Independent Plus Opinion

A perspective on COVID-19 statistics: Part 3

By Dr. John Pronk, ND

In the past two segments (Part 1 and Part 2), I shared some of the recent findings from experts such as Stanford researchers Dr. Jay Bhattacharya and Dr. John Ioannidis, as well as Dr. Scott Jensen MD, Professor Knut Wittkowski, and Dr. Joseph Mercola MD.

As we saw, not only is there growing evidence that more people may have had the coronavirus than was previously thought but also that the number of deaths due to COVID-19 may not be as alarming as was originally reported because of flaws in the reporting system. We also saw how the current approach to ‘flatten the curve’ is prolonging the curve, with one of the goals being the prevention of natural herd immunity and necessitating mass vaccination as the only foreseeable solution. Several concerns are surrounding a potential COVID vaccine that we should all be aware of. We’ll look at just a few here.

Governments make fast-tracked COVID-19 vaccines main priority

Immediately after the Jan. 30 World Health Organization declaration that a novel coronavirus outbreak in China posed a “public health emergency of international concern,” press releases were issued by the Gates Foundation and WHO informing the world that experimental coronavirus vaccines already in development would be put on a fast track to licensure for global use.

On March 9, WHO released its COVID-19 R&D roadmap that, according to BioWorld, had been endorsed by “400 experts” and included funding from the European Commission (37.5 million euros), the German government (10 million euros) and an additional 46 million euros from the U.K. government, with 20 million euros going directly to the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness (CEPI) for vaccine development.

CEPI committed $100 million to speed up licensure of COVID-19 vaccines but said it was trying to raise $2 billion more to speed vaccines to market.

The WHO’s R&D plan stated there was an “urgent need” to fill in scientific knowledge gaps about the “basic biology” of COVID-19 infection and clinical evolution of COVID-19 and its epidemiology, as well as the need to develop appropriate animal models for research because some previous SARS and MERS vaccine studies in animals showed that more (not less) respiratory disease can occur in vaccinated animals after exposure to the live virus.

The WHO roadmap stated, “Evaluating the potential for enhanced [=worsening] disease in humans is critical before [vaccines] can be assessed through larger-scale studies.” By mid-March and early April, the WHO, National Institutes of Health, universities, and global pharmaceutical corporations had announced the development of more than 50 experimental COVID-19 vaccines.

Maintaining that the only solution to dealing with the new coronavirus is the universal use of a new vaccine, this single solution approach guarantees even bigger profits in the exploding global vaccine market that has doubled over the past decade from $20 billion in 2010 to $42 billion in 2018. Dominated by the U.K.’s GlaxoSmithKline, France’s Sanofi and U.S. drug giants Merck and Pfizer, the vaccine market is projected to double again by 2026 to over $93 billion.

There are already reports from Wall Street predicting big gains in biotech stocks based on multiple companies developing COVID-19 vaccines and drugs.

One company, Moderna, which is partnering with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) headed by Dr. Anthony Fauci, has seen a 78 per cent increase in its stock price since it announced in February that its experimental messenger RNA vaccine was ready for clinical trials. The company’s CEO has become a new billionaire overnight. Unfortunately, the company finds itself at the heart of another debate, as it uses aborted fetus cell lines to produce this vaccine. This raises again additional questions of ethics in medicine as to whether we should exploit the remains of aborted babies for profit in health and disease management.

Canada’s recent approval of a human clinical trial for a Chinese coronavirus vaccine also made from aborted fetal cell lines should “be a concern” for everyone and that “rushing a vaccine to market could do more harm than good,” says a Canadian vaccine awareness group. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced May 16 that Health Canada approved this coronavirus vaccine Ad5-nCoV to be used in human clinical trials.

NIAID Director Dr. Anthony Fauci backpedals on his previous ‘alternative’ recommendations

Using alternative therapies or currently licensed prescription drugs has taken a back seat to an aggressive push to keep restrictive “social distancing” measures in place until fast-tracked experimental vaccines are licensed.

Curiously, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and the face of the White House coronavirus response team, is now saying life probably will not go back to normal until we can vaccinate the entire global population against COVID-19. I say “curiously,” as just four short years ago, in a Washingtonian article How to Avoid Getting Sick When You’re Around People All Day, Fauci touted vitamins C and D as being good for boosting your immune system and fighting infectious disease. Vitamin C “can enhance your body’s defence against microbes,” he said — a statement backed by recent research showing vitamin C supplementation lowers your risk of the common cold. At the time, Fauci said he was taking 1,000 milligrams (mg) of vitamin C, himself, every day. “Many people also do not get enough vitamin D, which affects a lot of body functions, so that would be helpful, too,” he added.

