Here’s the abstract to the study ‘Evaluating the COVID-19 vaccination program in Japan, 2021 using the counterfactual reproduction number‘ (emphasis added).
"Japan implemented its nationwide vaccination program against COVID-19 in 2021, immunising more than one million people (approximately 1%) a day. However, the direct and indirect impacts of the programme at the population level have yet to be fully evaluated. To assess the vaccine effectiveness during the Delta variant (B.1.617.2) epidemic in 2021, we used a renewal process model. A transmission model was fitted to the confirmed cases from February 17th to November 30th 2021. In the absence of vaccination, the cumulative numbers of infections and deaths during the study period were estimated to be 63.3 million (95% confidence interval [CI] 63.2-63.6) and 364,000 (95% CI 363-366), respectively; the actual numbers of infections and deaths were 4.7 million and 10,000, respectively… We demonstrated the very high effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccination in Japan during 2021, which reduced mortality by more than 97% compared with the counterfactual scenario."
Put simply, Nishiura et al. input a load of outlandish assumptions into their model to make it estimate that without the jabs, about 50% of the population would have been infected and 0.3% of the population would have died of Covid during the Delta wave alone. The nicest thing I can say is that they clearly omitted the assumption that Japan’s 100% mask rate made a difference.
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