ith Covid-19 vaccine getting close to approval for public use in India, Doctors Association Kashmir (DAK) on Tuesday said people who have recovered from Covid-19 infection should also get vaccinated.
“If you already had the virus and recovered, you still need to get vaccinated with a Covid-19 vaccine,” said DAK President and influenza expert Dr Nisar ul Hassan.
“Those who recover from Covid-19 infection are getting infected with the virus again,” he said.
DAK president said we were under the impression that if a person gets infected with the virus, he/she will develop antibodies and will not get the disease again.
“But many people who recover from Covid-19 do not develop antibodies,” he said adding “even those who mount adequate antibody response, their antibodies fade over time and they become susceptible again.”
“What the virus is doing is in some way compromising aspects of our immune response leaving people vulnerable to repeat infections,” said Dr Nisar
“Vaccine will get around this.”
He said there is evidence that vaccine induced immunity may be much stronger and lasts much longer than immunity built by contracting the virus,”
“That means even if you have recovered from the virus, you should get the vaccine.”
Dr Nisar said vaccine would protect you from getting Covid-19 infection and prevent you from getting seriously ill even if you do get the virus.
Getting vaccinated may also protect people around you, particularly people at increased risk for severe illness from Covid-19.
If enough people are vaccinated, we may even end the year-long pandemic.
He said Covid-19 vaccine is a two-dose schedule with the second dose to be given 21 days after the first dose. The maximum effectiveness of the vaccine was observed 7 days after the second dose. That means full protection is achieved 28 days after the initiation of the vaccine.
“While Vaccine is needed for all, it is not recommended for pregnant women and children under 16 years of age. The vaccine hasn’t been tested on expecting mothers and kids. But trials in these age groups are ongoing or planned,” said Dr Nisar.