Previously infected people ‘unlikely to benefit from COVID-19 vaccination’: study
CLEVELAND, Ohio, June 11, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — Researchers at the prestigious Cleveland Clinic, an academic hospital consistently ranking among America’s finest medical institutions, have published a study on the need for previously COVID-infected individuals to receive a vaccine to be immune to COVID-19, finding that “[i]ndividuals who have had SARS-CoV-2 infection are unlikely to benefit from COVID-19 vaccination.”
In evaluating the necessity of vaccinating those who previously contracted and have since recovered from SARS-CoV-2 infection, the clinic examined over 52,000 employees of the Cleveland Clinic Health System from the day that COVID vaccines began being administered on December 16, 2020.
Over the next five months the study followed developments in COVID infection within the group, categorizing the participants into four major subsets: previously infected individuals who were vaccinated, previously infected individuals who were not vaccinated, previously uninfected individuals who received the vaccine, and previously uninfected individuals who did not receive the vaccine.
Of the large overall sample size, around 5 percent, or 2,579 individuals, were considered previously infected (returning a positive PCR test for COVID-19 at least 42 days before the study commenced), slightly more than half of whom, 1,359, did not receive a COVID vaccine before the end of the study period. The researchers reported that not one of the 2,579 previously infected individuals became infected with SARS-CoV-2 throughout the course of the study, “including 1,359 who did not take the vaccine.”
In fact, the study revealed that all 2,154 infections recorded were in participants who had not previously been infected with SARS-CoV-2. The vast majority of these infections, 2,139, were associated with unvaccinated individuals, whereas 15 infections were considered breakthrough cases in vaccinated individuals.
For the purposes of the study, the researchers defined a vaccinated individual as one who had received both doses of either the Moderna or Pfizer experimental mRNA vaccines, with at least 14 days passing since their second shot. Every other participant, even if they had their first jab or became infected within two weeks of their second shot, was considered unvaccinated in the study.
The study showed no statistically significant difference in cumulative SARS-CoV-2 infection between three of the main categories, namely, those who were previously infected, be they vaccinated or not, and the previously uninfected who did receive a full vaccine regimen. Only those who were previously uninfected and did not receive the vaccine exhibited any significant incidence of infection with COVID-19, accounting for 99.3 percent of positive tests. The remaining 0.7 percent of positive tests related to vaccinated individuals who were previously uninfected.
The researchers thus concluded that “subjects previously infected with SARS-CoV-2 are unlikely to get COVID-19 reinfection whether or not they receive the vaccine,” prompting them to call “into question the necessity to vaccinate those who have already had SARS-CoV-2 infection.” The study awaits peer review.
Additionally, the researchers concluded that, without prior infection, receiving an experimental mRNA vaccine provided a significant improvement in immunity from the SARS-CoV-2 virus; however, owing to the movement of infected subjects from the unvaccinated to vaccinated category as the study progressed, it was not statistically possible to ascertain the true effectiveness of the vaccines against COVID-19, only that no significant benefit was gained from vaccinating those previously infected with the virus.
The team was able to declare with some certainty, though, that a robust immunity from COVID-19 was gained from prior infection with the pathogen. Indeed, the authors pointed to at least three previous studies which corroborate this finding, all of which “found very low rates of reinfection … among survivors of COVID-19.”
One such study, published May 24 in the journal Nature, found a significant presence of antibodies against COVID-19 in subjects previously infected with the virus, providing “strong evidence for long-lasting immunity,” according to study author Dr. Ali Ellebedy, Ph.D.
The study examined the long-term effects following a COVID infection, concluding that long-lived plasm cells created in the bone marrow “produce antibodies for the rest of people’s lives,” granting lasting immunity.
Another study, published the same day in the Lancet, found that individuals infected with COVID-19 remain immune to reinfection for a “substantial” period of time. This follows numerous other studies determining vaccination to be unnecessary for providing immunity to SARS-CoV-2 infection for the previously infected. In fact, a study emanating from Israel found that natural immunity from infection outstripped any protection offered by the currently available COVID vaccines.
Johns Hopkins School of Medicine professor Dr. Marty Makary supported the growing evidence for natural immunity in a recent radio interview and called out U.S. government bodies for “ignoring natural immunity.”
Makary explained that “[t]here is more data on natural immunity than there is on vaccinated immunity, because natural immunity has been around longer,” adding that “[w]hen you get natural immunity from a severe COVID infection, you have natural immunity that’s probably lifelong.”
“Right now in America, 62 percent of all adults have been vaccinated and half of the unvaccinated have natural immunity. That means 80 to 85 percent of adults in America today have immunity … That’s called herd immunity and we are there,” the professor said.