YOU’VE probably heard some of the wackier assertions about the various COVID-19 vaccines currently being rolled out around the world, from the claim they include aborted human fetuses to the one that says they will change your DNA.

The competition is stiff, but my favourite remains the persistent allegation Bill Gates is inserting microchips into the vaccines to track the movements of recipients.

The funniest thing about this is that the conspiracy theorists share this stuff on social media,  platforms that *ahem* are actually tracking just about every aspect of their users’ lives with their consent (informed or otherwise).

An image purporting to show the inner workings of the 5G chip inserted into COVID vaccines went viral on social media over the New Year period.

What it actually showed though, as Rolling Stone reported, was the electrical circuit of a guitar pedal.

The image was apparently posted by Seattle-based biohacking firm, Dangerous Things, in late December as a joke.

Despite some pretty obvious hints the post was intended to be satirical – the developers left labels such as “bass”, “treble” and “footswitch” on the diagram – anti-vaccine conspiracists enthusiastically circulated it as evidence of a sinister plot to control all of our lives.

When Italian software developer Mario Fusco recognised the diagram for what it was, Twitter had a field day at the anti-vaxxers’ expense.

Forget being tracked: one wit suggested vaccination might instead give billions of people a new-found tendency to play guitar. Now that really is terrifying.

I doubt I need to tell anybody reading this that claims about microchips in vaccines are nonsense.

If you want to read further, though, this fact check article from Reuters breaks down some of the manipulation used to convince people otherwise, including deliberately deceptive editing of a Bill Gates video.

Some of the conspiracy theories sound like an episode of 90s’ TV classic The X-Files with its exploration of deep government conspiracies and famous tagline “Trust No One”.

In fact, cultural critic Aimee Knight suggests in an article for Kill Your Darlings the cult show may have helped prepare the ground for some of the loonier anti-science scaremongering that is so pervasive online.

Mind you, Knight also suggests the clear-sighted scientific approach of the show’s Dana Scully, FBI agent and medical doctor, might have “inoculated” other viewers against pseudoscience.

Will the ridiculous claims of the anti-vax lobby undermine the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines? Maybe not.

For the first time in generations, humanity has faced the worldwide spread of a potentially fatal illness with unknown long-term effects that can be transmitted between people simply by sharing a room.

COVID-19 has given us all a taste of what the pre-vaccine world looked like. Perhaps that was the wake-up call we needed.

US paediatrician and molecular virologist Peter Hotez recently told the New Yorker he was hopeful people would resist the misinformation and opt for vaccination without it needing to be made mandatory.

“I’m hoping that as people see their friends and colleagues and their family members get vaccinated without any untoward effects, and people see how they’re not going to the hospital and the ICU because they’ve been vaccinated, that the rates will pick up,” Professor Hotez said.

While some in developed countries may choose to reject the protection offered by vaccines, it’s important to note millions of others may not have the option.

The Economist has charted the expected timeline for widespread vaccination to be achieved in countries around the world.

First in line are the US, Europe and Japan, followed by a raft of other countries, including Australia, China and India, that are expected to reach the goal by June of 2022.

According to the Economist, not a single country in Africa makes it into those first groups and nor do two of our closest neighbours, Indonesia and Papua New Guinea.

“Map worth 1000 words,” tweeted Nature reporter Dr Amy Maxmen.

Another commenter said the graphic showed colonialism was not dead, while many pointed out the map would neatly align with various global indicators of health disadvantage.

Meanwhile, some in wealthy countries will continue to see “science” as a dirty word, squandering the privilege of immunisation in favour of the shadowy world of The X-Files.

Jane McCredie is a health and science writer based in Sydney.



The statements or opinions expressed in this article reflect the views of the authors and do not represent the official policy of the AMA, the MJA or InSight+ unless so stated.


