We need to act not based on fears but on being informed and responsible
The most important reason to still act safely is the government telling us to do so. Civil disobedience shouldn’t toy or tinker with safety measures, from safety belts to helmets, from no-smoking areas to no drunk driving.
Having developed immunity for COVID-19 protects us almost 100% from death and greatly from serious COVID-complications. But not totally. And we can’t know if we or the person we talk to will be an exception.
But, much more importantly, when we have become immune, we might still pick up this virus and give it to someone else. (See this outstanding reporting by the JPost health reporter.) And if we do, we could be a link in a deadly chain that would kill an elderly person, someone with a known or previously unknown underlying illness, or a pregnant mother and her fetus. We don’t want to play any part in this.
Also those who may suppose to have COVID-immunity need to pay attention to possible signs of a light corona infection. (Some 94% (!) of cured corona patients after three months still have health complaints! And 50% of light corona patients have long corona: symptoms up to half a year after their infection was over. Is that still ‘corona light’?)
When, despite assumed immunity, we get even a slight suspicion we may be infected, we should play it safe and self-isolate. An unexpected little tiredness, loss of smell, feeling cold/hot? Don’t risk infecting others.
No, anti-bodies don’t prove immunity. They fade quickly after a corona vaccination or infection but the more-potent cellular immunity does not.
Even when there is herd immunity, the virus could still go around from person to person. It’s OK to take off our masks in one-on-one meetings. But not in settings where a super-spreader could infect hundreds. We still don’t know which kind of people are super-spreaders. It could be us. (NB: A herd immunity strategy fails when it kills most of the shepherds.)
So, we can hug our vaccinated grandparents again. (BTW: This is not leprosies. Hugging is not the dangerous thing. Breathing in someone’s face is the problem.) But not all the people in their old-age home.
As long as children are not vaccinated, the virus could start mostly circulating among them and mutate more, endangering them or us all.
We need to continue wearing masks and socially distance, ventilate, and not linger too long at indoor meeting places. NB: When we talk or run, the essence of the mask is covering our mouths. But when we are quiet, the essence is covering our noses. Many people need to be told.
And we should try to talk some sense into the anti-vaxxers we love.
And soon, when all tourists return to the Holy Land, with billions not yet vaccinated for years to come, we have yet another reason not to let down our guard or masks.
One day, this virus will be tamed or perhaps exterminated. But, that day has not yet come. And the next pandemic is in the making. As long as we want to mass travel, mass gather, and city dwell, we’d better continue to protect ourselves and each other. People who endanger the population at large should be fined and repeat offenders should be jailed.
It is not clear why now there is a sharp decline in India, but also in the US, and elsewhere. In Israel too, the downturn seems not just caused by vaccinations. But, as long as corona stays around and doesn’t show seasonality, it will not become like the flu. It will be more like hepatitis.