Home Medizin Große britische Studie zeigt Lücken in der Abdeckung der COVID-19-Impfung auf

Große britische Studie zeigt Lücken in der Abdeckung der COVID-19-Impfung auf

von NFI Redaktion

The first research study on the entire British population reveals gaps in the COVID-19 vaccination. By the summer of 2022, between a third and half of the population of the four British nations had not received the recommended number of COVID vaccinations and booster doses.

The results suggest that by the summer of 2022, more than 7,000 hospital admissions and deaths could have been prevented if the United Kingdom had better vaccine coverage, according to a paper published today in The Lancet.

Given the rising number of COVID-19 cases and the recently identified new strain variant, this study provides an up-to-date insight into vaccine willingness and hesitancy, and could inform policy makers.

The findings – led by Health Data Research UK (HDR UK) and the University of Edinburgh – were based on secure access to anonymized health data for everyone in all four countries of the UK, a progress that only became possible during the pandemic. The researchers say that this approach could be extended to many other areas of medicine, offering great potential for new discoveries in understanding and treating diseases.

Professor Sir Aziz Sheikh, Director of the Usher Institute at the University of Edinburgh, Research Director of HDR UK, and co-lead of the study, said: „Large-scale data studies have been crucial for pandemic response, enabling scientists to glean policy-relevant insights. Speed. COVID-19 vaccines save lives. When new variants emerge, this study will help identify cohorts of our society and areas of the country on which public health campaigns should be focused and tailored.“

Early COVID-19 vaccine rollout started strong in the UK: by January 2022, over 90% of the population over 12 years had been vaccinated with at least one dose. However, the frequency of subsequent booster doses throughout the UK had not been fully clarified.

Scientists from England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, and Wales examined securely stored, routinely collected NHS data from individuals over 5 years old from 1 June to 30 September 2022. All data were anonymized and only accessible to authorized researchers.

Subsequently, the data from all four countries were combined and harmonized – or made more consistent – which was not possible previously. Individuals were grouped by vaccination status, with inadequate vaccination defined as not receiving all doses of a vaccine for which a person was eligible.

The results indicate that the percentage of under-vaccinated individuals on 1st June 2022 was highest among younger people, men, people in more disadvantaged areas, and non-white ethnic groups.

Mathematical modeling showed that 7,180 hospital admissions and deaths out of around 40,400 severe COVID-19 cases during the four months in the summer of 2022 could have been prevented if the British population had been fully vaccinated.

Under-vaccination was associated with significantly more hospital admissions and deaths across all age groups, with the likelihood of severe COVID-19 among inadequately vaccinated individuals over 75 being more than twice that of fully protected individuals.

The infrastructure is now in place to fully harness the potential of routinely collected data in the NHS across all four countries of the UK. We believe we could and should extend these approaches to many other areas of medicine, such as cancer, heart disease, and diabetes, to seek better understanding, prevention, and treatment of diseases,“ said Professor Cathie Sudlow, Chief Scientist at Health Data Research UK and Director of the Data Science Centre at the British Heart Foundation (BHF).

Professor Cathie Sudlow, Chief Scientist at Health Data Research UK and Director of the Data Science Centre at the British Heart Foundation (BHF).

The study was launched to provide British and devolved governments with data-driven insights into COVID-19 vaccination rates and to establish methods and infrastructure for data consolidation, paving the way for future studies across the United Kingdom. It is led by HDR UK and the University of Edinburgh in collaboration with research teams from all four countries.

Alan Keys, a public engagement officer at the British Heart Foundation (BHF) Data Science Centre at HDR UK, who sat on the study’s steering group and is a co-author of the paper, said: „The research outcome provides strong validation of the benefits of vaccination.“


Journal reference:

HDR UK COALESCE Consortium., (2024) Under-vaccination and severe COVID-19 outcomes: Meta-analysis of national cohort studies in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales. The Lancet. doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(23)02467-4.

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