Hello. My name is Dr Cameron Jones, and I'm an environmental microbiologist and public health scientist. And in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, it is Victoria's chance at Freedom Day. Yes, this is the day that we are allowed and permitted to leave our homes and re-enter society. However, this is only at the expense of needing vaccine mandates, vaccine passports. Essentially, Victoria is in a state of medical apartheid. Without having access to your vaccine status, many of us will be refused entry into many public places and retail businesses.
All of this is a significant form of coercion, and we really no longer have free choice. And I wanted to make this video today, on Freedom Day, because a publication came out overnight which is reviewing the situation when an outbreak occurred over the 4th of July weekend in the United States, and I want to focus on what that research says because they were in a similar situation to some states as us in Australia, and I want to talk about this issue of about vaccination and whether vaccinated individuals versus the unvaccinated show a different distribution in the infection levels. And this excellent paper really does a great job of focusing on this exact question.
So the topic today for this short Livestream is "Victoria's Freedom Day - What Will Happen?" And if you've picked up the paper or checked your social media feed, you might be aware that on the 22nd of October, we had in Victoria 2,189 cases. That is a staggering number, and that's a lot higher than the starting point for this particular publication. And so, the question really is, what can we anticipate is going to happen in the not too distant future? And so, that's the point of this particular review.
So, if you picked up the papers such as The Age this morning, the headline would've been "Melbourne reopens: Victoria's statewide lockdown lifts as pubs, hairdressers, live music venues open their doors to vaccinated patrons", or you could have picked up The Guardian and their headline was "Melbourne freedom day: world's most lockdown city takes first cautious steps at reopening". Well, that's the premise for today's review of this particular publication. And you'll be able to retrieve this. You can go online and you can read it for yourself. It appeared on the pre-print server med archive, and the title of the publication is "Evidence of transmission from fully vaccinated individuals in a large outbreak of the SARS-CoV-2 Delta variant in Provincetown".
And you'll quickly see that there are over 80 different scientists who have participated in this research, and that is a staggering number of people to be involved in reviewing this data, so I think we can comfortably say that the conclusions that they make about this particular Delta outbreak could easily translate to the Victorian and Australian context. So, what have they actually set out to do? And what is the context of this publication?
Well, on the 4th of July weekend, obviously there is celebrations similar to our Australia Day celebrations, and the researchers were looking at the outbreak of SARS-CoV-2 during this time period. And I'm going to read directly from the highlighted sections, which I've extracted from this publication because as I said, it's just come out. So, I too am essentially doing a direct read from the research report and bringing the key points to your attention.
So, 74% of reported cases were in fully vaccinated individuals, and 17.9% of those were, as you can see, symptomatic. So, this is really, really concerning because the background level of vaccination for this particular area of Provincetown was 68%. So, that is just a little bit under the percentage that Victoria has gotten to before the lockdown restrictions have been removed. And so, why this is an important publication is that this data was also used by the CDC in the United States to reinstate their indoor mask recommendations, including for vaccinated individuals.
Now, what are some of the methods in which these scientists approached this breakout of cases? So, they were looking at how the case numbers were increasing, but they also did genome sequencing to see if there was a variation in the type of virus. And so, the premise is, and what they were looking at was, the genomic epidemiology of the outbreak, including the transmission from and between fully vaccinated individuals.
And the reason that I've highlighted this particular sentence is that the mainstream media, certainly strongly in Australia, has been pushing the narrative that vaccination is going to minimize or prevent transmission. And yet, this publication is saying the exact opposite. And I really want you to question what you are hearing about the transmission potential between vaccinated individuals, and perhaps download this paper and read it for yourself.
In any case, let's move on to the results. So when we look at the outbreak in this highly vaccinated population, what they were looking at was sequencing the specimens, and they found that most of the illness occurred it in males. The median age was 43 years old, and that 84% were from vaccinated individuals. In this vaccinated population, nearly 50% or 48% had received the Pfizer vaccine, 37% Moderna, and 14% were the Janssen vaccine product. The key takeaway from this slide is that the amount of virus titer, that is the viral load or the Ct load, was similar between vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals and between symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals.
Now, I want you to let that sink in. The amount of virus, the viral load, was similar between vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals, and between symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals.
I think that is a critical finding, which really is cause for concern, especially when vaccine mandates have been rolled out across our state. Many individuals are unable to maintain their current employment or gain employment due to the requirement for a blanket expectation that all individuals will be vaccinated, with the supposed public health good outcome being, "Do it for your neighbour". Well, these types of research publications are really suggesting that there isn't any significant difference between vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals in terms of their ability to transmit the virus, and that the concentration of the virus in their bodies is the same.
Now, if we go on and look at further information in this paper, the scientists were unable to resolve the transmission pattern. Now, again, this is concerning because they too have contact tracing. They too are attempting to connect the dots between individual case numbers and their location and the potential number of people they could have affected, or infected. And so, the conclusion is that the shape of this distribution suggests something called overdispersion.
Now, this is a particular new term in infection control where selected individuals are considered to be responsible for most of the transmission. And realistically, overdispersion is a construct or a variable to allow there to be a lot of grey here, meaning that really, they're not very sure how the transmission events actually occurred.
Now, if we move on. The transmission from vaccinated individuals, I have to say something about this. So, the scientists were looking at the contribution of the vaccinated individuals to their ability to transmit within the outbreak. And again, the scientists rely on the genomic data and the public health contact tracing, and they discovered that there were 19 links. And from the 17 index cases, those that were identified as being prime responsible for transmission, 16 out of the 17 were vaccinated.
Again, let that sink in. We're not talking about transmission between unvaccinated individuals. We're talking about transmission from vaccinated to vaccinated person. And the next part of the concluding paragraph is one additional outbreak-associated vaccinated case was a possible index of a cluster of 19 other cases in a close contact residential setting in which all individuals were fully vaccinated. Well, what does that mean?
Well, essentially, that means that an age care setting is a high concentration environment, a childcare setting is a high concentration environment, or in some cases, institutionalized disabled care could be considered a close contact residential-type situation. So again, the research is showing that transmission, at least over the 4th of July weekend with the Delta variant, was overwhelmingly between vaccinated individuals, and that should cause all of us to be highly sceptical and highly concerned for our own wellbeing, especially the incredibly high percentage of individuals who are vaccinated.
Now, the conclusion that the scientists raised and put forward is that the size of the Provincetown outbreak, over 1000 cases, demonstrated that intensely crowded events and indoor conditions, the SARS-CoV-2 Delta variant can cause a large outbreak, even in a mostly vaccinated population. Now, in Victoria today, on the 22nd of October 2021, on our Victorian Freedom Day, we have 2,189 new cases in Australia. This is really bad for our state, and we really have to question what the future holds.
Will our own trajectory follow on from research like in the United States, or will we see significant reductions in case numbers like we are seeing in New South Wales? Some perplexing questions here, but we can't go past the facts that, at least according to this publication, that just came out I might add, the conclusion is that the vaccinated transmit the virus, and that is really, really seriously concerning. In any case, my name's Dr Cameron Jones, I'm an environmental microbiologist and public health scientist. I'll be back with you next week. Bye for now.
Evidence of transmission from fully vaccinated individuals in a large outbreak of the SARS-CoV-2 Delta variant in Provincetown, Massachusetts