Covid-19 vaccines reduce hospital admissions, mortality: ICMR study

  • Post-vaccination breakthrough cases have been reported from various countries with use of different licensed vaccines. But vaccination seems to have an obvious advantage in averting severe disease, hospitalisation and deaths

Neetu Chandra Sharma
First Published16 Jul 2021
India experienced a deadly second wave of covid-19 with an increased number of post-vaccination breakthrough infections reported across the country. (Photo: AFP)
India experienced a deadly second wave of covid-19 with an increased number of post-vaccination breakthrough infections reported across the country. (Photo: AFP)

NEW DELHI: Covid-19 vaccines reduce hospital admissions and mortality in case of infections in those who were r having given the jabs, showed a study by Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).

The study, yet to be peer reviewed, also conducted a genomic analysis of covid-19 positive cases who had taken one or two does vaccine. This study indicated that majority of the clinical cases in the breakthrough were infected with the Delta variant. “At least 9.9% cases required hospitalization while fatality was observed in only 0.4% cases. This clearly suggests that the vaccination does provide reduction in hospital admission and mortality,” the authors said.

During March to June 2021, India experienced a deadly second wave of covid-19 with an increased number of post-vaccination breakthrough infections reported across the country.

The ICMR collected a total 677 tested positive by real-time RT-PCR by the Virus Research and Diagnostic Laboratory (VRDL) in the north, south, west, east, north-east, and central parts of India from Maharashtra, Kerala, Gujarat, Uttarakhand, Karnataka, Manipur, Assam, Jammu and Kashmir, Chandigarh, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, Pondicherry, New Delhi, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu.

Among the samples, 71 (10.5%) were vaccinated with Covaxin, 604 (89.2%) were vaccinated with Covishield, 2 (0.3%) were vaccinated with Sinopharm (outside India). The study showed that a total of 482 cases (71%) were symptomatic with one or more symptoms, while 29% had asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection. “Fever (69%) was the most consistent presentation followed by body ache including headache and nausea (56%), cough (45%), sore throat (37%), loss of smell and taste (22%), diarrhoea (6%), breathlessness (6%) and 1% had ocular irritation and redness,” the study said.

"It was observed that Southern, Western, Eastern and North-Western regions of India predominantly reported breakthrough infections were from mainly Delta and then Kappa variant. The Northern and central regions reported such infections due to Alpha, Delta and Kappa variants. The overall majority (86.09%) of the breakthrough infections were caused by the Delta variant (B.1.617.2),” the authors said.

Post-vaccination breakthrough covid-19 infections have been reported from various countries with use of different licensed vaccines. The authors said that it appears that the current covid-19 vaccines are disease modifying in nature wherein mild or less severe infections are expected to occur in vaccinated individuals.

However, vaccination seems to have an obvious advantage in averting severe disease, hospitalization and deaths, the scientists recommended.

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