Sunday, April 14, 2024
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German scientists damn lockdowns, masks and vaccines – but who in power will listen to them?


THE furore surrounding the release of the Hancock files is distracting from the core issue, which is how so many nations across the world, not just the UK, came to be so badly misled about Covid, resulting in repressive and irrational governmental responses far more damaging than the disease.

While we await a Covid Truth Commission of the type called for by senior American scientists to ensure that the public health disaster of the past three years is not repeated, a cool and even-handed appraisal of Covid-related measures has been published in Germany. The report, by 13 leading specialists, sheds further light on which steps were effective and which were either useless or harmful.  

The group includes four medical professors, a professor of medical statistics, lung specialists, and two politicians.  

Key lessons learned include:

Corona viruses are almost exclusively airborne, and their spread is practically impossible to prevent.

This has been known for years, but the implications were ignored by the authorities and their scientific advisers.  

Virus particles exhaled can remain in closed rooms for a long time, so there is still a risk of infection even if an infected person has left. 

Some people breathe out the virus even without becoming ill themselves; while some get sick without being contagious. 

Consequently, Zero-Covid policies were bound to fail. Precautionary testing, and quarantine, did little to stem spread.  

Countrywide lockdown measures as well as border, school, university and daycare closures were ineffective. Such measures could be justified to delay spread, but by mid-2020 it was clear in Germany [as elsewhere] that there was no nationwide overcrowding of hospitals or intensive care units.

Viral load determines disease severity. 

If you get infected with a small amount of virus, it takes a few days to get sick, and generally the disease is then milder because the immune system has had time to prepare. On the other hand, if you inhale large amounts of virus over a few hours, you will get sick faster and have a higher risk of death. 

It quickly became clear that those most threatened by SARS-CoV-2 were older people with other illnesses. Children and young people were largely not at risk, and several studies have shown that infected children exhale significantly fewer infectious particles than adults. The different risk groups need different protection strategies.

The greatest danger is in closed, poorly ventilated indoor spaces.

There is now overwhelming data that infection occurs only indoors. The risk depends on ventilation, on the number of people present, and on the height of the room. In spaces with higher ceilings, such as in many supermarkets or churches, the risk is greatly reduced. Outside, exhaled air is immediately diluted and there are practically never enough viruses inhaled to trigger infection. Lockdowns are directly counterproductive to the extent that they keep people indoors.   

Masks do not prevent infections, but can reduce the wearer’s risk of serious illness.

When viral load is high, in an enclosed space, masks can reduce the inhaled dose and so help protect an individual. But many studies have shown that masks do not significantly slow the spread of the virus, because you can never completely avoid contact with the airborne particles.    

Masks are completely pointless outdoors. 

Disinfection of hands and surfaces does not make sense.

Transmission via hands and physical contact is theoretically possible, but the risk is thousands of times lower than with inhaled particles and can therefore be ignored.

Quarantine is inappropriate.  Only the ill should have sick leave. 

Those infected are often not contagious; and many people spread the virus before they get sick. This is why lockdowns, and quarantining those who have tested positive, do more harm than good, especially because of the social and cultural damage caused, and delayed diagnosis and treatment of other illnesses.   

Since the virus cannot be stopped from spreading, sick leave only makes sense for those who are ill, not for everyone who has tested positive.  

Social distancing could create a false sense of security. 

Keeping your distance makes sense for pathogens transmitted through coughing, such as TB, but exhaled viruses spread very quickly in closed rooms. Aiming for short contact times makes more sense.

Previous infection protects better than vaccination.

Patients who became infected before vaccination was available were also vulnerable to infection with later virus variants, but less likely to become seriously ill.  Vaccination initially reduced reinfection somewhat, but that protection disappeared with the new variants. 

The vaccination drives have not been scientifically assessed.

Their value can be judged only through trials using a placebo vaccination group, but after the initial approval, there was no placebo control, bringing a high risk of bias in claims for effectiveness. Studies indicating that people who receive several Covid vaccine doses are at increased risk of infection and illness are currently being discussed in Germany.

Almost from the start of the pandemic, senior scientists have made claims similar to the above, but have been largely ignored by both politicians and mainstream media. While this institutional blindness and denial continues, it is important to keep putting on record lessons from what American professor of medicine Martin Kulldorf has described as ‘the worst public health mistakes in history’. 

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Neville Hodgkinson
Neville Hodgkinson
Neville Hodgkinson is the former Sunday Times medical and science correspondent who created an international storm by reporting a scientific challenge to the ‘HIV’ theory of Aids. His new book, How HIV/Aids Set the Stage for the Covid Crisis, is an expanded and updated version of his previous book on the controversy. It is available here.

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