COVID-19 vaccines offer consistent protection against the virus. The CDC states that natural infection plus vaccine is better than infection alone.
COVID-19 vaccines offer consistent protection against the virus. The CDC states that natural infection plus vaccine is better than infection alone.Almost 40 bn people have been vaccinated against COVID-19 worldwide. However, the effectiveness of "natural" immunity triggered by previously contracting COVID-19, in comparison to the protection offered by COVID-19 vaccines, is still a common talking point. Some say that natural immunity is always better than immunity afforded by vaccines. However, a recent study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that COVID-19 mRNA vaccines are almost five times more effective at preventing hospitalization than natural infection. The study included data between January and September 2021 from 187 hospitals across nine U.S. states. Participants who were 18 years and older were either fully vaccinated or had a previous COVID-19 infection. In addition, all participants received the vaccination or got infected atleast 3 to 6 months before hospital admission. Around 200,000 patients were hospitalized for COVID-19 between January and September 2021. Researchers found that in hospitalized patients, the odds of COVID-19 were "higher among previously infected unvaccinated patients than among fully vaccinated patients." The report concluded that "vaccine-induced immunity was more protective than infection-induced immunity" against COVID-19 in hospitalized patients who got COVID-19 or the vaccine three to six months before hospitalization. While speaking to Medical News Today, Dr. William Schaffner, an Infectious Diseases professor at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville, confirmed that "natural infection plus vaccination is better than natural infection alone." Furthermore, everyone's immune responses vary, so relying on "natural" immunity alone is not a safe approach. COVID-19 vaccines have been rigorously tested and researched and are proven to be extremely effective in preventing serious illness. The authors of the study acknowledged a need for further research. However, at this time, it would be misleading to say that natural infection provides stronger immunity than vaccine-induced infection.