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3 Feb, 2021 11:01

No new hospitalisations in those who have been vaccinated against Covid-19, says Oxford vaccine chief but warns of mutant variants

No new hospitalisations in those who have been vaccinated against Covid-19, says Oxford vaccine chief but warns of mutant variants

The chief inspector of the AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccine has said the jab is having a profound impact on Covid-19 hospitalisation across the world but warned that new virus variants may impact the vaccines’ efficacy.

“We have not seen any additional hospitalisations in those who are vaccinated,” Professor Andrew Pollard, chief inspector of the Oxford vaccine, told Sky News on Wednesday. 

“I think this is really good news, as we are seeing from all the vaccines that we now have information about – that they are preventing the most severe disease and hospitalisations consistently in different countries, in different geographies, and some emerging data even in countries where the new variants are more common,” Pollard stated.

The vaccine chief described the information as “encouraging” but said Covid-19 variants may cause difficulties in the future, noting one concern is that the variants “are the virus’ way to carry on transmitting and causing the milder infections.”

Pollard added that they had been running a trial in recent months concerning the effectiveness of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine on the British variant of Covid-19. He said that data will be available soon but suggested there are no significant mutations that should impact the jab’s efficacy. 

Also on rt.com AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine is 76 percent effective 12 weeks after first dose – Oxford study

Pollard’s comments come after further information was released concerning the efficacy of the widely used AstraZeneca jab on Tuesday. 

The data showed that a single dose of the vaccine is 76 percent effective at protecting from primary symptomatic Covid-19 for the first 90 days post-vaccination with the protection showing little evidence of waning in this period. The data also showed a 67 percent reduction in positive swabs among those vaccinated. 

The AstraZeneca jab has been administered across the UK for nearly a month but only received permission in the EU last week. The vaccine has been used alongside the Pfizer jab in the UK, where more than ten million doses have been administered.

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