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Antivax weaponization of v-safe: Like VAERS on steroids

Misrepresentation of VAERS reports has been a longstanding antivaccine propaganda technique. Now Del Bigtree has gotten his hands on V-Safe, the system created to track adverse events after COVID-19 vaccination. The results are, predictably, disinformation.

I’ve been writing about how antivaxxers love to abuse and misrepresent reports made to the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS), the reporting system jointly run by the CDC and FDA designed to pick up safety signals for vaccines, starting long before the pandemic. Indeed, the first time I ever wrote specifically about VAERS was in 2006, when the (in)famous père et fils duo of Mark and David Geier went dumpster diving into VAERS to try to “prove” that thimerosal-containing vaccines cause autism, something that “COVID-19 contrarians” did in 2021, with exactly the same sort of bad science. As I (and many others who routinely had combatted antivax disinformation before the pandemic) warned as COVID-19 vaccines neared release in late 2020, it didn’t take long for antivaxxers to adapt their old technique of misusing VAERS to find “associations” between vaccines and all sorts of bad things, leading me to proclaim 2021 to be the year that antivax weaponization of VAERS went mainstream. This background is important if you want to understand what antivax propagandist Del Bigtree and Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. are doing now, which is to weaponize v-safe to falsely portray COVID-19 vaccines as dangerous, following the same template that antivaxxers have long used to weaponize VAERS to portray childhood vaccines as unsafe. This weaponization takes the form of articles like:

And Tweets like this:

Why is Twitter still letting Del Bigtree stay on its platform to promote antivax disinformation? More importantly, does anyone trust the brain trust at ICAN to have been honest and accurate in the manner that they analyzed the database?

To see how this is possible, you have to understand a bit about v-safe. V-safe is a system similar to VAERS that was created to look for safety signals from adverse events reported after COVID-19 vaccination. It was first intended for use by healthcare workers, who were among the first to get the new vaccines, but then offered to everyone receiving a COVID-19 vaccine. The main difference is that VAERS is a purely passive reporting system, whereas v-safe prompts users with a text message at predefined time points after vaccination with a COVID-19 vaccine. Each prompt provides a link for the vaccinee to to fill out a brief online questionnaire about their health, whether they have had COVID-19 recently, and whether they are experiencing any symptoms that might be an adverse event from the vaccine. I myself have participated in v-safe and dutifully answered the questionnaires every time I received a text message prompting me to do so.

What both VAERS and v-safe share in common is that they cannot determine causality. In VAERS, users can submit a report of basically any symptom or health condition that occurs after vaccination and is a purely passive reporting system. No report is made unless a vaccinee or healthcare provider, such as a physician or nurse, makes it. V-safe, in contrast, is more active in that it prompts vaccinees whether they have experienced any symptoms after vaccination. Here’s a brief explanation of the difference between the two reporting systems:

During the pandemic, the CDC rolled out a new app-based system for voluntary side-effect reporting related to only COVID-19 vaccines: v-safe. Initially created to monitor vaccine safety for the health care workers who were first to receive the vaccines, the program was extended to anyone getting a COVID shot. The app sends text reminders to fill out symptom diaries and answer basic questions about side effects.

“It’s really fabulous; we gathered a lot of safety data from a lot of people quickly,” Talaat says. Unlike VAERS, v-safe is not designed to capture reports of unusual events, but more common symptoms like fevers, chills, or sore throats. v-safe data has been useful in evaluating side effects for groups that were not included in the vaccine’s first clinical trials, such as pregnant women.

V-safe, as anyone who’s ever answered one of its questionnaires knows, uses a multiple-choice format and limits the selection of what questions can be answered, starting with a question asking how you’re feeling today, with three options: Good, fair, and poor. Here’s a brief video from the CDC that describes the process of filling out a v-safe questionnaire:

As you can see, v-safe focuses mainly on common symptoms, such as local symptoms from the injection, fever, chills, headache, body aches, and the like. It also asks whether you could work normally, had to miss work, or even needed to seek medical attention. There’s also encouragement to report adverse events to VAERS.

One of the things that interests me about v-safe and the new emphasis by the CDC on VAERS since COVID-19 vaccine were introduced is that it actually very much contrasts with the narrative of antivaxxers. Think about it. Antivaxxers claim that the government and medical profession don’t want to know about vaccine complications and injuries, that they actually want to hide anything bad about vaccines, but here we have considerable investment in two systems designed to ask people receiving the vaccines if anything bad happened to them afterward. It really is quite a jarring contrast.

