UK finds vaccines 80% efficient at stopping hospitalisations in over-80s

LONDON (Reuters) – The Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines are greater than 80% efficient at stopping hospitalisations from COVID-19 in these over 80 after one dose of both shot, Public Well being England (PHE) mentioned on Monday, citing a pre-print research.

FILE PHOTO: A healthcare employee prepares a dose of the coronavirus illness (COVID-19) vaccine at a vaccination centre contained in the Blackburn Cathedral, in Blackburn, Britain, January 19, 2021. REUTERS/Molly Darlington

PHE mentioned the actual world research additionally discovered that safety towards symptomatic COVID in these over 70 ranged between 57-61% for one dose of Pfizer-BioNTech’s vaccine and between 60-73% for the Oxford-AstraZeneca one 4 weeks after the primary shot.

“These outcomes may additionally assist to clarify why the variety of COVID admissions to intensive care items amongst folks over 80 within the UK have dropped to single figures within the final couple of weeks,” British well being minister Matt Hancock informed a information convention. “That is severely encouraging.”

Britain has now administered a primary dose of COVID-19 vaccine to greater than 20 million folks, or simply over 30% of the inhabitants, with the aged getting precedence.

PHE submitted its evaluation for peer-review after offering preliminary findings of the real-world impression of the rollout per week in the past. A separate research in healthcare staff has proven one dose of a vaccine can cut back by 70% the variety of folks catching asymptomatic COVID-19.

The well being authority mentioned proof prompt that the Pfizer vaccine causes an 83% discount in COVID-19 deaths among the many over-80s. There was no equal knowledge for the AstraZeneca vaccine, which started to be administered at a later date.


PHE Head of Immunisations Mary Ramsay mentioned that whereas extra work wanted to be carried out to grasp the impression of vaccines in decreasing transmission of the coronavirus, the impact of the rollout was already obvious.

“This provides to rising proof exhibiting that the vaccines are working to cut back infections and save lives,” she mentioned.

One other PHE official mentioned extra work was wanted to ascertain the efficacy of vaccines towards the so-called Brazilian variant of the coronavirus.

Britain’s use of the AstraZeneca vaccine on aged folks contrasts with many European nations, which have cited an absence of scientific trial knowledge for his or her choice to not roll it out to older cohorts.

Requested whether or not the info justified Britain’s strategy, England’s deputy Chief Medical Officer Jonathan Van Tam mentioned it was “not immunologically believable” that the vaccine would work in youthful folks and never older folks.

“We took the view that it nearly actually would work,” he mentioned. “The PHE knowledge have clearly vindicated that strategy immediately.”

Reporting by Alistair Smout, extra reporting by James Davey and Michael Holden; Enhancing by Gareth Jones

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