There needs to be more clarity about Australia's COVID-19 vaccination program
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23 thoughts on “COVID-19 vaccines: the truth is out there, we just have to look

  1. Dr Roger BURGESS, radiologist (retired) says:

    The vaccine contains:
    1. nucleoside-modified messenger RNA, encoded to attack the viral spike glycoprotein of SARS-VG-2. You would get a stack of this stuff if you had a steak and eggs meal.
    2. 4 fatty substances: ALC-3015, ALC-0159, DPSL and some cholesterol.
    3. 4 salty compounds: table salt (NaCl), potassium chloride (KCl), monobasic potassium phosphate (good for your bones) and basic sodium phosphate dihydrate (also good for your bones).
    Hey you anti-vaxxers out there, there is NO MERCURY repeat NO MERCURY in this or any other of our current vaccines.
    There was a recent deadly outbreak of a vaccine-preventable disease with, tragically, a very large number of deaths, in Western Samoa and some smaller islands. These children are DEAD you anti-vaxxers.
    Google it.
    Vaccination levels are also, sadly, dropping in large countries like the UK.
    As I keep saying:
    It is our job to maintain herd-immunity producing levels of vaccination. Good luck.
    Vaccination levels in countries

  2. Andrew Baird says:

    An IPSOS survey in October last year showed that about 30% of Australian adults are ‘hesitant’ about getting the COVID-19 vaccine, and that about 10% of Australian adults are ‘resistant’ to getting the COVID-19 vaccine.

    As GPs, our time and effort will be better spent, with better outcomes, if we focus on those people who are ‘hesitant’. They may have anxieties, doubts, and ignorance about the COVID-19 vaccines, which can be addressed by explaining the facts, and by discussing their concerns. There is the possibility that these people will change their minds, and accept the vaccine.

    Those who are ‘resistant’ will be less amenable to rational and logical discussion, particularly if their resistance is based on conspiracy theories and/or on tenacious beliefs in false information. It may be a more efficient use of our time to ‘write off’ the ‘resistant’ people as the likelihood of change is low. It may be unlikely that rational discussion and argument will change their views. It’s probably worth having a go, but if there are no indicators of progress towards the person changing their mind, bale out, agree to differ, and move on. As good GPs we can always ‘leave the door open’ for them to come back for further discussion, or in fact to come back to get the vaccine.

  3. Andrew Baird says:

    To Louis Fenelon,

    Hi Louis,

    How did you obtain the Australian PI for the AstraZeneca vaccine?

    The Australian PI for the Pfizer vaccine (COMIRNATY BNT162b2) is available on the TGA website.

    The PI for the AstraZeneca vaccine is not available on the TGA website.

  4. Andrew Baird says:

    Today, the Australian Government will be launching its education program about COVID-19 vaccination. Watch this space.

    Here are some FAQ resources from the UK. Some answers may not apply to the Australian context.

    Oxford Vaccine Group: COVID-19 vaccine FAQs.

    Information leaflet for AstraZeneca vaccine.

    NHS: Basic vaccine information.

    Public Health England: COVID-19 vaccination – guidance for pregnancy and breastfeeding.

    Public Health England: COVID-19 vaccination – information for healthcare practitioners.

    Public Health England: COVID-19 vaccination – the Green Book (chapter 14a).

    NHS: Information leaflet for recipients of the AstraZeneca vaccine.

    NHS Specialist Pharmacy Service FAQs:
    Questions common to all COVID-19 vaccines.

    AstraZeneca vaccine.

    Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.

  5. Andrew Baird says:

    Any advice?

    I have been asked about the COVID-19 vaccines, and pregnancy and breastfeeding.

    Pre-conception/’thinking about having a baby’?
    First trimester?
    Second trimester?
    Third trimester?
    Efficacy of vaccine?
    Safety of vaccine?
    Do vaccine/antibodies ‘get in’ to fetus/baby, and what are the effects/safety?

  6. Anonymous says:

    Please investigate, and report to us, about two highly respected medical researchers involved in Covid analyses, Dr Wolfgang Wodarg and Dr Michael Yeadon. Why have they issued a motion for administrative and regulatory action to the European Medicines Agency (EMA)? What action do they want the EMA to take?

  7. Andrew Baird says:

    One of the Anonymous comments prompts me to add the following to my list of questions that patients may ask GPs about COVID-19 vaccines. Thank you to Anonymous for pointing these out as possible questions from patients.

