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Achieving Herd Immunity is Not a Possibility Says Head of Oxford Vaccine

The leading epidemiologist said that achieving Herd Immunity with Covid vaccines when the highly infectious delta variant is spreading is “not a possibility”. Many experts agree on several reasons why such a goal, where overall immunity in a population is reached and the spread of the virus is stopped, is not likely.

Sir Andrew Pollard, head of the Oxford Vaccine Group, told lawmakers on Tuesday that as Covid vaccines did not halt the spread of the virus entirely and the vaccinated people were still able to be infected and transmit the virus. So, the idea of achieving Herd Immunity was mythical.

Pollard, one of the lead researchers in the creation of the AstraZeneca-University of Oxford vaccine said that due to the spread of the delta variant achieving Herd Immunity is not a possibility because it still infects vaccinated individuals.He also added that it doesn’t mean that anyone who’s still unvaccinated, at some point, will be affected by the virus. That might not be this month or even a year but at some point, they will meet the virus and we don’t have anything that will stop that transmission.

Herd Immunity relates to the idea that a high level of immunity to a virus in a population can be achieved by both natural infection and by vaccination. The latter method is preferred as vaccines create immunity without causing illness or adverse health complications, unlike the natural infection route.The antibodies obtained by natural infection and vaccination usually protect against future infection. If many people in a population are immune this leads to lower rates of prevalence of disease or viruses in a community.

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