Why COVID-19 vaccines aren't comparable

Vox made a video on vaccine efficiacy rates and why you can’t compare the different COVID-19 vaccines.

In the US, the first two available Covid-19 vaccines were those from Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna. Both vaccines have very high “efficacy rates” of around 95 percent. But the third vaccine introduced in the US, from Johnson & Johnson, has a much lower efficacy rate: just 66 percent.

Look at those numbers next to each other, and it’s natural to conclude that one of them is considerably worse. Why settle for 66 percent when you can have 95 percent? But that isn’t the right way to understand a vaccine’s efficacy rate, or to even understand what a vaccine does.

Since the pandemic hit the West in early 2020, we have been inundated with numbers and graphs and there’s been very little to explain them in a way that people can understand. I just hope there isn’t a Sex Panther vaccine.

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