Herd Immunity Could be Reached by June says Hospital Chief of Staff

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The chief of staff at Windsor Regional Hospital believes Windsor-Essex could reach herd immunity against COVID-19 by the summer.

Dr. Wassim Saad is happy with vaccination efforts going on throughout the region and told AM800's The Morning Drive that we have nearly 40 per cent of the population vaccinated.

Saad believes the area could be hit that magical 80 to 85 per cent mark to reach herd immunity sometime in mid to late June.

Herd immunity is described as the endgame for a vaccination blitz and is achieved when enough people are immune either through vaccinations or infections, or a combination of both.

Dr. Saad also thinks we've been one of the great success stories in the province.

"When you consider what our hospitals look like, what our intensive care units look like and the rate of community transmission. Even with the UK variant in our community, the vaccines have proven to be very effective," he says Of all the patients we have in the hospital, including our ICU patients, none of them have been vaccinated. In fact, we only had one patient in the hospital that had received the vaccine but that was within a week of their first dose, so they clearly weren't protected enough.

Mathematics Professor Paul Tupper from B-C's Simon Fraser University says Canada may not reach that immunity with COVID-19.

He says that's because immunity through vaccines and infection doesn't last permanently, and since the virus is across the world, it gets reintroduced in different places.

Tupper says COVID-19 may eventually become like the seasonal flu.

Doctor Isaac Bogoch, an infectious-disease specialist at the University of Toronto, says either way, vaccines can significantly reduce transmission rates.

 

With files from the Canadian Press