Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Vaccine Mandates for College? Just Say No

From NYT (cited at Hot Hair), Aaron Carrol, Vaccine mandates are coming. Good.

Some colleges and universities have also required students, professors and other staff members to be vaccinated before returning to campus. The schools want to return to full classrooms, busy dining halls and a vibrant campus life. They want students to be able to go to football games, events and even parties without fear of outbreaks. The only way to do that is to achieve significant levels of immunity. The only way to do that quickly and safely is through vaccination. More than 500 colleges and universities in the United States have mandated Covid vaccination so far. My school, Indiana University, where I am the chief health officer, is one of them. Schools like ours believe that the only way to get to the level of safety we need to reopen without outbreaks or worse is to get nearly everyone immunized. Some private companies have done the same. Many of our health care systems in Indiana have mandated vaccination.

But  For college-aged, vaccination risks likely outweigh COVID risks, says UCI medical ethics chief

For college-aged students, the potential for adverse reactions to the COVID vaccination appear to outweigh the risks of the virus itself for that age group, said Dr. Aaron Kheriaty, a professor of psychiatry and director of the Medical Ethics Program at the University of California, Irvine.

Asked by The College Fix whether potential side effects of the COVID-19 vaccination outweigh risks of possibly contracting the virus for college-aged students, he said “the answer is likely yes.”

“[A]t the very least, based on current evidence, it’s entirely plausible to assume the answer is yes: that risks of Covid vaccination outweigh potential benefits of the vaccine for college age students,” Kheriaty said via email on Wednesday.

“We don’t know with certainty what percentage of college-age students have side-effects, or serious adverse effects, from the vaccine because the current systems (e.g., VAERS) used to track adverse events are not sufficient to answer that scientific question,” Kheriaty said.

VAERS stands for Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System, and it relies on self-reporting and may contain unverified reports that show an association but not causation, Kheriaty said.

He said that while there may be a few fraudulent reports to VAERS, someone would have to be pretty motivated to spend the 30-plus minutes required to file just one of the reports into the “cumbersome system,” Kheriaty said.

“Much more likely, however, adverse events are under-reported in VAERS — there are several studies suggesting that this is the case,” he said. “Even if adverse effects are not underreported, the reported rates of myocarditis in people under 30 — especially in young men — suggest that the risks of vaccination outweigh the risks of Covid in this population.”

I think that for college age  people, the risk calculus for the various WuFlu vaccines is equivocal enough that it's likely a wash. If you choose to get vaccinated, fine, the risks of vaccine side effects are real, but small, and if you choose not to get vaccinated, that's a reasonable decision too, the risks of WuFlu are also small in that age bracket.. For younger people, high school and below, there is probably not a good reason to get vaccinated; the risk from the vaccines likely outweighs the risk of the virus itself. We have no business mandating vaccines in young people that are more dangerous than the disease. 

And one more from Cutie Pavlich at Town Hall, Rand Paul Blows Up Another Fauci Claim, This Time on the Delta Variant

Americans are terrible at estimating and evaluating personal risk. I blame the media.

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