With yet another part of the big COVID-19 saga, Omicron has been taking over our lives since December 2021. Omicron, which was first discovered in South Africa, has become a dominant strain of coronavirus in several regions of the world. The number of COVID-19 cases has risen dramatically in recent weeks, which is concerning health officials.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) leader, the Omicron and Delta viruses that fueled the second COVID-19 wave in India might combine to generate a “tsunami” of coronavirus infections, putting “immense pressure on exhausted health workers and health systems.”
As per the data provided on Saturday by the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, in India, 3,071 cases of Omicron variant have been recorded across 27 states and union territories so far, with 1,203 having recovered or migrated.
A Source of Natural Immunity
Is it true that having a moderate but broad illness gives you more access to natural immunity? If you’ve already been infected with the SARs-COV-2 virus, you’ll very probably have gained some amount of immunity against the lethal infection, often referred to as ‘natural immunity.’
Given that the Omicron variety has a highly evolving nature and that the majority of symptoms have been found to be minor, some virologists believe it might lead to universal immunity. This suggests that the Omicron version might operate as a ‘natural vaccination.’
In an interview with Mail Online, Professor Ian Jones, a virologist at the University of Reading, backed the possibility of Omicron becoming nature’s own vaccine. This new strain, according to the virologist, can improve immunity without causing major sickness.
He believes that, like the flu or a typical cold, Omicron poses little harm to healthy and fit people. According to Jones, “contracting the Omicron might enhance immunity without triggering a major sickness.”
“A Dangerous Idea”
On the other hand, other specialists have rejected the possibility of Omicron becoming a natural vaccine. Shahid Jameel, a well-known virologist, stepped to the forefront and called it “A Dangerous Idea.”
He said that the notion of Omicron being a ‘natural vaccine’ is ‘rooted more in pandemic fatigue and the inability to do more, than in evidence available at this time.’ In light of India’s malnutrition, air pollution, and diabetes, Jameel stated in an interview with PTI that voluntarily exposing people to a virus about which little is known is not good science.
Which Is Better, Natural Immunity Or COVID-19 Vaccine?
While scientific data suggests that natural immunity can last 6 months to a year, it is thought to be at its height about 90 days following infection and then begins to decline. In comparison, immunity obtained with COVID vaccinations is thought to be more long-lasting.
Experts have warned about reduced vaccination immunity in light of the new COVID-19 variant Omicron. The new variant is reported to have an immunological escape mechanism that allows it to avoid vaccine-induced immunity. Furthermore, suggesting that people can still get infections and become unwell.
We still don’t know what are the consequences of the new Omicron variant, so according to me, I don’t agree that Omicron should be considered as a natural vaccine. What do you think? Will Omicron lead to an Endemic? Do let us know in the comment section below.
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