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November 5, 2022

VSS Scientific Updates During Pandemic Times #44

COVID Vaccine Ambassador Training: How to Talk to Parents?

From Geert: "Nice try but what kind of background does this lady have in immunology, virology, vaccinology, evolutionary biology etc.? How can you have any credibility as a so-called 'expert in vaccine decision' without profound knowledge in any of these fields? OMG‼

Here comes her bio: 

Rupali Limaye, PhD, MPH, MA, studies how health information can best be communicated to individuals in different contexts and through different channels. Widely seen as an expert in vaccine decision-making, she started her career working in advertising and is a health communication scholar. She received her PhD from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, her MPH in global health and MA in foreign policy from The George Washington University, and her BA in political science and BS in journalism from the University of Kansas"

https://www.coursera.org/learn/covid-vaccine-ambassador

2.    So Far This Flu Season is More Severe Than It Has Been in 13 Years

“While flu season is usually between October and May, peaking in December and January, it’s arrived about six weeks earlier this year with uncharacteristically high illness. There have already been at least 880,000 cases of influenza illness, 6,900 hospitalizations and 360 flu-related deaths nationally, including one child, according to estimates released Friday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”

https://www.msn.com/en-us/health/other/so-far-this-flu-season-is-more-severe-than-it-has-been-in-13-years/ar-AA13uc8d

3. Don’t Look Up” Your Science—Herd Immunity or Herd Mentality? 

“This analysis piece will attempt to examine some of the critical pandemic-related measures implemented in the United States from an immunological perspective and pinpoint caveats that should have been considered before their implementation. I also discuss alternative measures grounded in scientific data that were not thoroughly explored and likely could have helped fight the pandemic.”

https://www.mdpi.com/2076-2607/10/7/1463

4. The Legacy of the COVID-19 Pandemic for Childhood Vaccination in the USA

“However, the effects of the pandemic on childhood vaccination have the potential to extend beyond disruptions in vaccine delivery. What will be the legacy of the COVID-19 pandemic for childhood vaccination? In this Viewpoint, we discuss how the pandemic might affect trust, risk perception, mandates, and health equity in the context of childhood vaccination.”

https://www.thelancet.com/action/showPdf?pii=S0140-6736%2822%2901693-2

5. Bird Flu Infects Iowa Egg Farm With 1 Million Chickens

“Iowa has had 15 commercial farms infected this year, including turkeys, egg-laying hens and other chickens. In addition, five backyard flocks have been infected. Because the virus is highly contagious, all birds on an infected farm are killed and disposed of to avoid the spread of the disease.”

https://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/bird-flu-infects-iowa-egg-farm-million-chickens-92447622

6. Why Everybody You Know is Sick Right Now

“For hospitals that have spent the past two years struggling to maintain capacity in the face of surging Covid-19 cases, this year has not brought any relief. The opposite, in fact. “We are very busy,” Kristina Bryant, an epidemiologist at Norton Children’s Hospital in Louisville, told me. “It’s different this year. ... It’s not even Halloween, and many children’s hospitals are operating at or above capacity.”

https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2022/10/27/23421344/covid-19-flu-rsv-symptoms-vaccines-2022

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Geert Vanden Bossche received his DVM from the University of Ghent, Belgium, and his PhD degree in Virology from the University of Hohenheim, Germany. He held adjunct faculty appointments at universities in Belgium and Germany. After his career in Academia, Geert joined several vaccine companies (GSK Biologicals, Novartis Vaccines, Solvay Biologicals) to serve various roles in vaccine R&D as well as in late vaccine development.

Geert then moved on to join the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Global Health Discovery team in Seattle (USA) as Senior Program Officer; he then worked with the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI) in Geneva as Senior Ebola Program Manager. At GAVI he tracked efforts to develop an Ebola vaccine. He also represented GAVI in fora with other partners, including WHO, to review progress on the fight against Ebola and to build plans for global pandemic preparedness.

Back in 2015, Geert scrutinized and questioned the safety of the Ebola vaccine that was used in ring vaccination trials conducted by WHO in Guinea. His critical scientific analysis and report on the data published by WHO in the Lancet in 2015 was sent to all international health and regulatory authorities involved in the Ebola vaccination program. After working for GAVI, Geert joined the German Center for Infection Research in Cologne as Head of the Vaccine Development Office. He is at present primarily serving as a Biotech / Vaccine consultant while also conducting his own research on Natural Killer cell-based vaccines.

Email: info@voiceforscienceandsolidarity.org

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