Ever since the start of the pandemic, the words “herd immunity” have been thrown around. What is herd immunity? Is it meant to be used in place of the covid-19 vaccination, or can we use it in tandem with the vaccine? The following blog will clarify some of the myths surrounding community immunity.There is a lot of herd immunity misconceptions. What is herd immunity, and why is it important? Find the answer to that question in the following blog. Click To Tweet
According to the Mayo Clinic, herd immunity, or community immunity refers to when a large portion of a community is immune to a disease. As a result, the entire population is protected, not just the immune people. This means herd immunity nullifies a highly contagious disease like COVID-19.
How Does it Work?
To achieve this phenomenon, a large number of the population needs to become immune. But how does a person become immune? There are two ways:
Contracting the Disease
When COVID-19 infects a person, their immune systems develop antibodies against that strand. 70% of the population would need to recover from infection for this method to work. There are some drawbacks to this method of immunization.
For one, there is no guarantee that you will not contract the virus again. Over time viruses evolve, which means a person would have to be reinfected every time a new strain develops. While studies show that antibodies to a strain of the virus can last up to eight months, we do not know for certain how long antibodies will last.
Constantly contracting a disease over and over also takes a toll on a person’s body. Severe cases of COVID-19 can cause long-term damage to the nervous system, the heart, the lungs, the kidneys, and other organs. The CDC calls these post COVID conditions “Long COVID”.
Vaccines create immunity without infection and the complications that go with it. Now instead of risking the long-term effects of the COVID-19 virus, people can have the benefits of developing an immunity without the risks. Although you can still contract the virus after receiving the vaccine, the symptoms are much less detrimental.
Some members of society cannot receive the vaccine such as newborns and immunocompromised people, which is why it is important to get the vaccine if you are able.
Although we do not know everything there is to know about the vaccines at this time (here is a link to what the CDC knows for sure), it is the best avenue we have at this time.
Herd Immunity Through Vaccination
When a majority of the population is fully vaccinated, the population will have reached the herd immunity threshold. That will mean COVID-19 will join diseases like measles. If most of the population cannot spread the disease, then the disease will become nullified.
Get Vaccinated Today
It is your choice whether or not you get vaccinated, but there are many benefits to it. Pasadena Health Center strongly recommends you get the vaccine if you can. That is the safest and quickest way to achieve herd immunity.
Contact us for more information on the vaccine.