It is said that people can only worry about one thing at a time; if so, then I’m sure that few people are currently worrying about the recent increase in Covid cases in the U.K. This is a good thing – the hospitalisation and mortality rates of Omicron appear to be significantly lower than those of previous variants, so it’s surely time to just accept Covid as another type of cold that’ll give us all an annoying sniffle every couple of years.
But the sticky problem of the vaccines remains. Do they work or have they made things worse? Luckily, the UKHSA (just about) continues to publish the Vaccine Surveillance Report and as a result we can explore how the vaccines are impacting on Covid in England.
The new Covid wave, as defined by data from the Government Covid dashboard, appears to be gathering steam with new cases hitting 100,000 per day; it is easy to forget that the terrible Covid wave during January 2021 peaked at around 60,000 new cases per day (though this was admittedly before mass lateral flow testing had been brought in). We’re told that recent variants are nearly as infectious as measles – ignoring the surprisingly low household infection rate of Omicron variant, which doesn’t support the measles comparison. What do the data say?