We know that vaccines against the virus that causes COVID-19 are about 95% effective in preventing severe complications in people who become infected. This starts 7 days after the second dose. The vaccines also provide some protection as early as 12 days after the first dose. Until now, we were unsure if the vaccine also reduces the risk of a person spreading the virus to other people.
Vaccinated people are less likely to spread COVID-19
A study from Israel suggests that after having the vaccine, people are much less likely to spread COVID-19. There was still concern that people without symptoms may spread the virus (called asymptomatic transmission). This concern was addressed in nearly 5,000 people receiving the mRNA vaccine. Researchers found that viral load was greatly reduced starting 12 days after vaccination. Viral load is the amount of virus in an infected person’s blood. This study shows that the vaccine blocks or strongly reduces the chance of spread. After two doses, a vaccinated person is about 90% less likely to be infected compared to someone who is not vaccinated.
Everyone needs to be vaccinated
Results show that if a person becomes infected with COVID-19 12 days or more after vaccination, then their viral load as well as their risk of severe symptoms and complications are greatly reduced. We are in a race right now between vaccinations and the virus/variants. The stakes are extremely high, so everyone needs to be vaccinated. As more people are vaccinated, the number of people the virus can infect declines, and this will decrease the virus’ ability to survive.