What Will It Take for Masks and Face Shields To End?
According to rotavirus vaccine developer Dr. Paul Offit,1 people will need to continue wearing masks and social distancing for “the next couple of years” even after a COVID-19 vaccine becomes available.
“People now see vaccines as a magic dust that’s about to be sprinkled over this country and make this all go away. It doesn’t work that way,” Offit told MarketWatch, September 21, 2020.2
Offit, who sits on the Food and Drug Administration’s Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee, said he’s wary of a COVID-19 vaccine that may be rushed to market under pressure from the government.
The U.S. Health and Human Services’ Operation Warp Speed has pledged to deliver 300 million doses of a COVID-19 vaccine by 2021,3 if not sooner.4 However, developing a safe and effective vaccine normally takes years and begins with animal studies.
The COVID-19 vaccines are all being rushed straight into human clinical tests, forgoing lengthy animal trials altogether. Vaccine makers are also being shielded against liability if people are harmed by the experimental vaccines.5
Early Warning Signs of Vaccine Dangers
Early warning signs that something might be amiss have already started emerging. As detailed in “Gates Tries to Justify Side Effects of Fast-Tracked Vaccine,” results6 from Moderna’s Phase 1 human trial revealed 100% of volunteers in the high-dose group suffered systemic side effects. Side effects included fatigue, chills, headache and myalgia (muscle pain); 21% suffered “one or more severe events.”
A May 26, 2020, article7 in STAT news told the harrowing story of Ian Haydon, a healthy 29-year-old participant in Moderna’s vaccine trial who suffered severe side effects requiring hospitalization.
While Haydon recovered from the side effects, which included a raging fever, fainting, nausea, muscle pain and generally feeling “as sick as he’d ever felt,” just imagine what such side effects might do to an elderly person, an infant, young child or someone who is metabolically compromised or has an underlying condition such as a heart problem. For them, the reactions could be far worse and possibly fatal.
Disturbingly, in July 2020, it was reported8 that Moderna’s 100-mcg dose vaccine — despite its 100% side effect ratio after the second dose — would proceed to Phase 3 trial assessment.
Like the Moderna vaccine, the AstraZeneca/Oxford University vaccine also appears to come with a shockingly high rate of side effects. Results9 from one of its Phase 1/2 studies published August 15, 2020, revealed a clear majority of participants experienced side effects, including fatigue, headache, muscle ache, malaise, chills and feeling feverish.
September 6, 2020, AstraZeneca paused its Phase 3 vaccine trial due to a “suspected serious and unexpected adverse reaction” in a British participant.10,11 The company did not divulge the nature of the adverse reaction.
However, The New York Times reported12 that “a person familiar with the situation, and who spoke on the condition of anonymity” said the individual” had been found to have transverse myelitis, an inflammatory syndrome that affects the spinal cord and is often sparked by viral infections.”
September 12, 2020, the British Medicines Health Regulatory Authority gave AstraZeneca the go-ahead to resume its Phase 3 trial in the U.K., after an independent review found it “safe to do so.”13,14
And here is yet another major surprise that hardly anyone knows. Offit warns there could be problems with Moderna’s and BioNTech’s messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines because they have extraordinary shipping and handling needs that include using dry ice. “We’ve never done that before in this country,” he told MarketWatch.15 “Never.”
Why Enforce Ineffective Mask Rules?
Certain masks are more useless than others, with valved masks being among the worst, followed by homemade cloth masks. This includes both commercial cloth masks and N95-rated masks with one or two exhale ports. The reason for this is because masks with breathing valves do not filter the outbreath.
To be clear, while an N95-rated mask with exhale port will not protect others, it may, however, still offer some protection for the wearer. If you’re wearing a mask, N95-rated masks are the most effective choice. The caveat is that it must be properly fitted and put on and removed as instructed. Medical staff must go through fit tests24 for medical N95 masks, which makes them an impractical choice for the general public.
Face shields, recommended25 by Dr. Anthony Fauci at the end of July 2020, as an added layer to protect the mucous membranes of your eyes, are even more useless for the prevention of viral spread, especially if used alone in lieu of a mask (which is generally not recommended26).
Florida Atlantic University’s College of Engineering and Computer Science video above provides a qualitative visualization of how masks with valves and face shields perform. As reported by Florida Atlantic University news desk:27
“Widespread public use of these alternatives to regular masks could potentially have an adverse effect on mitigation efforts. For the study,28 just published in the journal Physics of Fluids, researchers employed flow visualization in a laboratory setting using a laser light sheet and a mixture of distilled water and glycerin to generate the synthetic fog that made up the content of a cough-jet.
They visualized droplets expelled from a mannequin’s mouth while simulating coughing and sneezing. By placing a plastic face shield and an N95-rated face mask with a valve, they were able to map out the paths of droplets and demonstrate how they performed.
Results of the study show that although face shields block the initial forward motion of the jet, the expelled droplets move around the visor with relative ease and spread out over a large area depending on light ambient disturbances.
Visualizations for the face mask equipped with an exhalation port indicate that a large number of droplets pass through the exhale valve unfiltered, which significantly reduces its effectiveness as a means of source control.”
In related news, a Japanese simulation study found “nearly 100% of airborne droplets less than 5 micrometers in size escaped through the shields” and “about half of larger droplets measuring 50 micrometers found their way into the air,” The Guardian reports.29,30
Why Did CDC Delete Aerosol Transmission Notice?
Interestingly, Friday September 18, 2020, the CDC posted updated COVID-19 guidance on its “How COVID-19 Spreads” page that, for the first time, mentioned aerosol transmission of SARS-CoV-2, saying “this is thought to be the main way the v
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