Vaccine Breakthroughs And Variants
CDC continues to actively monitor vaccine safety and effectiveness against new and emerging variants for all FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccines. Research shows that the FDA-authorized vaccines offer protection against severe disease, hospitalization, and death against currently circulating variants in the United States. However, some people who are fully vaccinated will get COVID-19.
The Delta variant is more contagious than previous variants of the virus that causes COVID-19. However, studies so far indicate that the vaccines used in the United States work well against the Delta variant, particularly in preventing severe disease and hospitalization.
Overall, if there are more COVID-19 infections there will be more vaccine breakthrough infections. However, the risk of infection, hospitalization, and death are all much lower in vaccinated compared to unvaccinated people. Therefore, everyone ages 5 years and older should get vaccinated to protect themselves and those around them, including family members who are not able to be vaccinated from severe disease and death.
About My Vaccine Record
My Vaccine Record is a document whichshows all the COVID-19 vaccinations you have had that are recorded on the Covid Immunisation Register . It includes details of your primary and booster doses.
It can be used:
- as evidence of your vaccinations if required by an employer, including under the New Zealand vaccine mandate
- alongside your International Travel Certificate.
My Vaccine Record cannot be used instead of a My Vaccine Pass or an International Travel Certificate if you are going overseas.
Get The Brand Available
The federal agencies also have approved the mix-and-match approach to getting a booster for people age 18 and older. This means:
- If Pfizer was your primary two-dose series, you can get a booster six months later of either Pfizer, Moderna or Johnson & Johnson.
- If Moderna was your primary two-dose series, you can get a booster six months later of either Moderna, Pfizer or Johnson & Johnson.
- If you received the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine, you can get a booster two months later of either Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer or Moderna.
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Phase I Covid Vaccinations
The NHS is targeting these nine priority groups in the initial phase of Covid jabs:
- Residents in a care home for older adults and their carers
- All those 80 years of age and over and frontline health and social care workers
- Everyone aged 75 years and over
- All those 70 years of age and over, plus clinically extremely vulnerable people
- Everyone 65 years of age and over
- All those aged 16 years to 64 years with underlying health conditions which put them at higher risk of serious disease and mortality
- Everyone aged 60 years and over
- All those 55 years of age and over
- All those 50 years of age and over
It has so far issued more than three million doses as part of a drive to vaccinate the four groups of most vulnerable people by the middle of February, and every adult by autumn.
More than 32million over-50s could be vaccinated by the end of March under new Government plans to ramp up the jab roll-out.
More than 800,000 medical staff and volunteers will work from 2,700 vaccination centres set up across the UK to deliver the vaccine.
If the ambitious timeline goes to plan, it means there will be two million jabs given out every week.
Thousands of Brits have signed up to be vaccination volunteers and help with the roll out through The Sun’s Jabs Army campaign.
Vaccine centres will be set up within ten miles of residents by the end of the month, the government has promised.
Brits will be able to get a Covid jab 24/7, Boris Johnson has vowed.
Breakthrough Cases And Delta: Background
Until recently, scientists were unsure whether fully vaccinated people who became infected with COVID-19 could transmit it to others. But the CDC report released in late July made it clear that some vaccinated people can get Delta in a breakthrough infectionand may be contagious.
The CDC added that breakthrough infections occur in only a small proportion of vaccinated people and of the breakthrough infections, transmission by the vaccinated appears to only be a small part of overall spread of the virus. But the CDC says it does not yet have data on the likelihood of asymptomatic spread among vaccinated people.
So, where does that leave us?
What we do know, says Dr. Meyer, is that there is less circulating virus in the community as a result of vaccination. When we look at vaccinations compared to cases on a population levelwe see that as the number of people vaccinated rises, the number of cases decreases, she says. This is likely due to the fact that people who are vaccinated are not becoming infected as often, but also that they are not forward-transmitting the virus as often.
But more research is needed. The CDC says that “studies are underway to understand the level and duration of transmissibility from Delta vaccine breakthrough infections.”
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My Side Effects Are Not Going Awaycould I Have Covid
In some cases, you might get your COVID-19 shot around the same time that you have been exposed to the virus. If this happens, you could develop symptoms of COVID-19in which case you would be capable of spreading it to others.
Some people by chance may become infected with coronavirus between their first and second dose before they are fully immune, DSouza said. It takes several days after infection for symptoms to develop, so they might get their second dose.
Common side effects of the vaccine, like fatigue, fever, or body aches, can also occur if you have a COVID-19 infection. The way to tell the difference is by the timing and severity of your symptoms. If you don’t start to feel better within a few days of getting your shot, or your side effects get worse, you should get tested for COVID-19.
