Some Reason To Hope – And Why We NEED >90% Vaccinated.


COVID has trampled the world. My nation, Australia, is about to open up everything in the upcoming months. We’ve seen a surge in vaccination rate after an outbreak occurred in June/July – going from 11% vaccinated to 63% receiving their first dose by October 1. In the first affected state, NSW, this number is over 87%and vaccine hesitancy is at an all time low of 8% too! A combination of messaging focusing on increasing vaccination, and restrictions promised to affect vaccinated people are to thank for this, I believe. But we’re only going for 80% vaccination. And states are starting to suggest that the unvaccinated people can enjoy these freedoms too, which may reduce vaccination enthusiasm. Here, I show real life examples from around the world which show why we need to go for 90% vaccinated to ensure Australians, including at risk people like myself, don’t suffer.

Around the world, there is reason to hope. Here are some examples of nations who have either controlled, or are starting to see huge regression of rates of COVID and hospitalisation.

The key is

  1. They ALL have over 90% of their eligible population vaccinated.

  2. They all test their populations and maintain excellent Contact Tracing, and have a population that abides by restrictions to people who test positive, or have symptoms.

Denmark –

Just under 91% of people over 14 are vaccinated . Denmark is not seeing huge surges and has controlled their outbreak! They had a population that followed restrictions, and they mass tested (4million per week) in a national population of 6million. They only had 427 cases in a population of just under 6million yesterday (September 30, 2021). And importantly, they’ve only had 18 deaths in the last week, and no more than 6 in a day since February 2021 . In my state, we see more than that every day, recording a record 15 deaths in a day recently.
The key to their success? A population that abides by recommendations, and mass testing. They do 4million tests per week. In Sydney, at our PEAK, we were only doing 1million. I outline why this strategy works and how we can emulate this and SAVE money here.
All sourced from https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/denmark/

Israel

Israel has recently been maligned, and used by antivaxers as a case study of why not to vaccinate for the past few weeks. They saw 12,000 cases per day in a population of 9million – numbers similar to the US. Yet even in that time, their hospitalisation and the number of ICU beds used by COVID-19 patients were lower than the US. 
Indeed, despite having over 12,000 cases per day in this recent August to September peak, they only ever needed 203 ICU beds. In my state (NSW), at 61% double-vaccinated, and less than 10% of cases, we needed more ICU beds for COVID patients – indicating how important it is we reach >90% vaccination (Israel has over 95% of its eligible population vaccinated). Sadly, 6 states had no ICU beds available in the US in late August. I personally have seen doctor friends asking hospitals interstate if they can fly patients out to get treatment via social media. 
An excellent resource which also does projections. https://covid19.healthdata.org/israel?view=resource-use&tab=trend&resource=all_resources
But hopefully numbers recede after this drop. BOOSTERS were responsible for a drop of cases by a factor of 11! This may also be why we’ve seen a drop in cases occur in Israel. They also did increase restrictions though.
Recently – cases have declined too in Israel too!

Portugal

 
Portugal – Reached 100% vaccination in at risk groups, and most of the nation. They too have only had 6 deaths a day as a maximum for months, are using 270 hospital beds, and need 13 ICU beds today despite seeing over 800 cases diagnosed every day! There are suggestions that hospitalisations could get worse with winter though. This is another reason why we shouldn’t be complacent and continue to contact trace and isolate those at risk, and consider restrictions to close contacts too. These aren’t lockdowns, just common sense quarantine practices! All these nations are continuing to do so. 
What excites me about Portugal – they have less than 15 ICU beds dedicated to COVID-19 patients in a population of 10million!

The UK

The UK has had 82% of its population double vaccinated. Yet vaccination uptake has stagnated. Unfortunately, a lot of misinformation spreads there, similar to the US. Currently, they are 130-135 deaths per day. By comparison, that would be equivalent to Australia seeing 48 deaths per day, which is almost 5x higher than what we’re seeing on average here. It’s important to know that they have almost 15x more cases per day there. So a higher vaccination rate DOES work in reducing hospitalisations. But sadly, their hospitals are quite strained – with over double the ICU bed usage (adjusted for the UK’s larger population). They did also use a different vaccine – but one shown to have similar efficacy in reducing hospitalisation and severe death against the delta strain (in any case, we in Australia also used the AstraZeneca vaccine). This is why we need a HIGHER vaccination rate than 82%!

 

There is reason for alarm. And this is likely why cases, deaths, and hospital strain is not going down there. I have friends in healthcare there who are struggling to keep up. I hope this trend doesn’t continue. 

Iceland

Iceland has controlled the delta Virus, without lockdowns, or restrictions of any kind, at any point. They did this through mass testing and effective and comprehensive contact tracing. I discuss this in detail, and how we can use rapid antigen test screening to mitigate this. At the very least though, targeted, regular rapid antigen tests, in addition to regular PCR testing for symptomatic or exposed populations may reduce the likelihood of COVID-19 outbreaks. And we NEED to emphasise this. I feel like in NSW, we’re losing focus of this as Lockdown fatigue affects us all. Find out more on Iceland’s contact tracing strategy too.

Iceland is a great example of how mass testing and contact tracing alone works! But with a vaccination rate of >95% likely responsible for reduction in transmission, a shining example of how high vaccination helps too.

 
So there’s reason for hope. But I really think we need to get 90% of our population vaccinated. And continue to contact trace.
I highly recommend you subscribe to my blog for more insights like this. I’m also an ex cancer patient, cancer researcher, med tech founder and regularly debunk and campaign against misinformation.
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