In an effort to get the U.S. government to recognize the value of natural immunity in providing effective protection against COVID-19, U.S. Representative Diana Harshbarger of Tennessee introduced the Natural Immunity Is Real Act in the House of Representatives on Oct. 18, 2021. The bill, H.R. 5590, requires U.S. federal agencies to take into account naturally acquired immunity from previous COVID infection when issuing any rules or regulations aimed at protecting from the disease.1 2 3 4 5
Scientific Evidence Shows Effectiveness of Natural Immunity
“There’s ample scientific evidence from numerous peer-reviewed studies that natural immunity from previous COVID-19 infection is effective, durable and long-lasting, Rep. Harshbarger said. “[T]he Biden Administration must ‘follow the science’ and be open, honest and transparent about the millions of Americans who have natural immunity against the COVID-19 virus.”
Rep. Harshbarger added:
I’ve always said we need to use all the clinical tools as protection and treatment options to combat COVID-19. However, my bill is a necessary and timely legislative action resulting from President Biden’s continued politicization of COVID-19 which continues to create deep divisions among Americans, such as when he chillingly said his national vaccine mandate requirements are ‘not about freedom or personal choice.’ Now more than ever, we need to pursue every scientific measure—such as natural immunity—that can help mitigate the pandemic without threatening people’s jobs, our economy, or denying Americans access to everyday life activities based on COVID-19 vaccination status.2
H.R. 5590, which has been referred to the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, has been co-sponsored by Reps. Daniel Webster (Florida), Jeff Van Drew (New Jersey), Chris Stewart (Utah), Bill Posey (Florida), Mary Miller (Illinois), Mariannette Miller-Meeks (Iowa), Dan Bishop (North Carolina), Mo Brooks (Alabama), Madison Cawthorn (North Carolina) and Chip Roy (Texas).5
“Too many medical leaders are refusing to publicly recognize what overwhelming data has already shown—protection afforded to individuals with natural immunity is real, robust and durable,” said Rep. Webster. “Denying science only contributes to existing confusion, misinformation, and mistrust among the American people. This bill helps restore trust and faith in the Public Health system, while maintaining our fight against COVID-19.”2
“No American should be forced to choose between getting the COVID vaccine or keeping their job, particularly when the Biden policy fails to recognize that millions of Americans have immunity because they’ve already had and recovered from COVID,” said Rep. Posey.2
Federal Government Urged to Respect the Science of Natural Immunity
A companion bill to H.R. 5590, S. 2849, has been introduced in the Senate by Senator Mike Lee of Utah and referred to the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions. “This bill does not say that vaccines are bad or unhelpful. It merely asks the federal government to respect widely available science,” Sen. Lee said. “The bill would allow us to keep Americans employed and help us beat the pandemic in a smart way, in a reasoned, rational way… in a compassionate way.”6 7
In a recently published retrospective observational study, researchers at Tel Aviv University and Maccabi Healthcare in Israel found that unvaccinated individuals who came down with a SARS-CoV-2 virus infection and developed natural immunity to it were 27 times more protected against the virus than those who had been vaccinated for COVID.
This study demonstrated that natural immunity confers longer lasting and stronger protection against infection, symptomatic disease and hospitalization caused by the Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2, compared to the BNT162b2 two-dose vaccine-induced immunity. Individuals who were both previously infected with SARS-CoV-2 and given a single dose of the vaccine gained additional protection against the Delta variant.9
On Sept. 28, 15 members of the Doctors Caucus in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives wrote a letter to the director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Rochelle Walensky, MD, urging the CDC to “acknowledge natural immunity and work with other federal agencies to ensure all future guidance, policies, and federally-funded research take this evidence into account and build off it.”10 11
If you would like to receive an e-mail notice of the most recent articles published in The Vaccine Reaction each week, click here.
Click here to view References:
1 Gilliam B, McAvoy D. Harshbarger proposes changes to mandate timelines based on immunity from previous COVID cases. WJHL 11 Oct. 18, 2021.
2 Press release. Congresswoman Diana Harshbarger Introduces Bill to Require Federal Agencies to Acknowledge Natural Immunity to COVID-19. U.S. Representative Dana Harshbarger Oct. 18, 2021.
3 Romboy D. Conservative politicians: Let natural immunity ring. Doctors: Get the COVID-19 vaccine. Deseret News Oct. 19, 2021.
4 The Ingraham Angle. Diana Harshbarger introduces bill to require federal agencies to recognize natural immunity to COVID. Fox News Oct. 27, 2021.
5 Congress.gov. H.R.5590 – Natural Immunity Is Real Act. Oct. 15, 2021.
6 Fox 13 News Utah. Utah Sen. Mike Lee wants mandate to consider natural immunity. YouTube Oct. 8, 2021.
7 Hal S.2846 – Natural Immunity Is Real Act
8 CBN News. ‘Natural Immunity is 27 Times More Protective’. YouTube Sept. 14, 2021.
9 TVR Staff. Israeli Study Finds Natural Immunity to Coronavirus Far Superior to Vaccine-Induced Immunity. The Vaccine Reaction Sept. 5, 2021.
10 Hobley N. Senators, Doctors Urge CDC to Recognize Natural Immunity. The Vaccine Reaction Oct. 25, 2021.
11 Press release. Sen. Marshall Leads Doc Caucus Letter Urging CDC to Acknowledge COVID-19 Natural Immunity. U.S. Senator Roger Marshall Sept. 29, 2021.