COVID vaccines can curb deaths and hospitalisation in patients substantially, including those infected by the highly transmissible delta variant, according to a new study by the Indian Council of Medical Research.
About 0.4 per cent died among fully vaccinated people who become ill following breakthrough infections, while 10 per cent needed hospitalisation, according to the study, led by researcher Nivedita Gupta.
The study analysed genome sequencing data of 677 patients and found that 86 per cent of the fully vaccinated cases were due to the delta variant, Bloomberg quote from the study.
The findings underscore the crucial role of shots in preventing extreme outcomes among COVID sufferers and allays doubts around vaccine efficacy, especially with respect to the delta variant.
First detected in India last October, this variant has emerged as the dominant strain in the UK, the US and Australia.
“This clearly suggests that vaccination reduces severity of disease, hospitalisation and mortality,” said the study. “Therefore, enhancing the vaccination drive and immunising the populations quickly would be the most important strategy to prevent further deadly waves of the Covid-19 and would reduce the burden on the health care system.”
Among those analysed in the study, which is still to be peer-reviewed, 592 people had received both the vaccine doses while 85 had only one dose. India has predominantly injected people with AstraZeneca’s Covishield — a traditional vector-based shot whose efficacy against the delta variant has been dogged with concerns compared to the highly-effective messenger RNA vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna.
The research also detected evidence of two new mutations of delta — Delta AY.1 and Delta AY.2 — in some samples besides older variants, alpha and kappa.
India saw daily infections breach record 400,000-levels in early May during the delta-driven second wave.
The country has so far fully vaccinated only 5.7 per cent of its 1.3 billion population, according to Bloomberg’s vaccine tracker.hs and hospitalisation in patients substantially, including those infected by the highly transmissible delta variant, according to a new study by the Indian Council of Medical Research.