    1. For conscientious and/or religious reasons I wish to avoid cow/pig/egg. Do any of the COVID-19 vaccines contain porcine, bovine, or egg products (eg gelatin, albumin)?
    2. Do any of the COVID-19 vaccines contain human fetal/non-fetal cells or human fetal/non-fetal DNA?
    3. Are/were any of the COVID-19 vaccines developed/manufactured using human fetal cells/non-fetal cells and/or human fetal/non-fetal DNA?

  8. Andrew Baird says:

    Re: vaccine excipients and Anonymous comment

    1. There are no fetal cells or fetal DNA in any human vaccine. In vaccines that use fetal cells, the cells and DNA were destroyed in the manufacturing process (I don’t know about vaccines given to animals, perhaps people with objections to vaccines that are manufactured based on fetal cells should avoid eating meat?).
    2. The Australian Immunisation Handbook has a nice table which shows vaccine excipients (called ‘components’). It lists bovine gelatin and porcine gelatin. Unfortunately, it does not distinguish between porcine and bovine (or other animal) for albumin. It does show egg albumin separately. It’s here:

    If someone objects to the principle of using human fetal cells in the development of a vaccine, even though there are no fetal cells or fetal DNA in the vaccine, then logically and to be consistent, the objector should avoid other items and personnel that are associated with the vaccine, eg avoid doctors who administer the vaccine (to other people), because such doctors are ‘colluding’ with the development of the vaccine. This is, of course, a ridiculous proposition.

  9. Simon Lee says:

    Here’s the way things like this work. People used to trust scientists and doctors, but then people began to form the impression that scientists and doctors can be partisan supporters of varies issues under the banner of “science.”

    The result is that now many people don’t trust them anymore on something as basic as a vaccine.

    And MJA is a prime example of the above.

  10. Andrew Baird says:

    The current overall case fatality rate (CFR) for COVID-19 in Australia is 3.2% (confirmed cases: 28,777; deaths: 909), which is 20 to 30 times greater than the case fatality rate for influenza.

    The COVID-19 CFR is much higher in the elderly than in young people (see Table below).

    The following data are out of date. I checked the data in September 2020. The data are for Australians, from the Australian Department of Health; for 22 January 2020 to 17 September 2020. I will get around to updating the data. It is likely that the conclusions will be the same with updated data.

    Age range Cases of COVID-19 Deaths from COVID-19 Case fatality rate (%)
    70 and over 70 3,581 639 18
    40 – 69 8,861 44 0.50
    20 – 39 10,680 2 0.02

    The problem with COVID-19 is not just its mortality. There’s a problem with its morbidity.

    15% of people who get COVID-19 will be hospitalised. 1-2% of people who get COVID-19 will develop disease due to its multisystemic effects: stroke, heart failure (cardiomyopathy), venous thromboembolic disease, and others, with potential long-term sequelae (here). 10% of people who get COVID-19 will develop ‘long’ COVID, or post-acute COVID, a prolonged and debilitating syndrome characterised by breathlessness and fatigue.

    The distribution of the incidence of COVID-19 by age-group matches the distribution of the Australian population by age-group, although children seem to be relatively less susceptible to COVID-19 than adults. The modal age-group for the incidence of COVID-19 in Australia is 20-30; this is the most populous age-group in Australia.

    If, for example, 50% of Victorians aged 20-39 get COVID-19, then in this age-group, we would expect 170 deaths, and about 25,000 hospitalisations (using a 3% hospitalisation rate ( Parents. Workers. Wage-earners.

  11. Andrew Baird says:

    Here are some of the questions that I expect to be asked by other GPs and by patients. Somehow, patients’ questions will need to be addressed in the Level A (item 3 or item 5000) consultation that has been assigned for vaccinating patients in general practice.


