After COVID vaccination, why precautions wise.

Because (at 28/Apr/21) there is no current vaccine that provides really strong protection against the more dangerous variants, it is advisable to still take precautions if you are in a country where COVID is circulating in the community.  The dangerous South African variant and Brazilian P.1 variant are now circulating on a number of continents - including Europe and USA.   This warning is particularly relevant if you have only received the AstraZeneca vaccine.

Articles of interest:

  • "Coronavirus Variants Don’t Have to Be Scary. Still, Mask Up." 13/Apr/21

    • https://www.nytimes.com/2021/04/13/opinion/coronavirus-variants-not-all-scary.html

      • Of the 136 million confirmed Covid-19 cases in the world to date, one million individuals have had their virus sequenced. And of those one million sequences, scientists have been concerned about only a handful of variants, because they are more infectious, cause more severe illness or partly evade our immune response or all of the above.

      • Five variants have now been proved guilty, as shown by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s designation “variants of concern.” They are B.1.1.7 (first identified in Britain), B.1.351 (first found in South Africa), P.1 (identified in Brazil) and two more recent variants found in California and New York.

      • The vaccines being administered in the United States were developed before some variants emerged. But so far, they appear to be effective in fighting those viruses. The Moderna and Pfizer vaccines, which use a technology called mRNA, have been shown in laboratory studies to be effective against each of the major variants. Even when the variants make the vaccines less effective, the mRNA coronavirus vaccines in use right now are so good that a reduction would not likely affect the efficacy rate in a meaningful way.

      • The limited amount of evidence available for the Johnson & Johnson, AstraZeneca and Novavax vaccines suggests that they remain mostly effective at tackling the variants. So far, the B.1.351 variant appears to be the most able to evade the vaccines, but studies indicate the shots still succeed at preventing significant illness.

      • Reports from Israel, which has vaccinated its population more quickly than any other country, have shown that the mRNA vaccines’ efficacy was not diminished by the three most common variants of concern.

      • The major variants pose a challenge, but the extraordinary efficacy of our vaccines will ultimately override them. That’s in part because vaccines induce a far broader and powerful immune response than humans do in response to coronavirus infections. But it’s critical that we contain the virus so it’s unable to evolve further and theoretically dodge our vaccines.

      • Vaccines are a vital tool, but masks and distancing work well against the variants. Combining these mitigation strategies with vaccination is the fastest way for us to emerge from the pandemic.

  • US CDC Mask wearing Guidelines for fully vaccinated people

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