By Dr. Kyle Smart, DO,
Chief Medical Officer
As the number of COVID-19 cases continues to skyrocket around the country and the world, scientists are working tirelessly to develop and test a vaccine to combat this virus.
Although news surrounding COVID-19 changes on a daily basis, one report that remains fairly consistent is that scientists who are closely studying the virus’ genetic code are noticing it’s not significantly mutating as it spreads through the human population.
What does this mean?
It appears that those who get infected with COVID-19 and recover will have lifetime immunity to this Coronavirus variant.
This is also good news for researchers and scientists who are working to create a long-lasting vaccine and great news for the population to take appropriate measures to protect themselves and those around them.
The Future of Vaccines
I’ve talked about the importance of vaccines in a previous blog post and the goal of that article was to bring to light the importance of vaccinations by addressing some of the common concerns associated with modern-day diseases.
I believe the current health crisis is something we’ll look back on and write about just like I did for the vaccine developments for diseases such as Diphtheria, Measles, Polio, and Smallpox.
But until then, as the vaccine topic is becoming more and more prevalent in the conversations surrounding COVID-19, I thought this would be a good time to discuss the importance of vaccines and herd immunity moving forward.
The Importance of Vaccinations
Now more than ever, as we fight to protect the population from this virus, we’ll need to understand that vaccines aren’t the enemy.
Vaccines are the shield that will protect us and future generations from the adverse effects of these viruses. Here’s how:
Vaccines prime your body’s innate immune system, protecting you against several otherwise debilitating and deadly diseases.
By getting vaccinated, you are not only protecting yourself, but others who may not be able to receive vaccines, such as those with allergies, or infants, or pregnant mothers. The term for this is herd immunity which is characterized as indirect protection from infectious diseases. If a large portion of the population is deemed immune to an infection, in this case, COVID-19, they are in turn providing a level of protection to people who aren’t immune and susceptible to the disease.
Although the history of vaccines has been wrought with trial and error, the prevention of disease has far outweighed the risks of vaccines. This certainly applies to our place in history, where we stand on this foundation and continue to make vaccines safer for humankind.
If you want to stay up-to-date with the latest information surrounding this health crisis and our efforts at CVMG, be sure to check out our COVID-19 Update page as our physicians continue to answer the many questions and address the growing concerns surrounding this virus.