More evidence has emerged on the relatively low risk of transmission outside compared with indoors.

@hpscireland data has shown that just one confirmed case of COVID-19 in every thousand is traced to outdoor transmission.…
“The relatively low numbers of cases resulting from outdoor transmission in the Republic is mirrored in international studies. A study of 1,245 cases in China found only three people were infected outdoors and they were in conversation without masks.”
“According to a review by the University of California of five global studies of transmission, the chances of getting Covid-19 in an indoor setting is 19 times greater than outdoors.”
Prof Orla Hegarty said “The risk of infection is low outdoors because unless you are up close to someone infected, most of the virus will likely be blown away and diluted in the breeze, like cigarette smoke.”

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More from @fact_covid

7 Apr
At a briefing from the UK medicines regulator on the investigation into the @AstraZeneca vaccine and whether it’s directly causing rare blood clots, Prof Van Tam says we have arrived at a “course correction” for the @AstraZeneca jab. Over 20m doses have been given in the UK.
No effective medicine is without risk, says Dr June Raine. And safety reviews have detected suspected blood clots in an extremely small number of people.

The evidence is firming up but more work is needed to establish beyond all doubt the vaccine has caused these side effects.
The benefits continue to outweigh the risks for the vast majority of people. There have been 79 case reports - all after the first dose - and 19 have died.

51 were women and 28 men, all aged 18 to 79 (3 under 30).

The risk of this type of rare clot is about 4 in a million.
Read 7 tweets
5 Apr
So as expected @BorisJohnson confirms Step Two of the roadmap will go ahead as planned on Monday 12 April. This is “fully justified by the data” and we are meeting the four government tests.

But “we cannot be complacent” and do not know “how strong the vaccine shield will be”.
“We see nothing in the present data that makes us think that we will have to deviate from the roadmap”, he says.
Chris Whitty says data from across the UK shows that there has been around a 60% reduction in symptomatic disease, and an 80% reduction in hospitalisation, from the first COVID-19 vaccine dose. He urges everyone to get their second dose.
Read 7 tweets
7 Feb
I’m seeing worrying comments from people that feel taking the Oxford/AZ jab is now pointless.

This is *absolutely* the wrong take: it remains a highly effective vaccine against severe illness for both the original virus AND the UK variant. Most likely the South African one too.
So take whatever vaccine you’re offered - the most important thing is to keep people out of hospitals.

If the vaccines do need to be updated (we don’t know yet), it will happen by autumn. Spring and summer will help keep transmission low until then.

There is no cause for alarm.
If you need further convincing please take a minute or so to watch this reassuring clip from the lead researcher on the vaccine, Professor Sarah Gilbert.
Read 4 tweets
7 Feb
Here’s the BBC’s take on the news about the South Africa variant:…

@AstraZeneca “expressed confidence that the vaccine would offer protection against serious cases, because it created neutralising antibodies similar to those of other coronavirus vaccines.”
Nevertheless the preliminary findings, first reported by the Financial Times and since confirmed by AstraZeneca, do suggest the vaccine offers only limited protection against mild and moderate disease caused by the variant.

The study is due to be published tomorrow.
The @UniofOxford told Reuters it was working with AstraZeneca to optimise the pipeline in vaccine production if it needed to adapt to a change in the virus.

It has said a new vaccine to work against mutated versions of the virus could be ready to deploy in the autumn, if needed.
Read 5 tweets
6 Feb
Today’s reported UK first vaccine dose figure falls fractionally short of the half million mark - but it’s still slightly up on the equivalent figure from one week earlier.

The total rises to almost 11.5 million first doses administered.
England and Wales are pretty neck to neck in terms of % of population to have received a first dose so far.
Read 4 tweets
5 Feb
Another strong day for reported first vaccine doses in the UK. Today’s number (480,560) is 64k up on the equivalent figure from one week ago.
Read 4 tweets

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