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COVID-19 vaccines that reduce symptoms but do not block infection need higher coverage and faster rollout to achieve population impact.

Abstract

to prevent 50% of the infections and death over 1 year. Delaying the start of the vaccination by 3 months decreases the expected population impact by more than 50%. Vaccines which prevent COVID-19 disease but not SARS-CoV-2 infection, and thereby shift symptomatic infections to asymptomatic infections, will prevent fewer infections and require larger and faster vaccination rollouts to have population impact, compared to vaccines that reduce susceptibility to infection. If uncontrolled transmission across the U.S. continues, then expected vaccination in Spring 2021 will provide only limited benefit.

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