Vaccination alone will not provide full protection. When borders open, NZ will still be managing COV …


Sumary of Vaccination alone will not provide full protection. When borders open, NZ will still be managing COVID-19:

  • From next week, unvaccinated staff working at managed isolation and quarantine (MIQ) facilities will be moved to low-risk jobs, following a case of a worker who missed vaccination appointments and then tested positive for COVID-19..
  • This case shows that, occasionally, even fully vaccinated people can still carry the virus in their throats and therefore potentially spread it..
  • Small risk of infection remains Clinical trials of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine show 90-97% efficacy which means most fully vaccinated people will not get sick, and the small number who do are very unlikely to develop serious disease..
  • In last month case, the vaccinated worker remained asymptomatic, which likely reduced the spread of the virus to others..
  • Data from use in several countries suggests the vaccine has some effect in reducing an infected person ability to pass the virus on to others, but as this example shows, vaccinated people can still carry and spread the virus, albeit at much lower rates..
  • Frontline border staff and their families were the first to be vaccinated in New Zealand rollout of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine..
  • Ministry of Health, CC BY-ND Herd immunity feasible, but challenging The combination of a vaccine ability to reduce illness — and therefore spread of the disease — is good news, but it not fool proof..
  • Should New Zealand consider opening its borders beyond the current travel bubble with Austalia (due to start on April 19), it likely this would allow people with COVID-19 into the country..
  • A quarantine-free trans-Tasman bubble opens on April 19, but ‘flyer beware’ remains the reality of pandemic travel If the majority of New Zealanders are vaccinated, we can be confident that very few people will get sick..
  • New Zealand could aim for herd immunity, which would mean vaccinating enough of the population to stop the virus from spreading, should it enter a community..
  • The ability to stop spread would depend on the proportion of the population that is immune (either following infection or through vaccination), whether immunity is spread evenly across the population, and the infectivity of the virus..
  • These include the recent more contagious mutations and the lack of data on precisely how effective the vaccine is against asymptomatic spread..
  • Clinical trials are underway to determine the efficacy of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine for children and preliminary results are promising..
  • But until trials are completed and the data scientifically reviewed, New Zealand vaccination programme excludes just under a quarter of New Zealand population..
  • Even with high vaccination rates of over 90% across most of the population, and a highly effective vaccine, the disease affected communities or age groups with lower immunisation coverage…

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