The coronavirus has taken the world by storm. But what steps can we take to try and stem its spread?
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Aside from public health measures like mask wearing, washing your hands and social distancing, by now it’s crystal clear that a vaccine is going to be pivotal in really slowing down this pandemic juggernaut and achieving the ultimate goal of ‘herd immunity’. Which is why researchers from all over the globe have been fast-tracking COVID-19 vaccine development at an unprecedented rate.
But while it’s truly incredible that we’ll have an effective new vaccine in record time, the reality is it’s really just the first step toward achieving herd immunity. The reality is, there are other obstacles we have to overcome and right now one of the biggest public health problems that stands in the way of finally stopping the pandemic… is skepticism.
And skepticism isn’t the only obstacle we have to overcome once we have a vaccine in order to stop the pandemic. After you’ve proven to the population that a vaccine is safe to take, there are still a number of practical hurdles, like distribution and accessibility, that need to be figured out. That’s not to mention that achieving full immunity from COVID-19, might not be just as simple as getting a single shot.
Experts have already said that any vaccine that gets approved for public use will most likely need to be administered in two doses at separate times to ensure full immunity. While all this seems like an uphill battle, the good news is that we’ve tried — and succeeded — in doing this before.
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U.S. Public Now Divided Over Whether To Get COVID-19 Vaccine
"As efforts to develop and test a COVID-19 vaccine spur debate around the timing and release of a federally approved vaccine, the share of Americans who say they would get vaccinated for the coronavirus has declined sharply since earlier this year."
What if ‘Herd Immunity’ Is Closer Than Scientists Thought?
"In what may be the world’s most important math puzzle, researchers are trying to figure out how many people in a community must be immune before the coronavirus fades."
‘A huge experiment’: How the world made so much progress on a Covid-19 vaccine so fast
"Never before have prospective vaccines for a pathogen entered final-stage clinical trials as rapidly as candidates for Covid-19."
SICK is a new series that looks at how diseases actually work inside our body. We’ll be visiting medical centers and talking to top researchers and doctors to uncover the mysteries of viruses, bacteria, fungi and our own immune system.
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