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So when Fauci agreed to an interview with Eugenio Derbez, he may have assumed the famed Mexican actor, director and producer would treat him the way the U.S. mainstream media usually does — with kid gloves.
That didn’t happen. Instead, Derbez lobbed one pointed question after another — and didn’t settle for non-answers.
From lack of long-term safety testing, to vaccine makers’ lack of liability, to the eventual mandating of COVID vaccines for kids (even though their risk of getting the virus is about 0.00% – 0.19% ) to the use of fetal cell lines in the Johnson & Johnson vaccine — no subject was off limits.
How did Fauci do?
Watch this video clip of the interview to find out:
Read the transcript (edited for length and clarity):
Eugenio Derbez: (00:00)
I was telling people that I was a little concerned. And so I had a lot of doubts about, uh, the vaccine, and then I got this invitation to talk to you. So it will be really helpful for all of us to learn and to understand about the vaccine. I’m going to play here, the devil’s advocate, what is the difference between an Emergency Use Authorization and an official approval by the FDA?
Dr. Fauci: (00:24)
So an emergency use authorization is based on the criteria. If the benefit clearly outweighs the risk and that you get a good degree of efficacy and safety, the full licensure is when you follow it for a longer period of time and you get more information and data. I have no doubt given how very, very efficacious, all three of these are that they will ultimately get the full authorization in the sense of what’s called a biological license approval. But an emergency use authorization is really, uh, quite of an important step in the direction of getting it the official approval.
Eugenio Derbez: (01:11)
That seems sort of safe and effective. Why hasn’t the FDA given any of them, the full, official approval and license?
Dr. Fauci: (01:19)
Actually, that is a very good question. There isn’t like they have any problem with it. It just takes logistically a long time to get the approval. So when this is such a good product that you want to get it to people as quickly as possible because it’s life saving, you give it what’s called an emergency use authorization.
Eugenio Derbez: (01:45)
What about the long term? I mean, what is the medical and legal responsibility of the companies that are making the vaccines? What happens if secondary effects are seen, let’s say in five or 10 years, can I sue the manufacturer of the product that hurts me, or if there’s long-term effects years down the road?
Dr. Fauci: (02:06)
You know, there is a fund that allows the, um, compensation for injury, but I have to tell you [inaudible] that it’s very, very, very unlikely that you’re going to have an effect five or 10 years down the pike. The reason we say that is that we have decades of experience in the field of vaccinology and virtually all of the effects if they even occur, and they’re very rare, occur within 15 to 45 days following the dose,
Eugenio Derbez: (02:42)
I’m more concerned about the long term effects, honestly. So, uh, that’s what I asked about the, if I can sue a manufacturer, but because, um, governments around the world are taking the liability governments, but I’m thinking about the manufacturer. If there’s a problem, can I sue the people that made the vaccine now, not the government, the people that made the vaccine, because I’ve heard they are protected from liability. If they’re not willing to stand for their product, or if I can’t sue them, does that mean they’re worried it’s going to hurt people.
Dr. Fauci: (03:17)
You know, they are very sensitive about hurting people, but you can sue anybody you want to sue. There’s no guarantee it goes, it will be in a court that would decide whether or not you get compensation, but we have not had, we have not had any issues with that in any of the other vaccines. So I would be really a surprised if that’s the case.
Eugenio Derbez: (03:40)
Let me tell you why, but there’s one thing that I suppose would make people or skeptical, like me more confident about vaccines. I’m thinking if they remove the protection, some vaccine manufacturers, I think that the ability to be sued and when I’m talking about suing is not about money at all. The ability to be sued is what makes companies make a better product. If you take that away, what incentive do they have to fix a problem with their product? You, you know what I mean? Either manufacturers could be sued for every death and injury that is caused by the vaccination. Probably they wouldn’t put it in the market right now, or they, I think they should be responsible for the product they made.
Dr. Fauci: (04:25)
You know, they really actually are. I think one of the things you got to separate is when you get injury in a trial or injury in a product after it has been fully approved, you have the opportunity. I mean, I understand where you’re coming from and why you bring it up, but you have the opportunity to sue anybody anytime for anything you want, that is the truth. The question is you have to show that it’s related to the vaccine itself. And we have so few, in fact, I can’t even think of a situation where five or 10 years later, something related to a vaccine, causes someone an injury. That’s the reason why I say almost everything that occurs is within a very short period of time.
