What do you have in common with having a Covid-19 and wearing a fanny pack? Neither should affect whether you should receive the Covid-19 vaccine.
Some may claim that they are “immune to Covid-19 coronavirus” after recovering from an infection and therefore do not need Covid-19. However, the answer to such a statement should be “perhaps immunity,” a variation of Carly Rae Jepsen’s song. It is not clear what percentage of people who have had Covid-19 develop a sufficient immune response to protect them from subsequent infection. What level of immunity you can develop can depend on a variety of factors, such as how severe your first Covid-19 attack was.
It is also not clear how long such immunity can last. As I reported earlier for Forbes, cases of re-infection with the virus have already been confirmed. In other words, like a 2005 movie Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo after the 1999 film Deuce Bigalow: Male gigolo, the Covid-19 attack could be followed by a sequel, perhaps an even worse sequel. Some cases of re-infection were more severe than the initial infection. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “based on what we know from other related human coronaviruses, it appears that humans become susceptible to re-infection about 90 days after the onset of infection.” It’s not too long, as there are only nine Scaramuccis.
Thus, you cannot assume that you are immune to Covid-19 coronavirus after you have recovered from a severe infection with acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV2). It’s not like banking for a presidential pardon. You can’t just do something like social distance and expect your immune system to say no problem. You may not know if you have natural immunity or immunity gained from recovery from an infection, or how long it can last.
What, then, is different from the Covid-19 vaccine? Well, immunity against vaccines may not be the same as natural immunity. The two currently available Covid-19 vaccines from Pfizer / BioNTech and Moderna do not simply expose you to SARS-CoV2. Instead, as I previously described for Forbescontain mRNA that can serve as a blueprint for your cells to produce the spike protein that is on the surface of the Covid-19 coronavirus. Note that Covid-19 coronavirus looks like a pointed massage ball. Your body usually has nothing like these little thorns. So the spike protein that appears in your body can be like Kanye West fan appearing at a Taylor Swift fan party. Or cottage cheese in hot dogs. Then your immune system should say, “hey, this doesn’t belong here,” and generate a response to the protein protein. By exposing your immune system to a very specific component of the virus, your immune system can better focus on this component, instead of firing in random directions when it first encounters the virus in a natural infection. This could then potentially lead to a stronger and more lasting immune response than what can happen after a natural infection. Since the immune system is quite complex, more studies are needed to confirm this possibility.
Moreover, vaccination with any of the available vaccines involves two separate doses three or four weeks apart. The first dose is the starting dose. It should introduce your immune system to spike protein, basically saying, “now for something completely different.” The second dose is increased. He then exposes your immune system to spike protein again, reminding your immune system, “hey, remember this? Did you pay attention when you last said this? “Or similar to what Bruce Willis said in the movie Die hard, “Does it sound like I’m ordering a pizza? Will you do something about this? ”This extra dose plus the initial starting dose may eventually have stronger and more lasting protection against immunity from natural infection.
As seen in the publication in New England Journal of Medicine,, the initial results of a phase 3 clinical trial of Pfizer / BioNTech Covid-19 suggest that the vaccine may provide additional protection to those who have already had SARS-CoV2 infection prior to vaccination. The publication reported that “among 36,523 participants who had no evidence of existing or previous SARS-CoV-2 infection, 8 cases of Covid-19 were reported starting at least 7 days after the second dose in vaccine recipients and 162 in placebo recipients,” which is corresponded to 95.0% vaccine efficacy. Both “among participants and those without evidence of previous SARS CoV-2 infection, 9 cases of Covid-19 were observed at least 7 days after the second dose in vaccine recipients and 169 among placebo recipients,” corresponding to 94.6% vaccine efficacy. These statements may mean that one person who had evidence of previous SARS-CoV2 infection and received the vaccine eventually became infected again, while seven people who had evidence of previous SARS-CoV2 infection and who received placebo re-infected. If that were the case, that would be the difference, although the numbers may be too small to be firmly established.
At this point, no one knows for sure how long vaccines can protect you. The trials did not last long enough for such a decision to be made. More data and more studies are needed. Remember, the two vaccines received emergency use (EUA) approval, not full approval. This means that much remains to be learned about vaccines. However, if you are recovering from Covid-19 coronavirus infection for 90 days or more, the vaccine may prolong your immunity, assuming you have developed immunity to the infection.
Conclusion: Before you had Covid-19, in itself there should be no reason not to get the Covid-19 vaccine. This does not mean that you necessarily need to fight others to get the Covid-19 vaccine right away as if it were toilet paper. There are currently limited quantities of Covid-19 vaccine, and these are given to those such as front-line workers whose risk of catching and spreading Covid-19 coronavirus is highest and to those who are most at risk for poor Covid-19 outcomes. So pay attention to who is ready for the vaccine when. In addition, if you have any medical conditions such as allergies that may prevent you from getting Covid-19, talk to your doctor first.
Some argue that if there is only a limited number of vaccines, those who have not had Covid-19 before should get vaccines first. For example, let’s say only ten vaccines were available to a clinic of 17 people. Then maybe those who already had Covid-19 can wait. Well, the problem is that you can’t assume that those who have had Covid-19 before are necessarily immune. What if they still have antibodies present? This could provide more certainty that they have at least some natural protection. However, it is not entirely clear how well the presence of antibodies can translate into protection and how quickly antibodies can disappear. Moreover, other factors such as the risk of getting Covid-19 should be considered when administering the vaccine. Those at greatest risk for Covid-19 coronavirus infection (e.g., pulmonary critical care specialists who must intubate patients with Covid-19) may need additional protection, regardless of whether they have any innate immunity.
All this also does not mean that you should get the Covid-19 vaccine while you have a Covid-19 infection. A meat loaf can do anything out of love, but don’t do it. The vaccine will not necessarily help you fight an active infection. In addition, your immune system would be somewhat distracted, potentially too distracted to react to the vaccine. It could be like trying to get Jackie Chan’s attention while fighting twenty gangsters. Don’t give your immune system anything else to deal with. Moreover, entering the vaccination site while you are contagious with Covid-19 coronavirus is definitely not cool to do.