As it happenedended1630584246

Coronavirus news – live: Double-jabbed half as likely to have long Covid as NHS ‘ready’ to vaccinate children

Latest developments as they happen

Tom Batchelor,Eleanor Sly
Thursday 02 September 2021 13:04
comments

Related video: Gavin Williamson wants Covid vaccine rolled out to children under 16

Being double-jabbed almost halves the likelihood of long Covid in adults who get coronavirus, a new study has suggested.

Researchers at King’s College London also said that being admitted to hospital with the virus was 73 per cent less likely, and the chances of severe symptoms were reduced by almost a third (31 per cent) in the fully vaccinated.

The team analysed data from more than two million people logging their symptoms, tests and vaccine status on the UK Zoe Covid Symptom Study app between 8 December 2020 and 4 July this year.

It comes as Gavin Williamson said there was the capacity to give Covid vaccinations to 12 to 15-year-olds as well as a booster programme for adults.

The education secretary said the decision was not “either/or” and insisted the NHS was “ready to go into schools and deliver that vaccination programme for children” when given the go-ahead by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).

1630584209

Goodbye

The Independent’s Covid blog is shutting for the afternoon but the latest updates and articles will be still be available elsewhere on the website.

Eleanor Sly2 September 2021 13:03
1630567264

Good morning and welcome to The Independent’s rolling coverage of the pandemic, in the UK and around the world.

Tom Batchelor2 September 2021 08:21
1630567655

JCVI to make decision on child jabs ‘very, very soon'

Gavin Williamson has heaped pressure on the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) to make a decision on vaccinating 12 to 15-year-olds “very, very soon”.

Speaking to BBC Breakfast, he said: “I think parents would find it deeply reassuring to have a choice of whether their children should have a vaccine or not.

“We obviously wait for the decision of JCVI. Probably a lot of us are very keen to hear that and very much hope that we’re in a position of being able to roll out vaccinations for those who are under the age of 16.

“I would certainly be hoping that it is a decision that will be made very, very soon.”

He said he could not give a timeline for when the decision is expected because the JCVI is a “completely independent committee”, adding: “They’re not there to take instructions from the government.”

“They will reach a decision, I’m told and I understand, very, very soon,” he said.

Tom Batchelor2 September 2021 08:27
1630568398

Vaccine booster programme for adults ‘highly likely’, says JCVI chief

Professor Anthony Harnden, deputy chairman of the independent Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), said it was “highly likely” that there will be a Covid vaccine booster programme.

Asked if there will “definitely” be a booster programme, Prof Harnden told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “I think it’s highly likely that there will be a booster programme.

“It’s just the question of how we frame it. This will be decided over the next few weeks.

“I can’t definitively say that there will be because we have not made that decision yet, but it is highly likely.”

Asked if boosters might not necessarily be for everyone, he replied: “Well again we need to look at all that data. What we don’t want to do is boost people and then find we have a new variant and we can’t boost them again because we’ve boosted them too soon and those people might not have needed the booster in the first place.

“So there’s a lot of very complicated modelling and data analysis that is going on about this at the moment.”

Tom Batchelor2 September 2021 08:39
1630569307

Being double-jabbed almost halves likelihood of long Covid, finds study

Being double-jabbed almost halves the likelihood of long Covid in adults who get coronavirus, a new study has suggested.

Researchers at King’s College London also said that being admitted to hospital with the virus was 73 per cent less likely, and the chances of severe symptoms were reduced by almost a third (31 per cent) in the fully vaccinated.

The team analysed data from more than two million people logging their symptoms, tests and vaccine status on the UK Zoe Covid Symptom Study app between 8 December 2020 and 4 July this year.

The research, published in the Lancet, said: “We found that the odds of having symptoms for 28 days or more after post-vaccination infection were approximately halved by having two vaccine doses.

“This result suggests that the risk of long Covid is reduced in individuals who have received double vaccination, when additionally considering the already documented reduced risk of infection overall.”

Tom Batchelor2 September 2021 08:55
1630570138

Third vaccine dose for 500,000 vulnerable Britons after JCVI advice

Around half a million vulnerable Britons are to be offered a third dose of coronavirus vaccine, but a decision has yet to be taken on the awaited autumn booster programme.

Anyone aged 12 or over with a weakened immune system — including patients with blood cancer, advanced HIV or who have had recent organ transplants — will be eligible for the jab following a recommendation from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).

Health secretary Sajid Javid stressed it was not the start of the booster programme, which he said would “begin in September to ensure the protection people have built from vaccines is maintained over time and ahead of the winter”.

Here is the story:

Half a million Britons to get third vaccine dose after JCVI ruling

But there is still no word on Covid jabs for school pupils aged 12-15 or the autumn booster programme

Tom Batchelor2 September 2021 09:08
1630570798

UK schools closed longer during pandemic than almost any other European nation

UK schools have undergone longer Covid closures than almost all other European nations during the pandemic, according to a new report from Labour.

The party’s analysis of Oxford University’s Covid-19 response tracker suggested the UK’s schools and universities spent 44 per cent of days between January last year and this July in complete closure.

It found that only Italy fared worse on 48 per cent, while Ireland was 10th on 29 per cent. The analysis did not take into account time periods of expected closure.

Tom Batchelor2 September 2021 09:19
1630571578

UK sees 207 Covid deaths in 24 hours — highest daily number for six months

The UK’s coronavirus death toll rose by 207 on Wednesday – the highest number of fatalities reported for six months.

It is the first time that more than 200 deaths have been reported in a single day since 9 March, when 231 people were recorded as losing their lives within 28 days of testing positive for the virus.

With the number of new daily infections having mostly sat above 30,000 in recent weeks, after rising to a high of nearly 55,000 on 17 July, there has been a slow but steady climb since June in the number of new deaths reported.

Here is the story:

UK sees highest daily number of Covid deaths for six months

Deaths have been rising steadily since mid-June but remain far lower than during winter wave

Tom Batchelor2 September 2021 09:32
1630572298

Schools likely to be ‘greater part of the problem’ this autumn

Professor Calum Semple has warned that schools are likely to be a “greater part of the problem” when it comes to spread of coronavirus than they previously were.

The academic, who sits on the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), told BBC Breakfast: “I think schools will become a greater part of the problem than they were before.

“Because if you want to have schools operating as near-normal as possible with full classes, and you can’t do social distancing as effectively compared to workplaces where the adults are working from home, and are vaccinated, schools become a greater part of the problem than they were before.”

But he said he believed schools should stay open “nearly at all costs” because the damage caused by “lack of social interaction and education is lifelong”.

He added that better buildings with better ventilation are needed.

He said: “It’s tricky. Many schools are built to be heat-efficient rather than well-ventilated now and that’s a problem. So I think a lot of emphasis has to go on to improving the quality of building stock.”

Tom Batchelor2 September 2021 09:44
1630573018

One in seven children with Covid still have symptoms after 15 weeks

As many as one in seven children who test positive for coronavirus display symptoms 15 weeks later, a study into long Covid in children has found.

The research, the most comprehensive of its kind in the world, has collected data from 7,000 people aged between 11 and 17 since it started in December. The cohort consisted of those who had a positive PCR test result and others who had not caught the virus.

Children’s health experts discovered that those who contracted the disease were twice as likely - almost four months after they tested positive for Covid-19 - to complain of headaches, fatigue and dizziness than those in the control group.

Here is the story:

One in 7 children with Covid still have symptoms after 15 weeks

Figure ‘not trivial’ but ‘nowhere near’ as high as some predicted, says study author

Tom Batchelor2 September 2021 09:56

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

View comments