Efficient Distribution Of Vaccinations
A method for efficient vaccination approach, via vaccinating a small fraction population called acquaintance immunization has been developed by Cohen et al. An alternative method based on identifying and vaccinating mainly spreaders has been developed by Liu et al. These are both based on the idea that people with a strong social network are at risk for accidentally infecting the many people they come into contact with and will have other highly connected people among their contacts.
What Happens In An Immune Response
There are different steps in the immune response:
- When a germ invades, your body sees it as foreign
- Your immune system helps your body fight off the germ
- Your immune system also remembers the germ. It will attack the germ if it ever invades again. This “memory” protects you against the disease that the germ causes. This type of protection is called immunity.
What Are Vaccinations & Immunizations
The World Health Organization is a global medical institution that helps standardize many terms and offer medical recommendations. They define the words Vaccination and Immunization as:
A vaccination uses an administered substance to stimulate the bodys own immune system to help protect the individual against subsequent infections or related diseases. The substance often contains part of the pathogen, such as a cell membrane protein or DNA. The process of immunization makes the individual immune or resistant to an infectious disease by the administration of a vaccine or exposure to an illness. This means the person becomes immune to a disease when the body is exposed to a specific pathogen, and the immune system produces key antibodies to fight it. Immunization describes the actual immunological changes that the human body typically undergoes after coming in contact with a foreign substance. Therefore, the process of becoming immune can come via a scheduled vaccination or by exposure to a natural infection.
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Who Should Be Vaccinated
Children – MMRV can be given to children who are 18 months old who have been vaccinated with the MMR vaccine at 12 months. The vaccinations are free for all children in this age group as part of the National Immunisation Program Schedule.
Adults – all adolescents and adults who have not been vaccinated against measles, mumps or rubella, or who have not received two doses of a measles-containing vaccine, should be vaccinated with the MMR vaccine. If you are unsure, check with your doctor about whether you should be vaccinated. Adults who need to have the MMR vaccine can be vaccinated at their own cost.
Pregnant women – the MMR vaccine is not given to women who are pregnant. Pregnant women who think they have rubella, or think they have been exposed to rubella, should seek medical advice as soon as possible.
Women of childbearing age – if you have not had the MMR vaccine, you should be vaccinated at least 28 days before becoming pregnant, or immediately after they have given birth. If you have just been vaccinated with MMR, you should avoid falling pregnant for 28 days after your vaccination.
The MMR vaccine does not cause autism.
Is Everyone Protected From Disease By Immunisation
Even when all the doses of a vaccine have been given, not everyone is protected against the disease. Measles, mumps, rubella, tetanus, polio, hepatitis B and haemophilus influenzae type b vaccines protect more than 95% of children who have completed the course. One dose of meningococcal ACWY vaccine at 12 months protects over 90% of children.
Three doses of whooping cough vaccine protect about 85% of children who have been immunised, and will reduce the severity of the disease in the other 15% if they do catch whooping cough. Booster doses are needed because immunity decreases over time.
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What About Immunization Side Effects
Today, vaccines are considered safe. As with any medication, they can have side effects. In most cases these are usually mild. Most common minor reactions to an immunization are:
- Soreness or redness around the injection site
- Low-grade fever
Side effects like these usually disappear in a few days. In extremely rare instances a high fever, in excess of 104 F, can occur with a vaccine. Fevers like this will not harm your children, but they can make them uncomfortable and upset.
Children have also been known to have serious allergic reactions to a vaccine. These usually happen very soon after getting the vaccine, and doctors’ offices are well equipped to handle such reactions. If you think your child has or may have an allergy to any component in a vaccine, be sure to share that information with your doctor.
Medical providers agree that the proven preventive benefits of vaccines far outweigh the risks of the minimal side effects associated with them. More information about vaccine side effects and precautions can be found in the CDC’s brochure Parents Guide to Childhood Immunizations.
Is Natural Immunity Better Than Vaccination Against Covid
There are around 30 different proteins that make up the SARS-CoV-2 virus, while the vaccines only contain the spike protein.
âWhen youâre infected with the real virus, you make antibodies and T-cells against all of the viral proteins, giving a very broad but variable immune response,â says Mike.
âThe vaccines only contain the spike protein, so youâre just training the immune system to recognise that particular protein, but theyâve been designed to give a robust and reliable protective immune response.â
But although natural immunity gives broader protection against the virus, itâs not necessarily better.
We know that itâs possible to be reinfected with COVID-19 after either vaccination or natural infection. Our data shows that two doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine give 71% protection against infection, while two doses of the Pfizer vaccine provide 87% protection.
However, we also found that being double vaccinated on top of having previously had COVID-19 actually provided an extra protection boost.
