For the study, a total of 2,714 symptomatic hospital workers at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), who were primarily offered Covaxin were assessed, from April 15–May 15.
New Delhi: Two doses of Covaxin, also known as BBV152 are only 50% effective against symptomatic coronavirus disease, the first real-world assessment of India’s indigenous COVID-19 vaccine published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases journal showed. For the study, a total of 2,714 symptomatic hospital workers at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) here, who were primarily offered Covaxin were assessed, from April 15–May 15
Talking about the study, which was conducted when India had witnessed an unprecedented surge in COVID cases, Manish Soneja, Additional Professor of Medicine at AIIMS New Delhi said,”It (The study) offers a more complete picture of how BBV152 (Covaxin) performs in the field and should be considered in the context of COVID-19 surge conditions in India, combined with the possible immune evasive potential of the Delta variant.
Furthermore, he said, “Our findings add to the growing body of evidence that rapid vaccine rollout programmes remain the most promising path to pandemic control while public health policies must continue to include additional protective measures, such as mask-wearing and social distancing.”
- The study found that the vaccine effectiveness against symptomatic COVID-19 after two doses of Covaxin with the second dose administered 14 or more days before undergoing RT-PCR testing was 50%.
- Two doses of Covaxin had 77.8 per cent efficacy against symptomatic disease and present no serious safety concerns.
- Researchers evaluated the effectiveness of the vaccine against symptomatic RT-PCR confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection.
- Of the 2,714 employees in the study population, 1,617 people tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 infection, the virus that causes COVID-19, and 1,097 tested negative.
- Positive cases were matched to negative RT-PCR tests (controls). The odds of vaccination with Covaxin were compared between cases and controls and adjusted for occupational exposure to COVID-19, previous SARS-CoV-2 infection, and infection dates.
- Delta variant was the dominant strain in India during the study period, accounting for approximately 80 per cent of all confirmed COVID-19 cases.
- Covaxin, developed by Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech in collaboration with the National Institute of Virology, Indian Council of Medical Research (NIV-ICMR), Pune, is an inactivated whole virus vaccine administered in a two-dose regimen, 28 days apart. In January this year, Covaxin was approved for emergency use in India for people aged 18 and above. The World Health Organization (WHO) added the vaccine to its list of approved emergency use COVID-19 vaccines earlier this month. The COVID-19 vaccination centre at AIIMS New Delhi exclusively offered Covaxin beginning January 16 this year to all of its 23,000 employees.