Wanted: Hard BCG vaccine data to inform SA on lockdown extension

By definition, the Biznews Community is a curious lot and we regularly receive many fascinating suggestions. Like two yesterday suggesting the US and UK pull data on birthplaces of those killed by Covid-19: if there’s a significant under-representation of those from BCG vaccinated nations, we’d quickly see whether BCG is indeed a shield.

While we wait for that kind of data to emerge – and, indeed, get the results of granular number crunching now being done by NYIT’s Dr Gonzalo Otazu – each of us can become amateur statisticians courtesy of the excellent real time infection and mortality info compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

The university’s table showing different mortality rates of nations per 100,000 of population support the BCG protection argument. Italy, which never vaccinated, and Spain (only for a few years) are at almost 30. Other non-vaccinators Netherlands, France and Belgium are next highest. BCG vaccinators India, China and Japan run at small fractions of a percent.

Scientists tell us it’s still too early to say for sure. But given that India and Japan were among the first to record Covid-19 cases after it spread from China, there’s cause to be hopeful. The trick now is to get hard data to inform SA’s next big Covid-19 decision. And perhaps avoid continuing the lockdown after April 16, avoiding more economic pain for a nation that can ill afford it.

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Comment from Biznews community member Barry Lewis:

Hi Alec

I hear Portugal used BCG and has low death rate compared to next door Spain.

Kind regards

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