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In Dubai, almost two thirds of eligible residents over the age of 16 have now received both the shots Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

Six months after the UAE began inoculating adult population against coronavirus, the country’s regulators are getting a clearer picture of how exactly the vaccines are helping recipients develop antibodies to fight the virus.

Early this week, Dubai Health Authority or DHA said 90 per cent of all coronavirus patients who required intensive care in hospitals had not received the vaccine. That means, only one out of ten vaccinated people may develop severe disease and will require treatment in a hospital setting.

The DHA findings were validated by private sector hospitals that are reporting that less than five per cent of vaccinated individuals who catch the virus require treatment by a specialist. At least one hospital group said vaccines reduce hospitalisation by up to 93 per cent. This can only mean one thing – the vaccines have high efficacy level and are providing significant protection from the disease.

In Dubai, almost two thirds of eligible residents over the age of 16 have now received both the shots. Overall, the UAE has vaccinated around 85 per cent of eligible adults and around 97 per cent of those over 60. Still, close to 20 per cent of those who are most vulnerable to serious illness are yet to be vaccinated in Dubai and is a matter of big concern.

Now that the UAE has significant real-time data proving the efficacy of vaccines, the next logical step is to widen the inoculation. After having launched Pfizer for children falling in the age group of 12 to 16 years, the country is launching trial of Sinopharm vaccine in children three years and older.

Yesterday, in a confidence building measure, members of royal families enrolled their children for the trial in Abu Dhabi. This will encourage citizens and residents to enroll their children.

This is perhaps for the first time in the history of modern medicine, vaccines are being tested in wider population and the entire process is accelerated. Given the nature of coronavirus which is evolving rapidly, modern medicine must do everything to remain a step ahead of the disease.

We cannot take the risk of leaving young children unvaccinated as the virus is mutating fast and becomes deadlier by the day. Children worldwide have been largely unaffected by the virus so far but we are not sure if this age group won’t be struck in the coming months. That is why, several countries, including the United States have launched vaccine trial among youngsters.