Republicans embrace natural immunity as an alternative to vaccines

Republicans fighting President Joe Biden’s coronavirus vaccine authorization are using a new weapon against White House regulations: natural immunity.

They argued that people who have recovered from the virus have sufficient immunity and antibodies and do not need a COVID-19 vaccine. Republicans use this concept as an alternative to vaccines.

Florida wrote the natural exemption into state law this week as Republican lawmakers elsewhere are pushing for similar measures to circumvent vaccine regulations. Litigation regarding authorization also began to rely on this idea. Conservative federal lawmakers urge regulators to consider this when formulating authorizations.

Scientists acknowledge that people previously infected with COVID-19 have a certain degree of immunity, but the vaccine provides a more consistent level of protection. Natural immunization is also far from one size fits all, which complicates the development of a comprehensive vaccine exemption.

This is because the immunity of COVID-19 survivors depends on how long they have been infected, how they are sick, and whether the virus variants they have are different from those currently circulating. For example, people who had mild cases a year ago are very different from people who had severe cases when the summer delta variant raged across the country. It is also difficult to reliably test whether someone is safe from future infections.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported in August that COVID-19 survivors who ignore vaccination recommendations are more than twice as likely to be infected again. A recent CDC study looked at data from nearly 190 hospitals in nine states and determined that unvaccinated people who were infected a few months ago are five times more likely to be infected with COVID-19 than fully vaccinated people.

Dr. David Dowdy of the Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University said: “If you are infected with this virus, if you survive, you can indeed prevent future infections to a certain extent, especially if you will not be severely affected in the future. Infection.” “But it’s important to note that even those who have been infected in the past can get extra protection from being vaccinated.”

Studies have also shown that COVID-19 survivors who are vaccinated will have super protection, the so-called “mixed immunity.” When a previously infected person is vaccinated against the coronavirus, the vaccine acts like a booster, raising antiviral antibodies to a high level. The combination also strengthens another layer of defense of the immune system, helping to create new antibodies that are more likely to resist future mutations.

The immunization debate comes as the country is experiencing yet another surge in infections and hospitalizations, and in this pandemic that has killed more than 770,000 Americans, 60 million people are still unvaccinated. Biden hopes that more people will be vaccinated, because workplace regulations will take effect early next year, but face many challenges in court.

Many Republicans eager to oppose Biden have accepted the argument that immunity to early infections should be sufficient to obtain immunity.

“We recognize that, unlike what you have seen in the proposed federal mission and other states, we are actually taking a science-based approach. For example, we recognize people with natural immunity,” Florida Governor Ron A. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, has been a major critic of the rules of the virus, he said at the signing ceremony for comprehensive legislation this week.

Florida’s new law forces private companies to allow workers to opt out of the mandatory requirements for COVID-19, provided that they can prove immunity through previous infections, as well as exemptions based on medical reasons, religious beliefs, regular testing, or agreements to wear protective equipment. The state health department, led by surgeon Dr. Joseph Ladapo (Joseph Ladapo), will have the authority to define exemptions. He opposed mandatory requirements and caused national concern for refusing to wear masks during the meeting.

The Republican-led New Hampshire State Assembly plans to take similar measures when it meets in January. The legislators in Idaho and Wyoming are both state legislatures under the control of the Republican Party. Similar measures have recently been debated but failed to pass. In Utah, a newly signed law exempts private employers from Biden’s vaccine authorization, allowing people to avoid this requirement if they are already infected with COVID.

This debate is not unique to the United States. Russia has seen a large number of people seeking antibody tests to prove that they were infected earlier and therefore do not need a vaccine.

Some politicians use the science behind natural immunity to advance the narrative, showing that vaccines are not the best way to end the pandemic.

“Vaccines are by no means the only or effective way to get rid of the pandemic. I don’t want to blindly believe the claims of the pharmaceutical industry,” said Greg Ferch, Republican of Idaho.

U.S. Senator, Kansas Republican and doctor Roger Marshall and 14 other Republican doctors, dentists, and pharmacists in Congress wrote to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in late September, urging the agency to Consider natural immunity when formulating vaccination policies.

The White House recently announced a series of vaccine authorizations, triggering a series of lawsuits in all Republican states, laying the foundation for fierce legal battles. These rules include vaccine requirements for federal contractors, businesses with more than 100 employees, and healthcare workers.

In separate lawsuits, others are using immune defenses to challenge local vaccine regulations.

A 19-year-old student who refused to be tested but claimed to have contracted COVID-19 and recovered quickly. He is suing the University of Nevada, Reno, the governor and others on the grounds that the state requires everyone (with a few exceptions) to show it Proof of vaccination in order to register for courses in the upcoming spring semester. The case stated that “enforcement of COVID-19 vaccination is an unconstitutional violation of normal immunity and physical integrity.”

Another case filed by the staff of Los Alamos National Laboratory challenged their requirements for vaccinations in the workplace due to civil rights and violation of the Constitution, saying that the laboratory refused to provide for those staff who had fully recovered from COVID-19 Provide medical accommodation requirements.

Last month, similar lawsuits by Chicago firefighters and other city employees encountered obstacles when a judge said that their case lacked scientific evidence to support the argument that the natural immunity of people infected with the virus was better than vaccine protection.

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