Reviewing Europe’s current Covid statistics one cannot but shudder. It is now clear that an enormous, record-breaking Covid wave is making its way through Germany and central Europe. Astoundingly enough, this is happening on the continent where many countries boast vaccine uptake between 65 and 70% of the total population.
Less than a year ago, Dr. Anthony Fauci stated that an inoculation rate between 60 and 70 percent would bring about herd immunity. According to a report from Axios which was published on December 25 of last year:
“Dr. Anthony Fauci has long cited 60% to 70% as the level of COVID infection/vaccination the country would need to achieve herd immunity — for the disease to fade and life to return to normal…”
Most countries in Europe now fall well within that range on the vaccination count alone.
The effect of the vaccines is further augmented by natural immunity which, according to some experts, may run as high as 50% in some populations. Nearly two years into the pandemic, people in many places have been extensively exposed to the virus and as a result possess natural antibodies. Therefore, inoculating, let’s say, 65 percent of the population with a good vaccine should result in overall immunity in the region of 80 percent. With this kind of immunity levels we should expect, if not elimination of the disease, then certainly a considerable decline in its occurrence.
It is, however, now amply clear that despite its high vaccination ratios Europe is nowhere close to achieving the promised relief. Not only that, but things are, in fact, much worse than they were at this time last year when there were no vaccines around.
Even though we do not know the exact threshold required for herd immunity against Covid 19, one thing is certain. If the vaccines worked the pandemic should be now largely under control, given Europe’s high vaccine uptake. Unfortunately, the opposite is the case. Even as we speak, Germany and central Europe are in the grip of the worst wave since the beginning of the pandemic. This wave is likely to travel further and sweep through other parts of the old continent.
We will show you the reality of the situation by presenting the relevant data in an easy-to-see, straightforward way. We do this by juxtaposing graphs that depict vaccination rates with graphs that show case rates in the countries we discuss.
Neither side in the vaccine debate would dispute the validity of the data presented below. The data is taken from the Google Coronavirus Statistics tool which draws its material from official sources and government databases. The data is publicly available and widely accessible. If you wish to verify or reproduce the data used in this piece, you can do so easily by going to google.com and typing “coronavirus” plus the name of the country whose statistics you want to examine. Once the country’s data comes up, you can choose in the horizontal menu that appears under the term “Statistics” what type of date you want to see: “New Cases” or “Vaccinations.”
As of November 25, Germany’s full vaccination rate stood at 68.1 percent while more than 70% of the population have received at least one dose.
Despite the vaccination rate that should have brought about herd immunity in that nation, Germany is suffering record case counts. On November 24, the country posted 79,051 new cases, topping by more than 50% the previous record of 45,333 set on January 7. It is highly revealing that the nation’s vaccination rate then stood at 0 percent. Germany’s seventy percent vax uptake not only failed to tame the pandemic, but it coincides with its worst case figures since the start of the pandemic.
As of November 24, the country had a 65.8% full vaccination rate while seventy percent of Austrians had received at least one dose.
With nearly two-thirds of its population injected, Austria posted a new daily record of 15,365 cases on November 24. This topped the country’s previous record from November of last year by more than 60 percent. At that time no one in the whole nation had received a single dose. In other words, the nearly 70% vaccine uptake did nothing to decrease the incidence of the disease in the population. Quite the contrary, it coincided with the highest case counts ever in this nation.
At the end of November Switzerland reported 65.7% full vaccination rate while 67.4% of its people had received at least one shot of the vaccine.
On November 22 Switzerland posted 14,592 new cases of Covid 19. This topped by nearly 40% the country’s previous record of 10,517 cases posted on November 3 last year. At that time, the country’s vaccination rate was zero percent.
[Note: If you try to reproduce the November record figure on google.com you will obtain the number of 21,926 for November 2. Given the trend and the graph curve, this is clearly a database error which we believe is unintentional. To correct for this, we draw our figure for November 3 from Worldometers.com; please see the link here.]
On November 24 the country’s rate of full vaccination stood at 58.9 percent while 61.8 percent of Czechs received at least one dose of the vaccine.
On November 24 the Czech Republic reported 25,949 new cases. This exceeded by nearly 40% the previous high of 17,773 set in January of this year. Even though the Czech Republic’s inoculation rate is somewhat lower than that of its neighbors to the west, 60 percent is still relatively high. In any case, it is very close to the herd immunity range that had been specified by Dr. Fauci. Not only has Czechia not achieved any large scale immunity, but its daily case load is significantly higher than at any other point in this pandemic. With 60 percent vax rate one should reasonably expect that the disease would be brought under control. Sadly, the very opposite has happened.