A growing body of scientific evidence on the effectiveness of natural immunity after a person gets the COVID-19 virus may become a legal defense to avoid mandated vaccines.
According to a Yahoo Finance article Saturday, the natural immunity argument against the rising tide of mandated vaccinations could become a way to legally avoid losing jobs or being prevented from attending schools.
President Joe Biden has already mandated vaccinations for members of the military and federal workers by executive order and using his administration’s Department of Labor to enforce a vaccine mandate for companies with more than 100 employees to pass down to workers.
In addition, several large colleges, states and cities, are also imposing mandates of their own.
In New York City for instance, Mayor Bill de Blasio is mandating the employees of the city’s school district to have proof of at least one dose of the available vaccines by midnight Monday or face losing their jobs.
The increase in mandates follows the raising tide of delta variant infections over the spring and summer that are filling some hospitals across the country as the new variant, which is more contagious, surges.
Many of these mandates are being challenged in court, with the New York City School District getting a temporary injunction put on its mandate by a federal judge on Friday.
The evidence in several studies that natural immunity is, in many cases, more effective than the current vaccine regimen of Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson, may give the defendants in these cases a firm legal footing to challenge the mandates.
“I think that a judge might reject a rule that's been issued by a body, like the U.S. Department of Labor or by a state, which has not been sufficiently thought through as it relates to the science,” Erik Eisenmann labor and employment attorney with Husch Blackwell, told Yahoo Finance.
Studies out of Israel, for example, show natural immunity at least as effective as vaccinations in some people, although the study is yet to be peer reviewed.
That study looked at thousands of cases, while studies by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention with smaller sample sizes in the United States, found that some people who recovered from the virus did not have any antibodies created.
Another study from Kentucky found the vaccines provided more protection than natural immunity alone.
Legal precedent seems to currently favor the mandates, with some cases that go back years, but the evolving scientific body of evidence regarding COVID could change that once the cases are decided.
One study conducted by Washington University school of Medicine found that the antibodies produced after a COVID infection could protect the patient for life.
"These cells will live and produce antibodies for the rest of people’s lives,” Ali Ellebedy, an associate professor of medicine and of molecular microbiology at Washington University said. “That’s strong evidence for long-lasting immunity.”
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