02
Vaccine and infection

How much immunization will be needed to reach herd immunity?

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20/6/2021
  • In short: we do not know. To know this, we would need to know how effective the vaccines are, and how they change the disease severity and transmissibility.
  • Also, we should not rely on a single number. An overall high rate of vaccine coverage does not imply that we are all safe. We have seen examples of clusters of measles in subpopulations, even when the overall population had high rates of vaccine coverage.
  • COVID-19 vaccines will significantly improve the toolkit we have to fight this disease - but not replace it. The potential impact of vaccines to help us end this pandemic will take time and can only be realized if the vast majority of people join the effort and are vaccinated.
  • If we let our guard down too soon by not continuing to wash hands our hands frequently, avoid crowded places and wear a mask where recommended, for example, the arrival of vaccines could open the door for wider community spread of the virus. Until we are all protected through vaccination, we will need to continue using all the other tools at our disposal to protect ourselves and communities from this deadly virus.
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