Now let’s see how RFK Jr. spins ICAN’s “dashboard.” It isn’t promising that his website, Children’s Health Defense, chose to republish an article from The Epoch Times, one of the foremost spreaders of COVID-19 and antivaccine disinformation in the age of the pandemic:

Hundreds of thousands of Americans sought medical care after getting a COVID-19 vaccine, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data released on Oct. 3.

Some 782,900 people reported seeking medical attention, emergency room care and/or hospitalization following COVID-19 vaccination.

Another 2.5 million people reported needing to miss school, work or other normal activities as a result of a health event after getting a COVID-19 vaccine.

The reports were made to the CDC’s V-safe program, a new vaccine safety monitoring system to which users can report issues through smartphones.

The CDC released the data to the Informed Consent Action Network (ICAN) after being sued over not producing the data when asked by the nonprofit.

In a promotional email (yes, I’m on ICAN’s email list, as I am on the email lists of several antivax groups in order to monitor what they’re doing), ICAN bragged:

This first batch of data includes the responses v-safe users provided to pre-populated ‘check-the-box’ fields. It does not include data from the fields that allowed free-text responses. It nonetheless reveals shocking information that should have caused the CDC to immediately shut down its Covid-19 vaccine program.

Among numerous alarming results, out of the approximate 10 million individuals that registered and submitted data to v-safe, 782,913 individuals, or over 7.7% of v-safe users, had a health event requiring medical attention, emergency room intervention, and/or hospitalization. Over 25% had an event that required them to miss school or work and/or prevented normal activities.  

There were also 71 million reports of symptoms in the pre-populated fields from the approximately 10 million users. This is an average of over 7 symptoms reported per v-safe registrant. Reported symptoms include, for example, over 4 million reports of joint pain, a very concerning immune reaction. While around 2 million of these joint pain reports were mild, over 1.8 million of the reports were for moderate joint pain and over 400,000 were for severe joint pain.  Since v-safe only included less than 4 percent of people that received a Covid-19 vaccine, tens of millions of Americans likely had an immune reaction to the Covid-19 vaccine in their joints that resulted in debilitating pain and potential long-term harm. 

There were also approximately 13,000 infants under 2 years of age who were registered for v-safe. For these 13,000 children, there were over 33,000 symptoms experienced that were significant enough to report, with the most common symptoms being irritability, sleeplessness, pain, and loss of appetite. These are very concerning since babies cannot speak and hence these symptoms are how they often communicate that something is wrong. 

Obviously, given how ICAN and RFK Jr., as anyone who knows anything about their history and the history of antivaxxers with respect to misrepresenting and weaponizing VAERS could have predicted, immediately weaponized raw v-safe reports, I can completely understand the reluctance of the CDC to release such data. For one thing, it suffers from the same sort of bias towards more severe symptoms that VAERS does, given that people are less likely to report minor symptoms than they are to report severe ones, particularly given that it includes only those individuals who actually signed up for the program and answered the questionnaire. Think about it: Ten million people do not represent that large a number. In comparison, according to Our World in Data, by August 1, 2022, the latest date in the dataset, nearly 262 million Americans had received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, with nearly 224 million having been “fully vaccinated” (i.e., having received at least two doses). As of today, it’s estimated that 620 million doses have been administered in the US.

ICAN does admit that this is only 4% of the population that has been fully vaccinated, but it makes an unfounded assumption, na ely that “tens of millions of Americans likely had an immune reaction to the Covid-19 vaccine in their joints that resulted in debilitating pain and potential long-term harm.” What’s the unfounded assumption? That muscle and joint pain after a vaccination results in long-term harm. How do we know that such pains rarely, if ever, result in long-term harm? We have safety studies! Scientists have actually looked at the data from VAERS and v-safe, for instance a study published in March in The Lancet Infectious Diseases, which noted, among other findings:

Injection-site pain (4 488 402 [66·2%] of 6 775 515 participants after dose one and 3 890 848 [68·6%] of 5 674 420 participants after dose two), fatigue (2 295 205 [33·9%] participants after dose one and 3 158 299 participants [55·7%] after dose two), and headache (1 831 471 [27·0%] participants after dose one and 2 623 721 [46·2%] participants after dose two) were commonly reported during days 0–7 following vaccination. Reactogenicity was reported most frequently the day after vaccination; most reactions were mild. More reports of being unable to work, do normal activities, or of seeking medical care occurred after dose two (1 821 421 [32·1%]) than after dose one (808 963 [11·9%]); less than 1% of participants reported seeking medical care after vaccination (56 647 [0·8%] after dose one and 53 077 [0·9%] after dose two).

