (have you seen WSJ Opinion lately?) to go full on antiscience
We have to understand better why? Is it as simple as a dog whistle to keep the 30 million together? Many identifying now as White Nationalists based on the broadside attack against me last wk. Or to fend off Newsmax or OAN? Or because of Putin Russian support? We just don’t know
But the public health consequences are just devastating. Have you seen the weekend vaccination numbers? Almost half in deep red states compared to blue blueish states. As a nation we can’t vaccinate our way out of this mess unless we can stop the antiscience aggression
Many thanks @AlisynCamerota @VictorBlackwell for hosting me following @POTUS remarks important to optimize access for those who want to get vaccinated. I was enthusiastic about his comments, but also there were a few elements missing, here they are:
1. The conservative lobby and four polls now showing that 40-50% of Republicans won’t get vaccinated. We must expand our outreach to conservative groups. Remember it’s not 70% of adults we must reach, it’s 70% of total population, and that means almost all adults
2. We’ll need to vaccinate Canada 🇨🇦 and northern Mexico 🇲🇽 to also halt virus transmission in the US. This means more than sending a few million AZOx doses
2/4 globally US needs to shape a more coherent foreign policy and vaccine diplomacy framework, balancing the needs to support COVAX, India 🇮🇳 and the need to help vaccinate Canada 🇨🇦 and Mexico 🇲🇽 to slow virus transmission across North America, also our @TexasChildrens vaccine
3/4 In the US I’m concerned about a widening disparity across different states. The blue or blueish states in New England, NY, CA, NM now with 50% vaccine coverage, but deep red states GA AL TN LA ID WY under 35% we need greater outreach to conservative groups
Wow, right out of the antivaccine playbook, except more nuanced fine tuned. Diabolical: Fox News has recruited clever writers, with science backgrounds, to press their political agenda, discredit scientists, promote doubt and instability. The Murdoch’s pay better wages than Putin
So here’s the actual deal: as we worked to discredit fake antivaccine links to autism and with some success with my Rachel book, the antivaccine lobby needed a new thing. So they went after the HPV vaccine and made the same fake assertions about its links to reproductive health
They said HPV vaccine causes infertility and miscarriages and now copy paste that onto COVID19 vaccines. Remember what’s happening. Antivax forces are getting ready to draw a line in the sand against any approvals for adolescents 12-15 years old
So I agree. We’re not looking out for our Canada 🇨🇦 brothers and sisters. I’m actually presenting tomorrow on this to an influential group. Vaccine metrics in Canada are awful. Canada has always been there for us through hard times and good, we must reciprocate.
It’s actually fucking ridiculous. The @POTUS should be up there with @CanadianPM@JustinTrudeau together announcing that all Canadian provinces will be afforded the same vaccine protection as US states. The Canadian people would never forget it and it’s in our own self interests
Honestly, we should do the same for Mexico and Central America, what’s happened to our humanity?
No Ms. Wheeler, you are mistaken as was Joe. He was not informed about the shifting nature of the pandemic, how the variants are landing young adults in hospitals and ICUs. Also uninformed about high rates of long-haul COVID in young adults, many debilitated as a result.
2/5: well funded and organized antivaccine groups, with 58 million followers according to the @CCDHate
3/5: the conservative lobby that began as Republican Tea Party PACs in South Central US TX OK now becoming mainstream in the GOP as evidenced by nighttime anchors on conservative cable networks defiant of vaccines and masks
1/3 Many thanks @jaketapper for hosting me @TheLeadCNN re: revised CDC guidelines. I indicated that I don’t have a specific problem with them, but they are not properly contextualized and placed in the context of a roadmap or continuum.
2/3 the way to do that is articulate what nation looks like by summer if approach full vaccination, meaning 20% of country under the age of 12 and ineligible because of age, and 80% adults/adolescents. The. transmission declines dramatically, we get back to 2019 style life
3/3 by summer life may get close to normal for many Americans. Between then and now the CDC should lay out a road map of gradually loosening restrictions as transmission declines. Right now at 50K new cases per day we’re at Summer 2020 levels, this decreases as we vaccinate >60%