The COVID vaccine is one of the newest vaccines on the market, and it’s quickly becoming a popular and recommended immune booster for many families, especially during this pandemic. In this blog post, we will discuss COVID vaccine effectiveness to better understand how COVID-19 works. We’ll also explore some of the side effects that can happen after the COVID-19 vaccination.
Do you have questions about the COVID-19 vaccine effectiveness? If so, keep reading!
What is COVID-19?
COVID-19 came from SARS-CoV-2, a strain of coronavirus that was first identified in Wuhan, China, in late 2019. It had been thought for some time that COVID-19 was not an immediate pandemic strain, as it had a lower mortality rate than most coronaviruses and was not associated with high rates of morbidity. However, because of increased air travel and mass population movements, it has spread worldwide. It was in March 2020 that the World Health Organization declared that the outbreak was a pandemic.
What makes COVID-19 so dangerous?
COVID-19 or SARS-CoV-2 came from a family of viruses that caused SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) in 2003 and MERSCOV (the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus) in 2012. These viruses have been found to better attach themselves to the cells that line the respiratory tract, allowing them to infect the body more efficiently. The virus has also undergone genetic changes, allowing COVID-19 to replicate more quickly once inside a cell, thus increasing its impact on the body even more. It is more easily transmitted from person to person, than by contact with an infected animal. COVID-19 can be passed between people in close quarters such as airports and other transport hubs with or without the carriers realizing they are ill.
How does COVID-19 spread?
When an infected person coughs, sneezes, speaks, sings, or breathes, the virus can spread through the microscopic liquid particles exiting their mouth or nose. These particles range in size from big respiratory droplets to tiny aerosols. This results in COVID-19 being able to infect many people simultaneously.
In addition, COVID-19 can remain active outside the body for several hours at normal room temperature, allowing it to spread via your environment or work surfaces such as door handles and shared eating utensils.
How does COVID-19 affect humans?
The coronavirus can cause many symptoms in human beings, including fever, headache, fatigue, chills/rigors, back pain, diarrhea or constipation, abdominal pain, and other discomforting signs. COVID-19 can also cause vomiting, dehydration, and jaundice. Although rare, this coronavirus can cause severe symptoms that may lead to death.
How is COVID-19 diagnosed?
COVID-19 diagnosis is performed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing of nasal and/or throat swabs. Viral culture can also be used to confirm infection from coronavirus. COVID-19 diagnosis may also include blood tests for COVID-specific immunoglobulin M (IgM) antibodies and liver enzymes. The determining factors for a person to get tested would be their symptoms and their history of exposure.
How is COVID-19 treated?
COVID-19 is not a bacterial strain, so it cannot be treated with conventional antibiotics. The only way to prevent coronavirus infection is by vaccination or avoiding contact with those already infected.
Though developed for better disease control and prevention, the two doses of COVID-19 vaccines, unfortunately, cannot treat the infection. Because it is a viral infection, treatment includes rest, hydration, and symptomatic relief. There are no antiviral agents that treat the COVID-19 infection.
How does COVID-19 infection differ in children?
COVID-19 symptoms are generally milder in children than in adults. Flu-like symptoms and immune system deterioration appear approximately 1-2 weeks after exposure to the virus and last for about 7-10 days. While all children are susceptible to the virus that causes the coronavirus disease, they do not fall ill and develop a severe disease as frequently as adults.
The majority of youngsters experience just minor symptoms or none at all. However, the virus can still cause serious illness in some children. So, we always advise our patients to protect themselves from the virus so that their kids and the people around them can also get protection through ‘herd immunity.’ Wash hands, wear masks, stay at least a meter apart from other people. And if you are eligible to get the vaccine, be vaccinated!
What are COVID-19 vaccines?
Large pharmaceutical companies, including Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, AstraZeneca, and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), collaborated with biotechnology firms, governments, and universities to speed up the development of a viable vaccine for disease control. To combine financial and industrial resources for a pandemic while utilizing adjuvanted vaccine technology, GSK partnered with Sanofi Pasteur to develop, support, and speed up mRNA vaccines.
