August 2020

Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

Saturday, October 17, 2020

Lummi Nation pulls out of AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine experiment

Photo by AIANTA

Coronavirus vaccine trials halted as more volunteers become ill, Lummi Nation withdraws from AstraZeneca experiments


By Brenda Norrell
Censored News

LUMMI NATION, Washington -- The Lummi Nation pulled out of the controversial AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine study this week, after a volunteer in the trial became ill with a neurological disorder.

Lawrence Solomon, Chairman of the Lummi Indian Business Council said, “We will continue to look for ways to protect our people from this virus. But after consultation with the Lummi Public Health Department, it was clear that the AstraZeneca vaccine trial was not a good fit.”


 Meanwhile, Pfizer, the drug company carrying out experimental coronavirus vaccines on Navajos said the vaccine will not be ready before the election -- bringing to an end Trump's promise of a vaccine before the election.

"It was never going to happen. It was utterly unrealistic," said Lawrence Gostin, director of the WHO Collaborating Center on National and Global Health Law at Georgetown University. "Vaccines follow a timeline of good science, they don’t follow a timeline of electoral politics," Politico reported.

The controversial vaccine experiments on Navajos sank into the political campaign. Navajo Vice President Myron Lizer publicly joined Trump's campaign. The Navajo government urged Navajos to volunteer for the vaccine experiments.

The ongoing Pfizer vaccine experiments on the Navajo Nation are underway by Johns Hopkins University researchers who are using Indian Health Service hospitals on the Navajo Nation and in the border town of Gallup, N.M.

Censored News has asked Johns Hopkins about its 40-year history of vaccine and medical experiments, which little is known about, and is awaiting a response. In an e-mail response to Censored News, the Indian Health Service said it is not responsible in the event of sickness or death from the coronavirus vaccine experiments.

With the risks of participating in coronavirus vaccine trials increasing, two other vaccine studies were halted this week because volunteers became sick. Both  Johnson and Johnson and Eli Lilly halted their COVID-19 vaccine experiments.

Dr. Dakotah Lane, medical director of the Lummi Nation said, “Native peoples are at greater risk for severe symptoms and death from Covid-19."

“Yet we are rarely participants in the testing of life-saving vaccines and medications. This is a significant disadvantage to determining whether a vaccine is effective for American Indian populations.” 

“We expect any vaccine trial we enroll in to meet the highest standards,” said Lane. “While the AstraZeneca trial is not a good fit at this time, we will assess future trials to see if they are safe and appropriate for our tribal members who wish to participate.”

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