Zimbabwe records 53 new coronavirus cases, record 21 300 vaccinated


The study found that of those that do get the virus, there was only a 16% chance that they will get “moderate” sickness.

But the tests showed that the vaccine has a 100% efficacy against severe illness and death. This means that, of those vaccinated in the test group, there was 0% chance of them getting seriously ill or dying.

In other words, the vaccine prevented them from having to be admitted to hospital. It protected them from death.

According to Dr Norman Matara of the Zimbabwe Association of Doctors for Human Rights: “It means that against the strain in Brazil, half of people who gets the vaccine can still get infected with COVID. However of the half that gets infected, only 16% will have moderate symptoms and none of those vaccinated will die or get severe disease.”

It is important to note that this test was done on COVID-19 variants in Brazil, which are different from those found in Zimbabwe.

What is efficacy anyway?

According to the WHO, vaccine efficacy measures a vaccine’s protection against a disease in a vaccine trial. If a vaccine has, for example, 70% efficacy, it means that a person vaccinated in a clinical trial is around 70% less likely to develop the disease than someone in the trial who didn’t get the vaccine.

The WHO considers a vaccine with 50% efficacy as useful.

And what is effectiveness?

When you give a vaccine outside a clinical trial, the WHO then refers to vaccine ‘effectiveness’. Compared with efficacy, effectiveness takes into account all the things of the real world, outside of a controlled clinical trial setting. This is why governments and scientists everywhere are actively monitoring how effective vaccines are.


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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.


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