Pennington returns to muddy the waters

It’s been a while since Scotland in Union activist and expert on bacterial outbreaks in Lanarkshire has been the go-to-guy for advice in managing a viral outbreak on Scotland’s MSM. Profs Sridhar and Bauld had largely replaced him but like the undead he’s back with his first idea to help the SNP do better since his expertise was last revealed:

In the Herald today:

Tests which detect Covid-19 before symptoms develop should be used to track flu cases, a leading microbiologist has claimed.

Professor Hugh Pennington’s made the call amid warnings of a surge in cases this winter and higher death rates.

Leading bacteriologist? It’s a virus nor a bacterium. He’s been retired for nearly 20 years. His last job was a cold meat e-coli outbreak from one butcher in Wishaw, in 1997. He’s a member of Scotland in Union’s covert writing team featuring in the Scotsman every few days as just Hugh. He’s not credible.

Is he right on this? I’ve no idea. Ask someone who does – Sridhar, Bauld?

And, cases surge and higher death rate? See these:

After a school-return-related ‘surge’ in Scotland, the 7 day average begins to fall just as they begin to rise in the other 3 areas.

Deaths are always too high, but this remains relatively small compared to pre-vaccine levels in January and is a consequence of the increase in cases a few weeks ago.

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7 thoughts on “Pennington returns to muddy the waters

  1. Is it my imagination, or have profs Sridhar and Bauld been pushed a bit to the back of late?

    Never mind the bbc and msm are always around to keep, um, doing stuff to make sure it’s all doom.

    I continue to be confused by the focus on students and student case numbers – this quote from a current bbc front page story is the same as it was last year:

    ‘ There were several significant outbreaks in student accommodation last year when universities accounted for 3% of all Scotland’s cases between September and November.’

    Google tells me that there are 250,000 higher education students in Scotland and we have a population of about 5.5m. My maths tells me that’s a population share of 4.5%.
    These students are slacking in their social duties. They need to get out more!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Spent a day in St Andrews yesterday during ‘Freshers week’ to witness the complete disregard for public safety by many of the student hopefuls, related visitors and those considered the brightest amongst us. Very scary.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. St Andrew’s U has always had a very high intake from private schools in England, who have viewed it as roughly, but, not quite, on a par with Oxford and Cambridge Universities and of a similar status to Durham or Warwick, but, it has Prince William as an alumnus!

        people from these social strata, tend to see themselves as immune to the kinds of things that affect the hoi polloi.

        However, on a more general level, students everywhere have tended to overdo the freedom when they are no longer living with their mammies!

        Liked by 2 people

  2. One of the lead headings on Reporting Scotland last night was “A Quarter of under 18s have not even had one dose of vaccination”.

    They could easily have said that 3/4 have had their first dose.

    The level of vaccination for under 18s across the UK is between 71 and 76% (as of 6, September). Scotland is second only to Wales.

    Clearly, despite the gloom being peddled by the BBC in Scotland, young people ARE going for vaccinations. This can be speeded up by having vaccinations in our colleges and universities and, should it be offered to those below 18, it can be done via schools, as has been being done since I got my first diphtheria jag at Kent Road PS in 1953. Vaccination levels for all conditions is very high in Scotland and has been for decades.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. O/T I see the BBC News website’s Scotland section is persisting with its contribution to the attempt to defeat plans for Covid vaccine certification in Scotland. Its latest article is entitled: ‘Opposition increasing towards vaccine passports’.

    Given it makes much of Scottish Labour’s opposition, it is notable that the article includes a reference to the Welsh Government’s position. It tells us this: ‘In Wales, First Minister Mark Drakeford last month said there were “no plans” to introduce mandatory vaccination certificates for venues due to “ethical and equality considerations”.’ Note the work being done by the word DUE in that sentence!

    I searched online to find out more on Drakeford’s position, always suspicious that BBC Scotland’s selective quotes might not give the whole story! And I was not wrong – to put it mildly!

    This is from an article entitled: ‘Welsh Government ‘looking seriously’ at introducing vaccine passports for large events’ published on 27 August on the ITV News website. It tells us:

    ‘People wanting to go to festivals and large events in Wales could be required to show proof that they have been doubly vaccinated amid rising cases of Covid-19, the first minister has said.

    ‘Speaking to ITV News, Mark Drakeford also said that there is concern around the rising level of cases in Wales and if it was “necessary” to introduce some more restrictions, “then that is what we would have to do”.

    Whilst making no substantial change in Covid rules in Wales at that time (late August), we also learn this from the ITV website:

    ‘On Friday, he (Drakeford) told ITV News … moving into Alert Level Zero which saw almost all restrictions lifted, has led to a rise in cases, particularly those attending large events.

    “We will use the next three weeks to look seriously at the issue of vaccine certification, whether or not it should be a condition of being able to go into such events of having been doubly vaccinated.”

    And then we have this: ‘Mr Drakeford said there are “lots of practical and ethical issues to think about” and added any “responsible government… has to take that seriously”.’

    And as long ago as 8 April, we learn this from the BBC News website’s Wales page: ‘First Minister and Welsh Labour leader Mr Drakeford said there were “practical and ethical” problems to be solved around vaccine passports.’

    He said: “If you can do it in a way that doesn’t discriminate unfairly against people, if you can do it in a way that does not make the system vulnerable to fraud and counterfeit certificates and so on, then I think there is a part they might be able to play in Wales.”

    So from two other sources (ITV News and BBC Wales) we find that Drakeford acknowledges ‘ethical’ and related issues with vaccine certification BUT sees them as issues for a responsible government to think about and to solve! And his government has them under active consideration: we wait to learn of its decision.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Professor Pennington thinks there should be a PCR test for flu virus just as there is for Sars-Cov2.

    There already is such a PCR test for flu virus and it has been in routine use in Virology labs for at least 20 years.

    DNA technology in the form of PCR tests revolutionised the diagnosis/identification of viruses. Prior to PCR there were antibody tests such as ELISSA tests which are still in use.

    So the Herald’s front page article and the Prof’s suggestion for a flu test is a load of cobblers.

    Liked by 2 people

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