This study included a period from December 2020 to June 2021, which encompassed nearly half of the total vaccinations administered overall as of today, and the authors concluded:

Safety data from more than 298 million doses of mRNA COVID-19 vaccine administered in the first 6 months of the US vaccination programme show that most reported adverse events were mild and short in duration.

A more recent study of COVID-19 vaccination in children using v-safe and VAERS published in August found a similar safety profile. This study also had the advantage of using another database that prospectively looks for adverse events after vaccination, the Vaccine Safety Datalink (VSD). An even more recent study supported this conclusion.

COVID-19 vaccines are reactogenic (that is, cause significant immune reaction). There’s no doubt about that, and I’ve experienced that reactiveness myself. Indeed, my personal experiences with the mRNA-based vaccines have generally involved feeling like crap for 24-36 hours after vaccination, experiences that have led me since the first dose to be very deliberate and careful about scheduling my vaccine. I generally try to pick a day when I can afford to be out for a day or so afterward, and that pickiness is the only reason why I have not yet received the bivalent booster. According to ICAN’s analysis, I was almost certainly one of the people reporting fatigue, pain at injection site, chills, muscle and joint aches, and headache to the database. Given that I’ve received both the primary series and two boosters, that means I’ve reported multiple events in the dataset for each of four doses of vaccine.

With that background, now let’s take a look at the “dashboard” provided by ICAN:

Helpfully, ICAN has provided a searchable front end to the database. You can also download the actual dataset for yourself, which I plan to do when I get a chance. (One of the files is well over 5 GB in size.) If you want to download the dataset yourself, the link is here, but I warn you: You’ll need a throwaway email address, as ICAN requires an email address before it gives access. Fortunately, since I already have a throwaway Yahoo! account that I use for just such mailing lists, this was not a problem. I’m hoping that someone with better data visualization and analysis skills than myself will download the dataset and see if they can figure out what ICAN did to generate its dashboard. It’s also not clear to me whether these are the original data files or files curated by ICAN; so there’s that issue too.

I’ll conclude by putting the various systems for monitoring vaccine safety into perspective. Antivaxxers have long loved to misrepresent VAERS as the be-all and end-all of vaccine safety monitoring, despite its very clear problems and the fact that it was never designed to determine actual prevalence of vaccine injuries, but rather to serve as a “canary in the coal mine,” in which an uptick in reports generates hypotheses regarding the relationships between specific vaccines and specific adverse events that scientists can investigate further using more suitable datasets, such as the VSD. As you can probably see by now, v-safe is like VAERS on steroids in that it cannot be assumed to be a representative sample of persons undergoing vaccination plus the added bias that it actively seeks reports at regular intervals after vaccination going out more than six months.

As I like to point out, antivaxxers always cite VAERS (and now v-safe) and only rarely, if ever, cite other, much better and more reliable, vaccine safety monitoring databases, such as the Vaccine Safety Datalink (VSD), the Clinical Immunization Safety Assessment (CISA) project, or FDA’s Post-licensure Rapid Immunization Safety Monitoring System (PRISM) Antivaxxers also seem to like to represent VAERS simultaneously as the best system to find adverse events (AEs) from vaccines, even while also claiming it’s awful due to underreporting, which means (to them) that all the horrible things in VAERS are really a lot more common than “they” want you to think. Now that they’ve weaponized v-safe too, they’re using a similar misleading argument in that they claim that the adverse events reported in v-safe must be much more common than “they” want you to know, because less than 5% of vaccinees participated in v-safe.

I think it’s worth reiterating that VAERS and v-safe were never intended to provide an accurate estimate of the frequency of adverse events related to vaccines, but rather to serve as an early warning system for possible new vaccine-related adverse events. In other words, VAERS and v-safe are a hypothesis-generating, not hypothesis testing, systems. The hypotheses generated from the signals in both systems first must be compared to the base rate of conditions in the general population and then tested using better systems and datasets, such as the VSD. In contrast to VAERS and v-safe, these systems are much more reliable reporting systems in that electronic health records are actively monitored for adverse events after vaccination in order to identify potential signals; there is a lot less bias that way and a lot less potential for misreporting.

