Older age is a significant risk factor for serious illness and death for COVID-19, particularly when combined with significant underlying health conditions.
Today’s data shows that 90.9% of the deaths today were people over 60; averaging out to 93.3% for the last 7 days or 80.5% for people over 70 (69.6% of deaths were among the jabbed in the last 7 days which dropped by over 10% since the government withheld the vaccine status of the 24 deaths on the 12th of February).
All the unvaccinated deaths today were people over 65. The two people who died who were aged under 65 were both vaccinated and had underlying health conditions. One person had received three doses of vaccine, and one person had received two doses of vaccine.
Vaccine Efficacy Against Death Once Hospitalised
Vaccine Efficacy Against Death Once Hospitalised for the 13th of February, 2022 was calculated to be POSITIVE at +34%
The 7 day moving average remained NEUTRAL at -0.2% (149 lives lost).
Please note this blog begins its calculation once the patients are admitted to hospital. I am not taking into account if and how well the vaccine stops infection and hospitalisation.
What happened in NSW hospitals in the last 7 days?
Hospitalised vs Mortality With Vaccine Status
For hospitalised patients we are not given dose numbers and we are not given an age or comorbidity breakdown. There is also a small number of people with an unknown status classified as ‘other’.
Vaccine effectiveness against death once hospitalised simply looks at the latest known hospital occupancy of the vaxxed verses the unvaxxed and the deaths associated with the same cohort.
This calculation is measuring severe cases (hospitalised patients) and then comparing them against the final outcome and the number of deaths for this cohort. Vaccination rate of the population is irrelevant for this calculation as this method does NOT allow the vaccine to receive glory for vaxxing the healthy. This formula is a better measuring stick as it shows the true vaccine efficacy (protection) of the vulnerable who often have comorbidities once hospitalised.
To validate information sources data should be checked forwards and backwards and I chose to tackle the problem from the middle by focusing on the hospital leg. Hence I am focused on comparing the severely ill patients —both the vaccinated and unvaccinated and their relative hospital population— and then comparing them to the final mortality data by vaccination status.
We know that COVID-19 disproportionately targets the elderly and sadly the publicly available data provided by NSW Health is incomplete and we do not know the age breakdown or comorbidity of the people in hospital hence our limitations to draw authoritative conclusions. It is simply a snapshot or possible signal showing how the vaccinated compare with the unvaccinated in severe cases (once hospitalised). Therefore the vaccine efficacy once hospitalised against death as calculated here should be treated as a rough guide and should only be applied to the older vulnerable age groups (+50) as they are the ones that are dying and that this data is representing. I will attempt to access all the required data but at this stage these —real world— numbers are what we have to work with.
Please note that we are measuring vaccine efficacy once hospitalised so we are not including vaccination rates in the population but I do consider this and show this calculation at the bottom of this page at the conclusion.
The NSW Health data used shows vaccines reduce hospitalisation (+VE). But why is the majority of the vaccinated patients in hospital doing worse than the minority of the unvaccinated patients relative to their occupancy ratio in hospital. Does the vaccine stop working in hospital?
From many data sources we know the vaccines do not stop infection but they somehow reduce hospitalisation — only to reverse in hospital with a negative efficacy for mortality once hospitalised. This needs explaining else it’s a red flag on the data. The vaccinated should not being doing worse in hospital but they are and by a significant margin.
This calculation could be better if we had hospitalisation data by age group and comorbidity for each individual case and if people are in hospital for COVID-19 or with COVID-19.
Patients in hospital:
*Data taken from the COVID-19 Risk Management Dashboard put out by NSW Health on the 9th of February. This data is not broken down by dose, age or comorbidity. I am attempting to find better data. For source please see screenshot at the bottom of page with link to the original NSW Health document.
Sadly, NSW Health is reporting the deaths of 22 people with COVID-19; 13 men and nine women.
Of the 22 people who died; one person was in their 40s, one person was in their 50s, two people were in their 60s, four people were in their 70s, nine people were in their 80s, four people were in their 90s and one person was over 100.
Three people who died were aged under 65. All three had received two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine and had underlying health conditions.
A man in his 40s died at Junee Correctional Centre on 26 January and is being reported today.
Of those aged over 65 years, two people had received three doses of a COVID-19 vaccine, nine people had received two doses and eight people were not vaccinated.
Triple Vaxxed 2 ppl (9.1%)
Double Vaxxed 12 ppl (54.5%)
Partially Vaxxed 0 ppl (0.0%)
Unvaxxed 8 ppl (36.4%)
*Data taken from NSW Health twitter update with links to the tweets further down this page. Partially vaccinated have been added to the vaccinated because they were either injured by the vaccine and could not take the second shot or it is a direct result of vaccinating during a pandemic which has its own risks for the first 10 days after each shot and is part of the risks attributed to mass vaccination of the whole population.
*Above data table shows the calculation to obtain Vaccine Efficacy Against Death Once Hospitalised.
Comparing the Vx/UVx ratios for death to the Vx/UVx ratios for hospitalisation to derive effectiveness is better than using vaccination population ratios because it removes any confounders for hospitalisation.
In research when investigating a potential cause-and-effect relationship, a confounding variable is an unmeasured third variable that influences both the supposed cause and the supposed effect. Therefore calculating efficacy closer to the final outcome (death) can give us a more reliable number. For example since people with comorbidity are mainly the ones who are dying it would be wrong to use the vaccination rate of the healthy general public to work out vaccine efficacy for the comorbidity group which is dying. From Israeli data we know that people who have comorbidities were less likely to be coerced into taking the jab and have slightly lower vaccination rates in almost all age groups.
Vaccine Efficacy Against Death Once Hospitalised for February 13, 2022:
= POSITIVE +34.3%.
Seven Day Average:
The 7 Day Moving Average Vaccine Efficacy Against Death Once Hospitalised for the period starting from February 7, 2022 to February 13, 2022
= NEUTRAL -0.2%
Deaths by Dose, Comorbidity And Age Breakdown
*We do not get a detailed list of vaccine status for each case and age group but we do get totals per age group and sometimes they give us the comorbidity details as well.
We can see that the elderly with comorbidity are the ones who are dying and for some reason in Israel people with comorbidity have a lower vaccination rate than the healthy general public. I would assume this fact would be similar in Australia but since we do not have this data we are forced to use the higher vaccination rate of the healthy general public.
In any case if we accept that 94% of the adults in NSW over 50 are vaccinated; today’s vaccine efficacy against death by considering the relative vaccination rates was calculated to be a POSITIVE +88.8% however the author of this blog feels this is a biased calculation therefore this blog is focused on comparing the Vx/UVx ratios for death to the Vx/UVx ratios for hospitalisation to derive effectiveness which reduces any confounders for hospitalisation but this calculation is also shown for transparency.
This author desires to save lives and believes in all hands on deck as both the vaccinated and unvaccinated require early treatment especially if the individual is elderly and has multiple comorbidities.
We should be allowing doctors to be doctors and permit them to use repurposed drugs in the early stage of this disease.
Hospital Occupancy Data By Vaccine Status Was taken From The COVID-19 Risk Management Dashboard
Please remember I currently do not have access to detail mortality data broken down by age and vaccine status so the signal reliability will be crude and perhaps should only be applied to get an indication how well the vaccine protect the vulnerable (elderly).