A recent study conducted in Israel at Maccabi Healthcare and Tel Aviv University compared the outcomes of over 76,000 Israelis in three groups. Those people who had Covid-19 but weren’t vaccinated against an equal number of people who had been fully vaccinated but hadn’t been previously infected and those previously COVID infected with only a single vaccine dose.
The results showed that the chances of a breakthrough infection were actually 13-times higher in the vaccinated group than reinfection was in the already-infected group.
The actual outcomes are as follows:
Without time constraints
Likelihood of infection among double-vaccinated (Pfizer) versus previously infected:
5.96 times higher
Likelihood of symptomatic infection among double-vaccinated (Pfizer) versus previously infected:
7.13 times higher
After 3+ months
Likelihood of infection among double vaccinated (Pfizer) versus previous infected:
13.06 times higher
Likelihood of symptomatic infection among double vaccinated (Pfizer) versus previously infected:
27.02 times higher
The researchers concluded that natural immunity to COVID-19 was more powerful than vaccine-induced immunity.
“This study demonstrated that natural immunity confers longer lasting and stronger protection against infection, symptomatic disease and hospitalization caused by the Delta variant;” said the authors.
This has been described as a “Bombshell” development by infectious diseases expert Professor Francois Balloux.
This finding does not undermine the importance fo vaccination for more vulnerable groups, however it could raise implications for global Covid policies.
It could also pose a fundamental challenge on the emphatic push for vaccine passports if unvaccinated people who have already had Covid actually pose less of a risk