As I’ve pointed out more times than I can remember now, before any of the COVID-19 vaccines started rolling out in the US under an emergency use authorization (EUA) nearly two years ago, those of us with long experience deconstructing antivaccine disinformation were warning that VAERS would be weaponized to portray COVID-19 vaccines as deadly. It was entirely to be expected based on the previous misuse of VAERS to falsely link vaccines to autism, premature ovarian insufficiency and infertility, death (including sudden infant death syndrome), and many other health outcomes that we know not to be related to vaccines. So why wouldn’t they do it with COVID-19 vaccines? They did, of course, and in terms of antivaccine disinformation 2021-22 have certainly been the years when the public, news media, and public health officials had their faces rubbed in what we had been describing before the pandemic and warning about as the vaccines rolled out.

In fact, it’s actually taken antivaxxers longer than I had expected to get around to trying to do with v-safe data what they’ve been doing with VAERS data for two decades: Weaponize it. The difference of course, is that VAERS data have always been publicly searchable through a CDC-run website, while v-safe data were not and remained available only to researchers; that is before now.

Antivaxxers could—and did—immediately go to work weaponizing VAERS against the COVID-19 vaccine beginning soon after the first dose was administered outside the auspices of a clinical trial to claim. Within a couple of weeks, antivaxxers were weaponizing VAERS to deceptively claim that the vaccines were causing Bell’s palsy and then, within weeks, that they were killing hundreds of people. By spring, antivaxxers were using VAERS to claim that COVID-19 was a “depopulation” plot that had killed tens of thousands of people. These days, that’s no longer enough, as people like Steve Kirsch are claiming that the vaccines have killed a half million people in the US alone, although admittedly these days he’s using a method even less rigorous than dumpster diving in the VAERS database. RFK Jr.’s claim a week and a half ago based on VAERS that the vaccines have killed “only” 31,000 seems almost semi-reasonable by comparison. I feel obligated to remind people again of the base rate fallacy and how, by random chance alone we’d expect many times more people to have died within a few months of vaccination just because 2.8 million people die in the US every year.

Now that antivaxxers like Del Bigtree have access to v-safe data through August 1, 2022, I fully expect them to go wild and try to present it in ways designed to deceptively make the COVID-19 vaccines look as bad as possible. It’s what they’ve done with VAERS for longer than I’ve been paying attention to the antivaccine movement. There’s no reason to expect that they won’t continue to do it with v-safe.

By Orac

Orac is the nom de blog of a humble surgeon/scientist who has an ego just big enough to delude himself that someone, somewhere might actually give a rodent's posterior about his copious verbal meanderings, but just barely small enough to admit to himself that few probably will. That surgeon is otherwise known as David Gorski.

That this particular surgeon has chosen his nom de blog based on a rather cranky and arrogant computer shaped like a clear box of blinking lights that he originally encountered when he became a fan of a 35 year old British SF television show whose special effects were renowned for their BBC/Doctor Who-style low budget look, but whose stories nonetheless resulted in some of the best, most innovative science fiction ever televised, should tell you nearly all that you need to know about Orac. (That, and the length of the preceding sentence.)

DISCLAIMER:: The various written meanderings here are the opinions of Orac and Orac alone, written on his own time. They should never be construed as representing the opinions of any other person or entity, especially Orac's cancer center, department of surgery, medical school, or university. Also note that Orac is nonpartisan; he is more than willing to criticize the statements of anyone, regardless of of political leanings, if that anyone advocates pseudoscience or quackery. Finally, medical commentary is not to be construed in any way as medical advice.

To contact Orac: [email protected]

54 replies on “Antivax weaponization of v-safe: Like VAERS on steroids”

CDC needs to now put v-safe data on its website. I don’t trust anything from CHD/ICAN/Bigtree/RFKjr.

They can’t claim under reporting for V-Safe. They simply can’t. First because physician reporting is not a part of V-Safe and second, because it’s so easy to use V-Safe that for them to claim underreporting means they are claiming Americans are too stupid to use their smart phones.

CDC needs to now put v-safe data on its website.

Why? Do or Don’t—you already know antivax propagandists are going to lie about what it says either way. That is not a winnable game, so stop playing it. The only thing the CDC needs to do is its own assigned job.

As for the rest of us, this is why I keep on saying: it is not sufficient to shred the claims, we must equally shred the claimants. Cure the disease, not just treat the symptoms. COVID antivax is now weaponized by the new Fascist Party of America as a key Means to Power; you have far bigger problems than these few noisy yahoos and their same old clown act. Get out of your rut and get joining those dots.

We need to enact and enforce zero tolerance policies toward those who already have proven themselves abusers, focus on their destruction in the public eye, and do not make ourselves parties to their enablement by continuing to play the game as they want.

