As Australia continues its urgent vaccination efforts across the country, many are now looking to the future. With the allure of travel on the horizon and a return to normality as we once knew it drawing ever closer, health officials and scientists are already considering the next step: a step that includes injections of vaccine booster and touch-ups.
As stated in The Atlantic, the current pandemic has drawn comparisons to measles, a virus that is much more infectious than SARS-CoV-2 and kills many vaccinated children that it infects. But as experts claim, measles vaccinations prevent many from contracting the virus and for those who contract a case of “modified” measles from a rare post-vaccination illness, the symptoms are incredibly mild. It is for this reason that scientists view measles as a kind of roadmap for Covid-19, or at least the pandemic as we know it now – where lockdown laws greatly affect large populations, seeing them fall apart. taking refuge in their homes for months, only to return to the outside world and find out that Covid-19 didn’t go anywhere, but was just waiting behind our doors.
As Covid-19 becomes endemic we will soon have to live with it but currently we are far from being able to officially label post-vaccination Covid-19 cases as “modified” and some claim they might never be like this . who are immune to the vaccine and contract the virus still get dangerously ill. But for the majority, vaccination not only saves lives, but also makes contracting the virus itself much more tolerable. Breakthrough infections are shorter, milder, and less contagious. As Lindsey Baden, infectious disease physician and Covid-19 vaccine researcher at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, said. Atlantic, “It’s a very different type of infection than immunologically naive people. “
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But if Covid does in fact become a staple, we could all find ourselves stricken with Covid-19 at some point in the future. Scientists claim that thanks to vaccinations, the Covid-19 that we might know will be much more tamed than the pre-inoculation. Inoculated bodies are more difficult to infect with the virus, and in those that SARS-CoV-2 still manages to infect, the virus appears to be purged much faster, with less time to cause symptoms – especially bad ones – and fewer opportunities to infect others.
A recent study from the UK saw researchers study nearly 4.5 million people through a mobile phone app. They asked if they had tested positive for the virus and if they had any of the two dozen symptoms. Of those analyzed, around 1 million had received at least one dose of the vaccine. Among those who were fully immune, almost all symptoms were rarer, with most cases being completely asymptomatic. Even the Covid rate appeared to be drastically reduced by vaccinations.
As Katherine J. Wu writes for The Atlantic, “Most people will eventually get Covid-19 in their lifetime. In most cases, it won’t be that bad. Eventually, silent or mild infections will feel less catastrophic, as many of us will be confident that they are unlikely to progress. Outbreaks can be smaller and spread more slowly, and breakthroughs will no longer make the headlines. Positive test results, in the absence of symptoms, could usually be ignored and infection will no longer be synonymous with illness. Our bodies will come to see the virus as familiar – not necessarily a welcome guest, but not quite the intruder it was before. “