Protected? Unprotected? COVID-19 experts warn of definition dangers as N.B. reviews policy – CBC

Misleading approach could fuel anti-vaccine sentiment and further drive anticipated surge

Nov 15, 2022

Three months after New Brunswick said it was looking at revising how it defines vaccine protection from COVID-19, the Department of Health says it’s still working on it.

Some experts CBC News spoke to are not surprised. They say it’s challenging, both scientifically and politically.

They also warn the current approach is misleading, could fuel anti-vaccine sentiment, and could further drive the anticipated surge in COVID activity this fall and winter.

“If we’re not doing anything to update everyone’s understanding, we’re continuing to essentially propagate this mess,” said Colin Furness, an infection control epidemiologist and assistant professor with the faculty of information at the University of Toronto.

For months, New Brunswick’s rates of hospitalization and death from COVID-19 have been higher for those “protected” from the virus than those “unprotected,” according to the province’s weekly COVIDWatch reports.

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