Israeli Doctor: Pfizer Vaccine Didn’t Stop 4th Corona Wave

And the “Green Passport” is effectively useless for preventing transmission since vaccinated people are being infected

By Ryan Jones | | Topics: Coronavirus, Vaccine
Photo: Michael Giladi/Flash90

Israel is busy patting itself on the back for “defeating” the fourth wave of coronavirus infections. The government of Prime Minister Naftali Bennett believes this achievement can and should be attributed to its aggressive vaccination campaign and the reintroduction of certain restrictions like the “Green Passport.”

But not all the experts agree.

Dr. Raya Liebowitz is the head of Oncology at Shamir Medical Center (previously known as Assaf Harofeh Hospital) and is a member of the Faculty of Medicine at Tel Aviv University.

She thinks that Bennett and his “government of change” are wrong, and that neither the vaccines nor the green passports can be credited with bringing Israel any closer to normalcy. If anything, she says those measures worsened the crisis.

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett has been very aggressive in pushing Israelis to get “fully” vaccinated and sidelining any experts who express dissenting views.

In an op-ed for Israel’s N12 news portal this week, Dr. Leibowitz stressed that “the Corona infection waves are not affected by the vaccine and cannot be prevented. This fact has been proven beyond any doubt with the advent of the fourth wave after most of the population had already been vaccinated.”

There was therefore “no reason to assume that giving a booster shot would alter the parameters” and prevent a future wave of infections.

The good doctor did note that the COVID-19 vaccine can reduce severe side effects associated with coronavirus infections, and therefore should be administered to the elderly and those with background illnesses. But, she emphasized that “its toxicity-benefit ratio in young adults has not yet been determined, and people should not be pressured to take the vaccine, let alone feel forced to do so.”

But the Green Passport program is aimed at doing just that, compelling Israelis to get the jab.

Dr. Leibowitz says this is both medically and morally wrong.

“Vaccinated people can and are being infected, so having a Green Passport won’t affect the dynamics of the infection wave. It creates a false sense of security, while being ineffective as a measurement of a person’s ability to infect others,” she explained. “But it does frustrate the public by creating segregation and social divisions.”

If a vaccinated person can still carry and transmit COVID-19, then what’s the point of the Green Passport?

As for vaccinating young children against COVID-19, which Israel is keen to do after the FDA granted emergency approval, Dr. Leibowitz is opposed.

Since children are not prone to the complications experienced by the elderly, and since we now know the vaccine can’t and won’t eradicate the coronavirus, she doesn’t see a need to vaccinate the 5-11 age group.

“COVID-19 is not a serious concern among young children, nor has vaccination of children shown to prevent serious complications related to Corona, as the vaccine does not prevent infection,” the doctor stated.

At the same time, “no one knows what are the long-term implications of receiving multiple booster vaccines over a lifetime. The vaccine is not without side effects in any age group.”

The next step is to vaccinate young children, but that’s where many Israelis may draw the line.

What then can we do?

Chasing the latest vaccine is always going to leave us a step behind, Dr. Leibowitz emphasized. Like the flu, COVID-19 is mutating, with each new infection wave caused by a new strand that is at least partially resistant to our current vaccines.

“It’s like preparing for a war that’s already happened,” she writes, continuing:

“As with any viral disease, recovery from COVID-19 confers deeper and longer-lasting immunity than that conferred by a pharmacological vaccine. Thus, at a strategic level – an increase in the percentage of recoverers will increase the ‘immunity depth’ in the population.”

In other words, we might have to wait it out. Our elected leaders, of course, can’t be seen to be doing nothing, so they do something. But is it helping, or further exacerbating a tense situation?

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