It's not helpful to talk about herd immunity with COVID-19

In the face of the frightening uncertainty swirling around COVID-19, it’s natural to clutch at simple suggestions about how to halt its progress and reduce its impact.

crowd wearing PPE

Because herd immunity has worked previously, we invoke it now. But COVID-19’s viral characteristics make this unlikely to be helpful.

The most basic problem is the difficulty of being certain about the nature and duration of SARS-CoV-2 immunity.

Recent studies