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CDC Acknowledges Natural Immunity to SARS-CoV-2

Without specifically using the term “natural immunity,” the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that risk of infection from COVID-19 “is considerably reduced by immunity from previous infection.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published a revised “guidance for minimizing the impact of COVID-19” that recognizes the role of acquired immunity on August 19.

The CDC says that risk of infection from COVID-19 “is considerably reduced by immunity derived from vaccination, previous infection or both” and that “persons that have had COVID-19 but who are not vaccinated have some degree of protection against serious illness from their previous infection.”

This is a significant step by the agency which from the beginning of the pandemic two and one-half years ago has at various times touted social distancing, quarantines, masks, and vaccinations exclusively as protection against the virus.

Citing the high level of immunity in the U.S. population—from vaccination, previous illness, or both—the CDC also rolled back its quarantine recommendations, regardless of vaccination status.

Mandates Still in Effect

As of late August, New York University and other colleges required students to be “fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and boosted, as soon as they are eligible, unless they have been granted a medical or religious exemption.”

Other high-profile universities reinstating vaccine and/or mask mandates for the fall term include Georgetown, Columbia, Johns Hopkins, Rice, and American University in Washington, D.C.

The Washington, D.C. public schools announced that children were required to show proof of vaccination this fall, or they would not be allowed to attend classes in person and would not have a remote-learning option.  But according to the city’s “Vaccine Data” website, 47 percent of black children ages 12–15 in the district had not completed the primary vaccination series required for in-person schooling.

After The Daily Signal reported the proof-of-vaccination requirement would keep many black children from attending school this fall, the D.C. government abruptly changed course and postponed the vaccine mandate until January 3, 2023.

FDA Clears Boosters

Meanwhile, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an emergency use authorization for new boosters developed by Pfizer and Moderna targeting the now-prevalent BA.4 and BA.5 omicron subvariants that have not undergone human trials, on August 30.

The COVID-19 shots serve no public health purpose, says Jane Orient, M.D., executive director of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons and policy advisor to The Heartland Institute, which co-publishes Health Care News.

“It is quite apparent that the COVID injections are not preventing infection or transmission, and thus there is no public health justification for discriminating against unvaccinated persons,” said Orient. “It is asserted that the shot will protect you against hospitalization and death, but that is looking increasingly dubious. The number of severe adverse reactions, including death, reported in close association with the shot, is unprecedented. More and more physicians are urging regulatory authorities to ‘stop the shot.’”

Bonner Russell Cohen, Ph.D. (bcohen@nationalcenter.org) is a senior fellow at the National Center for Public Policy Research.

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Bonner R Cohen
Bonner R Cohen
Bonner R. Cohen is a senior fellow with the National Center for Public Policy Research, a position he has held since 2002.


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