We found that two doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine plus a previous COVID infection gave 90% protection, while having COVID plus two Pfizer doses provided 95% protection.
âIf youâve already had COVID-19, that acts like the first dose of a vaccine to prime your immune system. Then the first dose of the vaccine acts as a booster and the second dose amplifies the effect again, adding up to higher protection overall,â Mike explains.
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What Should I Do If My Child Has A Fever After A Vaccination
Fevers are common in young children, especially after a vaccination, but they are usually mild. A fever doesnt necessarily mean your child has a serious illness. In fact, a fever helps the body’s immune system to fight infection.
|Seek medical advice if your child has a fever and one or more of the following:||Seek medical advice immediately if your child has a fever and one or more of the following:|
|– is younger than 6 months||-seems very sick|
|– you can’t wake them or they’re unusually sleepy|
|– rash||– theyve had a fit or convulsion for the first time, or one lasting more than 5 minutes.|
Are Nosodes Viable Alternatives To Vaccination
The short answer to this question is no. Nosodes are products taken from the body, diluted extensively , and used as a homeopathic treatment.
Lets take the example of a nosode to prevent human papillomavirus . The nosode is made by first taking fluid from the cervix of a woman infected with HPV. The fluid is then diluted to the point that no HPV is present. Therefore, a nosode is composed only of the fluid that was used to dilute the virus. For this reason, an HPV nosode cannot possibly prevent HPV infection.
A nosode vaccine is made using the concept of homeopathy, which was first introduced by Dr. Samuel Hahnemann. Proponents of homeopathy believe that while, in this case, HPV is no longer present in the nosode, the solution maintains a memory of the original agent that protects the patient from subsequent infection. No evidence supports this notion. And, quite frankly, its a good thing that the original HPV is no longer present. Otherwise, the recipient would be at risk of catching the virus.
Real vaccines, on the other hand , are made with known, measurable quantities of killed pathogens or individual pieces of them, such as proteins or inactivated toxins. Likewise, measurable immune responses are generated. In contrast, nosodes are made from solutions that have been randomly diluted such that no measurable material remains. Because no infectious material remains, measurable immune responses are not generated.
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How Are Vaccines Administered
There are several different ways that vaccines are administered. Most vaccines are administered through the form of an injection. However, advances in the medical field have diversified the means of delivery of new types of vaccines. Here are some means of administering vaccines through means other than an injection.
- Nasal Spray – flu injections are given to patients through their nose as a mist.
- Inhalant – There is a type of measles vaccine that is inhalable through the mouth.
- Orally – Certain vaccines can given in tablet form.
- Microneedle – Certain flu vaccines can shoot the substance into the body without the use of needles.
Vaccine Safety: Immune System And Health
Some concerns about vaccine safety relate to how vaccines interact with the immune system or even how the immune system functions in different situations . While it is fair to consider these concerns, it is important to understand them in the context of how the immune system works.
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What Does Vaccinate Mean
Vaccinate, then, is to inoculate with the modified virus of any of various other diseases, as a preventive measure . As you might have guessed, vaccinate simple means to give a vaccine to someone. Vaccinate is a verb that comes from a back formation of the noun vaccination, meaning the act of injecting a vaccine.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides basic information on the procedures that doctors should follow when vaccinating someone. Typically, a vaccine is put into the body through injection with a sterilized needle into a high density muscle, although some are administered orally or through the nose.
Depending on the vaccine, a person may receive multiple shots at once or may need to return at a later time for another dose. In terms of COVID-19, both of the currently authorized vaccines require two doses.
Vaccines Are The World’s Safest Method To Protect Children From Life
Vaccines are among the greatest advances in global health and development. For over two centuries, vaccines have safely reduced the scourge of diseases like polio, measles and smallpox, helping children grow up healthy and happy. They save more than five lives every minute preventing up to three million deaths a year, even before the arrival of COVID-19.
Thanks to immunization efforts worldwide, children are able to walk, play, dance and learn. Vaccinated children do better at school, with economic benefits that ripple across their communities. Today, vaccines are estimated to be one of the most cost-effective means of advancing global welfare.
Despite these longstanding benefits, low immunization levels persist. Some 20 million children miss out on life-saving vaccines annually. The most poor and marginalized children often most in need of vaccines continue to be the least likely to get them. Many live in countries affected by conflict, in remote areas, or where polio remains endemic.
Low immunization rates also compromise progress in areas of maternal and child health and well-being.
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Vaccine Myths And Misinformation
Here are important answers to three common misconceptions about vaccines.
Misconception #1: “We don’t need to vaccinate against rare diseases.”
Few parents today have even heard of all of the diseases we vaccinate against, let alone seen a case of the measles, diphtheria, or whooping cough.
