COVID-19: What Is ‘Herd Immunity’ And Why Is It Important That We Achieve It?

covid-19: what is ‘herd immunity’ and why is it important that we achieve it?

As we continue our fight against COVID-19, health officials across the world continue to look for the best possible way to contain the spread of the virus, because following SOPs can only suppress it so far.

Now, you may have heard the term “herd immunity” being used in relation to the outbreak, and how it’s important that we achieve it.

Here’s everything you need to know…

According to Healthline, herd immunity happens when so many people in a community become immune to an infectious disease that it stops the disease from spreading.

If enough people are resistant to the cause of a disease, such as a virus or bacteria, it has nowhere to go.

This can happen in two ways:

  1. Many people contract the disease and in time build up an immune response to it (natural immunity).
  2. Many people are vaccinated against the disease to achieve immunity.

covid-19: what is ‘herd immunity’ and why is it important that we achieve it?

For some diseases, herd immunity can go into effect when 40% of the people in a population become immune to the disease, such as through vaccination, but in most cases, 80-95% of the population must be immune to the disease to stop it from spreading.

With regards to COVID-19 in Malaysia, 50-80% of the population will need to be vaccinated.

Till then, the Health Ministry (MOH) stresses that it’s crucial that we continue to follow COVID-19 SOPs.

Social distancing and frequent handwashing are currently the only ways to help prevent you and those around you from contracting and potentially spreading the virus.

Meanwhile, you can find out everything you need to know about Malaysia’s national COVID-19 vaccination program here.

Stay safe, everyone!

 

by Kyle Roshen Jacob

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