According to two people familiar with the situation, the Biden government’s rush to roll out coronavirus immunization booster doses this month was primarily informed by unreported data from Israel’s immunization program.
Vaccine Effectiveness Fades Over Time
According to the two main sources, the Israel data indicates the Pfizer vaccine’s capacity to reduce serious illnesses and hospitalization is declining over time; also declining is the shot’s power to defend from mild/moderate illness.
The country began providing boosters to adults over 60 in July. It has since expanded the program to include persons over 30, yet disclosed very little information about the booster campaign’s impact so far.
To shape its COVID-19 reaction, the Biden government has long relied on statistics from Israel, which has one of the greatest immunization rates in the world.
Another senior government official said high-ranking members of the White House, the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control, and the United States Food and Drug Administration have spent weeks analyzing the newest Israeli data. They, therefore, concluded that the United States should begin administrating boosters this autumn.
So the vaccine doesn't work?
I thought the whole point of the vaccine was to protect you. https://t.co/3TUpo75Qcr
— Tim Pool (@Timcast) September 10, 2021
The Numbers Don’t Lie
Even though the CDC has released a number of targeted studies suggesting COVID-19 vaccinations’ efficiency against disease is declining (especially in the elderly), three people who have studied the data told Politico on Monday the Israeli data is more extensive and disturbing.
The government’s attention on Israel’s data demonstrates how much it is relying on the lessons of other nations to foresee the next stage of the epidemic in the United States. This is partially due to the highly contagious Delta variant spreading first in other regions of the world.
It’s also partly due to better data recordings in nations with national healthcare programs, such as Israel. Because the federal government has consistently ignored the nation’s public health systems, the United States continues to struggle to gather and evaluate trustworthy COVID-19 data.
We did not take your freedom. The government did.
We are not holding your freedoms at ransom. The government is.
If we are a danger to you, then your vaccine doesn't work.
If it does, then you should already be free.
The government has lied to you.
— Bethany Cherisse (@BethanyCherisse) September 8, 2021
Senior officials engaged in the government pandemic reaction have been debating whether or not to give booster doses to Americans for weeks. The White House and top health authorities announced in mid-August that most individuals would get the doses starting Sept. 20.
This proposal caused disagreements among Biden’s senior advisers, the CDC, and the FDA, with questions raised about whether internal statistics backed the goal. A study published Monday in The Lancet by two senior FDA vaccine scientists (who are departing the agency) found no evidence to warrant giving booster injections to the general public.
Three other administration officials have said the FDA is looking into the Israeli information, as it considers vaccine manufacturers’ requests to offer booster shots. One official stated the FDA makes the final decision over whether or not to prescribe booster shots, regardless of domestic or international vaccine evidence.
Pfizer’s proposal for approval of its second dose is set to be discussed by the agency’s vaccine advisory board on Friday.