EMA, ECDC reiterate need for vaccination

Full vaccination is key to protecting against serious COVID-19, including disease caused by the Delta variant, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) said in a joint statement on Wednesday. Full vaccination with any of the EU/EEA-approved vaccines offers a high level of protection against severe disease and death caused by SARS-CoV-2, including variants, such as Delta.

The two EU agencies strongly encourage those who are eligible for vaccination but have not yet been vaccinated to start and complete the recommended COVID-19 vaccination schedule in a timely manner.

Vaccination is also important for protecting those at highest risk of severe disease and hospitalisation, reducing the spread of the virus, and preventing the emergence of new variants of concern, the statement highlighted.

Infections in vaccinated people do not mean that vaccines do not work.

Although the effectiveness of all COVID-19 vaccines authorised in the EU is very high, no vaccine is 100% effective. This means that a limited number of SARS-CoV-2 infections among persons that have completed the recommended vaccination schedule (i.e. ‘breakthrough infections’) are expected. However, when infections do occur, vaccines can prevent severe disease to a large extent, and greatly reduce the number of people in hospital due to COVID-19.

Vaccinated people are far better protected against severe COVID-19 than unvaccinated people, and we should all endeavour to be fully vaccinated at the earliest opportunity,

Fergus Sweeney, EMA’s Head of Clinical Studies and Manufacturing said.

The EMA has so far recommended the use of Pfizer/BioNTech’s Comirnaty, AstraZeneca’s Vaxzevira, Moderna’s Spikevax, and Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine. It is also examining the Russian-made Sputnik V, Sanofi’s Vidprevtyn, CureVac’s CVnCoV, as well as the vaccines of Sinovac and Novavax.

Cover photo: Getty Images

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