Coronavirus vaccine coverage of the elderly in Estonia of 80-90 percent would have resulted in hospitalizations around one fifth of the current level, statistician Krista Fischer says. Nationwide, 65 percent of adults are currently vaccinated, the Health Board (Terviseamet) says.
Fischer, who sits on the government's coronavirus advisory board, said: "If we could vaccinate the majority of at-risk groups at a rate of 80 to 90 percent, then the number of hospital patients might now be only one-fifth of what he is," he said.
"If I look at other age groups, 37 people under the age of 70 are in hospital, but only two of these have been vaccinated."
"Among younger people, we can see that vaccination has a very strong effect on preventing serious illness. If we could reduce the number of unvaccinated people at risk by at least half, I think there would be a threefold drop in the number of hospital patients," she added.
Over a 10-day period at the end of August/beginning of September, Fischer said, 91 people were hospitalized due to the virus, 38 of whom were aged over 80.
"Of these, 28 were unvaccinated, and of these 28, it is safe to say that had they been vaccinated, while not all the elderly would have been kept out of hospital, but perhaps seven would have gone there," Fischer continued.
Vaccination reduces the chance of both infection and hospitalization, while not eliminating it. In the Nordic countries, higher vaccination coverage is accompanied by lower levels of hospitalization, ERR reports.
As of Thursday morning, 151 people are hospitalized due to the virus, the Health Board says.
Editor: Andrew Whyte