Evidence from Israel on the effect of the Pfizer BioNTech COVID - 19 vaccine

Britain's record on getting people vaccinated against COVID-19 is one of the best in the world with more than 5.38 million people - more than one in ten adults - now having had at least one dose of the vaccine and the daily rate up to 285 jabs a minute (Britain vaccinated 478,248 people in the 24 hours prior to today, Saturday 23rd January, with a first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.)

The best progress in the world has been made by Israel, which had vaccinated 10% of it's population by the end of December and is now up to 30%.

So naturally everyone is watching Israel for signs that this programme is bringing the infection rate down.

And although it is far too early to break out the champagne, the very early signs are encouraging.

Tracking of people over 60 in Israel who had the vaccine between 19th and 24th December suggests that although it took two weeks for any effect to start to show, thereafter there is a decline in infection rates in line with the clinical trials for the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine compared with a control group.

As I say, too early to break out the champagne, and we all need to remember when we have the vaccine that it will take two or three weeks to start providing protection, but at least this result provides hope that the world's long nightmare may be about to start coming to an end.


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