    1. How will GPs and general practices be involved in Phase 1a?
    2. Will general practices be administering Pfizer or AZ vaccines or both?
    3. Please explain the references in the EOI to ‘salaries’ (for after hours)
    4. Is the idea for general practices to run ‘COVID-19 vaccination’ mass clinics outside of the general practice Clinic’s normal opening hours? (Because running a COVID-19 vaccination clinic could ‘take over’ a Clinic for space (waiting room, consulting/treatment rooms) and for resources (GPs, nurses, reception))
    5. Will there be additional Government payments for nursing staff and admin staff who are involved in providing vaccination clinics in general practice?
    6. Is it safe and permitted to administer vaccines to patients in their cars? Does this count as ‘home visit’?
    7. Can COVID-19 vaccines be administered during a consultation that has not been booked for vaccination purposes (ie opportunistic, or patient requests the vaccine when attending for another reason)?
    8. Are vaccines in single-dose units with needle, single-dose units without needle, or multi-dose vials?
    9. Are vaccines administered IM or SC or either IM or SC?
    10. What are the logistics for ordering, supply, and delivery of vaccines to GP clinics?
    11. What are the requirements for storage of the vaccines in general practices? For how long can vaccines be left out of the fridge?
    12. What about reporting adverse events? Is there a hotline/specific email, or just through SAEFVIC?
    13. Can general practices ‘opt out’ of vaccine administration? If a general practice ‘opts out’, what should the general practice advise its patients to do about getting vaccinated?
    14. Will there be a standardised consent form? If there is a standardised form, will patients be required to complete this (online or hardcopy) prior to attending for vaccination?
    15. What are the procedures for obtaining consent for vaccination for patients who have cognitive impairment (eg dementia) – will need to get consent from a substitute decision maker/agent/attorney. That will take time and organisation.
    16. Can the second dose be delayed for up to 12 weeks after the first dose (as has occurred in UK)?
    17. Does the patient need to have the same vaccine for both doses?
    18. Do the MDOs cover COVID-19 vaccination?


    1. Why should I get vaccinated? There is no community transmission. I am at low-risk for getting COVID-19 and for getting complications of COVID-19. The vaccine is not worth the risk for me. It’s okay for old people and for health care workers, but not for me.
    2. How safe is the vaccine?
    3. How effective is the vaccine? (Try to explain – in plain English – the difference between vaccine efficacy and vaccine effectiveness, this is difficult because doctors struggle with the concepts) Emphasise prevents death and serious disease due to COVID-19, but may not prevent mild/moderate disease or asymptomatic infection or transmissibility.
    4. Does the vaccine protect me from getting infected with the virus (SARS-CoV-2)?
    5. Does the vaccine prevent me from transmitting the infection to other people if I get an asymptomatic COVID-19 infection?
    6. Does the vaccine prevent me from transmitting the infection to other people if I get a symptomatic COVID-19 infection?
    7. How long after I get the vaccine will I be protected against COVID-19?
    8. How protected am I if I only get one dose of vaccine, and, if protected, how long after that single dose does protection start?
    9. How long does protection against COVID-19 last?
    10. Do I need to get another COVID vaccination next year, and every year after that, or more often?
    11. How effective are the vaccines against the ‘new’ variants (UK, South Africa, others)? How effective will they be against other new variants?
    12. Do I have to wear a mask when I come to get the vaccine?


    1. What are the adverse effects of the vaccine: immediate (within 30 minutes); short-term (up to one week); long term (more than week after the vaccine)?
    2. How common are these adverse effects?
    3. I read that between about 1 in 3 and 2 in 3 people who get vaccinated (with the Pfizer vaccine) will get one or more of: fatigue, headache, chills, muscle pain, joint pain. How severe are these adverse effects? How long do they last? Are they harmful? If I get them with the first dose, will I also get them with the second dose?
    4. How can adverse effects be prevented/minimised?
    5. Does the vaccine give me a mild dose of COVID-19 infection?
    6. My arm is painful, swollen and tender after the vaccination. What should I do? How long will this last? Do I need antibiotics to treat this?
    7. Since I got the vaccine, I have had fever, headache, muscle and joint aches, and fatigue. What should I do? How long will this last? Have I now got COVID-19? Do I need to get a COVID-19 test?


