[News] Coronavirus

A place to discuss the now-global coronavirus outbreak.

Sigh. Danish health authorities just decided not to use J&J. I thought it was a very reasonable choice not to use AstraZeneca, based on the data that had been collected. But this seem crazy based on the currently available data. They basically said they dont trust US data, and unlike AZ vaccine, since we haven't started using it, we dont have any data ourselves.

Our politicians sounds a bit pissed about it, and they apparently want to allow people to sign up to get the J&J vaccines outside of the national healthcare system. All in all, it is a mess.

Shadout wrote:

Sigh. Danish health authorities just decided not to use J&J. I thought it was a very reasonable choice not to use AstraZeneca, based on the data that had been collected. But this seem crazy based on the currently available data. They basically said they dont trust US data, and unlike AZ vaccine, since we haven't started using it, we dont have any data ourselves.

Our politicians sounds a bit pissed about it, and they apparently want to allow people to sign up to get the J&J vaccines outside of the national healthcare system. All in all, it is a mess.

I'm not really that upset about it. in the end it only means that the final date for having everyone vaccinated will be delayed by a month (end of August). A month really doesn't mean anything. Corona is completely under control in Denmark at the moment due to high social adherence to the restrictions (and the summer season).

It actually seems like common sense to only use Pfizer and Moderna's vaccines. No need to kill 1:140000 and give many more severe side effects.

It is also worth remembering that the last to be vaccinated are young adults who generally dont get killed by Corona and have very few side effects.

All in all a good decision IN MY OPINION.

jbavon wrote:
Shadout wrote:

Sigh. Danish health authorities just decided not to use J&J. I thought it was a very reasonable choice not to use AstraZeneca, based on the data that had been collected. But this seem crazy based on the currently available data. They basically said they dont trust US data, and unlike AZ vaccine, since we haven't started using it, we dont have any data ourselves.

Our politicians sounds a bit pissed about it, and they apparently want to allow people to sign up to get the J&J vaccines outside of the national healthcare system. All in all, it is a mess.

I'm not really that upset about it. in the end it only means that the final date for having everyone vaccinated will be delayed by a month (end of August). A month really doesn't mean anything. At he same time corona is completely under control in Denmark.

It actually seems like common sense to only use Pfizer and Moderna's vaccines. No need to kill 1:140000 and give many more severe side effects.

It is also worth remembering that the last to be vaccinated are young adults who generally dont get killed by Corona and have very few side effects.

All in all a good decision IN MY OPINION.

Will you still feel that way when Indian variants begin circulating? Time is still absolutely crucial in my opinion. The longer this rages the more variants there will be and the harder it will be to finally quell all the lock downs, etc.

Currently, yes. I can't predict the future and have been mistaken before, but right now I'm not worried about new variants in our society.

I'd actually prefer that Denmark's J&J and AZ vaccines get put to use in countries where it is more needed than in Denmark. A 1:140000 death rate is probably favorable in India at the moment compared to the chaos created by Corona.

That seems like a better use of vaccines than getting a country with a successful lock down vaccinated a month earlier.

I hope the 1 month delay ends up being true. Since J&J was supposed to be our largest share of vaccines, they are seemingly relying on Pfizer delivering much more than initially promised. If that changes, the delay could increase significantly.
Norway said recently that they expected a 3 month delay if they abandoned J&J. Which would bring the schedule into autumn and the rise of of infections you would expect at that time of the year.
As for having the pandemic under control, that might not last, when everyone are pushing toward full reopening at the same time.

But I acknowledge the health agency has an incredibly difficult job. There is no easy choice here.

jbavon wrote:

Currently, yes. I can't predict the future and have been mistaken before, but right now I'm not worried about new variants in our society.

What is this confidence based on?

Literally the concern is that the variants eventually escape immunity, in which case immunizing more people soon is the difference between the pandemic ending and the pandemic never ending. To say nothing about this being a matter of life and death.

DSGamer wrote:

Literally the concern is that the variants eventually escape immunity, in which case immunizing more people soon is the difference between the pandemic ending and the pandemic never ending.

Yeah. We need to get to a point where the virus cant spread effectively anymore. If the virus can keep spreading anywhere in the world, the whole pandemic can be restarted at any moment.
Of course, jbavon is right that places like India needs the vaccine just as much (and more) as US or Denmark, so if the unused vaccines are used elsewhere, slowing down the process in one place, to speed it up somewhere else, should not go against the overall goal.

Though this is also why I always thought the UK strategy of only giving a lot of people 1 jab, of the two they were supposed to give, seemed like a bad idea.
Creating a population of 'relatively' weak immune responses sounds like a paradise for corona mutations. Maybe even more so than in unvaccinated populations, since we helped the mutations to get rid of the competition.

In that case it would be logical to vaccinate the countries which are more likely to create variants.

Variants are more likely to be created in places where a virus can run unchecked. Most third world countries fall into this category due to overpopulation, dense urban areas and poor health care.

So diverting vaccines from a rich country to a poorer country seems like a good idea to me.

