Big rise in the number of health workers that have anti-bodies against coronavirus

By the end of last month 64% of health workers in Belgium had anti-bodies protecting them against infection with the novel coronavirus. The figures come from a new study carried out by the public health science institute Sciensano. The big rise in the number of health workers with antibodies is above all thanks to the vaccination campaign. 

In order to chart the progress towards the ultimate aim of herd immunity against coronavirus blood samples are taken from various groups, including health workers, in order to find how many people have developed anti-bodies. During the period between April and September last year the percentage of health workers with anti-bodies was between 8% and 9%. In the wake of the second wave this had risen to 24% by the end of January.

By the end of February 80% of health workers in Belgium had already received at least 1 dose of coronavirus vaccine and according to the latest figures from Sciensano 64% of them had developed anti-bodies by the end of last month.

Around a quarter of the health workers tested had not developed anti-bodies despite already having been vaccinated. However, this can be explained by the fact that among most of this group the blood tests had taken place just 6 days after they had received their first dose of coronavirus vaccine. Such a short period is not long enough for them to have developed antibodies.

Sciensano stresses that we won’t be able to gauge the full effect of the vaccination campaign on health workers until future blood samples have been taken.


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