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Friday, September 24, 2021
Judgment and Prediction: On Vaccines and Pandemic
Chan Kung

1. It is inaccurate to say vaccinated people would not transmit virus. More precisely, people who have been vaccinated are less likely to spread the virus than people who have not been vaccinated. It depends on the type of virus, as well as the chance and time of survival of the virus. This does not exactly depend on whether one is vaccinated or not, as even the virus might even be present on surface like elevator buttons.

2. Any kind of vaccine has a limit on the effectiveness. Even if Pfizer-BioNTech’s vaccine is 95% effective, 5 million people out of 100 million people who have been vaccinated will still have chances to be infected. With the increase in the number of vaccinations, the lack of vigilance among the people will also increase, so it is normal for the number of cases to rise sharply, hence the greater the number of vaccinations, there will be greater the number of cases as well.

3. Viral infection does not necessarily mean the outcome would be fatal. This depends on the treatments received. Even in the United States now, infected patients often cannot get effective treatments unless they are a severely ill. In other countries, patients cannot be effectively treated because of the lack of medications. It should also be noted that now medications for COVID-19 have appeared.

4. It is also not true to say the fatality rate of COVID-19 is higher than that of the flu. This actually depends on the underlying disease and treatment conditions. In fact, the current death toll from COVID-19 is roughly equal to the death toll caused by the severe viral cold.

5. The effectiveness of vaccines has certain time limit, and this can be determined through antibody levels. In general, vaccines can offer 6 months of protection. After this period, booster shots should be administered.

6. While vaccines are an important aspect in the war against COVID-19, medications are more crucial. We cannot fully eliminate any virus, although the smallpox virus was theoretically eliminated, it is actually just not appearing due to the protective conditions. Virus cannot be eliminated.

7. It is incorrect to say the vaccines are completely harmless. A more correct statement is that, there is currently no unacceptable damages caused by the vaccines. Vaccines like the mRNA types need to undergo long-term testing to clearly understand their overall mechanism of action and effect, especially the effect on the immune system. The current time for drawing conclusions, after all, is too short.

8. It is a misconception that the pace of vaccines has always failed to keep up with the mutation of the virus. The advancement of modern medical technology can in fact, keep up with the needs, and the distribution speed of the vaccines can also keep up with that.

9. Not all vaccines are equally useful. If a vaccine’s effective rate is lower than a certain level, it would cause more harm than good. Because of its low efficiency, it creates a false sense of protection which could result people losing vigilance, and causes a large number of post-vaccination infection cases, which in turn would create new chaos.

10. Human beings can never do without the protection of vaccines. There are too many types of viruses, and they are constantly mutating. In addition, there are also new viruses appearing. Hence, vaccines and vaccine industries have become indispensable, and this is related to the division and planning of national power.