The coronavirus pandemic has wreaked havoc in the whole world since it first emerged in China in 2019. Therefore it was named Covid-19, which is abbreviated as Coronavirus Disease 2019. The virus has caused historic damage to the whole world. This is a first kind of epidemiological outbreak which has spread on all inhabited continents across the world.
We have to keep ourselves protected and safe from the viral particles. The only effective way to do this is through the proper use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). They include face masks, gloves, protective coveralls, surgical gowns etc. With the spread of covid-19 the demand for ppes has seen a huge increase and the protective coveralls manufacturers industry has boomed.
What Does Herd Immunity Have to Do With the Pandemic
The only solution to an epidemic is herd immunity. Many previous diseases have been wiped out due to herd immunity. A vaccine is the best tool throughwhich herd immunity can be achieved. A vaccine trains the immune system of the body to fight against different types of pathogens. Let us dive into the details about the immune system and herd immunity.
Herd immunity has to do with the immune response of the human body to the virus. When any type of pathogen enters the body, it produces special types of proteins and cells which attack and kill the invader. The antibodies are of several types. One type of antibodies are released by the innate immune response and the other by the adaptive immune system.
Immune System and Its Types
The innate immune system is a general type of immune system. This immune system releases general types of antibodies that attack the invading pathogen. Our bodies have a type of immune system that is a part of the adaptive immune system. This is called the lymph system and it is responsible to keep memory of the types of pathogens that the body has fought before.
How Does a Vaccine Work
This is where the role of vaccines comes in. Vaccines contain a small portion of the virus which has been killed or weakened. A Vaccine introduces this weakened form of virus into our bodies. The quantity of the virus present is insufficient to make us sick and the virus is already treated to make it incapable of replication.
This triggers an immune response from our bodies and the immune system kills the virus or any other type of pathogen that has been introduced through the vaccine. Now, the lymph system is a gift from our Creator, which remembers the type of pathogen, and also the way to destroy it, if that same pathogen ever enters the body again.
When is Herd Immunity Achieved
Now let us talk about herd immunity. When a person has their immune system trained to attack the pathogen, they have almost no chance to get sick by that pathogen again. When a sufficient percentage of the population has their immune systems trained accordingly, the chances of the pathogen to spread is significantly reduced.
This percentage has been recommended by the WHO to be 70% of the total population in a specific country or region. It means that when 70% or more of the total population has the necessary immunity against the virus, the chances of it spreading and infecting new people are low enough to lift any restrictions.
What Are the Variants and What Risk Do They Pose
All the viruses in nature are capable of mutations. This gives rise to different types of variants. Viruses have a natural tendency to mutate and become different. Most of these differences are of no worry. The variations in coronavirus have been observed since the beginning of the pandemic. Most of them pose no new threats, but some variations are more contagious and a few may even prove to be more dangerous.
Till date many variants have been found in different countries like UK, South Africa, Brazil, India, and now Vietnam. All of them are far more contagious than the original coronavirus. The alarming fact is that most of them have been discovered in other countries as well. The major concern is that some of these variants seem to be able to bypass the immunity created by vaccines.
A recent news from the French Nobel Laureate Luc Montagnier has been the internet and news sensation from the past week. The virologist claims that the vaccines are the cause of the development of new variants. So let us explore whether there is enough evidence to support his claim or not and whether we must get vaccinated or not.
Does the Vaccine Actually Cause Variants
The knowledge and data that is available till date is not supportive of Montagnier’s claims. His claims are based on the fact that there are similarities in the coronavirus and many other viruses that have never been seen before. He cited all these claims in his paper which he wrote last year.
His claims about variants have been unanimously rejected by public health officials and scientists around the world. He based his claims on the phenomenon of Antibody Dependent Enhancement, which is actually a real thing. But there is almost no evidence to support the fact that it happens in humans due to covid vaccine.
Should We Get the Vaccine
Vaccine developers reported this Antibody Dependent Enhancement (ADE) in initial studies with animals, but since then there have been no reports of ADE in human trials. Experts from all around the world have shown data from countries which are near to full vaccinations of their populations, that the vaccine has caused a significant decrease in the number of cases and the number of deaths.
This backs the fact that variations are caused by mutations and not vaccine. On the other hand there is data to support the effectiveness of vaccination.
The data shows that vaccinated people are far less likely to die even if they contract covid again. So getting the vaccine as soon as it is available to you is the sensible thing to do.