@Has –of course they will lie about it either way but putting it up on the CDC website at least keeps them from forging the data which they will do if allowed. I don’t disagree with the rest of your post but I know longer have the brain power or energy to think much beyond the things most important to me.

has: “… we must equally shred the claimants.”

Thank you.
I approach this in several ways
— reveal their general background, education, career as well as history of false claims, legal problems, inappropriate actions, sidling up to suspicious groups
— show how they manipulate followers so that they comply
— in precise detail, how much they earn, what their products really cost ( money and risk-wise) AND their extravagant lifestyles, estates, net worth.
— show how WRONG they’ve been previously – fortunately, some of these charlatans keep their old material intact on the net ( thinking it so great perhaps that they don’t hide it) including their simple errors that any
12 year old should catch.
— illustrate how they misinform and twist data as well as demonise SBM supporters. The more over-the-top the better: Fauci is a demon? Orac is uneducated? Putin is a fine fellow?

So with three vaxes deep you’ve had a longer duration of symptoms than me an unvaccinated omicron survivor.

So with three vaxes deep you’ve had a longer duration of symptoms than me an unvaccinated omicron survivor.

See, if you had ever learned anything about statistics you’d understand about variation. (I know: the foolish part there is “If you [john] had ever learned anything)

I had it in January. Probable omicron no loss of taste or smell. Positive test headache for a couple days followed by lingering fatigue.

My wife was one of those who sought medical attention after a COVID booster. She developed strep throat the next day.

I suppose that the anti-vaxxers will find some way to accuse the vaccine somehow, but this is why raw data can be misleading. It includes everything, even unrelated things.

Reassuringly, she got a call from the CDC a few days later checking up on the report. It was good to know that someone was looking at the reports.

Thank you – I addressed parts of this, but did not provide as much substantive discussion of V-Safe itself as you did, and this is very helpful.

ICAN also misrepresented the legal case, in my view. For example, by presenting a scheduling order as a decision in its favor.

I had all but forgotten about Aaron Siri, who recently churned out a joint in Bloomberg Law:

[W]hen questions arose about the mRNA and viral vector technologies, the CDC told the public that Covid-19 vaccines “do not change or interact with your DNA in any way.” When asked through a Freedom of Information Act Request for “all documents relied upon” by the CDC in making that claim, the CDC responded, “A search of our records failed to reveal any documents pertaining to your request.”

Oo-ee-oo.

When asked through a Freedom of Information Act Request for “all documents relied upon” by the CDC in making that claim, the CDC responded, “A search of our records failed to reveal any documents pertaining to your request.”

It actually took me a couple seconds to spot the trick therein (the penalty of being a slow thinker). Well played. If I’m ever trying to slip out of a multiple homicide charge (guilty AF, natch), I now know who to use as defense lawyer.

But honestly, the CDC’s only error was in not sticking a first-year Mol Bio textbook into the envelope and telling Siri to go fsck himself with it.

Nothing new here, really. Antivaxxers love twisting things to their ideology. Their sycophantic followers (argy Bargy, stoned et al) drink it in as a new flavour of gotcha. Over 2 years in , there can’t be many people who have not formed an opinion which way they go. So the end effect is actually ‘status quo’, nothing changed. Also, nearly everyone can count up people they knew had covid, who died, who got vaccinated and who had a reaction. Given the figures these kookbabblers wave about, we all should have noticed deaths from vaccines. Me, none. I can count a few dozen who had covid, 2 unfortunately died (pre vaccines, none since) 1 who still suffers a year on. I can count a few hundred who are fully vaccinated amongst close and extended family, personal friends, work colleagues etc. All of whom are still alive, most of whom suffered the usual 24 hours injection site pain, feeling crap etc. A few of them did contract covid, but no one suffered serious illness. I know this is all anecdotal, but surely the claims should be visible, and they are not.

“my personal experiences with the mRNA-based vaccines have generally involved feeling like crap for 24-36 hours after vaccination”

In other words, the injections made you sick. This does not contradict what RFK Jr has been saying, and by itself supports the position that the use of injectables should at the very least be a matter of personal choice. Add to that increased risk of infection in the days after injection, waning efficacy, and lack of long-term safety data (much less for boosters ad infinitum), and mandates shouldn’t even be on the table.

In other words, the injections made you sick.

Woah, everybody stand back—CI has made a scientific observation!

Well done, grasshopper. Now do the same for COVID itself, and let us know which of the two makes their recipients sicker.

