Coronavirus vaccination drive in India: With over 1 crore people having been infected with COVID-19, a prominent question that comes up is whether a previously infected person also needs to be vaccinated.
While not much is known about coronavirus re-infection, several cases have cropped up in Europe.
Coronavirus vaccine query: As India is inching closer towards approving coronavirus vaccines and putting into action the immunisation plan, several questions are cropping up in the minds of the people. With over 1 crore people having been infected with COVID-19, a prominent question that comes up is whether a previously infected person also needs to be vaccinated. This is especially a question because of heightened talks previously about herd immunity in several countries. The entire concept of herd immunity is based on the assumption that a person once infected by coronavirus would not be infected again due to the antibodies, and eventually, this number will become sufficiently large to protect the vulnerable population.
Apart from that, the multiple serosurveys being carried out across the country check participants for antibodies to determine whether they have been exposed to the virus. Since the vaccines also work to trigger the immune system to build these antibodies itself, it is only natural that several people would be confused whether a previously infected person needs to be vaccinated or not.
Well, here is what the Government of India has said.
Coronavirus pandemic: Previously infected person and vaccination
In a recently released FAQs regarding the vaccination drive, the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare included a question on whether a COVID-19 recovered patient needed to get vaccinated?
As a response to this question, the ministry stated that irrespective of the history of COVID-19 infection, it was advisable for everyone to complete the vaccination schedule of COVID-19.
The ministry said that it would help in building a strong immunity against the coronavirus-induced infection. This is important because several people exposed to the novel coronavirus are not able to generate sufficient antibodies to effectively fight the infection. Moreover, it has been found that the antibodies generated in a person infected by COVID-19 start to decrease after two to three months. This might leave them vulnerable to a re-infection. While not much is known about coronavirus re-infection, several cases have cropped up in Europe. This makes it important to get vaccinated against the virus even if an infection has previously occurred.