Frequently Asked Questions about COVID-19 — July 7, 2021

  “Shared expectations lead to predictability.”

311. Drug companies not allowed to participate in vaccination promotions.

         Q:  Pharmaceutical companies advertise their products on TV.  Why don’t they help promote taking their vaccines?

         A:   All authorized vaccines have received Emergency Use Authorizations (EUA).  FDA regulations allow pharmaceutical companies to advertise or promote their drugs only when they have been fully authorized.  Those with EUA approvals are prohibited from this possibility.

312. Vaccines are being developed to use human immune systems to fight cancer.

         Q: What’s this I hear about vaccines being developed to fight cancer?

         A: The prolific research triggered by using memory ribonucleic acid (mRNA) technology to trigger human immune response to reduce foreign cell proliferation in the body is spilling over into cancer research.  Clinical trials are underway and different potential vaccines are being developed to research if mRNA products can be effective in spurring cancer patients’ immune systems to root out cancer cells preventing recurrences and fighting off advanced tumors.  It will be at least a year before the results will be known.

313. Nearly all current COVID-19 deaths are preventable.

         Q:  Why are so many people in the U.S. still dying from this pandemic?

         A:  CNN did a recent review of statistics and found that the overwhelming majority of new COVID deaths are occurring in unvaccinated people.  CDC director Rochelle Walensky stressed that the U.S. could now prevent these deaths if all eligible adults would be vaccinated.  This is especially true now that the more infectious and virulent Delta variant is becoming more dominate throughout the country.

314. California develops a state-issued identification verifying vaccinations.

         Q:  Will there ever be a vaccination passport available to prove someone’s status?

         A:  President Biden recently stated there are no plans to develop a national identification system to document a person’s vaccination status.  Most jurisdictions never planned in advance to provide a registration system from which such identification could be provided.  But the California Departments of Public Health and Technology recently announced the opening of its “Digital Covid-19 Vaccine Record portal.”  The intent is to provide a digital backup to the paper cards created by CDC given to those getting their vaccine shots.  A statewide data base has been created for all shots given in California, and the registry can be viewed, duplicate copies received and electronic copies loaded on cell phones to assist those needing such documentation.  These are not “passports,” however.  No personal photographs can be included when copies are issued.

315. Delta variant found to be significant cause of breakthrough infections.

         Q:  What do we know about vaccinated people testing positive for COVID-19?

         A:  An unpublished study just released looked at 100 fully vaccinated healthcare workers who had become infected.  This phenomenon is known as “breakthrough infections.”  Nearly all of these infections-after-vaccinations were caused by the Delta variant.  This study supports the general reporting that the Delta variant is highly infectious, and that the current vaccines being used offer protection from severe illness – but not necessarily from becoming infected.