Two doses of Pfizer or AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine are as effective against the highly transmissible Delta coronavirus variant as they are against the alpha variant, according to a study published on Wednesday. Officials say the Pfizer vaccine is highly effective against the delta variant. However, the study reiterated that a single dose of vaccines is not sufficient for high protection.
According to the study, two doses of Pfizer's shot was 88% effective against the Delta variant, compared to 93.7% against the Alpha variant broadly the same as previously reported. Meanwhile, two shots of the AstraZeneca vaccine were 67% effective against the Delta variant, up from 60% originally reported, and 74.5% effective against the Alpha variant.
Meanwhile, Public Health England researchers wrote. "Only modest differences in vaccine effectiveness were noted with the Delta variant as compared with the Alpha variant after the receipt of two vaccine doses. Our finding of reduced effectiveness after the first dose would support efforts to maximise vaccine uptake with two doses among vulnerable groups in the context of circulation of the Delta variant."
The Delta variant- first identified in India, is highly infectious and fast-spreading. It was responsible for the second Covid-19 wave in India, according to a government study. According to the study of INSACOG and NCDC, the Delta (B.1.617.2) variant has 50% higher transmission rate than Alpha (B.1.17). The risk of breakthrough infections post Covid-19 vaccination is also high. But the scientists found no evidence of the role of the Delta variant in more deaths.
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