More than 210,000 people in the U.S. have died from COVID-19, and tens of thousands are testing positive daily. The best way to defeat the pandemic is with a safe vaccine that can protect a large share of the population, especially people at higher risk of exposure, such as frontline health workers, and those more vulnerable, such as the elderly and, some health experts maintain, pregnant women. The data on whether pregnancy increases the risk for coronavirus infection or leads to more complications is incomplete, but there are preliminary indications that it is a potential risk factor.
By the workings of “herd immunity,” a vaccine wouldn’t even have to be given to everyone; if a large enough portion of the population is protected from infection, the virus won’t be able to keep spreading. The country is nowhere near that point at present.
It is encouraging to know that there are