mRNA vaccines are performing much better than those using older technology (and available to the largest part of the world). A severe dilemma develops in vaccine promotion and messaging.
- snip - A growing body of preliminary research suggests the Covid vaccines used in most of the world offer almost no defense against becoming infected by the highly contagious Omicron variant.
All vaccines still seem to provide a significant degree of protection against serious illness from Omicron, which is the most crucial goal. But only the Pfizer and Moderna shots, when reinforced by a booster, appear to have initial success at stopping infections, and these vaccines are unavailable in most of the world.
The other shots including those from AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson and vaccines manufactured in China and Russia do little to nothing to stop the spread of Omicron, early research shows. And because most countries have built their inoculation programs around these vaccines, the gap could have a profound impact on the course of the pandemic.
What you lose first is protection against asymptomatic mild infection, what you retain much better is protection against severe disease and death, said John Moore, a virologist at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York. He called it a silver lining that Omicron so far appears less lethal than the Delta variant.
interesting take by Empty Wheel April, 27, 2021
Article coming at this from a slightly different angle than what we're hearing elsewhere. Personally, I think the U.S. has an obligation to do as much as it can. It's a pandemic! But ... Is it fair to be saddling the U.S. with 'inadequate response' -- given the deplorable (near criminal) performance of Modi and his government?
Youve likely seen images of numerous funeral pyres and many graves along with sick outside overfull hospitals.
Apart from the pyres, it looks like Wuhan in January 2020, the U.S. in March 2020, and Brazil at the end of this March.
And yet there is something really wrong here, very off. The case counts and deaths are truths which cant be escaped but the insistence the U.S. somehow is failing to meet Indias needs is off base. - snip -
- snip - In the mean time invective against the Biden administration and Big Pharma has continued, some of it based in what looks like weak and less-than-thorough reporting.
Claims that Big Pharma has decided profits come before the lives of Indias people follow reports that Big Pharma refused to give India patents or transfer intellectual property.
Except that Big Pharma is represented in India by AstraZeneca, which is making their adenovirus-vector vaccine in country. Its the same vaccine which has been used in Europe, and is still in FDA safety review here.
India also has its own Big Pharma in Bharat Biotech, which has developed Covaxin vaccine in collaboration with Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri. The vaccine left Phase 3 trials in early January.
Yet intelligent people continue to harangue the U.S. and Big Pharma about their refusal to help India with the IP needed for licensing. They retweet stuff like this:
The account that wrote this was opened only weeks ago in January 2021. Theres almost nothing in its profile to suggest this is a human with credible background education or experience; the account hasnt been validated by Twitter. Note the number of times this has been shared by retweet or quote tweet, yet the majority of roughly 6000 tweets by this account are about pop culture.
This is the kind of social media content which ramped up tension around U.S. response to Indias ongoing COVID surge and continues to do so because it remains uncontested.
The issue the tweet focused on was vaccine manufacturers request for indemnification by countries which use its vaccine or licensing to manufacture vaccines. How odd that an account tweeting about beauty products and the Kardashians chose to phrase indemnification this way. - snip -