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National Opinion Centre

COVID-19 headlines for May 14 included the following:

Confused?

How does the reader reconcile the apparent contradictions?

Why, for instance, is the Liberal government buying more AstraZeneca (AZ) vaccine – despite the growing number of cases of vaccine-induced thrombotic thrombocytopenia (VITT) – and the fact that some provinces and other countries have halted use of the vaccine due to the health risks?

Why is Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam planning on “mixing and matching” vaccine types, in view of the increase in severity of reactions reported? The US Centre for Disease Control and Prevention and Public Health England have both warned against mixing vaccines – unless there are “exceptional situations”, such as a shortage of first-dose vaccine.

Much is unknown about the effacy and side effects of mixing vaccines, and there is no global consensus of expert opinion at this time.

Several vaccine mixing trials are planned or in early stages around the world, however there are no conclusive data available at this time. Early results suggest increased side effects.

Evidently, what is viewed as a risky “exceptional” event in the US and UK – warranting use only in the event of a failure in production and distribution systems – is going to be the norm in Canada. This is the Liberal government’s vaccination plan.

In Europe, concerns about the safety of the AZ vaccine have prompted countries to recommend the lesser evil of dose-mixing. Germany has advised that those under 55 receive an alternative vaccine as a second dose, while France has recommended the same for people under the age of 60.

AZ concerns however, extend beyond blood clotting.

In April, the Biden administration disclaimed knowledge that the Emergent BioSolutions facility in Baltimore had discarded millions of possibly contaminated doses of AZ vaccine when President Biden authorized the company to ship vaccines to Mexico and Canada, stating also that no assurances regarding quality had been provided to either government. Mexico and Canada were also made aware of another episode of possible contamination, involving the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, that occurred at the same facility.

Vaccine production at the Emergent plant was halted. Up to 15 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine were to be discarded because of concerns over contamination. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) subsequently reported that Emergent had failed to fully investigate the episode, and that problems with disinfection, manufacturing and training had been identified.

The FDA shared its findings with Canadian regulators in April.

An FDA spokesman said that products not authorized for use in the US, like the AstraZeneca vaccine, “may nonetheless be exported if certain conditions are met.”

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wasn’t concerned, “We have confirmed that the doses received from the United States a number of weeks ago are not, have not been subjected to the challenges that have come up currently in the Baltimore plant. There is absolutely no danger of that for Canadians.”

This would be good news for Canadians, if only the Trudeau government hadn’t gotten everything else wrong about COVID-19… from initially stating that it wasn’t contagious, to not closing the borders initially, to travel restrictions, to mask guidelines (including Tam’s perplexing recommendation to wear one during sex) – and if the FDA findings are ignored.

Obviously, the government is able to get its hands on the AZ vaccine because other governments around the world are suspending or restricting its use, in order to protect their citizens. No one else wants it… freeing up stockpiles for Canada.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has been bragging about vaccination rates, saying that Canada ranks among the top countries in the world in terms of the number of vaccine doses administered, and that Canadians can expect a “one-dose summer”. This self-congratulatory spin egregiously misrepresents the true vaccination picture.

The New York Times coronavirus vaccination tracker provides daily updates of vaccination rates globally. As of May 17, it shows USA (37 percent of total population fully vaccinated), UK (30), Italy (14), France (13), Germany (11) Canada (3.8), and Japan (1.4).

Canada actually ranks a shameful second to last among G7 nations in fully vaccinating its population, on par with nations such as St. Kitts and Nevis (3.3) and Kazakhstan (4.1).

The tiny archipelagic former British colony of Seychelles, in the Indian Ocean, holds top global position with 63 per cent of the population fully vaccinated. Some countries, such as China, do not report vaccination data.

Vaccine procurement in Canada has been a massive debacle. In November 2020 it was revealed that Pfizer and Moderna procurements had in fact been delayed as a result of a deal gone bad between the National Research Council (NRC) and a Chinese supplier. After months of delays, China (a Trudeau favoured-nation) refused to ship the vaccine – leaving only 3.8 per cent of Canadians fully vaccinated today.

Unfortunately for Canadians, pandemic policy has been driven largely by politics… instead of science. The WHO has been urging governments to end lockdowns since October 2020.

Another May 14 headline suggests that Canadians may be finally awakening to the obvious failures in pandemic policy:

Trust in Canadian political leaders has cratered during the pandemic, poll finds — except in Quebec.

The writing may be on the wall for political leaders who have ignored science in favour of politically based policies that have rendered Canada one of the most miserable countries in the world – according to the Covid Misery Index.

 

The views, opinions and analyses expressed in the articles on National Newswatch are those of the contributor(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the publishers.
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