Johns Hopkins Doctor Thinks COVID Will Be Largely Gone By April, Half of U.S. Has Herd Immunity
BY KATHERINE FUNG
Dr. Marty Makary, a surgeon and a professor at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and Bloomberg School of Public Health, believes that the coronavirus will be “mostly gone” by April.
In an op-ed published by The Wall Street Journal on Friday, Makary argued that half of the U.S. has already reached herd immunity because there are more coronavirus cases in the country, possibly 6.5 times as many, than the 28 million that have been reported.
Combined with the 15 percent of Americans who have already begun receiving the vaccine, the doctor argued that normal life will return by the spring.
Markary argued that while the topic of natural immunity has often been rejected by most experts in the medical field due to a lack of data, the observational data is showing the majority of Americans may already be protected not only from COVID-19 but also its new variants.
“But the consistent and rapid decline in daily cases since Jan. 8 can be explained only by natural immunity,” Makary wrote. “Behavior didn’t suddenly improve over the holidays; Americans traveled more over Christmas than they had since March. Vaccines also don’t explain the steep decline in January. Vaccination rates were low and they take weeks to kick in.”
“Many experts, along with politicians and journalists, are afraid to talk about herd immunity. The term has political overtones because some suggested the U.S. simply let COVID rip to achieve herd immunity. That was a reckless idea,” he added. “But herd immunity is the inevitable result of viral spread and vaccination. When the chain of virus transmission has been broken in multiple places, it’s harder for it to spread—and that includes the new strains.“