Herd immunity to COVID-19 will take time, says WHO chief scientist Soumya Swaminathan


The chief scientist of World Health Organissation (WHO) Dr Soumya Swaminathan warned that ‘herd immunity’, or when a big part of the inhabitants develops resistance to the illness, continues to be a good distance off and may be sped up by a vaccine.

Swaminathan stated that after just a few waves of the an infection resurfacing people will get to a stage of pure immunity. 

“For this concept of herd immunity, you need 50 to 60 per cent of the population to have this immunity to be actually able to break those chains of transmission. That’s much easier to do with a vaccine; we can achieve it faster and without people getting sick and dying. So, it is much better to do it that way, to achieve herd immunity through natural infection. Over a period of time, people will start developing natural immunity,” defined Swaminathan.

The scientist warned that not less than for the subsequent 12 months or so, the world must do all the things attainable to maintain the novel coronavirus at bay whereas scientists work on vaccines.

When requested in regards to the fearful prospect of by no means getting a COVID-19 vaccine, Dr Swaminathan admitted that we’ve got to entertain the likelihood that we could should “learn to live with this virus”.

Swaminathan is a paediatrician and a globally recognised researcher on tuberculosis and HIV. She was addressing a spread of questions on coronavirus vaccines and therapeutics, in a social media dwell occasion organised by WHO from Geneva.

Meanwhile, the coronavirus has thus far claimed over 30,601 lives in India with round 12,87,945 variety of infections until Friday, whereas globally as many as 6.three lakh individuals misplaced their lives with greater than 15.5 million confirmed instances internationally.