Why Getting COVID on Purpose Is a Dangerous Idea

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Jan. 13, 2022 -- As COVID-19 cases from Omicron successful the United States person skyrocketed to what seems similar new records each different day, speculation is rising among immoderate experts and technological novices alike that corruption for galore seems unavoidable.

In a Senate proceeding Tuesday, acting FDA Commissioner Janet Woodcock, MD, adjacent told the panel, "most radical are going to get COVID."

In mid-December, World Health Organization Director Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, PhD, said vaccines unsocial won't support america against Omicron. In precocious December, an epidemiologist told BBC News: "We person to beryllium realistic; we are not going to halt Omicron."

Now, posts are popping up connected societal media resurrecting ideas similar to chickenpox parties, wherever you intentionally mingle with infected people. One edifice successful Italy is charging $150 for a accidental to not lone get good vino with your dinner, but COVID-19, too.

So, if it's highly apt everyone volition beryllium infected, wherefore not perceive to the chatter retired there, conscionable get infected connected purpose, and get it implicit with?

Because it’s a truly atrocious idea, nationalist wellness experts say.

"No, it is not inevitable that everybody volition get Omicron infection," said Greg Poland, MD, a prof of medicine and infectious diseases astatine the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science successful Rochester, MN, and editor-in-chief of the diary Vaccine. "There whitethorn good beryllium higher rates of corruption and precocious rates of exposure, but vaccinated, boosted, and mask-wearing individuals person a precise precocious accidental of protecting themselves from infections."

Becoming infected requires a concatenation of events that is not inevitable, helium says.

"I deliberation that it is surely spreading similar crazy," says Aaron Glatt, MD, main of infectious diseases and infirmary epidemiologist astatine Mount Sinai South Nassau successful Oceanside, NY. "It is highly contagious and is going to interaction adjacent the vaccinated and boosted."

Even so, helium says, "There's nary mode to say, 'Everyone is going to get it.'"

With intensive attraction units packed crossed the state and tests arsenic hard to find arsenic truffles, "'it surely isn't the clip to propulsion our hands up successful the aerial and say, 'Everyone is going to get it,' " says Omai B. Garner, PhD, manager of objective microbiology for the UCLA Health System successful California. It sends the incorrect message, helium says.

Saying that Omicron volition impact america crossed the committee "means we should halt trying to combat it," helium says. If that happens, helium says, "you volition enactment the immunocompromised and the unvaccinated astatine risk. This is inactive a precise unsafe illness for radical who aren't vaccinated."

And the unvaccinated, Garner reminds people, see "an full colonisation nether property 5" for whom nary COVID vaccine has yet been authorized.

The Get-It-on-Purpose Narrative

The thought to deliberately drawback COVID is besides faulty reasoning, Poland says.

People whitethorn assume, mistakenly, that what they telephone "natural immunity" -- and what helium prefers to much accurately word "illness-induced immunity" -- won't person immoderate antagonistic consequences, and that erstwhile they are infected, their immunity volition beryllium long-lasting.

Another issue, Poland says, is misunderstanding what “milder” means erstwhile saying Omicron is mostly milder than the Delta variant. If you are unvaccinated oregon insufficiently vaccinated and go infected with the Omicron variant, helium said, the prognosis is amended than with Delta, but you could inactive get precise sick and die.

"I would surely not urge that radical spell retired and effort to get Omicron," Glatt says. "If idiosyncratic gets infected and recovers and does well, that would boost immunity, similar [from] immoderate infection." But "that means you person to get sick," and that's not a bully idea.

The different misguided thinking, Poland says, is figuring that experts already cognize everything determination is to cognize astir Omicron.

Not true, helium says. He cites caller studies, specified arsenic newly published probe from the CDC that recovered a higher hazard for a diabetes aft children were infected with COVID-19.

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