KUALA LUMPUR, July 8  — COVID-19 vaccination does not protect an individual 100 per cent from contracting COVID-19 but it does protect in 99.999 per cent of cases from the severity of the disease, according to researchers.

Dr Rais Hussin and Dr Margarita Peredaryenko said these recent statistics were made available by the United States Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

“According to the statistics for the period Jan 1 till April 30, 2021, for approximately 101 million people fully vaccinated against COVID-19, a total of 10,262 vaccine breakthrough infections had been reported from 46 US states.

“Out of these 10,262, a total of 2,725 (27 per cent) were asymptomatic, 995 (10 per cent) were hospitalised, and 160 (two per cent) patients died. Furthermore, among the 995 hospitalised patients, 289 (29 per cent) were asymptomatic or hospitalised for a reason unrelated to COVID-19,” they said in a joint statement here today.

Dr Rais and Dr Margarita are part of the research team of EMIR Research, an independent think tank focused on strategic policy recommendations based on rigorous research.

The researchers said it is evident that vaccination plays a crucial role not only for personal protection but also for society as a whole longing to get back to some “normalcy” in our socio-economic interactions.

It is important to note that the same countries have been gradually reducing their movement control restrictions as well, step in step with the progress of their COVID-19 vaccination programmes, they said.

They said based on the recent pre-COVID-19 empirical evidence collected by Our World in Data group, Malaysia appeared among the countries that have a very low vaccine hesitancy in general and very high trust in healthcare staff.

“Hopefully this trend can continue with regards to the current NIP (National Immunisation Programme) effort,” they said, adding that systemic information about COVID-19 and vaccines might help people to make informed choices if they were still hesitant.

They also said the vast data accumulated for the five months of the national immunisation programme is the richest input for Machine Learning algorithms that can be used to evaluate the safety of various types of vaccines for individuals based on their pre-existing chronic conditions and illnesses.

“It is the absence of such solid data base and transparency that becomes the fertile ground for unfounded fears.

“With the vaccine hesitancy remaining low and COVID-19 NIP efforts gearing up at a constant pace, Malaysia might be well poised to finally break out of the recurrent and devastating movement control restrictions,” they said.


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