Still more on the COVID vaccines’ 95% effectiveness rate…

WHO says “no evidence that vaccines prevent people from getting infected”

True, but no reason to go anti-vax.

Bias alert: I’m pro-vax and plan to get vaccinated as soon as I can.

In a prior post, we parsed the Pfizer study results … honing in on one of the study’s limitations: it only counted the number of participants who exhibited at least one COVID symptom.

Said differently, the study was silent on the number of participants who might have been infected but asymptomatic.

So, I wasn’t surprised when the WHO’s chief scientist quipped:

“At the moment, I don’t believe we have the evidence on any of the vaccines, to be confident that it’s going to prevent people from getting the infection and passing it on,”

Based on the study’s design and results, I think that it’s reasonable to conclude:

1. The vaccines substantially decrease the probability of catching COVID and developing any symptoms … probably not by 95%, but by a very high number (say, 70%)

2. But, there is an undetermined (or unreported) chance of catching COVID but not developing any symptoms.

3. And, “the science” is still fuzzy on the likelihood of asymptomatic COVID infectees transmitting the virus to other people.

On the last point, some scientists say that asymptomatics are the primary transmitters of the virus.

Others argue that asymptomatics don’t develop symptoms because they have a low “viral load” … and, if their viral load is low, their contagiousness is low … so they’re not transmission threats.


Bottom line: There’s little news in the headline that has gone viral … an no reason to fret.

I still plan to get vaccinated as soon as I can.

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