TOPLINE Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine staved off illness and death for over 95% of Israeli patients, according to government figures released Saturday from a report reviewed by multiple news outlets, encouraging news from the world’s most heavily vaccinated country.
- Israel’s Ministry of Health studied the roughly 1.7 million Israelis who had received both shots of Pfizer’s vaccine as of the end of last month, and released a report later obtained by Reuters and several local news outlets.
- Two weeks after receiving both doses, vaccinated Israelis were 95.8% less likely to fall ill from Covid-19 and 98.9% less likely to face hospitalization or death, Reuters reported.
- This report follows a spate of good news from Israel: The country’s main healthcare provider said Sunday vaccinated patients are 92% less likely to end up with serious Covid-19 cases than their unvaccinated peers, and a non-peer reviewed study Thursday found just one dose of the vaccine reduces the risk of infection by 75% after two weeks.
32.4%. That’s the share of Israelis who are fully vaccinated as of Saturday, according to the New York Times’ tracker. The country ranks first in the world for vaccinations, compared to the United States’ 5.1% immunization rate.
Israel is leading the worldwide vaccination race, partly due to the country’s small size, speed in buying up doses and comprehensive network of HMOs (the effort controversially doesn’t include most residents of the West Bank and Gaza Strip). Public health authorities around the world are watching Israel’s progress closely, making the country the planet’s largest test case for the impact of mass-vaccination. So far, experts say there’s reason for cautious optimism: cases and hospitalizations have declined for several weeks.
“Israel has a remarkable diminution in cases associated with the efficiency of their vaccine,” U.S. infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci said Wednesday.
By Joe Walsh, Forbes Staff