by Jon Sanders
Research Editor and Senior Fellow, Regulatory Studies, John Locke Foundation
Image source: Screenshot of a WTVD ABC 11 story on First Friday crowds in downtown Raleigh, August 6, 2021.
This past week 99.6% of people in NC posed no threat of passing along COVID-19 to anyone, and over three-fourths (76.4%) of adult North Carolinians are estimated to be immune.
Here is the NC Threat-Free Index for the week ending August 9:
For August 9, the estimate is now over three-fourths (76.4%) of adult North Carolinians with immunity (vaccine-induced immunity and natural immunity), using CDC estimates of actual infections and DHHS estimates of current vaccinations and the formula outlined here.
Recall that Cooper’s standard of immunity was two-thirds (66.7%) of adult North Carolinians partially vaccinated. This standard had no regard whatsoever for natural immunity from actual infection, even though that is the stronger and more durable immunity. Vaccination is a means, not the end — the goal is herd immunity. With 62 percent of North Carolinians already partially vaccinated, that should be more than sufficient for North Carolinians to be past two-thirds goal of adult North Carolinians with immunity.
Furthermore, including vaccinated and naturally immune children (18 and under) into the mix, North Carolina is at 72.4% immunity. As a reminder, it is widely accepted that herd immunity from Covid-19 is with 70% of people immune.
Unlike with previous weeks, most of the “new” deaths announced in the past week occurred within the past month. Even though 84 of the 89 deaths occurred in July through August, one of the reported “new” deaths actually occurred in October 2020. DHHS retracted two deaths from November and December 2020. Five “new” deaths occurred in January and February 2021.