Yet, in a March 26, 2020 interview with RealClear Politics, he changed his tune, saying there was “no definite proof” that the vitamins work, even though some studies show they do. What changed? Why did he say vitamins C and D help boost immune function and ward off infectious disease four years ago, only to deny it now?
According to Dr. Andrew G. Weber, a pulmonologist and critical-care specialist affiliated with two Northwell Health facilities on Long Island, “The patients who received vitamin C did significantly better than those who did not get vitamin C. It helps a tremendous amount, but it is not highlighted because it’s not a sexy drug.”

Global vaccine plan in action?

Is Fauci simply promoting Bill Gates’ vaccine agenda? It’s not an implausible idea, considering Fauci is on the Leadership Council board responsible for putting together Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s Global Vaccine Action Plan — a collaboration between the Foundation, NIAID, UNICEF and the World Health Organization.

As explained in a Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation press release:

“The Global Vaccine Action Plan will enable greater coordination across all stakeholder groups — national governments, multilateral organizations, civil society, the private sector and philanthropic organizations — and will identify critical policy, resource, and other gaps that must be addressed to realize the life-saving potential of vaccines.”

It’s quite feasible that one “gap” that would need to be addressed “to realize the life-saving potential of vaccines” would be the elimination of inexpensive patent-free competition such as nutritional supplements.

Because many reports from medical professionals treating COVID-19 patients are showing favourable results using old medicines and supplements such as IV vitamin C and zinc, there’s absolutely no reason to announce the end of normalcy unless we vaccinate billions of people.

Zinc is currently looking like one of the most important remedies against COVID-19. Compelling evidence suggests the reason the antimalarial drug chloroquine appears so useful in the treatment of COVID-19 is because it acts as a zinc ionophore (zinc transporter) so it improves zinc uptake into the cell. Zinc is crucial for healthy immune function and a combination of zinc with a zinc ionophore was in 2010 shown to block the replication of SARS coronavirus (SARS-CoV-1) in cell culture within minutes. Many of the symptoms of COVID-19 are also near-indistinguishable from those of zinc deficiency.

COVID-19 vaccine will bypass safety testing

Even if a vaccine comes out in a year, which is astoundingly rapid, we will have little proof that it’s safe and effective since researchers are foregoing some of the normally required safety testing to get a vaccine out as soon as possible.

What if it turns into a repeat of the fast-tracked H1N1 swine flu vaccine released in Europe during the swine flu pandemic of 2009-2010? In July 2009, the U.S. National Biodefense Safety Board unanimously decided to forgo most safety and efficacy tests to get the vaccine out by September of that year. Europe also accelerated its approval process, allowing manufacturers to skip large-scale human trials — a decision that turned out to have tragic consequences for an untold number of children and teens across Europe. Over the next few years, the ASO3-adjuvanted swine flu vaccine Pandemrix (used in Europe but not in the U.S. during 2009-2010) was causally linked to childhood narcolepsy, which abruptly skyrocketed in several countries. Children and teens in Finland, the U.K. and Sweden were among the hardest hit. Further analyses discerned a rise in narcolepsy among adults who received the vaccine as well, although the link wasn’t as obvious as that in children and adolescents. A more recent 2019 study also found the same increased susceptibility to Pandemrix-induced narcolepsy in certain individuals.

Well worth noting, concerning vaccine safety and efficacy in general, is a study published in Clinical Infectious Disease (June 2012) which revealed that recipients of the regular flu vaccine were at significantly increased risk of non-influenza respiratory virus infections such as coronavirus.

Is it any surprise that the sectors of society being hit hardest by COVID-19 are also the very people who have (and are typically required to) receive the flu shot each winter; health care workers and elderly in nursing homes. This is just my speculation, based on the above study.

There’s much we still do not know

Here we are, again, awaiting another fast-tracked vaccine for a virus we still don’t even fully understand. For example, in recent days, some doctors have noted their patients’ symptoms appear closer to altitude sickness than pneumonia. Their blood oxygen levels are devastatingly low, yet they’re not gasping for air. Doctors in the field are also noticing that patients put on ventilators have a much higher death rate than those who are not ventilated. Yet standard of care for low blood oxygen calls for ventilation. This situation highlights the danger of making medical assumptions.

For years vaccines have been held up as ‘sacred cows’ by our medical system (interestingly enough, vaccine – ‘Vacca’ – comes from the Spanish word for cow). I expect the awaited Corona (meaning royal or crown) vaccine promises to become the king of all sacred cows yet known to medicine. Fauci and Gates insist a vaccine is the only thing that can open the world back up for business, yet they have little evidence to back up the notion that a vaccine is the best way to protect public health.

Next week we’ll look at some of the more encouraging paths to beyond COVID-19.

For more information from well-referenced resources, I suggest Dr. Joseph Mercola’s website (articles.mercola.com) and James Corbett’s Reports (www.corbettreport.com), or check out some of the other doctors and researchers mentioned above.

To be continued next week.

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Dr John Pronk ND practices natural medicine in Palmerston. He can be reached by email at jpronk@greenwoodclinic.ca