In my case, there only litle pain after first vaccination, Wonder if it was not effective at all.
Actually, Robert Kennedy Jr speaks about seriously, lasting harm. Orac does not claim anything like that.

Mandates aren’t on the table in the US.

You can always go to a different school, or find another job. See this mandate stuff cuts both ways. You shouldn’t be able to mandate that you can endanger a whole school of unwilling targets either.

I had the latest booster and the flu shot the same day. Didn’t get sick. My wife did the same — didn’t get sick. Same for neighbors who went and got the shots. That proves that the “shots make everyone sick” gambit you scum are pushing is false. (Actually, once again, it shows people react differently as well as the overwhelming safety of the shots and the complete disassociation from reality serial liars like labarge, ginny, chaos infusion, and the others of their kind possess.)

The liars don’t care. They know their position is only saleable to others if averse effects of vaccines are wildly exaggerated and the dangers of disease outrageously downplayed, turning the relative risks so hard on its head blood that pours out its ears.

They’ll do and say whatever gets the job done, with zero doubt or remorse. But while the adulation of those they deceive is sweet to their ears, ultimately they don’t care if their words kill none, one, or a million; all they care about is their own power to destroy. They make Buck Turgidson look humble.

N=1 here: The first two AZ had me up in the night wanting to puke; those and Pfizer booster also gave me a sore arm for a few days. Meh. I’ve had swine flu; one of the sickest weeks in my life. COVID jabs were nothing.

These AVers are just giant whining pussies, drama whores desperately grabbing for something—anything!—to feel persecuted about. Me, I’d happily deport the lot to DRC or Somalia; let their problem take care of itself. Everyone happy at last.

One of the things that interests me about v-safe and the new emphasis by the CDC on VAERS since COVID-19 vaccine were introduced is that it actually very much contrasts with the narrative of antivaxxers. Think about it. Antivaxxers claim that the government and medical profession don’t want to know about vaccine complications and injuries, that they actually want to hide anything bad about vaccines, but here we have considerable investment in two systems designed to ask people receiving the vaccines if anything bad happened to them afterward. It really is quite a jarring contrast.

Yes, and how does the CDC not wanting to release such info that they must forced to fit into this?

And….

Among numerous alarming results, out of the approximate 10 million individuals that registered and submitted data to v-safe, 782,913 individuals, or over 7.7% of v-safe users, had a health event requiring medical attention, emergency room intervention, and/or hospitalization.

Wow! 7.7% is far greater than the hospilzation rate for Covid. I wonder if the death rate was also higher. Obviously, we will never know because those registerants were unable to submit data.

And…..

COVID-19 vaccines are reactogenic (that is, cause significant immune reaction). There’s no doubt about that, and I’ve experienced that reactiveness myself. Indeed, my personal experiences with the mRNA-based vaccines have generally involved feeling like crap for 24-36 hours after vaccination, experiences that have led me since the first dose to be very deliberate and careful about scheduling my vaccine. I generally try to pick a day when I can afford to be out for a day or so afterward, and that pickiness is the only reason why I have not yet received the bivalent booster.

Are we seriously on the cusp of witnessing hell freezing over?! Is Orac flirting with becoming an antivaxxer?!

Yes it is, Narad. Taken from your link….

As far as you know, what percentage of people who have been infected by the coronavirus needed to be hospitalized?” Only 18% provided the correct answer, which at that time was between 1% and 5%

No, Peaches, it helps to read the RI posts rather than just skipping to the comments. The 7.7% number doesn’t reflect actual COVID-19 hospitalizations in any way, shape, or form. Do read the Appendix.

The 7.7% number doesn’t reflect actual COVID-19 hospitalizations in any way, shape, or form

Sure it doesn’t, Narad. Sure

There is VAERS available. Let see what hidden facs antivaxxers will found there.
Reactogenity is known from clinical trials. Interesting thing is that anivaxxers did not notice it then.

All this bickering about v-safe is simply white noise clouding the real issue. Why has medical science ignored stimulating the humoral immune system (i.e., allergies) to decrease morbidity and mortality from acute infection?

MJD’s educated guess,

Stimulating humoral immunity (i.e., allergies) to inhibit the severity of acute infections would be perceived as a money grab in that it would also increase the sales of allergy treatments. It is estimated that the allergy treatment market in the US will reach 28.83 billion by 2026.

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/allergy-treatment-market-size-to-reach-revenues-of-usd-28-83-billion-by-2026–arizton-301371643.html

@ Orca’s minions,

Let’s unite and accept that allergies are an evolutionary defense mechanism that provides natural protection against infectious pathogens.

