Roll-outs, satire, nationalism, and more…

FSM News and Articles

Australia’s vaccine roll-out setbacks take shine off its COVID-19 success: Some public health experts have warned that Australia may not be able to vaccinate its entire population until the end of 2022 due to a lack of supplies. “We need to settle in for the long haul because I don’t think we will be getting significant amounts of Pfizer vaccine until next year,” Professor John Dwyer.

FSM Friends’ News and Articles

COVID-19 raises erectile dysfunction risk – men, wear masks, get vaccines: A new study has shown a significant correlation between COVID-19 infections and erectile dysfunction (ED). While not causally proven, the study showed an almost 6x greater risk of ED following a case of COVID-19. This is correlation is also biologically plausible as COVID-19 is an endothelial disease, and ED is often regarded as an endothelial disorder. It makes perfect sense that the two would be correlated, and this informs the growing body of knowledge about the risks of COVID-19.  There is currently a narrative in which vaccines are considered to be ‘risky’ due to isolated consideration of effects that are small and/or rare. We should make sure that such narratives are appropriately balanced by consideration of the far more common and far more extreme consequences of the disease itself. 


They swore by the diet I created — but I completely made it up:  “The diet was satire, invented by me, and it came at the end of a book dedicated to exposing pseudoscientific nutrition claims.”

Today’s Abused Health Concept

Vaccine Nationalism. The best hope for fairly distributing COVID-19 vaccines globally is at risk of failing. Here’s how to save it: “COVAX, the global initiative to coordinate the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines in an equitable way, is crucial for bringing the pandemic under control.” But vaccine nationalism is making the global pandemic response far less effective. “So far, only 0.2% of the 700 million vaccine doses administered globally have been given in low-income countries, whereas 87% have been received by people in high-income and upper middle-income countries. At this rate, it could be 2023 or 2024 before vaccination brings the pandemic under control globally. For COVAX to supply enough vaccines for even 20% of the world’s population, rich countries will need to step up. And fast.”

But instead “Rich countries like Australia have undermined COVAX by negotiating deals for vaccines directly with pharmaceutical companies, rather than waiting for COVAX to allocate them fairly….” In fact 14% of the world’s population has secured 51% of the global supply in premarket deals, leading to massive delays in vaccine delivery. “India and South Africa have put forth a proposal at the World Trade Organization to waive intellectual property rights for COVID-19 medical products during the pandemic, which has been supported by more than 100 low- and middle-income countries. However, several high-income countries, including Australia, have blocked it.”

So what do we need to do? “WHO has called on rich countries to immediately share 10 million doses to prop up COVAX in the first half of 2021. No country has agreed to this yet. Secondly, governments need to support mechanisms for sharing intellectual property, such as the WHO’s COVID-19 Technology Access Pool (C-TAP). This was set up nearly a year ago, but no vaccine developer has contributed to it yet. Finally, governments need to help low- and middle-income countries to produce their own vaccines. This means investing money to build up manufacturing capacities in these countries and facilitating technology transfers from companies based in high-income countries.”

Great Moments in Health and Science 

The invention of spectacles: A commonplace accessory now, we sometimes take for granted how much glasses assist many people with important daily tasks such as reading and driving.

Lesser-known Health Professions

Cytotechnologist: These professionals prepare and evaluate tissue samples to see if they contain disease, using medical equipment such as microscopes. Cytotechnologists often play a crucial role in helping patients to recover from illness by identifying a disease while it is still at a treatable stage.