• A single shot of either the AstraZeneca or Pfizer vaccine reduces hospitalisation by more than 90 per cent

  • Scientists using real world data from the NHS vaccination programme show the effectiveness of the jabs

  • The Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine is being shunned by millions of people across the European Union

  • French President Emmanuel Macron claimed the Oxford vaccine was ‘quasi-ineffective’ for over-65s

Source: Daily Mail

Reprinted for educational purposes and social benefit, not for profit. 

The vaccine developed by Oxford University and AstraZeneca is stunningly effective at preventing recipients becoming seriously ill from Covid-19, new analysis shows.

It is even better than the Pfizer jab at stopping people getting so sick that they need to be admitted to hospital, Ministers have been told.

A single shot of either jab cuts the chance of needing hospital treatment by more than 90 per cent, ‘real world’ results from the NHS vaccination programme show.

But the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, shunned by millions across Europe because of concerns over trial data, is proving slightly more effective at stopping severe Covid-19 illness than the Pfizer jab.

Its apparent superiority even holds among over-70s, The Mail on Sunday understands, vindicating the UK drug regulator’s decision to approve it for use in older people.

The results are a massive boost not just for Oxford and AstraZeneca, but also the Government. Ministers have ordered 100 million doses, making it the workhorse of the NHS vaccination campaign.

The landmark results will add to growing confidence that vaccination is breaking the link between infections and deaths.

The figures were calculated by comparing Covid hospitalisation rates across England in those who have received a first dose of vaccine in the NHS rollout, to those of a similar age who have not.

They follow a Scottish study of Covid hospitalisation rates, published last week, which came to similar conclusions. Edinburgh University researchers found that by the fourth week after injection, ‘the Pfizer and Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines were shown to reduce the risk of hospitalisation from Covid-19 by up to 85 per cent and 94 per cent, respectively’.

Among over-80s, who are at highest risk of severe illness, a single dose cut the risk of needing hospital treatment by 81 per cent from week four onwards, when the results from both types were combined.

Well-placed sources said the larger English study found hospitalisation rates in over-70s were slightly lower among recipients of the Oxford vaccine than those who got the Pfizer drug. Last month, German authorities advised against using the Oxford vaccine in over-65s, citing lack of evidence of effectiveness from formal trials. The trials were dogged by low numbers of older volunteers.