Pfizer Inc and BioNTech SE recently revealed that Israel’s real-world data suggests their COVID-19 vaccine is 94% effective in preventing asymptomatic infections, meaning it could significantly reduce virus transmission.
The companies added that the latest analysis of the Israeli data shows the vaccine was 97% effective in preventing symptomatic disease, severe disease, and death—all in line with the 95% efficacy reported in the vaccine’s late-stage clinical trial last December.
Israel’s Health Ministry, working with the healthcare providers administering the vaccine, said in an emailed statement that the data was developed from the ministry’s tracking of morbidity.
Israel’s Health Ministry previously found that the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine reduces infection, including in asymptomatic cases, by 89.4% and in symptomatic patients by 93.7%.
Pfizer Chief Executive Albert Bourla said the data was vital for society because it means fewer people are passing on the virus to others without knowing it. The company plans to publish the data in a peer-reviewed journal, he said.
The analysis also shows real-world evidence of the vaccine’s effectiveness against a highly infectious variant of COVID-19 first discovered in Britain—with over 80% of the tested specimens being that variant.
There was no evaluation of its effectiveness against the virus variant first discovered in South African known as B.1.351 due to the limited number of infections with that variant in Israel.