Science in the US, Denmark, and the UK

The US has a history of enthusiasm regarding whatever is new and shiny from the pharmaceutical industry (see Book review: Bad Pharma, about a book by a British doc). So it isn’t surprising that the CDC recommends emergency use authorized COVID-19 booster shots for anyone 5 or older:

People ages 5 years and older are recommended to receive 1 bivalent mRNA booster dose after completion of any FDA-approved or FDA-authorized monovalent primary series or previously received monovalent booster dose(s). This new booster recommendation replaces all prior booster recommendations for this age group.

Note that the difference between FDA-approved and emergency use authorized is now irrelevant. The CDC also recommends flu shots for all Americans 6 months and older.

Let’s check in with Science in Denmark. The COVID-19 shots are recommended for those age 50 and older. What about the flu vaccine, that cornerstone of American public health? Denmark says it is for the old and the young:

We recommend influenza vaccination for everyone aged 65 and over as well as for persons with certain chronic diseases, children aged between 2 and 6, pregnant women in the second and third trimesters and staff in the healthcare and elderly care sector and selected parts of the social services sector.

Let’s go to the UK and see what Science has decided there. The flu vaccine is for those 65 and older and also children from 2 to the end of “primary school” and, depending on how much they have left over, maybe some child in secondary school (Science is all about the leftovers!). How about the miracle COVID shots? A “1st booster” for those 16 and older and “seasonal booster” for those over 50.

As a humble engineer, of course, I cannot say which of the policies described above is best. But I am capable of noticing that they’re different, which is not what one would expect for policies for which a Scientific basis is claimed.

Maybe we should celebrate diversity, as London did in 2015:

5 thoughts on “Science in the US, Denmark, and the UK

  1. Fun facts about the CDC and flu vaccines:

    > in 2003 “the manufacturers were telling us that they weren’t receiving a lot of orders for vaccine,” Dr. Glen Nowak, associate director for communications at CDC’s National Immunization Program, told National Public Radio. “It really did look like we needed to do something to encourage people to get a flu shot.” So the CDC defined “influenza-related” (not “influenza-caused”) to include ANY deaths where the flu MAY have been a factor. The CDC now says there on average 36,000 “influenza-related” deaths per year. Yet back in 2001 only 18 death certificates positively identified influenza as the cause.


  2. In the USA, all kids can get free medicines, under either insurance or welfare agencies, as long as they are mandates. The CDC panelists know this, and take it into account. So they believe in mandating anything that is lawfully available. Anything else would deprive poor kids of medicines.

  3. Modern medical Science has incorporated knowledge of relativity of time and space. You can not compare age of people in different locations (UK, USA and Denmark) in such a simplistic way. And if you can not understand this, you can simple listen and obey what Science tells you, instead of mocking their high priests.

    • @mata,

      I think it is fair to say that the number of readers and commenters on this blog is small as such you can count them on both hands.

      I also think it is fair to say that this small group of readers and commenters on this blog are smarter then most folks you run into everyday.

      Given this, if you think this small group of readers and commenters on this blog needs to dig quantum physics, i.e.: “incorporated knowledge of relativity of time and space” before they can question the “high priests” orders, then you made your point that 97.98% of American’s are a bunch of brain dead zombies.

      So, yeah, more bottom’s up for you, sorry, I mean COVID-shorts to wakeup those zombies.

  4. The Brits do a bit of value or risk analysis and do not fund every treatment that is available. This approach can save enormous amounts, for example not over-treating end-of-life disorders.

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