If your symptoms last longer than 72 hours, it is worth making sure you dont actually have COVID-19, Juthani said. If you do, you didnt get it from the vaccine. You just happened to get it from someone else around the time you got your vaccine.
How Long Youll Be Protected For
We dont yet know how long youll be protected but will continue to review data as it becomes available.
Current evidence suggests that after two doses protection against severe disease, including hospital and ICU admission, remains high, including for the Delta variant, but that antibody levels decline over time.
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What If I Dont Have Any Side Effects
The common side effects of the vaccine are all signs that your body is building protection against the SARS-CoV-2 virus.
However, some people do not experience any symptoms after they get the shot. And this is OK.
If you don’t experience any side effects from the COVID-19 vaccine, it does not mean that your body is not responding. Everyone’s immune system works differently. And no one really knows why.
It is unclear why some people get side effects and some dont, Juthani said. From the vaccine studies, whether you got side effects or not, people were still protected. Count yourself as lucky if you dont get side effects.
What About Future Variants
So far, the preliminary data shows our current vaccines are effective at protecting against circulating variants.
But as the virus mutates, there is increasing chance of viral escape. This means there is a greater chance the virus will develop mutations that make it fitter against, or more easily able to evade, vaccinations.
To help the fight against COVID-19 the best thing we can do is minimise the spread of the virus. This means get vaccinated when you can, ensure you maintain social distancing when required and get tested if you have any symptoms.
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Are Side Effects From Covid Vaccine Contagious
COVID-19 vaccine side effects can feel like mild symptoms of an illness, but they do not mean that you’re sick. The signs and symptoms that you might experiencelike a fever and body achesare not contagious.
Side effect symptoms cannot be spread to others, Juthani said. The vaccine cannot give you the virus, so the symptoms you experience are a manifestation of your immune system building a response so that you can fight the virus in the future should you be exposed to it.
Amber DSouza, PhD, professor of epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, told Verywell that symptoms after vaccination do not represent infection. It’s not the same as being infected with the virus.
You cannot spread the side effects of the vaccine you may feel to other people. So if you’ve been worried that the side effects from a COVID vaccine are contagious, you can rest easy.
What Can I Expect When I Get The Vaccine
You might feel nervous about getting the vaccine, which is normal.
A fully trained vaccinator will give you the vaccine in your upper arm, and it will be over very fast. You will then need to stay for at least 15 minutes so we can make sure you do not have an immediate reaction.
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Voluntary Reporting By State Health Departments
When the United States began widespread COVID-19 vaccination, CDC put in place a system where state health departments could report COVID-19 vaccine breakthrough infections to CDC.
On May 1, 2021, after collecting data on thousands of vaccine breakthrough infections, CDC changed the focus of how it uses data from this reporting system.
- One of the strengths of this system is collecting data on severe cases of vaccine breakthrough COVID-19 since it is likely that most of these types of vaccine breakthrough cases seek medical care and are diagnosed and reported as a COVID-19 case.
- Persons with asymptomatic or mild cases of vaccine breakthrough infections may not seek testing or medical care and thus these types of vaccine breakthrough cases may be underrepresented in this system. For this reason, CDC relies on a variety of additional surveillance approaches to ensure that it is collecting information on all types of vaccine breakthrough cases.
What Can You Do To Stay Safe
In light of the rapid rise in COVID-19 cases, largely driven by the Delta variant, in late July, the CDC updated its COVID-19 prevention guidance. The CDC is now recommending that everyone, including the fully vaccinated, wear a mask in indoor public spaces in areas where COVID-19 transmission is substantial or high.
The new recommendations emphasize that certain populations should continue masking, for instance those who have or live with someone who has a suppressed immune system or an underlying medical condition that puts them at risk for severe disease.
The agency has also urged universal masking for teachers, staff, students, and visitors in K-12 schools, regardless of their vaccination status and the intensity of community transmission in their area.
Another substantial change to the CDC guidelines is the recommendation that fully vaccinated people who have been exposed to someone who has COVID-19 get tested. These people should also wear a mask when indoors in public areas for two weeks after exposure or until test results are negative.
Importantly, says Dr. Meyer, theyre not recommending quarantine after exposure if youre fully vaccinatedjust to wear a mask and get tested. And thats because we think post-vaccination infections are so rare.
But if fully vaccinated people test positive for COVID-19, the CDC recommends they isolate for 10 days.
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Its Still Good To Be Cautious
While this is encouraging news, Dr. Cardona stresses that fully vaccinated people still need to be careful as everything opens up again.