    1. Does the vaccine increase the risk of getting cancer?
    2. Does the vaccine increase the risk of getting other diseases: Guillain-Barre Syndrome, multiple sclerosis, autism, inflammatory bowel disease, etc etc?
    3. I have had COVID-19. Should I get vaccinated, and is it safe to get vaccinated?
    4. I have long COVID. Should I get vaccinated, and is it safe to get vaccinated?
    5. Who should not get vaccinated, and why?
    6. I am getting chemotherapy/radiotherapy/immunotherapy/biological therapy for cancer. Is it okay to have the vaccine?
    7. I am taking immunosuppressant medication (eg one or more of prednisolone, ICS, methotrexate, azathioprine, cyclophosphamide, infliximab, golimumab, etc etc). Is it okay to have the vaccine? Will it be effective? Do I need extra doses because my immune responses are weak?
    8. I am allergic to latex/eggs/other vaccines (anaphylaxis). Is it okay to have the vaccine?
    9. I am allergic to penicillin/other antibiotics/NSAIDs/sulfa drugs/other drugs (anaphylaxis or other). Is it okay to have the vaccine?
    10. I have coeliac disease. Is it okay to have the vaccine?
    11. I am intolerant of all FODMAPS (gastrointestinal symptoms). Is it okay to have the vaccine?
    12. I have a ‘cold’. I had a COVID-19 test. The result was negative. Can I still get the vaccine (ABSOLUTELY NOT while symptomatic, must isolate until symptoms have resolved, but then? get re-tested (and negative result) before attending for vaccine?)


    1. Can I get the influenza vaccine at the same time as the COVID-19 vaccine? (Current advice is minimum interval of 2 weeks between influenza vaccine and COVID-19 vaccine)
    2. Can I get any other vaccines at the same time as the COVID-19 vaccine?


    1. Do I get a certificate to confirm that I have been vaccinated?
    2. Is a record of the vaccination details entered in my Clinic medical record?
    3. Who gets notified that I have been vaccinated?
    4. Is notification of vaccination automatically uploaded to MHR and AIR?


    1. How long after I get the vaccine will I be safe to drive?
    2. I don’t want to wait in the Clinic for 15 minutes after vaccination as I don’t want to sit with other patients (physical distancing, indoors). Can I go and sit in a nearby café instead, or can I go and sit in my car instead?
    3. How long after I get the vaccine will I be able to go back to work?
    4. When can I remove the band-aid (or cotton ball) that has been applied to the injection site?
    5. How long after the vaccination is it okay to have a shower / go swimming / play sport / go to gym?
    6. After I have had the vaccination, are there any adverse effects that should trigger contact with a GP/nurse-on-call/emergency department?


    1. What proportion of the Australian population will need to be fully vaccinated, and with which vaccines, to reach so-called herd immunity (community immunity)? (A concept that is poorly understood, and poorly explained)
    a. Note: children under 18 will not be vaccinated initially (approximately 22% of Australian population =16, AZ approved >=18)
    3. I am a temporary resident. Am I eligible for the vaccine?
    4. I do not have Medicare. Am I eligible for the vaccine?
    5. I have heard that there is some sort of national appointment booking system. Why can’t I just book the appointment with the Clinic in the usual way?
    6. How much do I have to pay for the vaccine?
    7. How much do I have to pay for the vaccination procedure?
    8. If I pay for the vaccine and/or the vaccination procedure, can I get the vaccine sooner?
    9. I want to be vaccinated now, not in Phase 2b, because I look after my grandparents who are frail and elderly
    10. How do I know when and where to go to get the second dose?
    11. Will I get a reminder for the second dose?
    12. Do I have to get the second dose at the same place/Clinic/venue where I got the first dose?
    13. If my first dose was Pfizer, is it okay if I get AZ for my second dose (and vice versa)?
    14. How did the vaccine get transported here? What temperature is your vaccine fridge?
    15. The vaccine is provided in multi-dose vials. What steps are you taking to prevent transmission of infection?
    16. I want the vaccine injected into my thigh muscle not my arm muscle. Okay?
    17. Is this a ‘live’ (attenuated) vaccine, or a ‘killed’ (inactivated) vaccine?
    18. Can I see the PI and CMI for this vaccine?

