|Children between 6 months and 12 years can now enroll in clinical trials for a COVID-19 vaccine. (Photo: Adobe Stock/Illustration: David Chrisom, Boston Children's)
Even with new variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus appearing and spreading, vaccines are still proving effective in approaching herd immunity.
Even before herd immunity has been reached, vaccination can significantly reduce the diseases spread.
Although the global death toll hit 5 million on November 1, the mortality rate of the pandemic has fallen due to vaccination.
Infectious disease experts insist that vaccines are the key to stopping the pandemic.
According to Hungary’s news site 444.hu, three weeks after their first vaccination, 0.2% of those vaccinated were infected; 0.05% were hospitalized; and 0.012% had died from the coronavirus. The second vaccination gave even stronger protection. Three weeks after the second dose, 0.086% had contracted the virus; 0.013% were hospitalized; and 0.003% had died from the coronavirus.
Nearly 2 years after the first COVID-19 outbreak, the US and Europe, two initial hotspots, are gradually returning to normal, thanks to a massive vaccination campaign.
Bloomberg says more than 6.64 billion doses have been administered in 184 countries and territories, equivalent to 43.2% of the world’s population.
Globally, the average vaccination rate is 26.6 million doses per day. At this pace, it will take another 6 months to cover 75% of the population.
A number of countries and territories have vaccinated 70, 80, even 90% or more of their population. The UAE has fully vaccinated more than 94.5% of adults, Portugal, 88%, Chile nearly 83%, Spain more than 80%, Singapore nearly 80%, and Israel more than 70%.
Inoculation of children has received increasing interest, as the Delta variant is proving more infectious for young people.
Many countries now consider vaccination of children the best way to open schools and permit kids to participate in social activities while protecting them from a heightened risk of illness and death. Immunizing children will also reduce the risk of their transmitting the disease to others.