Eugenio Derbez: (05:17)
But if I sue the manufacturer who pays for that, that is the government not the company, right?
Dr. Fauci: (05:27)
Eugenio Derbez: (05:30)
Okay. Got it. Got it. I’ve heard that the reason people should take vaccines is to create herd immunity. What is herd immunity?
Dr. Fauci: (05:39)
Well, the first reason to take the vaccine is to protect yourself, your family and your community herd immunity refers to a situation where you have a high percentage of people who are vaccinated so that when the virus enters the community, there are so few people to attack that the virus has a difficulty in propagating itself. Herd immunity means you get an umbrella of protection because so many people are protected that when the virus comes in, it spreads only when there are a lot of vulnerable people. But if a certain percentage of the people are protected, like with measles, if you get 90% of the people vaccinated with measles, 91, 92%, when you get measles introduced into the community, it will not spread. But if you get down to level two in the eighties, there’s enough vulnerable people that the virus can spread.
Dr. Fauci: (06:43)
They use the word herd, you know what it refers to you ever see when you look at the movie pictures of Africa, where you see the herds of wildebeest and the lions trying to get to them, and you have all of the adult wildebeest around and the weak ones, the older ones or the babies they’re in there. But there were a few of them. The herd protects the vulnerable because in this case, the lion or whatever the animal is, that is the prey animal that’s trying to prey on them can’t get to the vulnerable ones because there’s too many people that are protected. That’s why they use the word herd immunity.
Eugenio Derbez: (07:25)
If herd immunity is of paramount importance, what can be done with all the undocumented immigrants that will not want to get a vaccine out of fear of deportation?
Dr. Fauci: (07:37)
Yeah. That’s a very important question. And the department of Homeland security has made it very clear that there will be nothing punitive associated with getting vaccinated.
Eugenio Derbez: (07:50)
And now I have a question about that. The news has reported that the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines are 95% effective. Does this mean that if I get the vaccine, I won’t get infected with SARS-CoV-2 virus?
Dr. Fauci: (08:05)
That means that there’s a 95% chance that you will not get symptomatic infection, namely, that you won’t get infected to the point that you get symptoms. But we are unsure right now what the protection is against infection, because it’s conceivable that you could get vaccinated, get exposed, get infected, not know it because the vaccine is protecting you against symptoms, but that you could have virus in your nasal pharynx, which is the reason why we say until we prove that the vaccine prevents transmission, that people who were vaccinated should wear a mask when they’re near people who might be vulnerable to infection.
Eugenio Derbez: (08:51)
Yeah. But I think it’s a different thing. Um, the, the stop, the clinical disease or the symptoms is different from getting the virus infection, right? So basically the vaccine lowers my symptoms, but it may not prevent me from being infected with SARS-CoV-2, which means there’s the possibility that I can still spread the virus even after I received the vaccine.
Dr. Fauci: (09:21)
Right. That’s the reason why we ask you to wear a mask after you’ve been vaccinated. But the evidence is accumulating that the level of virus in the nasal pharynx is very low and it is unlikely that you would transmit it. But just to be sure, we’re saying, wear a mask in the next couple of months, we will get enough data to be able to prove whether or not, if you get infected, despite the fact that you’re vaccinated, proving that, in fact, it is a very, very low risk that you would transmit it to someone else.
Eugenio Derbez: (09:59)
Yeah. But because I’ve been reading and I saw that you stopped getting the symptoms, but you still can get infected and you can still spread it … what is the main aim of the vaccines? If they neither stop you from getting the virus or transmitting it, right?
Dr. Fauci: (10:23)
The main purpose of the vaccine is to prevent you from getting sick, going to the hospital and maybe dying.
Eugenio Derbez: (10:33)
Moderna and Pfizer are both mRNA vaccines, correct? Has this kind of mRNA vaccine technology ever been injected into humans before?
Dr. Fauci: (10:46)
Well, this is the first time. And the good news is that the results have been really, really good.
Eugenio Derbez: (10:51)
Okay. But in essence, this is an experimental technology.
Dr. Fauci: (10:58)
The new technology and it is proven in a very large group of clinical trials to be safe and highly effective.
Eugenio Derbez: (11:07)
Are you completely positive that this new technology is safe? I mean, how can we be sure there won’t be long-term effects when these vaccines were seemingly developed so quickly and have only been tested for months and not years?
