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Hey, remember when the FDA's top vaccine regulator said even a moderately effective Covid shot could produce herd immunity if 70 percent of people received it?
I'll take "Failed Predictions" for $200, Mayim!
In late July 2020, Dr. Peter Marks, who oversees vaccines for the Food and Drug Administration, spoke for an FDA-produced podcast about the Covid vaccines.
At the time, the big mRNA vaccine trials were just beginning, and the two-part interview was fairly straightforward. It opened with Marks explaining what a vaccine is.
Later, though, Marks explained how an effective vaccine might end the epidemic:
What we also know is that once one reaches a certain level of protection, roughly 70 percent, and if 70 percent of the population gets that vaccine, you start to get to a place where the infectious disease that you're trying to prevent, in this case, let's read COVID-19 into that, it doesn't have anywhere to go and you start to be able to help wipe that infectious disease out…
70 percent protection by 70 percent of the population equals (basically) no more Covid. Got it, doc!
The next week, Marks again explained the importance of 70 percent protection - and this time, he used the magic h-word:
That's the concept of herd immunity that you have enough people in the population that can't get the disease, that the disease has nowhere to go if it shows up. That's exactly what we'd like to ultimately see with a really effective vaccine, one that might have, I think, we estimate at least 70 percent efficacy…
This might be a good time to remind you that much of Western Europe hit Marks’s magic number months ago. In countries like Britain, 70 percent (okay, 69.3!) of people - not adults, the entire population - is fully vaccinated. And about 30 percent of Britons have now received a third dose.
So how come a vaccine that was supposedly 95 percent effective at preventing infection (and supposedly even better at stopping severe disease) in clinical trials has completely failed to stop the epidemic?
Or, put another way, if the vaccines work, what’s going on?
Oh well. We’ll figure it out next pandemic. Meantime, get yer free booster today!