The roll-out of that term, referring to influenza/COVID-19, appears to have begun with the AARP late last month. (Scroll down.) Here’s an email I wrote yesterday to the director of the facility where my father’s living, in Chicago. I wrote it in response to her announcement that they’re urging all their aged residents to get flu shots as protection against COVID-19.
Many thanks for keeping us all in the loop, and doing such an excellent job at managing the Home throughout this crisis. We are all very grateful to you, and to your vigilant staff.
With my father living there, and as one concerned about the well-being of all our elderly, I write to send you some important information about flu shots as a possible protection against the “second wave” of this coronavirus, or any other respiratory virus that may emerge this fall.
The decision to administer those shots should be well-informed, I’m sure you will agree; and so I’m sending you the links to some important scientific studies from reputable sources, and which have not been impugned. The fact is that such shots appear to make one more, not less, susceptible to respiratory viruses.
This study in the British Medical Journal, published in February, finds that “flu shots increase the risk of noninfluenza viral ARIs [Acute Respiratory Infections] fivefold [emphasis added].” Similarly, a study by the Department of Defense, based on data concerning the health of military personnel collected in 2017/2018, and noted in June in a letter to the journal Vaccine, found that those receiving flu shots increased their risk of such infection by 36%.
There are also several studies, not conclusive but suggestive, that have found a striking correlation between flu vaccinations and the COVID-19 death/infection rates in Italy and elsewhere. Here’s a summary of those studies:
I hope you find this useful. In any case, thank you again for your great work.
Mark Crispin Miller