Vaccines effective in reducing deaths, hospitalisations - WC health Dept says
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CAPE TOWN - The Western Cape Department of Health presented an overview of the effectiveness of vaccines when it comes to reducing the numbers of hospitalisations and deaths.
In a statement, the provincial Health Department said there was no doubt that vaccines save lives.
To illustrate their point, the department used comprehensive data on cases of people diagnosed with Covid-19 in the over 60 years age bracket during the week of August 14 to 20, when the province was in the peak of its third wave of infections.
This age group was the first to receive vaccinations and presents the highest number of fully vaccinated people.
In this cohort, 270 619 people over the age of 60 or 38% out of a population of 720 000 were fully vaccinated at the time.
The analysis was led by Professor Mary-Ann Davies, director of the Centre for Infectious Disease Epidemiology and Research at University of Cape Town (UCT) and Public Health Medicine Specialist at the Western Cape Department of Health.
Her analysis found that of those over the age of 60, 22 455 cases were reported but of those infected 92% (2 245) were not vaccinated.
The analysis found that 729 people over the age of 60 were hospitalised and 96% (699) were not vaccinated.
It found that, unfortunately, 292 people died due to Covid-19, but 98.3% (287) of the deceased were not vaccinated.
Professor Davies also found that of those who died, 1.7% of deaths were due to other complications and not the vaccine.
The Health Department, referring to Professor Davies’ findings, said it could not be clearer as to how the vaccine reduces the risk of ending up in hospital or dying from Covid-19.
The department has urged residents who have understandable concerns to consult their local doctor or healthcare worker and ask questions.
But it said emerging data from local and international agencies provide clear evidence that the vaccine will offer an individual protection against severe Covid-19 and will save lives.