By BMJ Global Health, an analysis has been published which has highlighted the fact that eradication of COVID-19 is possible from the face of Earth. It is more feasible than eradication of polio. However, it may not be as simple as eradicating smallpox.
In University of Otago Wellington in New Zealand, public health experts have said that taking proper health measures, vaccination and interest of global citizen can make the goal achievable. Covid-19 can be defeated in the process.
However, main challenge here is to secure as much vaccine as possible to vaccinate people quickly. Quick response to the SARS-CoV-2 virus can be given in the process too.
Feasibility of eradicating COVID-19 can be defined as “the permanent reduction to zero of the worldwide incidence of infection caused by a specific agent as a result of deliberate efforts”
On the occasion, COVID-19 has been compared with two viral diseases such as polio and small pox that are generally cured with vaccine. Diverse kinds of sociopolitical, technical and economical factors have been taken into consideration also that may help to deal with the goal.
Scoring system with three points is used on the occasion. Importance has been given on 17 variables on the occasion. It includes lifelong immunity, available of effective and safe vaccine, public health measures and management of government to control the disease.
Through the analysis, small pox has got 2.7 whereas COVID-19 and polio have got 1.6 and 1.5 respectively.
In 1980, Smallpox has been eradicated whereas two among three types of polio have been abolished around the globe. The author of the study has said “While our analysis is a preliminary effort, with various subjective components, it does seem to put COVID-19 eradicability into the realms of being possible, especially in terms of technical feasibility.”
However, they have acknowledged the fact that in comparison to polio and small pox, technical challengers are much higher in case of COVID-19. Challenges are seen due to lack of vaccines, acceptance of vaccine and more variants of COVID that is highly transmissible causing low immunity.
The authors have also said “Nevertheless, there are of course limits to viral evolution, so we can expect the virus to eventually reach peak fitness, and new vaccines can be formulated”
Later on, they have also added “Other challenges would be the high upfront costs for vaccination and upgrading health systems, and achieving the necessary international cooperation in the face of ”vaccine nationalism” and government-mediated ”antiscience aggression’”
Persistence and mutating ability of the vaccine may affect the goals of COVID-19 eradication in the future. However, it may not be a serious issue. The authors have also said “unprecedented global interest in disease control and massive investment in vaccination against the pandemic” offers a lot of hope for the future.