Vaccines take time
Re: “Vaccine research gamble pays off — Technology once seen as too risky now called ‘spectacular success,’” Monday news story.
Thank you for publishing this excellent article! I found it easy to understand and very informative. It outlines the fact that recent vaccines are not overnight sensations, but the result of years of work and research. I personally plan on getting a vaccine for COVID-19 as soon as possible. Hopefully, people who are unsure may read the article and gain some reassurance.
Cherl Harrell, Highland Village
A lesson for us all
What a wonderful article! It greatly justifies my subscription to The Dallas Morning News. It gives you an opportunity to visualize the intricacies of research as well as teaching us that hard work really pays big at the end. No doubt, this is a good lesson to the young ones. I just sent it to my grandkids.
Esteban A. Herrera, Coppell
Excellent look at research
I only wish this article could have been in your Sunday edition to reach a larger audience. The work of scientist Barney Graham is an excellent example of research and the value of government partnership. Quoting from the article, “the Vaccine Research Center … was the brainchild of Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. It was created in 1997….”
The article also states it was where Graham and his colleagues developed, in partnership with Moderna, a fast and effective vaccine technology, standing by when a pandemic appeared. The point being, this all was happening decades ago, not months.
While many are praising the Trump administration for vaccine development, let’s give credit where it’s due. Operation Warp Speed started with the work of scientists our president so often scorns. Some would say it’s this thinking that is warped, but all should agree it’s anything but speedy.
Philip Charles Civello, Dallas
Trump got it done
Please remember that the program called “Warp Speed” was created during the Trump administration. The purpose of this program was to create an effective vaccine to combat the coronavirus and to get it distributed as quickly as possible. The new administration just might try to take credit for this program. You think?
Howard Logan Casada, Duncanville
Proceed with caution
On April 27, 2020, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued an Emergency Use Authorization allowing COVID-19 patients to be treated with chloroquine or hydroxychloroquine despite no good evidence of beneficial effects from these drugs. On June 15, the FDA revoked this authorization based on studies that showed that there were no significant benefits to patients who received this drug therapy.
On May 1, the FDA issued an emergency authorization for remdesivir to treat seriously ill patients, based on very minimal data. On Oct. 22, the FDA advanced remdesivir to full approval for treatment of patients, despite much larger studies in the United Kingdom and by the World Health Organization that clearly showed remdesivir had minimal if any benefits.
Now, Dr. Anthony Fauci and others expect us to be willing to receive a new vaccine with less than four months of safety data once it is approved by the FDA. Count me out. Perhaps an argument could be made for giving high-risk patients this newly developed vaccine, but in my opinion as a physician, giving healthy, low-risk patients this minimally tested vaccine cannot be justified based on how little we know about this novel biological.
I strongly recommend to my friends and others to wait at least six months after the vaccine begins to be distributed before volunteering to receive it. The FDA has proven itself to be unreliable as a medical reference body with regard to COVID-19 and it could be that these new vaccines have more risks to healthy people than the benefits that they may provide.
Mark S. Donnell, Silver City, N.M.
Put high-risk workers first
Re: “Review confirms Pfizer vaccine safe, effective — Final decision on U.S. rollout likely days away; Britain begins injections,” Wednesday news story.
This article upset me concerning the delivery of the COVID-19 vaccinations. Although this was in Britain, the issue is just as applicable here. There were pictures of two elderly persons, one 90, having just received their shots and everyone was cheering them on. The issue here is unless the high-risk workers, such as nurses and doctors, ambulance workers and school teachers have received their shots, elderly people, especially those over 80, should not be in line before them. My wife and I almost fall into that category but will refuse the shots unless those critical workers have received their shots before us.
Edward Murray, Richardson
Unclear about restaurants
For months, the Texas Restaurant Association has been insisting that indoor dining at restaurants is safe for their customers. Now they turn around and ask that restaurant employees be allowed to go near the front of the line for vaccines because working in a restaurant is so dangerous.
So, which is it? It makes me think that the restaurant association has not been telling the truth to customers when they’ve claimed indoor dining is safe. I urge everyone to keep that in mind and order food for curbside pickup, takeout and delivery — both you and the employees at the restaurant will be safer for that decision.
Tom Desmond, Plano
Help essential workers
I’m hoping that grocery store workers will be listed as a priority for receiving vaccine shots when they become available, along with first responders. They deserve the protection, they are essential and deserve the protection as early as possible.
David G. Barton, Dallas/Casa View
Identify the vaccinated
As seniors we are very careful to follow all the basic guidelines identified by health experts, and we eagerly await the day we can start the first of our two vaccinations for COVID-19. Once the vaccine is available, we would like to be able to identify thoughtful people who decide to utilize the vaccine treatment. Those who have been vaccinated once could choose to wear a specific color wristband. Those who have been vaccinated twice could choose to have it replaced with a different color wristband. Possibly even a third color wristband could be chosen to represent a final test that verifies the total absence of the disease.
It will probably be most of 2021 before those who wish to be vaccinated will have that ability. Wearing a color wristband would give those who have been vaccinated a way to demonstrate that they are no longer a threat to others who have not yet been vaccinated or don’t plan to be. And those persons waiting to be vaccinated could be able to decide whether or not to be close to and associated with someone yet to receive the vaccinations.
Richard Cooksey, Allen
I would venture a guess that all of those who have an aversion to vaccines are not old enough to remember the polio epidemic or to have ever seen an iron lung. Look it up.
Robert Lockwood, North Dallas
Thanks to Britain
We may owe Britain a great big thanks for volunteering to be the world’s petri dish by initiating wide use of the COVID-19 vaccine. We can be pretty sure there will be unpredicted side effects not discovered in the labs. Next will there be the passing of new laws affecting its use, making it mandatory for all citizens to be inoculated? No shot, no service!
It will be good to see if Dr. Anthony Fauci and Bill Gates are among the first to receive this much-needed preventive.
James F. Van Gilder, Rockwall
Vaccine trial concern
Re: “Take your shot at vaccine — N. Texans with health conditions, or are over 65, or have greater risk of exposure sought for Phase III trial,” Dec. 4 Metro & Business story.
I just read that the powers that be have decided that the volunteers who receive the COVID-19 trial placebo are being asked to sign a modified consent form indicating that they might have to wait for up to two years to receive the vaccine.
Some leading “experts” are saying that to vaccinate those who receive the placebo would be disastrous for the integrity of the trial.
If that happens, nobody will volunteer for future trials. I had contemplated signing up for the trial, but now I am glad I did not.
Marlene Seidel, Highland Village
Crediting Trump is shameful
Re: “Give vaccine credit to Trump,” by Don Skaggs, Dec. 3 Letters.
Big Pharma, worldwide, saw the need for a vaccine for COVID-19 long before the president recognized the existence of this pandemic. To give any credit to President Donald Trump for any positive words or deeds in fighting this deadly virus is shameful. Almost 300,000 Americans are deceased due to his absent leadership.
Carol Isaacson, Little Elm
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