Health Viewpoints

‘Unethical’ and Up to 98 Times Worse Than the Disease: Top Scientists Publish Paradigm-Shifting Study About COVID-19 Boosters for Young Adults

BY Jennifer Margulis and Joe Wang TIMESeptember 10, 2022 PRINT

A team of nine experts from Harvard, Johns Hopkins, and other top universities has published paradigm-shifting research about the efficacy and safety of the COVID-19 vaccines and why mandating vaccines for college students is unethical.

The 50-page study, which was published on the Social Science Research Network at the end of August, analyzed Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and industry-sponsored data on vaccine adverse events, and concluded that mandates for COVID-19 boosters for young people may cause 18 to 98 actual serious adverse events for each COVID-19 infection-related hospitalization theoretically prevented.

The paper was co-authored by Dr. Stefan Baral, an epidemiology professor at Johns Hopkins University; Dr. Martin Adel Makary, a surgeon and professor at Johns Hopkins known for his books exposing medical malfeasance, including “Unaccountable: What Hospitals Won’t Tell You and How Transparency Can Revolutionize Health Care”; and Dr. Vinay Prasad, a hematologist-oncologist who is a professor in the University of California–San Francisco Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, as well as the author of more than 350 academic and peer-reviewed articles.

But among this team of high-profile international experts who authored the paper, perhaps the most notable is Dr. Salmaan Keshavjee, director of the Harvard Medical School Center for Global Health Delivery and professor of global health and social medicine at Harvard Medical School. Keshavjee has also worked extensively with Partners in Health, a Boston-based nonprofit co-founded by the late Dr. Paul Farmer, on treating drug-resistant tuberculosis, according to his online biography.

Risking Disenrollment

As the study points out, students at universities in the United States, Canada, and Mexico are being told they must have a third dose of the vaccines against COVID-19 or they will be unenrolled. Unvaccinated high school graduates who are just starting college also are being told the COVID-19 vaccines are mandatory for attendance.

These mandates are widespread. Currently, 15 states honor philosophical (personal belief) exemptions to vaccines, and 44 states and the city of Washington allow religious exemptions. But even in these states, private universities are telling parents they won’t accept state-recognized vaccine exemptions.

Based on personal interviews with some half a dozen families, The Epoch Times has learned that administrators at some colleges and universities are informing students that they have their own university-employed medical teams to scrutinize the medical exemptions submitted by students and signed by private doctors. These doctors, the families are being told, will decide whether the health reasons given are medically valid.

5 Ethical Arguments Against Mandated Boosters

Though rarely reported on in the mainstream media, COVID-19 vaccine boosters have been generating a lot of controversy.

While some countries are quietly compensating people for devastating vaccine injuries, and other countries are limiting COVID-19 vaccine recommendations, the United States is now recommending that children 12 and older get Pfizer–BioNTech’s Omicron-specific booster and young adults older than age 18 get Moderna’s updated shot.

At the same time, public health authorities in Canada are suggesting that Canadians will need COVID-19 vaccines every 90 days.

Against a backdrop of confusing and often changing public health recommendations and booster fatigue, the authors of this new paper argue that university booster mandates are unethical. They give five specific reasons for this bold claim:

1) Lack of policymaking transparency. The scientists pointed out that no formal and scientifically rigorous risk-benefit analysis of whether boosters are helpful in preventing severe infections and hospitalizations exists for young adults.

2) Expected harm. A look at the currently available data shows that mandates will result in what the authors call a “net expected harm” to young people. This expected harm will exceed the potential benefit from the boosters.

3) Lack of efficacy. The vaccines haven’t effectively prevented the transmission of COVID-19. Given how poorly they work—the authors call this “modest and transient effectiveness”—the expected harms caused by the boosters likely outweigh any benefits to public health.

4) No recourse for vaccine-injured young adults. Forcing vaccination as a prerequisite to attend college is especially problematic, because young people injured by these vaccines likely won’t be able to receive compensation for these injuries.

5) Harm to society. Mandates, the authors insisted, ostracize unvaccinated young adults, excluding them from education and university employment opportunities. Coerced vaccination entails “major infringements to free choice of occupation and freedom of association,” the scientists wrote, especially when “mandates are not supported by a compelling public health justification.”

The consequences of noncompliance include being unenrolled, losing internet privileges, losing access to the gym and other athletic facilities, and being kicked out of campus housing, among other things. These punitive approaches, according to the authors, have resulted in unnecessary psychosocial stress, reputation damage, loss of income, and fear of being deported, to name just a few.

A Risk With Little Benefit

The lack of effectiveness of the vaccines is a major concern to these researchers. Based on their analysis of the public data provided to the CDC, they estimated that between 22,000 and 30,000 previously uninfected young adults would need to be boosted with an mRNA vaccine to prevent just a single hospitalization.

However, this estimate doesn’t take into account the protection conferred by a previous infection. So, the authors insisted, “this should be considered a conservative and optimistic assessment of benefit.”

In other words, the mRNA vaccines against COVID-19 are essentially useless for young adults.

Mandated Booster Shots Cause More Harm Than Good

But the documented lack of efficacy is only part of the problem. The researchers further found that per every one COVID-19 hospitalization prevented in young adults who hadn’t previously been infected with COVID-19, the data show that 18 to 98 “serious adverse events” will be caused by the vaccinations themselves.

These events include up to three times as many booster-associated incidents of myocarditis in young men than hospitalizations prevented, and as many as 3,234 cases of other side effects so serious that they interfere with normal daily activities.

At a regional hospital in South Carolina, the desk clerk sported a button that read, “I’m Vaccinated Against COVID-19” with a big black check mark on it.

“What about the boosters?” a hospital visitor asked. “It’s starting to seem like we need too many shots.”

“It does seem like a lot,” the clerk agreed. “It’s hard to know what to do.”

But she did have some advice for the visitor.

“Just keep reading and educating yourself, so you can make an informed decision.”

This new paper is essential reading for anyone trying to decide if they need more vaccines. The authors concluded their study with a call to action. Policymakers must stop mandates for young adults immediately, be sure that those who have already been injured by these vaccines are compensated for the suffering caused by mandates, and openly conduct and share the results of risk-benefit analyses of the vaccines for various age groups.

These measures are necessary, the authors argued, to “begin what will be a long process of rebuilding trust in public health.”

May the Force Be With Brave Scientists

The study’s two first co-authors, Kevin Bardosh and Allison Krug, both thanked their families for supporting them to “publicly debate Covid-19 vaccine mandates” in the acknowledgments section of the paper.

As we wrote in May, an increasing number of scientists and medical doctors are speaking out about the dubious efficacy and disturbing safety issues surrounding these fast-tracked COVID-19 vaccines. They do so fully aware of the personal and professional risks involved. They deserve our encouragement and support.

Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times. Epoch Health welcomes professional discussion and friendly debate. To submit an opinion piece, please follow these guidelines and submit through our form here.

Jennifer Margulis, Ph.D., is an award-winning journalist and author of “Your Baby, Your Way: Taking Charge of Your Pregnancy, Childbirth, and Parenting Decisions for a Happier, Healthier Family.” A Fulbright awardee and mother of four, she has worked on a child survival campaign in West Africa, advocated for an end to child slavery in Pakistan on prime-time TV in France, and taught post-colonial literature to non-traditional students in inner-city Atlanta. Learn more about her at JenniferMargulis.net
Joe Wang
Joe Wang, Ph.D., was a Molecular Biologist with more than 10 years of experience in the vaccine industry. He is now the president of New Tang Dynasty TV (Canada), and a columnist for the Epoch Times.
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