Q. Could humoral skin cream therapy be a cheap and effective way of maintaining a robust and active immune system for greater health and prosperity.

MJD: Not sure how you are defining “Humoral Immunity” and “Allergies. My understanding is that humoral refers to macromolecules (including all IgG classes and complement factors) that are found in body fluids including blood and lymphatic fluid. Allergies are type I hypersensitivity mediated by IgE. Almost no IgE is found in body fluids as it is all bound to extremely high affinity receptors on mast cells and basophils. Allergies result when an epitope on an allergen is recognized by the cell bound IgE causing immediate release of pre-formed mediators such as histamine, enzymes, and some cytokines. Synthesis and release of leukotrienes occurs later.

I do not know what factors favor class switch to IgE though the cytokine milieu certainly is important. If I recall IL-4 slightly favors and interferons disfavor IgE selection. I have no idea how a vaccine could be configured to select IgE. And I am not sure it would be a good idea as subsequent infection might cause anaphylaxis.

You’re overthinking it. All you need to know is that RI’s resident rubber fetishist grows ever more lost in his delusion of competence. It would be comic if it weren’t so pitiful. LOL, and move on.

@ ‘has’-been,

I’m close to publishing a review article titled “Natural Rubber Latex Precautions for Children.” Orac (the one) may graciously allow it as an off-topic inclusion in a future post.

@ Orac,

In advance, thank you!

I’m close to publishing a review article titled “Natural Rubber Latex Precautions for Children.”

Good for you, MJD!

We’re closer still to not caring one whit.

@ldw56old: How unkind!

Implying MJD cannot even give it away.

Also, not wrong.

@ dean,

Feedback and feedforward loops in adaptive immunity can be used to affect the immune response to acute infections.

@ Everyone,

Most important—An example of a feedforward loop at Respectful Insolence (RI) relates to MJD teaching the hazards of Natural Rubber Latex (i.e., Hevea Brasiliensis). Specifically, ‘has’ makes a particularly insolent statement causing MJD to respond defensively, but reasonably. Thereafter, a pack mentality by some of Orac’s minions (e.g., Idw56old) accelerates the incidence of insolent statements causing an RI feedforward loop.

@ Orac,

Can you provide any feedback when I’ll be released from auto-moderation?

Can you provide any feedback when I’ll be released from auto-moderation?

Really, MJD, listen to the steady sound of silence and take the damn hint. This constant whining and begging for attention is most unbecoming of you. That’s the Gerg’s job.

This constant whining and begging for attention is most unbecoming of you. That’s the Gerg’s job.

You’re just sore because I keep reminding you that everyone is getting bored with your narc rants. As I said (and Wendy second in a nicer way), find another hobby horse, mister!

So, who can say this ‘antivaxxer’ never attempts to mend bridges (yes, give it up Has!: I am sensing that even your colleagues are starting to get bored and annoyed with your narc rants!)?

On one side we have provaxxers saying that this bill is necessary to prevent doctors from disseminating dangerous misinformation and disinformation; on the other hand we have ‘antivaxxers’ saying that the Covid scientific consensus might be dangerous misinformation and disinformation. Why not have a compromise where doctors are allowed to share their beliefs and providing they acknowledge that it is not the scientific consensus and they point their patients to the consensus?

Seriously — what is to gain from completely muzzling doctors? Sorry! That was a dumb question.

“Seriously — what is to gain from completely muzzling doctors?”

Lives.

“Daniel, a medical doctor and prominent Pentecostal minister, fraudulently marketed and collected more than $1 million for a medical treatment that she and her employees claimed could cure many diseases and conditions, including cancer, multiple sclerosis, stroke, Alzheimer’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, diabetes and hepatitis.”

“The evidence presented at trial showed that Daniel’s treatment did not cure anyone of cancer, nor was it was made from herbs from around the world or blended for an individual patient, as she has promised patients. Chemical analyses determined that the product contained sunscreen preservative and beef extract flavoring, among other ingredients, none of which could have had any effect on cancer or other diseases, according to expert testimony.”

“…Depending on the purported level or strength of the herbal product, Daniel would charge her customers up to $4,270 for one week’s worth of the herbal product. She offered a six-month treatment program for between $120,000 and $150,000.

