Single shot of AstraZeneca vaccine slashes transmission by two thirds gives 76% protection for 3 months

A SINGLE dose of the AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccine slashes Covid transmission by two thirds, new research has found.

Scientists at Oxford University have revealed Britain's jabs rollout could have already begun to block the virus spreading.

They found there was a 67 per cent drop in positive swabs among those already vaccinated. 

It comes as 9,646,715 Brits have already had their first dose of a Covid vaccine in the ambitious programme.

Researchers published their latest findings in Preprints with The Lancet, on Tuesday.

The experts also revealed just one jab gives 76 per cent protection for three months.

It follows intense global debate over fears about the delay between the first and second jab.

But new research shows the initial injection is effective from 22 days after the shot, for 90 days.

It backs up the Government’s plan for Brits to wait 12 weeks after their first vaccine – to get more jabs into arms as fast as possible.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock tweeted last night: "This is a really encouraging study – thank you to the teams at @UniofOxford and @AstraZeneca.

"Vaccines are the way out of this pandemic and we are making fantastic progress vaccinating the most vulnerable."

It was also revealed vaccine efficacy sits at 54.9 per cent with a wait of less than six weeks before the second jab.

But when each injection is spaced 12 or more weeks apart its efficacy soars to 82.4 per cent.

Professor Andrew Pollard, Chief Investigator of the Oxford Vaccine Trial, and co-author of the paper, said: “These new data provide an important verification of the interim data that was used by more than 25 regulators including the MHRA and EMA to grant the vaccine emergency use authorisation.

“It also supports the policy recommendation made by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) for a 12-week prime-boost interval, as they look for the optimal approach to roll out, and reassures us that people are protected from 22 days after a single dose of the vaccine."

Dr David Matthews, Reader in Virology, University of Bristol, said: “This is excellent news and very much what was expected from what we know about other vaccines.”

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