Chinese vaccines can protect people against the Delta variant, serious illness: top epidemiologist

China’s top epidemiologist Zhong Nanshan said that China needs to vaccinate about 83 percent of its population to achieve herd immunity. He also revealed that all the 13 severe cases infected with the Delta variant in Guangzhou COVID-19 outbreak in May did not get inoculated.

Zhong made the remarks during a speech in Guangzhou, South China’s Guangdong Province, on Saturday. Amid fresh COVID-19 outbreaks in multiple cities across China, Zhong said China has administered the most vaccine doses in the world, but the proportion of vaccination per 100 people is not high due to the large population, Qianjiang Evening News reported on Monday.

To achieve herd immunity through vaccination, China needs to inoculate 83.3 percent of its population, Zhong said.

Chinese COVID-19 vaccines can protect people against the Delta variant, Zhong added referencing studies of some 100 COVID-19 patients who were infected with the variant in Guangzhou in May. The preliminary studies found that Chinese vaccines are 100 percent protective against severe cases, and 76.9 percent, 67.2 percent and 63.2 percent protective against moderate cases, mild cases and asymptomatic infections, respectively, Zhong said, according to Qianjiang Evening News.

He reminded the public that all the 13 severe cases in Guangzhou in May who were affected with the Delta variant did not get inoculated.

Comparing with the Guangzhou outbreak, Zhong said that the fresh Nanjing outbreak has spread to broader areas, which deserves great attention.

But Zhong said he was confident the outbreak could be controlled in about 10 to 14 days due to the effective measures taken by the local government. Global Times