Nearly two-thirds of over-70s now have a degree of immunity against Covid

NEARLY two-thirds of over-70s now have some degree of immunity to Covid — mostly thanks to the vaccine, data reveals.

It shows 60 per cent in that age group had antibodies against the virus by the end of February.

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That figure is expected to rise far higher as the study was done when a sizeable chunk of the over-70s had not yet reached the three-week milestone, when the vaccine takes full effect.

Blood tests show only five per cent of the protection came from natural infection after catching Covid.

It means the jab is responsible for more than 91 per cent of the immunity found in older Britons.

Public Health England also said levels of Covid antibodies from natural infection levelled out last month — suggesting the vaccine is stopping over-70s from catching the virus.

Around 89 per cent of those aged 60 and over in England have now received their first dose.

 


 

Dr Gayatri Amirthalingam, consultant epidemiologist at PHE, said: “Our routine testing of blood donor samples shows that the vaccine is having a big impact on the number of people that have antibodies in the age groups that have been vaccinated.

“This supports the decision to prioritise the first dose. But no vaccine is 100 per cent effective, so it is vital to follow lockdown rules.”

And Israel’s data suggests two Pfizer jabs cut the risk of hospital admission and death by 97 per cent.


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