  12. Don Stott says:

    So what makes you think Africans, Indonesians, and Papua New Guineans don’t think the vaccines are microchipped?

  13. Lilliana Greaves says:

    Jane, a relatively small proportion of people believe in 5G / microchips / conspiracy theories.

    A large number if not a majority would have legitimate concerns about a vaccine developed on mRNA technology that has not been used in a widespread manner before. The Pfizer vaccine at least. They might still take the jab, but they have legitimate concerns.

    Perhaps try to address some of those questions instead of calling people who aren’t willing to jump straight on with what the “scientists say” and you might go some way to educating these people, or helping us doctors educate them.

    Calling swaths of people dumb morons never won any argument, or made for interesting journalism.

  14. Louis Fenelon says:

    I have the PI for Astra Zeneca and Pfizer vaccines sitting on the kitchen counter so I can go through them with my wife (on Australian States Day tomorrow). She’s not keen on COVID vaccination. She has enough social media contact to be afraid of the vaccines.
    I see it differently. If the whole world doesn’t get on board with vaccination fast, then this virus will mutate adversely. A new strain will be resistant to vaccines and we will all go back to day one, with no guarantee of any freedoms. The only secure people will be the mega rich and mega powerful. The new oligarchs who never had anything but gains to be made out of COVID; the very people the anti-vaxxers do not trust (plus politicians who value totalitarianism – apparently almost all of them).
    The PI’s do not make for very comfortable reading. Plenty of questions are unanswered, but they are honest within the limits of timeline. The PI for aspirin and paracetamol aren’t encouraging either. It’s important to consider what is really at stake here when you decide about vaccination for COVID. It is all of our future, the chance for the average person to have a free life and the chance our offspring are not going to live in the poverty of our errors of judgement. For all of their lives.

  15. Sue Ieraci says:

    “Anonymous” #6 is incorrect about COVID-19 mortality. Let’s look at the Australian figures: 909 deaths of 28,766 cases, which makes for a case fatality of over 3%. More than three per hundred infected people in Aus have died, despite our relatively sophisticated and accessible health care system. That does not capture the many many people who have only survived after a long stay in intensive care, a miserable illness with severe hypoxia, or those who have lasting long-term effects.

    I’m happy to put my name to this comment because I am confident in the figures I have quoted, and I understand that a mortality rate of 3% in a wealthy country is a high figure – substantially higher than influenza, just to name one example.

    If we are not able to competently interpret data and understand how to search valid sources, how can we hope to advise our patients?

  16. Sue Ieraci says:

    To anonymous #3, it’s worth explaining that cell lines that were obtained from foetuses, that would otherwise have been discarded many years ago, no longer contain any of the original cells. Cell culture material is destroyed during the vaccine manufacture.

    Pope Francis has urged the world to get vaccinated. No major organised religion opposes vaccination, to my knowledge.

  17. Sue Ieraci says:

    It’s almost like some of the “anonymous” posters have collaborated to illustrate Jane’s point. Let’s go through their points:

    “Anonymous” #1: It would be most helpful to me, as a medical practitioner, to know the risks of the vaccines being rolled out, and some of the negatives (like, they don’t prevent community transmission): WE DON’T KNOW yet whether they prevent transmission because they were tested for efficacy and safety.

    Perhaps you could report on the data collected by the VAERS, deaths and adverse events directly related to COVID vaccination? VAERS is a passive database of adverse events, not verified vaccine reactions.
    Could you tell us any findings in the deaths of Sonia Acevedo? or our colleague Greg Michael? Or the 33 deaths in Norway so far? This is being asked in the context of over TWO MILLION COVID DEATHS worldwide and millions of doses of vaccine administered. What would Anonymous #1 consider to be an acceptable risk?

    “you have set up a straw man of paranoid ideas that are circulating, and knocked them down.” Indeed – that’s an exercise that we all need to contribute to.

    Thanks, Jane, for the reminder.

