Drlee wrote:It is a very good thing. I would be thrilled by a vaccine which is that effective. Particularly if you understand what the word "effective" means to an epidemiologist as opposed to a doctor.
It is possible, and even likely that a vaccine that is 60% effective at giving immunity from infection would drop the basic reproduction rate to near or below 1 in which case the disease would be quite manageable.
Further. If you can immunize the most vulnerable first you can drop the CFR dramatically.
Then there is the case of partial immunity. It could be that this vaccine may not protect everyone but that some of the 40% who do not get absolute immunity may still experience a decreased severity of infection should they be exposed. This would be a good thing too.
Right, if "60% effective" means that there's a 60% probability that it immunizes the patient, then it would essentially give us herd immunity in what is probably the safest way conceivable. IIRC the R0 is 2-6 and seems to be closer to 2.5, interestingly, if the vaccine is 60% effective then vaccinating everyone would be just enough to end the pandemic since the pandemic would end if 60% if the population is exposed. If the R0 is higher, it would still leave us a lot closer to the herd immunity status. If as you say it means a partial immunity then the disease would be a lot milder and more manageable from a public health perspective.
If the virus mutates so quickly as to necessitate a seasonal vaccine, then the new SARS-COV2 vaccines should also be easier to develop, just like the flu ones are.
And serious secondary effects of vaccines are rare. Among these, I think the most common concern are allergic reactions. Well:
CDC wrote:Although allergic reactions are a common concern for vaccine providers, these reactions are uncommon and anaphylaxis following vaccines is rare, occurring at a rate of approximately one per million doses for many vaccines (5). Epinephrine and equipment for managing an airway should be available for immediate use (6). The best practice to prevent allergic reactions is to identify individuals at increased risk by obtaining a history of allergy to previous vaccinations and vaccine components that might indicate an underlying hypersensitivity. Acute allergic reactions following vaccinations might be caused by the vaccine antigen, residual animal protein, antimicrobial agents, preservatives, stabilizers, or other vaccine components (7). Components of each vaccine are listed in the respective package insert. An extensive list of vaccine components and their use, as well as the vaccines that contain each component, has been published (8) and also is available from CDC pdf icon[4 pages]. Additional informationexternal icon and tables of potential allergens in different vaccines are available. The allergens identified in the history can be cross-checked against the allergens identified in package inserts.
So if everyone in the US was vaccinated, you should expect that 330 or so people would get a severe/life-threatening allergic reaction. Sounds like a lot less than the people who would die without a vaccine or as a result of lockdowns (yes, these are costly too and no one denies that. The whole point of a vaccine is to lift restrictions safely). Let alone those who face serious complications from the disease or lockdowns (including socioeconomic ones like getting fired), who would be a lot more than those who die.
More common, non-serious (but annoying) complications of common vaccines can be found here:
Having a sore arm or some cough, fever or other mild COVID-19 symptoms in exchange for getting my life back seems like a nice trade off. So why the hell wouldn't one take it?