Dr. Fauci: (11:24)
Speed with which it’s been done is a reflection of the extraordinary advances in science. And there was no compromise of safety. But as I said before, in the history of vaccinology, you don’t see effects that occur years later, almost all of the bad effects, as rare as they are — and they are very rare — occur between 15 and 45 days from the time you get vaccinated.
Eugenio Derbez: (11:58)
I have some questions from the audience. The Johnson and Johnson vaccine is not an mRNA vaccine, correct? What kind of vaccine is it?
Dr. Fauci: (12:09)
It’s a vaccine that uses a harmless common cold virus in which you insert the gene of the protein that you want the body to make an immune response against you, you inject it. The body sees the protein, makes an immune response and then protects you against infection.
Eugenio Derbez: (12:28)
And this is the first time it has been injected into humans, too?
Dr. Fauci: (12:32)
No, no, no. They have a lot of experience with Ebola in Africa with this.
Eugenio Derbez: (12:38)
Okay. Mmany Latinos in the community that are practicing Catholics last week, Catholic bishops, weren’t the Catholic, the Catholic community that they should not use the Johnson and Johnson vaccine. Can you explain why?
Dr. Fauci: (12:54)
Well, some not all, because there are Catholic bishops who are saying the opposite of that. And the reason is in the preparation of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, they use the cell line that was taken from fetal tissue from years and years ago, to be able to produce the vaccine. So some of the bishops felt that because that was used that we should not use the vaccine.
Eugenio Derbez: (13:24)
Yeah. Sorry. Is that true? That there, there is a residual DNA from an aborted baby in the Johnson, right?
Dr. Fauci: (13:29)
No, there’s no residual DNA that gets injected into you at all. It’s there in the preparation of the vaccine, there is no residual human, fetal DNA at all.
Eugenio Derbez: (13:42)
Kids. I’m concerned about my daughter. I have a 6-year-old daughter. I heard the death rate for kids is extremely low. Do they really need the vaccine? Are there going to be COVID vaccines for kids in the future? It’s going to be mandatory?
Dr. Fauci: (13:58)
In order to be able to completely crush this outbreak, you want to get as many people, including children vaccinated as you possibly can. Because when you do, you will get such a broad protection that you could eliminate this virus. And that’s what we’re trying to do. Also, even though children unusually can’t get a serious outcome, some children do get very seriously ill when they get infected. And that’s the reason why you want to vaccinate them, not only to protect them, but they can be the vehicles for spreading the virus to other people.
Eugenio Derbez: (14:42)
Is it going to be mandatory at school because my daughter, when I enrolled her into school, it was mandatory to have all the vaccines covered. Didn’t exist back then, but is it going to be mandatory at schools to have the COVID vaccine.
Dr. Fauci: (14:59)
I can’t say that it would. It is certainly conceivable that it might ultimately turn out to be mandatory. But right now, nothing we’re talking about is mandatory in the future. It could be similar to the measles, mumps, rubella and the hepatitis and meningitis, all of which are required. If you go into a public school right now, there is no mandatory anything about it, but someday it might.
Eugenio Derbez: (15:29)
So last question, with over so many variants and counting, how effective are each of the approved vaccines if I get the vaccine, but it doesn’t protect me against the new variants?
Dr. Fauci: (15:42)
The most prevalent variant in the United States is the one from the UK, and the vaccines that are available right now, are highly effective against that particular variant. It’s less effective against the South African variant, but that is not a prevalent variant in this country right now. The most prevalent one is the one from the UK.
Eugenio Derbez: (16:09)
What if I get the vaccine, but it doesn’t protect me against the new variant. Exactly. The pharmaceuticals are working on a third booster shot. Is that true? Yes.
Dr. Fauci: (16:21)
But let me explain what happened in a trial in South Africa, with the J and J vaccine, it didn’t completely protect against getting infected or getting symptoms, but it totally protected you against getting into the hospital and dying. So when you get exposed to a variant, you may not be completely protected, but it has a very, very good at protecting you from getting seriously ill.
Eugenio Derbez: (16:49)
And this third booster shot that they’re working on, that says to me that probably they’re not confident that the two shots are going to be good enough …
Dr. Fauci: (17:03)
That they want to be doubly sure. In case they have to give a booster, they want to determine what the effect of that booster is. So in order to be doubly sure, we’re proceeding with studies to see what happens when you give a third shot that has nothing to do with being confident or not confident. It means you want to be doubly sure that you’re covering all the bases.
Eugenio Derbez: (17:30)
Good. Okay. Good. Well, I think we covered most of the questions.