Florida’s surgeon general says state health officials will warn anyone under 65 about getting the new Covid booster vaccine.
Dr Joseph Ladapo – who was accused of promoting faulty vaccine data last year – today claimed there was “a complete absence of figures” on the effectiveness of the updated vaccines.
Dr. Lapado – who was hand-picked by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis – also promoted the false claim that there was “not a drop of clinical trial data” supporting the vaccines.
Speaking on a panel on vaccines today, Dr. Lapado said: “I just think at this point, with the level of immunity that the community has, virtually every human being that walks has a certain degree of immunity.
“And the questions we have about safety and effectiveness, particularly about safety, in my opinion, it’s not a good decision for young people and people who are not at high risk at this point of the pandemic.”
Florida Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo said the state would not recommend people under 65 receive the updated Covid boosters.
The chart above shows cardiac arrest deaths among people under 34 each year since 2000. It comes from the CDC Wonder database. Data for 2021 and 2022 are provisional
Dr. Ladapo has repeatedly supported claims that vaccines cause widespread heart problems in young people, a link that has been repeatedly refuted by large studies.
The vaccines have been linked to a very low risk of myocarditis in young people, affecting around one in 30,000 children under 40 after their second shot.
But cases are normally mild and resolve on their own without requiring any medical intervention.
Covid infection is also more likely to trigger myocarditis than vaccines, studies show.
And data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that cardiac deaths among Americans under 34 are similar to pre-pandemic levels.
The updated Covid shots, approved this week by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), have been deemed safe for anyone aged six months and older and have been recommended for anyone in that age range.
However, during a vaccine panel hosted by DeSantis, Florida Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo said there was “a complete absence of data” on the effectiveness of the updated vaccines.
The state’s top health official was joined by several other doctors, who said approving the booster shots was “irresponsible” and that the FDA and CDC were “failing” in their jobs.
Dr. Ladapo’s most recent statement comes days after he warned Americans not to take the updated vaccine due to “red flags” regarding its safety and amid mixed recommendations from health experts about who should and shouldn’t roll up their sleeves to get the final curtain call.
DeSantis echoed Dr. Ladapo’s sentiments, writing in a press release sent after the panel: “I will not stand idly by and let the FDA and CDC use healthy Floridians as guinea pigs for new booster shots whose safety or effectiveness has not been proven.”
“I will not stand idly by and let the FDA and CDC use healthy Floridians as guinea pigs for new booster shots that have not been proven safe or effective,” the Florida governor wrote, Ron DeSantis, in a press release sent after the panel.
During the panel, Dr. Ladapo criticized CDC Director Dr. Mandy Cohen for her statement on Tuesday, which said: “Vaccination remains the best protection against hospitalizations and deaths related to Covid-19. »
“She made this statement without a single drop of clinical trial data on these products that have just been approved and that say nothing about their effectiveness or safety in human beings,” Dr. Ladapo said.
“We’re just at a point where the CDC director is making very clear statements in the complete absence of data and somehow many people believe that to be true.”
“It is not something that should be ignored if the goal is to preserve the health of human beings.
“This is a great disservice to every American and, frankly, every human being on this planet who fears getting sick from COVID-19,” Dr. Ladapo continued.
Doctors joining DeSantis and Dr. Ladapo expressed concern about the lack of research being done on the new vaccines. Dr. Tracy Beth Hoeg, an epidemiologist at the University of California, San Francisco who participated on the panel, pointed to a small study conducted on one of the booster shots made by Moderna.
The study followed 50 participants and found that one person, or two percent of the study population, experienced adverse reactions directly related to the vaccine.
Dr. Hoeg did not specify what the side effect was.
“Right now we are completely devoid of useful data. This puts us all in a very difficult position when it comes to recommending or not taking these vaccines,” Dr. Hoeg said.
“From what we know, healthy people under 65 have very little to gain from the vaccine. We don’t know what the benefits of the vaccine will be.
Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, a professor of health policy at Stanford University, told the panel: “There is no chance that a product like this would be brought to market with the type of data that is currently available. »
“I think it’s an absolutely irresponsible decision for the FDA to approve this product and for the CDC to recommend that everyone take it.”
“It is absolutely essential that our regulatory agencies require these pharmaceutical companies to produce better data if they want to gain approval. That’s their job, and they can’t do it.
The FDA approved new booster shots from Moderna and Pfizer on Tuesday, and the CDC urged every adult and child over six months to take the new vaccine, which was designed to target newer versions of the Omicron variant.
Health officials hope to increase immunity levels across the country before winter as Covid rates rise nationwide for the first time this year – although top experts expect that this is a mild wave of the virus.
This is the second booster recommended by the CDC. Last year, the CDC also recommended the bivalent Covid booster for everyone six months and older.
But other countries have only authorized the previous recall for older age groups, with the UK giving it the green light for those aged 50 and over and Italy for those aged 60 and more.
There are signs, however, that health chiefs will struggle to convince Americans to come up for the new Covid booster vaccine this year, after languishing uptake last year.
Overall, only 17% of eligible Americans came forward for the bivalent vaccine, which protects against Omicron’s versions.
Among people over 65 – who are most at risk of serious illness – almost six in ten have not come forward to get vaccinated.
Some experts are already urging only older Americans to come forward to get the updated Covid booster, with Dr. Paul Offit, who serves on the FDA’s vaccine advisory committee, telling DailyMail.com last week that adults in Healthy under 75s do not need it. to get the shot.
This comes as Covid indicators continue to rise in the United States amid the emergence of new, more transmissible variants.
Covid-related hospitalizations increased by almost nine percent in a week, reaching 18,871 admissions in the seven days to September 2.