So far, this is the list of pharmaceutical companies that can develop and manufacture COVID-19 vaccines.
- BioNTech, Pfizer vaccine (COMIRNATY)
- Sinovac vaccine (CoronaVac)
- Bharat Biotech vaccine, (COVAXIN)
- Johnson & Johnson vaccine (Janssen)
- Moderna vaccine
- Novavax vaccine (Covovax or Nuvaxovid)
- Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine
- Sinopharm BIBP vaccine
What is the COVID-19 vaccine schedule?
The COVID-19 vaccine schedule varies depending on which COVID vaccine brand a country uses. Most brands require individuals to receive two doses of COVID-19 vaccines within a month to receive protection, whereas Janssen and Sputnik Light only require one dose.
Because of the Delta variant and Omicron variant spreading worldwide, getting a booster dose is encouraged. Depending on the availability of vaccine brands in vaccination sites, healthcare workers choose whether to receive a homologous (same COVID vaccine brand) or heterologous (different COVID vaccine brand) booster dose.
To get your COVID-19 vaccine and other vaccines, find an accredited vaccination provider. If you have any questions regarding your vaccination and eligibility, please feel free to talk to reliable health care personnel so they can assist you.
What are the COVID-19 vaccine side effects?
The most common COVID-19 vaccine side effect is soreness at the site of coronavirus injection, which can last for up to two days. Your immune response to the vaccine dictates your side effects, more commonly associated with the second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Whether the initial 2 doses or the booster doses are concerned, COVID vaccine administration may also cause mild fever, headache, and fatigue.
So far, other than those health care workers and patients whose adverse events and effects come from their underlying medical conditions, there were no notable severe allergic reactions or diseases ever reported among those who have already received their COVID-19 vaccines.
How effective has the COVID-19 vaccine been so far?
Results from several COVID-19 vaccine trials show effectiveness for vaccine-induced immunity. The data came from patients whose vaccination status was reported as those administered with the second dose of the vaccine. The coronavirus was introduced for laboratory studies, and symptoms were observed in the vaccinated and unvaccinated control groups.
COVID-19 cases were differentiated from coronavirus cases by antibody titers in blood samples after the study period. It was found that COVID-19 vaccine effectiveness against hospital admission and symptoms aggravation from the virus averaged 79 percent. Meanwhile, research shows that booster shots of mRNA coronavirus vaccines (Pfizer and Moderna) increase antibodies by about 10 times, benefitting disease control and one’s immune system against the virus’ severe outcomes.
Who should get the coronavirus vaccine, and when?
The COVID-19 vaccine rollout should be given to people in high-risk COVID groups. Now that the Delta variant and Omicron variant continue to infect and spread rapidly in many countries, the vaccines’ demand rises. High-risk COVID groups include:
- Laboratory personnel who work with the COVID-19 virus.
- People who work in hospitals and healthcare facilities where outbreaks of COVID have been found.
- Family members of health care workers with a compromised immune system.
- Close contacts of someone infected with COVID-19.
Moreover, COVID-19 vaccines are required for those travelling overseas.
Vaccines are considered a crucial weapon against coronaviruses such as COVID-19 and MERS-CoV (Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus). COVID-19 vaccine effectiveness could save many lives, and they are proven safe and effective during clinical trials.
You now have a better understanding of how COVID-19 works, the vaccines available, and the vaccine efficacy, as well as the side effects you may experience after vaccination. If you’d like to learn more about these vaccines, contact us today! But whether it’s related to COVID-19 or not, our team is always happy to answer any questions or concerns that you might have about your health. We can’t wait to hear from you!
Different COVID-19 Vaccines
Different types of COVID-19 vaccines: How they work
Is the COVID-19 Vaccine Safe?
The lightning-fast quest for COVID vaccines — and what it means for other diseases
World Health Organization: COVID-19 Vaccines