Exclusive: FOI Requests Unearth Thus Far Unknown Extent Of UK Government's COVID Vaccine Waste
Total tops 80,000,000 doses, estimates nearly half a billion pounds of taxpayer cash...
Documents obtained through Freedom of Information Act (FOI) request by The Stark Naked Brief reveal that the UK Government has wasted over 80 million experimental COVID-19 vaccines since November 2020.
What follows is a simplified summary of two separate FOI requests sent to the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA). These requests focus on the amount of vaccines wasted and illustrate the true cost to taxpayers resulting from the government's mindless bid to vaccinate every soul in Britain.
1st Discarded FOI Request
UKHSA disclosed that between November 2020 and August 21, 2023, it disposed of 732,060 COVID-19 vaccines.
Despite their best efforts to manage “supply effectively”, the disposals were mainly due to products “reaching their expiry date”.
The agency also confessed that the total could be an underestimate as it excludes “wastage at NHS vaccination sites”.
According to The Office for National Statistics (ONS), 93.6% of the UK population is COVID vaccinated with at least one dose. There were hundreds if not thousands of vaccination sites stationed across the UK throughout 2020 to 2022. Undisclosed disposals could be considerable.
Both the UK government and associated agencies, including UKHSA, have been reluctant to reveal the amount of taxpayer money spent on Covid vaccines.
However, based on available data, the cost estimates per dose are approximately £20 for Pfizer/BioNTech, £19 for Moderna, and £3 for AstraZeneca.
Total Estimated Cost of Discarded Vaccines
Using these estimates, the total amount spent on discarded vaccines totals:
Pfizer/BioNTech - 16,780 x £20 = £335,600
Moderna - 5,000 x £19 = £95,000
AstraZeneca - 710,280 x £3 = £2,130,840
Total estimated cost: £2,561,440
2nd Donations FOI Request
Several investigative journalists have noted significant vaccine wastage in other countries, particularly in Europe, which totalled millions. UKHSA’s numbers appeared conservative in comparison.
I submitted a follow up FOI request about COVID vaccine donations on 6th October 2023, wondering if UKHSA had not classified donations as a form of “wastage”.
Here was their response (emailed almost two months later):
The documents provide some explanation why vaccine wastage was so low in their initial response. Compared to 732,060 discarded, the government donated a whopping 80,416,069 doses internationally.
Bangladesh, Indonesia, and Jamaica received the most at a million or above. The donation of the remaining 6 million doses went to various countries across Asia, North America, and Africa in varied lots. But these amounts paled compared to its donations to COVAX.
COVAX, otherwise known as COVID-19 Vaccine Global Access, is a global initiative designed to provide “equitable” access to COVID-19 vaccines.
It is directed by three separate NGOs - coincidentally all Bill Gates-funded - including the GAVI Alliance, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, and the World Health Organisation.
The government provided COVAX with 71,067,729 shots (paid for by British taxpayers) to distribute at their discretion, without oversight.
Notably, 59% of them came from AstraZeneca, which was the first vaccine regulators suspended as early as March 2021 because of blood clot reports.
UKHSA chose to withhold the dates of the donations so it is impossible to know if they were donated after regulators suspended use of the AstraZeneca jab.
Total Estimated Cost of Donated Vaccines
From November 2020 to the end of 2022, using the same price estimates for discarded vaccines, the total amount spent on donated vaccines amounts to:
Pfizer/BioNTech - 94,400 (direct donations) x £20 = £1,888,000
AstraZeneca - 9,253,940 (direct donations) + 41,779,280 (COVAX donations) x £3 = £153,099,660
Janssen - 20,001,600 x £6.50 = £130,010,400
Unassigned/Unknown Maker - 9,286,849 x £12.13 (mean average cost of all vaccines) = £112,649,478
Total estimated cost: £397,647,538.
Total estimated donated vaccine cost (£397,647,538) + cost of discarded vaccines (£2,561,440): £400,208,978
Put simply, if these modest calculations are correct, the government spent nearly half a billion pounds on COVID vaccines for the British public that they did not use.
Whilst UKHSA acknowledged in their response that transparency over government spending makes them more “open and accountable”, they admitted the commercial interests of the external companies involved overrides that of public interest.
Put differently, Big Pharma’s profitability seemingly takes precedent over the British public’s right to know how the government has spent their money.
The agency further justified their opacity on costs and dates to assure they can get “the best value for money for the public purse” in future negotiations.
Apply the same estimated amount spent to UK homelessness, however, and data compiled by Crisis.org shows the government could have prevented well over a quarter of a million people from falling into homelessness. Official statistics reveals around 3,069 people sleep rough per night. The total is thought to be around 271,000 people. So we could have practically ended what has become a rising trend in post-lockdown, cost-of-living-crisis Britain.
On a more positive note, we can at least now confirm that the British public did not receive 81,148,129 ineffective, experimental products that could have fatally harmed them.
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*There were gaps in the Guardian’s reporting. The outlet only specified prices for a number of shots. Prices also varied between countries so I took a rough average in between the highest prices and lowest prices outlined.