Why Covid-19 and Influenza Vaccine Mandates For Rhode Island Health Care Workers Defy Evidence-Based Medicine

Dating back to the seminal 1954 polio vaccine trial involving 1.8 million U.S. children [1], randomized, controlled trials have generated the gold-standard evidence for making public health recommendations [2,3]. I repeat “recommendations,” not “mandates.”

There are no data from four decades of influenza vaccine randomized, controlled trials, and < 2-years of covid-19 vaccine randomized, controlled trials, that either influenza or covid-19 vaccines reduced viral transmission within any randomized, controlled trial design. [4-8] Indeed, none of these influenza or covid-19 vaccine randomized, controlled trials even attempted mass contact tracing of trial participants to establish a legitimate claim for reduced community transmission. Given such deficient data, recommending mass influenza or covid-19 vaccination is at best inappropriate; mandating either practice based upon the evidence-devoid claim of “reduced community viral transmission,” is coercive, anti-scientific, neo-Soviet Lysenkoism.[9]

Moreover, regarding covid-19, we now have voluminous evidence from covid-19 epidemiologic and laboratory studies, further confirmed by subgroup analyses of the covid-19 randomized, controlled trials, that prior SARS-CoV-2 infection confers at least as robust, and more enduring and broad immunity to future SARS-CoV-2 infections, than vaccine-acquired immunity. [10-14] For example, locally, none of 423 unvaccinated Massachusetts healthcare workers with a prior SARS-CoV-2 infection were reinfected during 6-months plus of observation. [15] Finally, I analyzed RIDOH’s own data, provided to my state Representative Chippendale from January 2022 as the SARS-COV-2 omicron wave peaked in Rhode Island. Prior SARS-COV-2 infection, naturally acquired immunity, regardless of vaccination status, was associated with a 4-fold lower rate of new SARS-COV-2 infections, relative to full vaccination, with a history of prior infection.[16]

Consider these vaccine trial comparisons. The 1954 polio trial of 1.8 million children [1] was ~780-fold larger than Pfizer’s randomized, controlled trial of ~2300 5-to-11 year-olds which garnered covid-19 vaccine approval in this age group. [12] Understand that during the first 9-months of 1953, alone, Rhode Island recorded 289 clinical, i.e., crippling, pediatric polio cases, with 15 deaths, a 5.2% fatality rate. [17] Over 2-years there have been zero pediatric covid-19 deaths in Rhode Island, despite thousands of so-called “cases.” For an order of magnitude more lethal and crippling childhood disease than covid-19, polio vaccination in the 1954 trial prevented 374 cases of paralytic polio. Despite recruiting 20% with comorbidities, Pfizer’s pediatric covid-19 vaccine trial recorded no cases of severe covid-19 in either group, but did “prevent” 13 cases of sniffles. Not even sniffles occurred in the covid-19 vaccine or placebo groups among children with a history of prior SARS-COV-2 infection. [12]

We must return, immediately, to rational, data-driven vaccine policies of the recent past, such as the Center For Diseases Control and Prevention (CDC)’s 2009-10 H1N1 swine flu pandemic vaccine guidelines. Per these guidelines, vaccinating potentially high-risk individuals was RECOMMENDED, NOT MANDATED, and also, naturally-acquired immunity, i.e., PCR-documented prior infection, was explicitly acknowledged as an alternative to vaccination. [18]



[2] “Experimental and Quasi-Experimental Designs for Research.” https://www.sfu.ca/~palys/Campbell&Stanley-1959-Exptl&QuasiExptlDesignsForResearch.pdf 

[3] “GRADE: an emerging consensus on rating quality of evidence and strength of recommendations” https://www.bmj.com/content/336/7650/924.long

[4] “Efficacy and Safety of the mRNA-1273 SARS-CoV-2 Vaccine” https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33378609/ 

[5] “Safety and Efficacy of the BNT162b2 mRNA Covid-19 Vaccine” https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33301246/ 

[6] “Safety and efficacy of the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine (AZD1222) against SARS-CoV-2: an interim analysis of four randomised controlled trials in Brazil, South Africa, and the UK


[7] “A one-year study of trivalent influenza vaccines in primed and unprimed volunteers: immunogenicity, clinical reactions and protection.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2129324/pdf/jhyg00018-0010.pdf 

[8] “The efficacy of influenza vaccination in elderly individuals. A randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial.” https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/7966893/ 

[9] “Soviet Genetics and World ScienceLysenko and the Meaning of Heredity https://ia801601.us.archive.org/4/items/in.ernet.dli.2015.52393/2015.52393.Soviet-Genetics-And-World-Science.pdf 

[10] “How Likely is Reinfection Following Covid Recovery?” https://brownstone.org/articles/how-likely-is-reinfection-following-covid-recovery/ 

[11] “The Thin Gruel of Randomized, Controlled Trial Evidence Supporting Covid-19 Vaccine Boosters (and Their Mandated Use)” https://www.andrewbostom.org/2021/12/the-thin-gruel-of-randomized-controlled-trial-evidence-supporting-covid-19-vaccine-boosters-and-their-mandated-use/ 

[12] “Ashish Jha’s Improper Comparison of Pediatric Polio and Covid-19 Vaccinations


[13] “The Incidence of SARS-CoV-2 Reinfection in Persons With Naturally Acquired Immunity With and Without Subsequent Receipt of a Single Dose of BNT162b2 Vaccine” https://www.acpjournals.org/doi/10.7326/M21-4130 

[14] “Risk of SARS-CoV-2 reinfection 18 months after primary infection: population-level observational study”


[15] “Continued Effectiveness of COVID-19 Vaccination among Urban Healthcare Workers during Delta Variant Predominance” https://doi.org/10.1101/2021.11.15.21265753 

[16] Link to RIDOH January, 2022 raw data: https://www.andrewbostom.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/02/RIDOH-data-1.22.xlsx; Rhode Island population data, ages 19+ years old = 889,003 (per 2018 census data)

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1c2QrNMz8pIbYEKzMJL7Uh2dtThOJa2j1sSMwiDo5Gz4/edit#gid=661880792; Vaccination data, as of 1/15/22, n=775,554: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1c2QrNMz8pIbYEKzMJL7Uh2dtThOJa2j1sSMwiDo5Gz4/edit#gid=1196542126; Prior infection, as of 1/15/22, =85%; n=755,653: https://covidestim.org/us/RI

[17] “Pediatric polio in Rhode Island, reported by the Newport Daily News, December 16, 1953: 289 cases treated, 15 deaths reported, through October 31, 1953, a 5.2% fatality rate”


[18] “Questions & Answers: Vaccine Against 2009 H1N1 Influenza Virus” https://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/vaccination/public/vaccination_qa_pub.htm 



Of the following two issues related to Rhode Island’s public schools, which one is a greater concern?

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