How Much of the Population Will Need to Be Vaccinated Until the Pandemic Is Over?
A physician discusses what percentage of the population will need to be vaccinated against COVID-19 in order for the pandemic to be over.
A: A vaccinated person acts as a barrier to slow and prevent the virus from continuing to spread. The ultimate end goal is to get as many people vaccinated as possible so that more people are protected. The entire population benefits from a high vaccination coverage.
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Once a population reaches a point of collective immunity where the disease is no longer likely to spread, it reaches the herd immunity threshold. The estimate for COVID-19 is that roughly 50% to 80% of the population will need to be vaccinated to reach the herd immunity threshold. (In contrast, the flu needs between 33 and 44% vaccinated to reach the herd immunity threshold.)
It’s a safer place to live when you have a high vaccination rate and we hope that everyone will take the vaccine when they’re eligible to receive it.
– Serpil Erzurum, MD, Chair of the Lerner Research Institute.