COVID-19 vaccines lower chance of being infected with delta variant by half: UK study

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People who are fully vaccinated with a two-dose coronavirus vaccine have a 50 percent to 60 percent reduced risk of being infected with the delta variant, according to a new UK study.

Live Science reported that the study examined nearly 100,000 people who took COVID-19 swab tests at home between June 24 and July 12. The researchers didn’t untangle the effectiveness of specific vaccines.

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The study found that people who received two vaccine doses were 49 percent as likely to test positive for the coronavirus, even without symptoms, compared with unvaccinated people, and that vaccinated people were 59 percent less likely to test positive with symptoms.

“These findings confirm our previous data showing that both doses of a vaccine offer good protection against getting infected,” Paul Elliott, director of the REACT program from Imperial’s School of Public Health, said in a statement.

Live Science also reported that the study also found that vaccinated people had a smaller viral load on average, meaning they likely shed less virus and are less contagious than unvaccinated people.

The U.K. Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said that the report shows the importance of taking personal responsibility by self-isolating if you are contact traced, getting tested if you have symptoms, and wearing face coverings where appropriate.

“I urge anyone who has yet to receive a vaccine to get jabbed and take up both doses — the vaccines are safe, and they are working,” Javid added.

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