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A Six-Year-Old Child Should Not Be Forced to Get the Covid Shot to Eat in a Restaurant

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I saw this tweet today: 

It is an interesting question. First, is the technical matter. What evidence do we have that two doses of vaccination are necessary and risk reducing for a six-year old boy who ALREADY had covid-19 (and one dose of vax)? 

The Pfizer trial that led to EUA had a fraction of patients with seropostivity at baseline (i.e. they had had covid), and in this group, comparisons could not be made because there were no Covid cases whether they received a vaccine or not. The CDC acknowledges this but points to higher titers of antibodies, and no serious safety events as justification to move ahead. The UK advisors use their countries own high seroprevalance in this age group as a reason to hold off on vaccinating the young.

Second, German data (discussed in the last post) shows outcomes for healthy kids is remarkably good. Essentially no kids in this age died with or without vaccination. And of course, this is for kids who have not already RECOVERED from Covid-19.

So, on the technical matter, does two doses lower risk to a healthy 6 year old who had Covid-19? The best answer is we don’t know.

Now to the policy question: what sense does it make to exclude kids who don’t meet this vaccination requirement from NYC restaurants? I have to say it is crazy. Both James and Marty are correct: focusing on this age group, and ignoring natural immunity, and using the brute force of the state to impose such a draconian restriction is a terrible policy decision.

We should save our political capital to encourage older Americans and those with co-morbidities to get the first dose, not six-year olds who recovered from COVID19 to get the second. 

I think many people don’t realize that overly exuberant policy does serious damage to public health. I worry now that too much damage has been done.

Honestly, I don’t even know what to say as this policy is so irrational.

Republished from the author’s substack

Author

  • Vinay Prasad MD MPH is a hematologist-oncologist and Associate Professor in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the University of California San Francisco. He runs the VKPrasad lab at UCSF, which studies cancer drugs, health policy, clinical trials and better decision making. He is author of over 300 academic articles, and the books Ending Medical Reversal (2015), and Malignant (2020).

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