The government's chief medical officer Chris Whitty has said the results from the landmark UK study provides 'encouraging' early data on the impact the vaccine is having.
The Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid vaccine has helped to reduce hospital admissions by an incredible 94% according to the latest statistics.
Oxford Covid vaccine reduces hospitalisations
According to the landmark UK study based on real-world data, even taking just one shot of the two-vaccine programme causes a significant decrease in hospitalisations.
Data collated between December 8 and February 15 when 1.14 million vaccines were administered in Scotland with a fifth of the population receiving at least one dose, showed a sharp decline in reducing the risks of hospitalisation.
Researchers analysed Covid hospital admissions in Scotland among people who have had their first vaccine and compared them with those who had not yet received a dose of the vaccine. Scientists from the University of Edinburgh, the University of Strathclyde, and Public Health Scotland studied data on people who had taken both the Pfizer/BioNTech jab or the University of Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine. The Pfizer and Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccines were shown to reduce the risk of hospital admission from Covid-19 by up to 85% and 94%, respectively by the fourth week after receiving the initial dose.
Chief Medical Officer for England and co-lead for the National Institute for Health Research, Professor Chris Whitty, said: “This research provides encouraging early data on the impact of vaccination on reducing hospitalisations.” Lead researcher of the Scotland vaccine study and director of the University of Edinburgh’s Usher Institute, Professor Aziz Sheikh, said: “These results are very encouraging and have given us great reasons to be optimistic for the future. We now have national evidence – across an entire country – that vaccination provides protection against Covid-19 hospitalisations. Roll-out of the first vaccine dose now needs to be accelerated globally to help overcome this terrible disease.”
National Covid-19 incident director at Public Health Scotland, Dr Jim McMenamin, said: “These results are important as we move from expectation to firm evidence of benefit from vaccines. Across the Scottish population the results show a substantial effect on reducing the risk of admission to hospital from a single dose of vaccine. For anyone offered the vaccine I encourage them to get vaccinated.”
PHS Public Health Consultant Lead for EAVE II, Dr Josie Murray, said: “These data show real promise that the vaccines we have given out can protect us from the severe effects of Covid-19. We must not be complacent though. We also all need to protect ourselves, our families, and friends by taking the second dose of vaccine when it is offered.” Professor of public health epidemiology at the University of Strathclyde, Chris Robertson, said: “These early national results give a reason to be more optimistic about the control of the epidemic.”