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Critics Slam Lancet Study for Failing to Differentiate Between Unvaccinated and Under-Vaccinated

According to the authors, under-vaccination resulted in 7000 hospital admissions, but they also acknowledge that those who did not receive any vaccinations were the least likely to experience severe outcomes of Covid.

A study in the medical journal the Lancet, which garnered significant attention last week, concludes that 7,000 hospital visits during the summer of 2022 were due to people being “under-vaccinated” against COVID-19. However, flaws in their data interpretation were immediately criticized by statistical experts.

Professors Norman Fenton and Martin Neil, both experts in statistics, risk, and probability from Queen Mary University, criticized the study, saying, “The paper is a joke and should never have been published.”

The pair accused the Lancet authors of “writing the conclusions in such a way that the mainstream media will wrongly be able to claim that those vaccinated are less likely to be hospitalized or die from COVID-19.”

Professors Fenton, a mathematician, and Professor Neil, a computer scientist, highlighted the supplemental data. They pointed out that the authors did not separate the data for “never vaccinated” from “under-vaccinated” in reaching their conclusions, with people who have had as many as four or five jabs considered “under-vaccinated” in the study if they declined just one recommended booster shot.

Writing on their blog, Where Are The Numbers, Professors Neil and Fenton accused the Lancet of being “the most high profile medical journal that has a known history of publishing bogus research that promotes the benefits of the vaccines.”

The Lancet study, conducted by researchers at the University of Edinburgh and led by Professor Sir Aziz Sheikh, mentions that they were able to obtain privileged access to the large data sets used, which they say are “highly sensitive and not available publicly.”

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The study examined the population over the age of five in the entire UK in June 2022 and found that under-vaccination rates against COVID-19 ranged from 32·8 percent to 49·8 percent across the four nations of the UK. The authors concluded that “under-vaccination was associated with an elevated risk of severe COVID-19 outcomes.”

The researchers utilized mathematical modeling to estimate a figure of 7,000 hospitalizations and deaths for the summer of 2022, which they claim could have been prevented if every one of the 63 million people aged over five had taken all the recommended jabs.

The study, titled “Under-vaccination and severe COVID-19 outcomes: meta-analysis of national cohort studies in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales,” was presented by the Lancet authors as evidence that the jabs were life-saving and was reported as such across much of the media.

However, as pointed out by the Queen Mary professors, comparing the health outcomes of those who have received no COVID-19 jabs at all yields a much different result. The supplementary data in the study finds that completely unvaccinated people are less likely than fully vaccinated people to experience a severe health outcome from the virus.

For example, “Our estimates for the 16–74 years and 75 years and older age groups show that being unvaccinated (strictly maximum dose deficit) was associated with similar or lower hazard ratio for severe COVID-19 outcomes compared with being vaccinated but having a vaccine deficit of at least one dose,” the Lancet paper finds.

The authors also speculate why this might be the case, suggesting vaccine waning as a possible factor and postulating that the healthiest individuals are more likely to have declined all the jabs.

Furthermore, the authors disclose various conflicts of interest, such as their positions on various advisory panels for pandemic preparedness and respiratory diseases for the Scottish and UK governments. Additionally, several authors hold positions with AstraZeneca, the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), and the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies.

Data shows that there has been a growing tendency of people, across all age and socio-economic groups, to decline boosters since the introduction of the jabs in January 2021, resulting in 44 percent of the UK population being classified as “under-vaccinated.”

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