Further proof of increased transmission in the vaccinated was confirmed on 30th July. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that the Delta variant showed similarly high viral loads among unvaccinated and vaccinated cases. The CDC suggested an increased risk of transmission and raised concerns that, unlike with other variants, vaccinated people infected with Delta can transmit the virus.
Public Health England reached a similar conclusion on 6th August: virus levels in those who become infected with Delta having already been vaccinated may be similar to levels found in unvaccinated people. This may have implications for people’s infectiousness, whether they have been vaccinated or not, meaning that vaccines will not suppress the virus spread as much as hoped.
In the UK, the Delta variant accounts for 99% of all Covid hospitalisations. Of these, 34.9% were fully vaccinated, and 55.1% had received at least one dose. Public Health England’s Technical Briefing 20 in early August showed that while vaccination does reduce mortality in the over-50s by more than threefold, for those under 50, the fatality rate among the vaccinated is slightly higher than in the unvaccinated: 0.05 versus 0.03% (likely the result of several confounding variables).
On 10th August, a panel of experts, including most notably the head of the Oxford vaccine team, called for an end to mass testing in Britain because the Delta variant has destroyed any chance of herd immunity through vaccination. The scientists believe it is time to accept that there’s no way of stopping the virus from spreading through the entire population, and monitoring people with mild symptoms is no longer helpful.
A pandemic can only be terminated for good if the population develops robust protective immunity against the virus. This naturally occurs through herd immunity and becomes stronger as a combined result of natural disease-mediated immune selection and active immunisation (i.e., as far as its adaptive, pathogen-specific component is concerned).
The more robust the herd immunity becomes, the more effectively and durably the population controls the virus, the less frequently outbreaks will occur, and the less impressive those will be.
To quote Professor Robert Clancy, one of the most senior clinical immunologists in Australia and the most specialised when it comes to Covid:
The biology of Covid-19 infection dictates that while the parenteral genetic vaccines available to us will be necessary for short-term Covid control, they will have little impact on infection, will be limited in duration, and that antigen drift will create variants that will severely compromise efficacy.
They will settle along influenza vaccine lines. Moreover, genetic vaccines by stimulating uncontrolled Spike protein synthesis will cause highly concerning adverse events of a short and long term nature that we can only surmise at this stage. All these outcomes have come about.
My point was, and is, that Ivermectin and like drugs are immediately needed, not to compete with vaccines, but to complement them: to reduce community spread; to treat early disease; to reduce progression to severe illness requiring admission to hospital and death, and to reduce the growing community repository of ’long Covid’.
Making Ivermectin available across the Covid community now will be synergistic with the vaccine programme facilitating movement through the planned stages and greatly facilitate our reconnect with the world outside the bubble.
In summary, the current vaccines will help reduce hospitalisation morbidity and death in the elderly and vulnerable, but do little in preventing infection or reducing community spread. Indeed, they may achieve the opposite.