- Further waves of the pandemic could come, requiring new restrictions and even new lockdowns
- Development of effective and safe vaccines happened extremely rapidly, and that means the end of the pandemic is now achievable. However, scaling to vaccinate the world takes time and international collaboration. Because of the transmissibility of this virus, and the tendency of coronaviruses to mutate rapidly, none of us are safe until all of us are safe.
- New Covid variants of concern have emerged already. The most concerning at this time are the Delta, Delta Plus, Kappa, and Lambda variants, which are more transmissible, with greater clinical impacts. They have also been found to impact young people more than previous variants.
- Vaccines have been shown to be highly effective against these variants at reducing the likelihood of hospitalisation, and effective at reducing the risk of catching the disease at all, in those who are fully vaccinated. Early signs suggest they also reduce transmission, but it’s not yet clear by how much. Note that the word is ‘reduce’ rather than ‘eliminate’ in all these cases. People who are vaccinated can still catch COVID-19, can still have symptoms, and can still transmit it, but at reduced likelihood and reduced levels of impact to themselves.
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