The virus ran rampant is running rampant everywhere... except NZ

We're pretty fine in Australia as well. Our government sent a bunch of PPE and supplies to India recently, I think.

polypusher wrote:

The virus ran rampant is running rampant everywhere... except NZ

In Portugal, it's pretty much controlled. Everything is opening up now (but still with safety measures), so let's see how it goes.

IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/Or32Hjf.png)

So this is what competence and compassion feels like?

That's great to see; I was on a work call today, and a number of my coworkers are Indian or Pakistani, and the amount of stress they're going through with worrying about their families back home was just heartbreaking to hear. Anything to help that at this point.

OG_slinger wrote:

IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/Or32Hjf.png)

Great! Now do insulin!

OG_slinger wrote:

IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/Or32Hjf.png)

There is one large danger with this. Once you open it up to out of patent protection, you really start upping the risk of people producing the vaccine with less than ideal quality control.

It could also deter future medical research since the companies could fear their IP being taken from them. Though it is probably a gamble we have to take.

This is what I'm talking about: graphical representation of herd immunity, over time, for the US (and states) including previous infections + vaccinations.

Population level immunity: https://covid19dashboardgt.shinyapps...

kazar wrote:

It could also deter future medical research since the companies could fear their IP being taken from them. Though it is probably a gamble we have to take.

I am not sure how much of a realistic worry that is.

Given that IP rights are conferred by the government, the government can always take them away or force the owner to provide them at low (or no) cost to others. The Canadian Federal government almost forced Canadian Patent holders of a couple of HIV drugs to licence them to 3rd parties for manufacture for sale to Africa during the AIDS crisis. To the best of my knowledge, that is the only time in Canadian history that has even been threatened.

I assume that particular governmental right exists in other jurisdictions as well.

kazar wrote:

It could also deter future medical research since the companies could fear their IP being taken from them. Though it is probably a gamble we have to take.

Yeah. Not sure this is a good idea.
Strong arm the companies into allowing more third parties to manufacture their vaccines, sure, plenty of companies have offered to help, such as TEVA. Which might be what the intention is here too.
But completely waiving patents seems like a bad move in the long run.

I'm disheartened by the lack of humanity around this IP stuff (disclaimer: that comment is not directed at anyone here). This is a global pandemic impacting the entire world, and the more people infected means more opportunities for mutation which could lead to something worse, not to mention all of the death and suffering going on right now. If this is equating these vaccine IPs to $$ that's abhorrent. It's in our long term best interest to get this pandemic behind us and learn how to better prevent the next one.

To me, this is a no brainer- share the "recipes" with the world. Offer to help with materials and creation of the vaccine. Give it away! Your intellectual property isn't going to mean sh*t if you're dead. I question how much further we can progress as a race if we continue to try to monetize everything. Where is the compassion for others?

It might save a lot more people in the future, if companies are more willing to take risks in their research. Unless we find a way to get rid of capitalism right now, that is likely going to be needed for a while.

In any case, I would assume most countries and companies aren’t equipped to producing these vaccines regardless. Especially the rna vaccines. So forcing the companies to make deals (which they haven’t done nearly enough so far imo) with the few others who can produce these things, and governments paying both of them, seems like it will both accomplish the actual goal, and with more safety in term of the vaccines being produced properly, than just releasing the “recipes” to the world.

mudbunny wrote:

There is one large danger with this. Once you open it up to out of patent protection, you really start upping the risk of people producing the vaccine with less than ideal quality control.

India's at 400,000 new cases and 4,000 deaths a day now.

400k new cases a day is about double what our peak infections were and there's no sign of that rate of infection slowing. And these numbers are almost definitely tremendous undercounts.

India also has a large base of experience manufacturing pharmaceuticals so I'm not terribly worried that they're going to be brewing up bathtub versions of the vaccine and giving it to their citizens.

Note, I am 100% in favour of opening up the IP rights for life-saving medications like the COVID vaccine.

However, vaccine reluctance and denial are serious problems. What will happen when (not if, but when) someone somewhere cuts corners on the steps for creating a vaccine and a significant number of people are injured or killed?

What will most likely happen is the US patents will be released (under government order) to specific 3rd parties who have shown they can meet the required conditions to safely produce the vaccine. The patent holders will be compensated by the US government somehow.

Yeah, the CDC and FDA are going to be on top of this. We're not talking about President Awarded-a-multi-billion-dollar-wall-building-contract-to-two-guys-in-a-shack. The adults are in charge again.

kazar wrote:

It could also deter future medical research since the companies could fear their IP being taken from them. Though it is probably a gamble we have to take.

I call bullsh*t. This claim gets put forth all the time about pharma pricing, and it just doesn't hold water.

Something that poses an imminent global threat is well outside of the normal "private pharma research" territory. For that matter, much of the primary vaccine research was funded heavily by our taxes, not by private investment (Moderna got $2.5 billion from the US gov, Pfizer got half a billion from Germany via Biontech and a promise of guaranteed sales from the US gov to ensure it would be profitable) -- and publicly funded research is quite frequently the primary source of investment for pharmaceuticals that are truly public health concerns, though you wouldn't know it by looking at the price tag.

Edit: just to clarify Kazar, my aggressive tone was not intended to be targeting you. I have a lot of resentment built up against our healthcare and pharmaceutical industries in the US.