Despite what you may have seen in shonky crockumentaries like Died Suddenly, COVID-19 vaccines have not caused a massive increase in fatal blood clots.

Despite memes being passed around social media, sudden cardiac death, even among young people, is not new (see this Australian journal article from 2004, for example: ), and has not increased in frequency. It’s just that your average social media meme creator and passer-onner has very little knowledge of pathology, and imagines that if he or she has not heard of something before, it must not have happened before, and must be related to something new…

In reality multiple large studies have shown LOWER rates of cardiac death following COVID-19 vaccination. Hardly surprising, since cardiac arrest is common in severe COVID cases. See this summary from the world’s most highly regarded heart research foundation:

Also, despite what you may have seen being passed around social media, often consisting of statistics which the posters don’t understand, and which say the opposite of what they claim, the vaccines are effective in reducing transmission and even more effective in reducing severe illness and death.

However, vaccines are not effective for everyone; people with impaired immune systems, for example, who cannot mount an effective response to the illness despite the prompting given by the vaccine. In addition, COVID-19 is very good at evading immunity. Existing vaccines may be less effective against newer strains like the Omicron BF7 strain causing the current massive outbreak in China.

A vast amount of research is being done around the world, in thousands of hospitals and research facilities, to develop vaccines which are even more effective at reducing transmission, and which will be effective against new strains.

A similar volume of research is seeking new treatment and prophylactic protocols. Researchers at the University of Cambridge have tested hundreds of existing drugs to check for possible utility in the fight against COVID-19. They have just published the partial results of this research. Read the link below. Ursodeoxycholic acid is an off-patent medication which is cheap and quick to produce.

Vaccination is the cheapest and most efficient way to slow transmission and stop severe illness – better not to get it, than to get it and have to treat it. Even apparently mild cases can have unpleasant long-term effects. But for people with impaired immune systems, and perhaps as a prophylactic for medical staff or in areas of very high community infection, this medication offers another tool to save lives.