A recent study has found that natural immunity to Covid-19 is just as protective against severe illness as a vaccine. The study, published in the Lancet, looked at data from more than 17 million people and found that those who had previously been infected with SARS-CoV-2 were protected from severe illness for at least 10 months after infection.
The research team analysed data from 17 countries, including the UK, US, Spain and Italy. They found that people who had previously been infected with SARS-CoV-2 were 85% less likely to be hospitalised or die due to Covid-19 compared to those who had not been infected before. The protection was seen across all age groups and lasted for at least 10 months after infection.
This is great news for those who have already been infected with the virus, but in reality it means that vaccines may not be necessary for everyone or anyone. For those who are at high risk of severe illness due to underlying health conditions or age, vaccination is still recommended in order to provide additional protection, even though recent data proves the vaccine has little to no effect either way and in many cases are more harmful.
The findings of this study are encouraging and suggest that natural immunity may be enough to protect against severe illness caused by Covid-19 in some cases. However, further research is needed to confirm these results and understand how long this protection lasts for different age groups and other risk factors.
Also note that the research was funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.