Dear Teachers and Parents,
These comments represent purely and solely my own personal views, foremost as a father and grandfather and professionally as a long-time medical practitioner in New Zealand and as an ex school-doctor at a number of NZ schools.
I am not an expert in vaccines, apart from my experience as a practitioner of 48 years full-time medical practice, nor am I able to access information beyond the Ministry of Health’s assurances that the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccination is safe and effective for this
5-12 year old age group.
These personal views, therefore, do not represent any views or endorsement by any association, organization, Ministry of Health or professional body and I personally accept the responsibility for these private comments.
I want to stress that these comments are about the Covid-19 vaccinations for children and adolescents and as such are completely irrespective of anybody’s personal stance on the Covid-19 vaccination in general. Whether parents and teachers decide to have the vaccination as adults is a question of freedom of choice and personal decision-making. But to vaccinate children with this type of mRNA vaccine during their still developing immune-system is in my opinion a different issue altogether.
My comments pertain therefore to my serious doubts about the wisdom of extending the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccination to the 5 to 12 year old age-group, as formally commenced on Monday17 January 2022, under emergency medical ruling by the New Zealand Ministry of Health.
All human vaccinations, until this very rapidly developed ‘vaccine’ in 2020, have only been released and permitted after thorough and long-term pre-clinical and clinical research into any possible and potential adverse effects, and with long-term benefit-risk assessments, especially involving the not-yet-stable immune system in the age group of young children and in pregnant women. That is, and has always been, standard medical practice to weigh up benefits and risks.
From my research I have not been able to find sufficient evidence of significantly convincing risk/benefit assessments in regard of the long-term potential positive and adverse effects of this vaccination in children of the 5-12 year age group in view of the Covid-19 health risks to this age-goup.
Similarly, there appears to be insufficient specific research of mRNA inoculation and its potential effects in pregnant women and effects on the infant via breast-feeding.
Adequate and appropriate pre-clinical research into the effects on potential congenital effects and later effects of this vaccine, with its genetic modulation, on the still-developing immune-system in the young child appear unconvincing to me.
A risk-benefit assessment in this age-group reveals in fact no benefit and potentially (very) serious immediate and potentially long-term adverse effects in a developing child.
(On this basis the only clear benefits that I can detect appear to be commercial ones for the manufacturers.)
There are a number of pillars, on which the principles of vaccination are based:
- To prevent individual infection with a particular causative organism, which can lead to serious and potentially lethal disease outcomes.
- To prevent the spread of such infection in the community.
- The risk profile of vaccination must remain minimal in comparison with the risk of becoming seriously ill from the infection with the particular pathogen.
- Only in case of emergency can the process of vaccine research and delivery be justified and short-circuited to avert high morbidity and mortality in a specific vulnerable segment of society, in this case the cohort of 5-12 year old children.
In my opinion the current proposal and implementation to vaccinate all 5-12 year Kiwi children fails on all of the above criteria:
- As stated by the NZ Ministry of Health, this mRNA vaccination does not prevent infection with Covid-19
- As stated by the NZ Ministry of Health, this mRNA vaccination does not prevent the spread of Covid-19
- In this age group, this is not a serious disease, with practically nil mortality and very low grade morbidity.
- As research has consistently shown, the risk-benefit assessment of mRNA vaccination in this age-group shows a negligible risk to significant Covid-19 disease and a significant potential risk for long-term, and until now unknown, adverse effects of the vaccination.
- Recent cases of myocarditis and other cardiac pathology in the young and adolescent age group have come to light, which would significantly skew the risk/benefit assessment.
- A discussion as to what number of deaths and/or adverse-effects in this age-group can be expected and/or tolerated, is in my view morally un-defensible. This is similar to discussing what particular statistical number of ‘traffic deaths and long term disability’ do we decide to tolerate in society?
In my opinion therefore, there don’t appear sufficient medical or scientific grounds to justify this vaccination to 5-12 year olds in New Zealand under emergency regulation.
I remember well, from my medical school training and from two adult patients later in my own general practice, the lessons to be learnt from the Thalidomide (Softenon) tragedy in the early 1960s. That medical disaster caused the deaths and serious life-long after-effects of thousands of children worldwide and should not be forgotten. It should never be forgotten that those deaths and congenital abnormalities were the direct result of insufficiently researched medication, prescribed for pregnant women as safe and effective in pregnancy.
Therefore, as a medical doctor, I can not remain silent in this proposed program of what I consider completely un-necessary vaccination, with an insufficiently researched genetic immune-modulating agent in this age group; an age-group, in which the risk of developing serious health risks due to Covid-19 is less than miniscule.
In fact, in my opinion, the motivations, the ethics and the morality of the protagonists of this proposed program may need to be seriously scrutinized.
Psychiatrist, ex long-term GP