UK Health Minister Javid tests positive for COVID-19
- Javid says symptoms are mild, awaiting confirmation by PCR
- The Minister of Health had received two injections of AstraZeneca
- Vaccines provide high – but not complete – protection against COVID
LONDON, July 17 (Reuters) – UK Health Minister Sajid Javid said on Saturday he tested positive for COVID-19, but added his symptoms were mild and he was grateful to have received two doses of vaccine against the disease.
Javid, who has been Health Secretary for three weeks, has backed Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s plan to remove all remaining legal restrictions on coronaviruses from Monday, despite a new wave of cases fueled by the highly transmissible Delta variant.
“This morning I tested positive for COVID,” Javid said in a tweet, adding that he had performed a rapid lateral flow test and was awaiting confirmation of a PCR test, which is to be processed in a lab .
“I’m waiting for my PCR result, but luckily I have had my jabs and the symptoms are mild.”
Javid tweeted on March 17 that he had received a first injection of the COVID-19 vaccine from Oxford / AstraZeneca (AZN.L), posting a photo of him receiving a second dose on May 16.
Vaccines are not 100% effective in preventing infection, but fully vaccinated people are less likely to become seriously ill with COVID-19 even though they may test positive.
A real-world analysis published by Public Health England found that two doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine are 60% effective against symptomatic Delta variant disease and 92% effective against hospitalization.
Britain is facing a new wave of COVID-19 cases, but Johnson and Javid say the vaccination program has largely broken the link between COVID-19 cases and mortality, although Johnson said the country should come to terms with the prospect of more COVID deaths.
Britain has the seventh highest death toll from COVID-19 in the world and has fully immunized two-thirds of adults, although it does not vaccinate children.
Some scientists have warned that the government’s plans to reopen for England are dangerous given the large number of unvaccinated people and the vaccines are not 100% effective. Read more
Reporting by Alistair Smout; Editing by Catherine Evans and Christina Fincher
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