Why do they say Covid-19 could become seasonal | India News

Why do they say Covid-19 could become seasonal | India News
NEW DELHI: It may very well feel like this pandemic is endless, its trail of destruction limitless. But all pandemics do come to an end, and this one will too. The end, however, would not be an elimination of the coronavirus, or even a scenario where we have reached herd immunity to practically halt the transmission. Scientists say Covid-19 could become seasonal. That is to say, the coronavirus will become endemic.
“Almost everybody has some form of immunity from natural infection and/or vaccination and/or one followed by the other, and that that will persist long enough so that they don’t get really sick when they get it again. And then we transition to endemicity,” Marc Lipsitch, an infectious diseases epidemiologist at Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health, tells Stat.
Previous pandemics show this is likely. The 1918 flu pandemic, the 1952 H2N2 pandemic, the 1968 H3N2 pandemic and the 2009 H1N1 pandemic all resulted in the pathogen becoming endemic.
These pandemics ended without a large-scale rollout of vaccines around the world. Neither did humans develop herd immunity to them. The viruses, instead, became endemic.
Our immune systems learned enough about them to fend off the deadliest manifestations of infection, at least most of the time, explains Stat. Instead of causing tsunamis of devastating illness, over time the viruses came to trigger small surges of milder illness.
Now, scientists say the pattern could hold true for Sars-Cov2, too. Jennie Lavine, a biology research fellow at Emory University who authored a modeling paper published in Science that envisioned how Covid-19 could become endemic, our trained immune system — through exposure to infection or through vaccination or both — will likely turn future Covid-19 infections into the equivalent of a cold.
Does that mean vaccinations are less significant? No. Quite the opposite.
Scientists say the impact of these seasonal bouts of Covid-19 would be unequal in countries. Countries that have high vaccination rate may be better off, while the less-privileged population could be impacted more severely.
Mind you, this is no definite science. The pandemics of the past were caused by influenza viruses. Covid-19 is caused by a coronavirus.
Will that drastically change the scenario? These scientists opine it will not.

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