Virus transmission may still occur from those who are infected and asymptomatic, or ill without knowing it, especially in crowded areas with a lack of physical distancing, respiratory precautions and hand washing. Other factors to consider are ongoing community transmission and immunization rates.
If you havent been vaccinated or havent completed the vaccination series, she recommends doing so. And if you have a unique circumstance that delays your ability to complete your series of shots as scheduled, still get the second dose. Dr. Cardona says restarting the series isnt necessary.
The CDC also recommends that fully vaccinated people wear masks indoors in public for maximum protection from the delta variant and to lessen the risks of transmission. You should also wear a mask if you have a weakened immune system, an underlying medical condition or are at high risk for severe disease.
Merck Says Its Antiviral Pill Reduces Covid
It’s likely that people who have been vaccinated clear the infectious virus from the body faster. A previous study from Singapore had found that although levels of the virus were initially the same in those infected with the delta variant regardless of vaccine status, by day seven, levels of the virus dropped quickly in those who were vaccinated, which may reduce the ability to spread illness.
There is emerging evidence that even though cycle threshold values may be the same regardless of vaccination status, people who are vaccinated may have less infectious virus in their bodies, potentially reducing transmission. Richterman pointed to a recent pre-print from China that found a large reduction in transmission in those who had received two doses of vaccine, compared to the unvaccinated.
Vaccines have the ability to prevent transmission of the virus in two ways, he said. The first is by preventing infection altogether. The other is by reducing the amount of infectious virus should somebody get sick.
People who have been vaccinated will have immune systems at the ready that can coat the virus in antibodies much more quickly than unvaccinated people who have to build up an immune response, Richterman said.
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When Can Children Get The Vaccine
While children are less likely to develop severe disease and die from Covid-19, there are several reasons for ensuring that eventually there is a vaccine that is safe and effective for children. Although rare, some children may develop severe disease or die from Covid-19. Children have also developed a severe inflammatory syndrome, called multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children. Children may be important transmitters of SARS-CoV-2 and vaccinating them with a vaccine that reduces transmission could be important in controlling the pandemic. Finally, having a safe vaccine for children will build confidence towards opening up schools and learning centers for in-person educational processes.
Both the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines are being studied in children as young as 12 years of age. These studies typically involve several thousand children, and not the tens of thousands studied in phase 3 trials in adults. Assuming the vaccines are safe and effective, the vaccines will be studied in younger and younger children. Studies of the Moderna vaccine in children 1 to 11 years of age may start soon.
Clean And Disinfect Surfaces And Objects
How long the COVID-19 virus survives on surfaces and objects is unknown. Research shows that the virus may live on surfaces and objects for a few hours or up to several days depending on:
- the type of surface or object
- environmental factors such as humidity and temperature
It’s also not certain to what extent contaminated surfaces or objects play a role in the spread of COVID-19.
Surfaces and objects that you or others frequently touch are most likely to become contaminated. Cleaning and disinfecting them can deactivate the virus, making it no longer infectious.
Health Canada has published a list of hard surface disinfectants that are likely to be effective for use against COVID-19. Use special precautions when cleaning with bleach to avoid serious incidents.
Paper mail or cardboard packages may be contaminated, but the risk of the virus spreading this way is very low. You don’t need to clean and disinfect mail or packages. However, after handling mail, it is a good practice to avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth until you can clean your hands.
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Latest Coronavirus News As Of 1pm 8 April
Omicrons symptom duration is shorter than deltas among people who have had a booster vaccine
Cristina Menni at Kings College London and her colleagues analysed more than 63,000 people who tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 virus between June 2021 and January 2022. The participants, who had all received at least two doses of any covid-19 vaccine, self-reported their positive test result and symptoms via the Zoe COVID app.
From June to November 2021, when delta was the dominant variant in the UK, covid-19 symptoms lasted on average 7.7 days among the participants who were triple jabbed. This is compared with an average 4.4-day symptom duration when omicron was dominant, defined as the end of December 2021 to mid-January 2022, when the study completed.
Omicron has long been known to be less virulent than past covid-19 variants. Its mild symptoms may also differ from deltas.
Fewer than one in five of the participants who caught covid-19 when omicron was dominant reported a loss of smell, compared with over half of those who probably had delta.
Those who probably caught omicron were more likely to report a sore throat and hoarse voice than those with delta, however, the latter variant was more strongly linked to brain fog, headache and fever.
It is a lesson that we need to be far more flexible in thinking what the virus is and how it is going to present than we have been, certainly in the UK, Tim Spector at Kings College London told The Guardian.
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