This leads some to ask, “Why am I giving my child a vaccine against a disease that doesn’t even exist?”
The answer is that it’s the vaccines that keep these diseases so rare. Avoiding having your child immunized because of myths and misinformation about vaccine safety puts your child — and public — at risk. In communities where vaccine rates have dropped, these infectious diseases have quickly returned.
Misconception #2: “The preservative thimerosal makes vaccines risky.”
Another concern about vaccines involves the use of a mercury-based preservative called thimerosal.
Thimerosal has been used as a preserving agent in some vaccines and other products since the 1930s. According to the CDC, no harmful effects have been reported from the amount of thimerosal used in vaccines, other than expected minor reactions like redness and swelling at the injection site.
However, in July 1999, the Public Health Service agencies, the American Academy of Pediatrics , and vaccine manufacturers agreed to reduce or eliminate thimerosal in vaccines as a precautionary measure.
Misconception #3: “Vaccines cause autism.”
The Body’s Natural Response
A pathogen is a bacterium, virus, parasite or fungus that can cause disease within the body. Each pathogen is made up of several subparts, usually unique to that specific pathogen and the disease it causes. The subpart of a pathogen that causes the formation of antibodies is called an antigen. The antibodies produced in response to the pathogens antigen are an important part of the immune system. You can consider antibodies as the soldiers in your bodys defense system. Each antibody, or soldier, in our system is trained to recognize one specific antigen. We have thousands of different antibodies in our bodies. When the human body is exposed to an antigen for the first time, it takes time for the immune system to respond and produce antibodies specific to that antigen.
In the meantime, the person is susceptible to becoming ill.
This means that if the person is exposed to the dangerous pathogen in the future, their immune system will be able to respond immediately, protecting against disease.
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Do Vaccines Weaken The Immune System
Vaccinated children are not at greater risk of other infections than unvaccinated children. On the contrary, in Germany, a study of 496 vaccinated and unvaccinated children found that children who received immunizations against diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, Haemophilus influenzae type b and polio within the first three months of life had fewer infections with vaccine-related and unrelated pathogens than the non-vaccinated group.
Bacterial and viral infections, on the other hand, often predispose children and adults to severe, invasive infections with other pathogens. For example, children with pneumococcal pneumonia are more likely to have had a recent influenza infection than other children. Similarly, varicella infection increases susceptibility to the ‘flesh-eating bacteria .
Why Do Kids Need Vaccines For A Disease That’s Been Eliminated
Diseases that are rare or nonexistent in the United States, like measles and polio, still exist in other parts of the world. Doctors continue to vaccinate against them because it’s easy to come into contact with illnesses through travel either when Americans travel abroad or when people who aren’t properly immunized come to the United States.
In recent years, there have been measles outbreaks in many different states, even though measles was declared eliminated from the U.S. in 2000. These cases were mostly among people who did not get vaccinated. Other preventable diseases that had recent outbreaks include whooping cough and mumps.
It’s only safe to stop vaccinations for a particular disease when that disease has been eradicated worldwide, as with smallpox.
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What Kind Of Vaccine Is The Flu Vaccine
Since we are in the midst of flu season , you may also be wondering where the flu vaccine falls in all this. The shot version uses an inactivated virus or single protein from the flu virus, and essentially does the same thing as the Covid-19 vaccines mentioned above: It introduces your body to parts of different flu viruses. This puts your immune system on the defensive to help rid your body of this foreign substance. Antibodies are made, and then offer protection down the line. The tricky thing about the flu vaccines effectiveness is that it is going to vary from season to season because there are different types or the virus that circulate each year. So medical experts never know exactly which will hit us and often are making highly-educated guesstimations.
The most important takeaway from all of this? Protection against the Covid-19 is key. All of these types of vaccines are just different routes to get your body to protect you.
What Is Natural Immunity From Covid
When you catch SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, your body triggers an immune response. This involves the production of antibodies by B cells, which fight off the infection, and activation of T-cells which attack virus-infected cells.
After the initial infection is over, for most of us antibodies remain in the bloodstream to protect against reinfection. Our initial analysis of our ZOE contributors antibody test results, suggests that antibodies stick around for at least 450 days. Other studies show that they can stick around for six months or more.
Youâre also left with memory B and T-cells, which stay in the body for months or even years. These cells ârememberâ what the virus looks like, so the immune system can swing into action quickly if youâre infected again in the future.
The effectiveness of the immune response and levels of immunity after having a COVID-19 vary widely between people.
âWe are all different, so our immune systems will be different too,â explains Professor Mike Malim from Kingâs College London. âSome people become very sick from COVID while others have no symptoms at all due to differences in the underlying immune response as well as a number of other characteristics, and there will also be a wide variation in immunity after infection.â
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