Wednesday 27 October 2021

Vaccinated and unvaccinated people dying from Covid

I hear about a lot of unvaccinated Romanians in their 40s and 50s dying of Covid-19. 

Many people in Romania are understandably angry with people who campaign against being vaccinated, who return the feeling.

The Romanian Covid Vaccine Committee says that vaccines reduce the risk of infection to one fifth of what the risk would be without a vaccine and the risk of dying of Covid to one twentieth.

This does not mean people who have been vaccinated do not die of Covid. Not at all. 

Lots do. 

Of course, the more people in a country that are fully vaccinated the greater the proportion of people in that country who die of Covid despite being fully vaccinated.

Six in ten people admitted to hospital in the UK with Covid are fully vaccinated, according to new figures from the UK Health Security Agency and between Sept. 6 and Oct. 3, 70 percent of 'Covid-positive deaths' in the UK occurred among people who were fully vaccinated.

The Swedish Public Health Agency reported 70% of the 130 people who died of Covid 19 were “fully vaccinated” between Sept. 1 and Sept. 24. Sweden recorded about 130 fatal Covid cases during that period. Researcher Farshid Jalalvand told the Swedish newspaper of record Svenska Dagbladet that “it has been a long time since the elderly were vaccinated, vaccination rates have increased, restrictions have been relaxed, and the delta variant has taken over. 

It is important to remember that all deaths are not equally tragic. Most people everywhere who die of or with Covid are very old. Many, perhaps even most, are dying of old age, as Colin Powell did. 90% of people who die of Covid-19 around the world are aged 65 or over. 90% of the maybe one or maybe four million people who died of the Hong King Flu in 1968 were 65 or younger.

The overall infection fatality rate (IFR) for Covid, meaning the proportion of people with the illness who die, including people who have no or few symptoms,  is between 0.1% and 0.5%, which is close to the rate in the Asian Flu of 1957 and the Hong Kong Flu of 1968. 

As with flu Covid-19 is mostly spread by droplets indoors - there is a little circumstantial evidence that masks might do some good, though there is no proof and the introduction of mandatory masks didn't seem to contain or slow the epidemic. About half the people who died with Covid around the developed world died in nursing homes. Many or most died with not of Covid. Many or most died of old age.

In Iran, so I read in the famous British magazine New Scientist, almost everyone seems to have had Covid, sometimes more than once, and yet they have not reached herd immunity. Portugal has vaccinated 85% of her adults and children aged over 12 and the Netherlands has vaccinated 80% and in neither country is there any sign of herd immunity.


  1. It is important to remember that all deaths are not equally tragic.

    That's an intriguing perspective. It doesn't sound very Christian. It also doesn't sound very Catholic. It is a viewpoint that seems to be popular on the far right these days. It doesn't really matter if old people and sick people die because they're just useless eaters.

    I'm frankly a bit shocked to hear you say something like this.

    What worries me is how we're going to decide which people's deaths matter and which don't matter. And who is going to make the decision? Presumably the government.

    1. I only just saw this and can say you drew strange conclusions from what I wrote. I certainly did not say it does not matter if old people die. I implied the world has got the pandemic all wrong. It's a nasty influenza like illness which kills lots of people, mostly old and frail. I certainly do not think that lockdowns etc would be justified if everyone killed by Covid-19 was over 70. In fact I think lockdowns were a bad idea anyway. We should have tried to protect old and frail people but otherwise gone on as normal.

  2. For every 100,000 fully vaccinated 40-49 year old in the UK, 1731 have Covid right now;

    For every 100,000 unvaccinated 40-49 year olds in the UK, only 773 have Covid right now.

    That is to say, being fully vaccinated has increased the odds of forty-somethings in Britain of having Covid by 124%.

    A Pandemic of the Vaccinated
    OCTOBER 28, 2021

    1. Very interesting, Toma - thank you.
      The comments below this article are interesting, especially the long quotation from Arthur Firstenberg that starts: “As a person who went to medical school, I was shocked when I read Neil Orr’s study, published in 1981 in the Annals of the Royal College of Surgeons of England. Dr. Orr was a surgeon in the Severalls Surgical Unit in Colchester. And for six months, from March through August 1980, the surgeons and staff in that unit decided to see what would happen if they did not wear masks during surgeries. They wore no masks for six months, and compared the rate of surgical wound infections from March through August 1980 with the rate of wound infections from March through August of the previous four years. And they discovered, to their amazement, that when nobody wore masks during surgeries, the rate of wound infections was less than half what it was when everyone wore masks. Their conclusion: “It would appear that minimum contamination can best be achieved by not wearing a mask at all” and that wearing a mask during surgery “is a standard procedure that could be abandoned.”

      I Googled Mr Firstenburg and he has some very odd ideas about electromagnetic radiation, for example from mobile telephones, but what he says about masks is interesting if true (something Alexander Kinglake wanted to write on every altar in Europe)>