(Natural News) A Spanish study has found that the post-vaccine omicron variant of the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) spreads at the same rate among vaccinated people as it does among unvaccinated people. This study led to widespread changes in the COVID-19 vaccine passport policies in Spain.
The study was conducted by leading public health and medical practitioners from the Public Health Observatory of Cantabria, the Directorate General of Public Health of the Cantabrian provincial government and the Marques de Valdecilla University Hospital. The study examined the spread of the post-vaccine omicron variant in the Cantabria province, which has recorded nearly 120,000 COVID-19 cases as of Feb. 9. Around 20,000 of those cases are still active.
According to the study’s findings, the highly infectious post-vaccine variant of the virus accounted for nearly half of all infections in the province. The researchers found that one reason for this is because the omicron variant’s window for transmission is earlier than in previous variants.
The researchers noted that half of the infections occurred before the onset of symptoms, with only two percent of people infected with the omicron variant continuing to spread the virus after the fifth day of infection. They noted that the early stage of transmission complicates mainstream mitigation efforts even more .
“This would imply that the effectiveness of measures such as screening, rapid testing or isolation would decrease significantly in the absence of preventive measures such as distance, limiting mass gatherings or social gatherings,” wrote the researchers.
Perhaps the study’s most consequential finding is that being fully vaccinated does not appear to reduce the spread of the coronavirus.
“Vaccinated cases seem to have the same transmission capacity as unvaccinated people,” noted the researchers during an interview with a Spanish public radio station.
The researchers, who believe in the effectiveness of the vaccines, claim that this is a departure from the post-vaccine delta variant, where other studies supposedly found differences in transmission depending on vaccination status. (Related: Columbia University study confirms vaccines and boosters DO NOT WORK against omicron.)
Study findings lead to changes in Spain’s vaccine passport regulations
The leading researchers in the Cantabrian study agree that their study makes COVID-19 vaccine passports pointless. Cantabrian Director-General of Public Health Dr. Reinhard Wallmann, one of the study authors, said the high contagiousness of the omicron variant made vaccine passports “a measure that no longer makes sense.”
Wallmann argued that, if the objective of COVID-19 vaccine passports is to reduce transmission and if that cannot be avoided with this variant regardless of vaccination status, then it is no longer effective.
Many other leading public health experts in Spain have used the Cantabrian study as additional evidence to support their claim that the vaccine passports are not effective at controlling the coronavirus.
“Scientific evidence tells us that the COVID passport has had very little or no effectiveness in interrupting infections, especially with the omicron variant, said Jonay Ojeda, spokesman for the Spanish Society of Public Health and Health Administration. Ojeda described the measure as more “gimmicky than effective.”
“The epidemiological situation is changing,” noted Angela Dominguez, coordinator of the Spanish Society of Epidemiology’s Working Group on Vaccinations. “At the moment, given the evidence that transmission of the virus occurs in the vaccinated, which, really, is something that we already knew but that is more evident with the omicron variant, the COVID passport makes less sense.”
Inigo de Miguel Beriain, a researcher specializing in bioethics, law and legal philosophy, said that he was one of the COVID-19 vaccine passport’s most ardent defenders. However, given the new evidence, he has changed his mind.
“The only use of the COVID passport is to protect the unvaccinated, even against their will, preventing them from accessing places where the contagion is more likely,” he said in an interview in Spanish. “At this point, it is not going to make those who have not already been vaccinated get vaccinated, and it is not going to substantially reduce infections, because vaccines do not make transmission more difficult.”
In light of the evidence from the Cantabrian study, a committee of scientists told the regional government in the autonomous region of Catalonia that, because of the way the omicron variant spreads, “a large part of the population is once again susceptible to getting infected whether or not they are vaccinated or have already had the illness.” Therefore, the effectiveness of the region’s vaccine certification “is reduced as an extra level of security.”
Several other Spanish regional governments have announced that they are scrapping their vaccine passport requirements.
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Listen to this episode of the “Health Ranger Report,” a podcast by Mike Adams, as he speculates whether the omicron variant was engineered as a self-spreading antidote to end the COVID-19 pandemic.
Learn more about the omicron variant at Infections.news.