PSA: You’re not fully vaxxed until at least a week after your second dose

Australia’s vaccination rate is climbing, and everyone is eager to get back to normal, but just remember this very important point about your jab.

For much of this year and last, hope for a return to normalcy has been a faraway dream, an alternate reality at times. As Australia’s vaccination rate climbs towards that radiating 80 percent, post-pandemic life is in sight. Mingling with friends, going out on dates, having a beer in a bar to watch the footy, all of these things are almost within reach.

There are too many people, though, who have received the necessary second shot (yes, you do need both doses and no, we’re not going to argue about it) and feel like they can immediately drop their guard, maybe sneaking over to a mate’s house and discarding their masks. But immunity to Covid doesn’t happen magically in the instant the shot is administered.

Like what you see? Sign up to our newsletter for more stories like this

Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration responsible for approving vaccines state that it does not consider you to be fully protected against Covid-19 until seven days after your second dose.

The United States’ Center for Disease Control does not consider a person fully protected until two weeks following the second dose, the same goes for Britain’s National Health Scheme.

The reason for this is because the body and its immune system need time to identify coronavirus cells and communicate with two types of cells: B cells, the ones that make antibodies; and T cells; which destroy cells infected with the virus. Your immune system essentially gets a to-do list on how to tackle the virus. It’s around the two-week mark when your immunity is producing enough antibodies to neutralise infection.

It’s not entirely known how long protection against Covid will last, but both Pfizer and Vaxzervria (formerly known as AstraZeneca) are highly effective at preventing serious disease, hospitalisation, and death.

The topic of booster shots is being discussed by the world’s medical community, and at this stage, it’s looking like only vulnerable and immunocompromised individuals will need them.

23,362,740 vaccine doses have been administered to Australians; 69.1 percent of people 16 and over have received their first dose, and 43.9 percent of people over 16 have received their second dose.

Any products featured in this article are selected by our editors, who don’t play favourites. If you buy something, we may get a cut of the sale. Learn more.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here