The lab leak hypothesis for SARS-CoV-2 seems highly unlikely, and yet this still made me laugh out loud.
A persistent question related to COVID-19 is to what extent previous COVID-19 infections protect from future infections. It is not uncommon on social media to see people say that since they previously contracted COVID-19, they are immune and see no reason to get vaccinated.
The CDC notes that there are still a lot of unknowns about how long such protection lasts,
Yes, you should be vaccinated regardless of whether you already had COVID-19. That’s because experts do not yet know how long you are protected from getting sick again after recovering from COVID-19. Even if you have already recovered from COVID-19, it is possible—although rare—that you could be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 again.
A recently published study that followed more than 16,000 adult health care workers suggests the “natural immunity” may be fleeting at best.
Nine hundred and thirteen (6.12%) participants, including 45 (4.93%) IgG positive participants, experienced COVID-19 infections after study initiation, representing a 51% increased risk of COVID-19 infection among IgG positive participants (IRR = 1.51). Regressions adjusted for documented disparities showed no difference in COVID-19 infection by IgG status (OR=1.19; P = .3117) but significantly greater odds in COVID-19 recurrence among participants with a prior documented COVID-19 infection (OR=1.93; P < .0001).
SARS-CoV-2 IgG antibodies and prior COVID-19 infection do not appear to offer meaningful protection against COVID-19 recurrence in healthcare workers. Recurrence would impact decisions regarding ongoing healthcare resource utilization. This study can inform considerations for vaccine administration to vulnerable groups.
Bran Castle is a 15th-century castle in Bran, Romania, known as “Dracula’s Castle.” Since Vlad, the Impaler, likely never set foot in it, and Bram Stoker was apparently unaware of it, it is a bit of a mystery how it came to be associated with the most famous vampire of them all.
Still, playing up the connection likely helps tourism to the site, and Romanian officials are now using the connection to promote COVID-19 vaccination to visitors.
Doctors and nurses with fang stickers on their scrubs are offering free Pfizer shots to all-comers at 14th century Bran Castle, which is purported to be an inspiration for the vampire’s towering home in Bram Stoker’s novel “Dracula”.
Castle staff hope the service will bring more people to the site in Romania’s Carpathian mountains, where tourist numbers have plummeted since the start of the pandemic.
The castle even issues its own vaccination card. Good luck forging this.
Clever ad for the La Jolla Fencing Academy.