Intended for healthcare professionals

Rapid response to:

Letters Covid-19 vaccine trial protocols released

Covid-19 vaccine: we are sleepwalking into a massive prospective cohort study

BMJ 2020; 371 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.m4568 (Published 24 November 2020) Cite this as: BMJ 2020;371:m4568

Rapid Response:

Re: Covid-19 vaccine: we are sleepwalking into a massive prospective cohort study

Dear Editor

We need to take heed of Hamish Duncan’s warning [1]. With reports that Covid vaccines will be rolled out as early as next week we should perhaps be amazed that the regulator could overcome all the issues raised by Peter Doshi and others [2-6], or concerns about the long term effects of products using new technologies which have only been in development for months, in such a small space. Can we really assume given the state machinery in action that there are no political pressures to preempt careful science?

[1] Hamish Duncan, ‘Covid-19 vaccine: we are sleepwalking into a massive prospective cohort study’, BMJ 2020; 371 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.m4568 (Published 24 November 2020

[2] Peter Doshi, ‘Will covid-19 vaccines save lives? Current trials aren’t designed to tell us’, BMJ 2020; 371 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.m4037 (Published 21 October 2020)

[3] Peter Doshi, ‘ Covid-19 vaccine trial protocols released’, BMJ 2020; 371 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.m4058 (Published 21 October 2020)

[4] Peter Doshi & Eric Topol, ‘ These Coronavirus Trials Don’t Answer the One Question We Need to Know’, New York Times 22 September 2020, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/22/opinion/covid-vaccine-coronavirus.html

[5] WillIam Haseltine, ‘Beware of covid-19 vaccine trials designed to succeed from the start’, Washington Post 22 September 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2020/09/22/beware-covid-19-vacci...

[6] Peter Doshi ‘Pfizer and Moderna’s “95% effective” vaccines—let’s be cautious and first see the full data’,
26 November 2020, https://blogs.bmj.com/bmj/2020/11/26/peter-doshi-pfizer-and-modernas-95-...

Competing interests: AgeofAutism.com, an on-line daily journal, concerns itself with the potential environmental sources for the proliferation of autism, neurological impairment, immune dysfunction and chronic disease. I receive no payment as UK Editor. I also moderate comments for the on-line journal ‘The Defender’ for which I am paid. I am also a member of the UK Medical Freedom Alliance

30 November 2020
John Stone
UK Editor
AgeOfAutism.com
London N22