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Current Affairs

Breakthrough infections

Date: 10 September 2021 Tags: Miscellaneous

Issue

A recent study in US has showed that breakthrough infections can happen in individuals fully vaccinated against the virus.

 

Background

Vaccines can be protective against serious illness but they cannot guarantee complete safety.

 

Details

  • The study further showed that the number of unvaccinated people getting hospitalized due to infection is 29 times more than that of vaccinated people.

  • The delta variant has caused surge in infections in several parts of the world but there will be certainly an end to the pandemic.

 

Reasons for breakthrough infections

  • The virus is creating improved copies of itself through a process known as mutation. This has increased its survival chances.

  • The new copies not only infect other healthy cells they also shed through mouth and nose to infect other healthy individuals.

  • The occurrence of breakthrough infection is quite normal. This is because no vaccine is 100% effective in preventing infection.

 

Significance of vaccination

  • Vaccination makes the body vigilant to new antigens. The effect of the pathogen reduces considerably and the chances of hospitalization are reduced.

  • The number of vaccinated individuals dying from COVID-19 is close to zero when compared to actual infected individuals.

  • If an individual is not vaccinated then the alarm and response process of body’s defenses are much slower, increasing the risks.

 

Protection against breakthrough infection

It is better to follow safety practices like mask wearing, social distancing, and hand hygiene whenever possible.