“…According to testimony at trial, one victim who had been diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer contacted Daniel and was told that chemotherapy would not help. After the victim traveled to Southern California, Daniel told the victim that the herbal treatment program would shrink her tumors and kill her cancer cells. For almost five months, the victim and her husband paid Daniel thousands of dollars for the herbal product. After taking the herbal “cure” for four months and within two weeks after Daniel pronounced her to be cancer-free at a party held for patients, the victim died. The cancer had spread from her breasts to her bones and brain.”

http://justice.gov/usao-cdca/pr/san-fernando-valley-doctor-who-sold-bogus-cancer-cure-victims-across-nation-sentenced

Apparently it would have been fine in Greg’s view if this quack had told her patients that medical consensus was different, but that she had the cure for cancer.

“Sorry! That was a dumb question.”

But no dumber than we expect from you.

*Greg apparently wandered into this thread mistaking it for the one about AB 2098.

While not wrong, you are thoughtfully explaining why other people’s lives matter to on that is pathologically incapable of caring for anyone but himself. You may want to stop that eventually: you’ll only hurt yourself.

If our resident parasites have never claimed any lives themselves, it is only that they lack the raw ambition of Daniel and her ilk. Same basic wiring though. They’re all ahuman shit.

“Why not have a compromise where doctors are allowed to share their beliefs”

….and then sell you something that doesn’t work and costs them very little whilst telling you (nudge, nudge, wink wink) how the government doesn’t want you to know about it?

Watch this video quickly before it’s deleted. Millionaires don’t want you to earn £435.23 per day from home.

Remember Bigtree’s “catch this mild cold” ? This would be very dangerous,if he were a doctor.

“ Hundreds of thousands of Americans sought medical care after getting a COVID-19 vaccine, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data.”

In other news, not reported by the Epoch Times, hundreds of thousands of Americans sought medical care after drinking a cup of coffee in the morning.

Another way this is potentially misleading is that ICAN never tells us what their time frame is for that medical care. V-Safe prompts you daily for the week after the vaccine, and then weekly for about six weeks, and then about six weeks after that.

Within that time, there are many reasons someone could seek medical care, and we just don’t know what

Something that has always interested me is the fact that reports of ADR’s in respect of MMR vaccine were submitted to VAERS by a legal firm for litigation cases up to ten years after vaccination.

How does that come about and is it a regular occurrence? Anyone provide insight?

Example VAERS ID: 195640

Oh, yes. Antivaxxers have been trying to game VAERS for literally decades. They first started by flooding it with reports of autism after vaccination, trying to create an impression that vaccines caused autism.

The sad thing is, as COVID-19 vaccines neared rollout, a lot of us were warning (1) that, given the law of large numbers plus the unprecedented and large rollout of the vaccines there would be a lot of reports to VAERS for things that happened by random chance alone that the baseline rate fallacy would allow antivaxxers to use to portray the vaccines as very dangerous and (2) that antivaxxers would flood VAERS with reports related to the vaccines in order to make them look dangerous. Unfortunately, no one listened, and everyone seemed mystified when exactly what we predicted did, in fact, happen.

Yes, like other anti-vaccine favourites V-Safe is uncontrolled so the raw data does not inform anyone as to whether it is abnormally above or below the base rate background level that would be observed in untreated subjects.
Anti-vaccine liars such as Dull Bigtwig and RFK, Jr. have used this tactic numerous times to fool their drooling arrogant science-ignorant followers.
These two and their minions couldn’t pass a high school science class but presume to lecture PhD scientists with 20 years of schooling and 20 years of professional experience on their area of expertise.
It’s like watching a 3 year old in its car seat with a steering wheel lecture 35 year old Daddy that he doesn’t know how to drive and he’s doing it all wrong. He should turn around and watch and Jr. will show him how to drive the car.
It is laughably idiotic and depressingly repetitive with these morons.

Kennedy should be disbarred for a lot of the stuff he’s pulling.

@Dorit

Thank you, I hadn’t seen that and it’s relevant to the VAERS reports I saw with regards to timing. It seems likely that the example I provided has been submitted by lawyers associated with the UK MMR litigation as there was mention of Immravax vaccine which of course, was never used in the US but was in the UK (and other countries) and was one of the brands involved in the UK class action.

Timing wise the reports were submitted to VAERS at the end of 2002, months before Legal Aid was withdrawn for the UK cases and the litigation collapsed but also a few months before initial documents were submitted in the US Omnibus proceedings.

An influx of reports from the UK class action alleging causation between measles virus in M, MR and MMR vaccines and ASD/IBD which had to be abandoned when the legal team stated they could not bring a claim, would of course create a spike in the number of reports involving certain conditions which as you rightly state could then have been used for other purposes.

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