The original Sars virus disappeared – here’s why coronavirus won’t do the same
The idea that letting the coronavirus run wild would protect us is unlikely to be valid says Dr Connor Bamford.
British cancer doctor Prof Karol Sikora recently claimed that the current COVID-19 pandemic would “burn itself out”. His thinking is that if there are more infections than we realise, and that those milder, unrecorded infections result in robust immunity, then this would quickly lead to “herd immunity”, leaving the virus nowhere to go but extinct. Extend this to the world’s population and the virus eradicates itself.
But the idea that letting the virus run wild would protect us is unlikely to be valid. The antibody results coming in suggest that only a small proportion of people have been infected by SARS-CoV-2. In the UK, only an estimated 6.8% of people have had the virus; for France, the figure is just 4.4%.
This means that we are far away from achieving herd immunity. It also suggests that the virus does indeed have the relatively high fatality rate that we’ve estimated.
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Article originally appeared on The Conversation.