According to some new research by UK scientists, even those who are fully vaccinated can, not only catch COVID-19, but can also spread it to their household members.
That’s right! Citizens who have received both doses of the vaccine can still infect individuals close to them even while having few to no symptoms of the virus themselves so it’s best to be careful.
More precisely, the chance of fully jabbed people transmitting COVID-19 is about 2 in 5 or 38 percent.
If the other housemates are also fully vaccinated, however, the chance of transmission drops to 25 percent, or 1 in 4.
This study by The Lancet Infectious Diseases tries to prove how vital it is to get as many people vaccinated as possible in order to lower the chances of transmission.
They point out that, the research shows how unvaccinated people cannot rely on others around them being vaccinated to protect them from contracting the virus themselves.
Besides, as COVID-19 continues to mutate and produce new variants, the protective power of the vaccine weakens more and more.
For now, the vaccines available are great at preventing the loss of human lives as well as serious symptoms when infected with COVID-10 but they are not doing as well when it comes to stopping the spread.
This is even more so in the case of the Delta variant, which seems to be more easily transmissible than the initial virus.
Not to mention that the protection the vaccines provide wanes in time, just like in the case of other jabs out there.
As a result, most vaccinated people may need boosting doses as the months go by.
Experts argue that all the members of a household should make sure they receive their vaccine and boosters since that is where most COVID transmission happens.
The UK study ran from September 2020 to September 2021 and featured 440 households from London and Bolton and data on their PCR COVID tests.
What the scientists were able to conclude was that being fully vaccinated lowers the risk of getting infected with the Delta variant when compared to unvaccinated people but that is not to say that it is impossible.
In fact, the chances of spreading the virus are considerable!
While vaccinated individuals are able to clear infection faster, their peak viral load (most infections stage) is pretty similar to that of unvaccinated people.
With that being said, it makes sense why they could still spread the virus to those whom they share a roof with.
Prof Ajit Lalvani from the Imperial College London, UK, and a co-leader of the study, said that “The ongoing transmission we’re seeing between vaccinated people makes it essential that unvaccinated people get vaccinated to protect themselves from infection and severe Covid, especially as people will be spending more time in close proximity inside, during the winter. We found that susceptibility to infection increased within months after the second vaccine dose – so those eligible for booster shots should also get them promptly.”
Furthermore, co-leader Dr Anika Singanayagam also stated that “Our findings provide important insights into the effect of vaccination in the face of the new variants, and specifically, why the Delta variant is continuing to cause high Covid numbers around the world, even in countries with high rates of vaccination. Thus, continued public health and social measures to curb the transmission – such as mask wearing, social distancing, and testing – remain important, even in vaccinated individuals.”