More than half of Brits being admitted to hospital with Covid are still unvaccinated, the Government’s chief scientific adviser has clarified.
Sir Patrick Vallance last night told a Downing St press conference marking ‘Freedom Day’ that 60 per cent of hospitalisations were patients who had received both jabs.
But he later tweeted to reveal he had misspoken and that the 60 per cent figure actually applied to unvaccinated people.
Sir Patrick did, however, warn that the trend will soon flip because most people will soon be fully vaccinated and the jabs are not 100 per cent effective.
Vaccines have already saved tens of thousands of British lives since the third wave began, drastically slashing the proportion of infected patients who are left seriously ill. But none of the jabs are perfect, and admissions will continue to track upwards in line with infections.
Sir Patrick Vallance tweeted to clarify 60 per cent of hospital admissions are among unvaccinated people, rather than vaccinated
While hospitalisations are trending upwards across the UK, the rate at which the number is increasing is slowing. Week on week data in the three weeks leading up to July 13 showed the rate hospitalisations were increasing at dropped from 52.9 per cent, to 36 per cent and then 30.4 per cent
The number of Covid patients requiring NHS treatment reached 740 a day last week — up 30.4 per cent compared to seven days earlier.
Analysts tracking the health service’s battle say the current figures suggest the third wave is already outpacing some of SAGE’s worst-case scenarios.
Now children as young as two could get the Covid vaccine
Every child in the UK could be offered a Covid jab by the end of the year, vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi suggested today.
No10 is set to unveil plans to immunise Britons aged 12 to 16 who have underlying health conditions or live with a vulnerable family member.
The plans will also see 17-year-olds who are months away from their 18th birthdays offered a vaccine.
But ministers will stop short of opening the rollout up to all healthy youngsters until more safety data is collected in places like the US, where it is already happening.
The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation — which advises No10 on the inoculation drive — will also review data from ongoing trials of Pfizer’s jab in children as young as two.
Mr Zahawi said the Government had niggling concerns about the ‘very rare’ cases of heart inflammation in some young people given the Pfizer and Moderna jabs.
It comes as all Covid restrictions are lifted in England today, though Boris Johnson has urged caution as the outbreak across the country is spurred on by the more contagious Indian ‘Delta’ variant.
He will be spending Freedom Day in isolation — along with Chancellor Rishi Sunak — because they were both identified as close contacts of Health Secretary Sajid Javid, who tested positive for the virus at the weekend.
No10’s top advisers believe daily Covid hospitalisations will breach 1,000 within weeks, as infections continue to rise.
Sir Patrick made the incorrect claim while appearing at the news briefing alongside a self-isolating Boris Johnson and Professor Chris Whitty.
He said: ‘In terms of the number of people in hospital who have been double vaccinated, we know its around 60 per cent of the people being admitted to hospital with Covid have been double vaccinated.
‘And that’s not surprising because the vaccines are not 100 per cent effective. They are very, very effective but not 100 per cent.’
He later tweeted: ‘Correcting a statistic I gave at the press conference today, 19 July.
‘About 60 per cent of hospitalisations from Covid are not from double-vaccinated people, rather 60 per cent of hospitalisations from Covid are currently from unvaccinated people.’
But he warned the proportion of unvaccinated people seeking hospital treatment for Covid will definitely rise.
Sir Patrick said: ‘If everybody over 18 had taken up the vaccine, then of course anyone who caught it would be double vaccinated.
‘So the answer is we should expect to see a higher proportion of people in hospital and catching the infection who are double vaccinated.
‘That is inevitable that we will see that because of the less than 100 per cent efficacy of the vaccines overall.’
Leading scientists estimate two doses of AstraZeneca’s jab are around 85 per cent effective at preventing infected people from being hospitalised.
Jabs made by Pfizer and Moderna are similarly effective, trials show.
But the three vaccines are slightly less powerful after just a single dose.
All British adults have now been offered a first dose.
And figures show the number of people going to hospital is significantly lower than it was earlier in the pandemic.
The UK recorded nearly 40,000 cases yesterday, while 742 people were admitted to hospital.
When cases rose to 40,000 during the second peak in December, around 2,400 people were admitted to hospital, showing that the vaccine rollout is weakening the link between positive cases and hospitalisations.
Infections are currently running at about 45,000 a day (yellow line shows cases increasing since May) but deaths are still flat at about 40 a day (pink line shows fatalities in the third wave). For comparison, the last time cases hit this level when the second wave began to spiral out of control (orange line) there were more than 600 daily deaths
Latest Government figures show 742 people with Covid were admitted to hospital on Monday, a week-on-week rise of 30.4 per cent. Daily cases hit 39,950 and 19 people died within 28 days of testing positive. Meanwhile, 46.3million people have now had one jab and 36million are fully immunised
Source: Daily Mail UK