  18. Anonymous says:

    It would be most helpful to me, as a medical practitioner, to know the risks of the vaccines being rolled out, and some of the negatives (like, they don’t prevent community transmission). Perhaps you could report on the data collected by the VAERS, deaths and adverse events directly related to COVID vaccination? Could you tell us any findings in the deaths of Sonia Acevedo? or our colleague Greg Michael? Or the 33 deaths in Norway so far? Could you report on Pfizer’s Covid-19 Vaccine use in Israel being declared an illegal clinical trial? I would be grateful for that information, which you are well positioned to provide us, so that my patients can give informed consent to a COVID vaccine.
    Instead you have set up a straw man of paranoid ideas that are circulating, and knocked them down. Easy, but not at all helpful to those of us working with patients. Avoiding the science, Jane. Not looking. You can do better than this.

  19. Pierre Sands says:

    Conspiracy theories are becoming more and more mainstream. Either that means that people are devolving to become susceptible to rubbish they read on social media, or they no longer trust the mainstream media and establishment messages. Take your pick.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for the article. On the use of cells from fetal material – this is well documented and people with ethical concerns should be informed, including those that might be concerned about porcine and bovine excipients, which may offend some people (culture/religion)

    Human fetal cell lines are used to culture some vaccines. They are listed on the CDCs Vaccine Excipient list as WI-38, MRC-5, HEK293, PERC.6.
    WI-38 is a diploid human cell culture line composed of fibroblasts derived from lung tissue of an aborted female fetus.
    MRC-5 (Medical Research Council cell strain 5) is a diploid human cell culture line composed of fibroblasts derived from lung tissue of a 14-week-old aborted male fetus.
    Human embryonic kidney cells 293, also often referred to as HEK 293, HEK-293, 293 cells, or less precisely as HEK cells, are a specific cell line originally derived from human embryonic kidney cells grown in a tissue culture.
    PERC.6 cell line was derived from human embryonic kidney cells taken from an elective abortion performed in the 1970’s.
    The newest cell line created in 2015 for vaccines: WALVAX 2 is taken from the lung tissue of a 3-month gestation female who was ultimately selected from among 9 aborted babies. The scientists noted how they followed specific guidelines to mimic WI-38 and MRC-5 in selecting the aborted babies, ranging from 2-4 months gestation. They further noted how they induced labor using a “water bag” abortion to shorten the delivery time and prevent the death of the fetus to ensure live intact organs which were immediately sent to the labs for cell preparation. (Source:

    For a table of some of the COVID vaccines and cells used see

    We need to be considerate of those sensitive to these issues.

  21. Anonymous says:

    “Winning” is not everything, if defined as “survived the infection”.
    A substantial but not exactly known proportion of survivors nonetheless have sequelae including:
    * generic prolonged recovery from critical illness
    * specific debilitating/disabling dysfunction of one or more organs, for months or longer, including in a substantial proportion of patients without pre-existing co-morbidities, not especially ill with the Covid-19 virus, and not especially old. A published series (JAMA) documents degraded cardiac function in young adult athletes.
    It remains a bad idea to get the disease at all.

  22. Anonymous says:

    I do not fear the vaccine.
    I fear the blind faith politicians have put in the ability of the vaccine as the panacea of all positive tests.
    It begs the question as to whether we are treating a disease or treating a number.
    It would seem that only vulnerable people are harmed by the virus. Those people should be protected.
    The vaccines so far developed aim only at one site of the spike protein which is mutating faster than the people researching the mutations can keep up. The viruses will always mutate to a more transmissible form but may not be as deadly. The R zero rate will increase as the major mobility and mortality rates fall. The effectivity of vaccines in preventing disease will fall.
    We must not depend on a vaccine to “cure” us of the virus.

  23. Anonymous says:

    I agree that Covid is potentially fatal but to a small percentage of people contracting it. The infection fatality rate is well under 1%.
    Far more emphasis needs to be put on the fact that the risk of dying is hugely less than the risk of being unaffected in any way. The mainstream media and the medical media need to stress these facts, instead of the constant Project Fear which pervades the world.
    I am not publishing my name this time as I will immediately become a Covid denier, which only a moron would consider. I just feel we need a lot more even-handed information being issued. Even as a non-gambler,I would put some money on a horse with more than a 99% chance of winning

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