Covid vaccinations have saved the lives of 20million people according to a major study out of the United Kingdom.
The study looked at the spread of the disease in 185 countries between December 2020 and December 2021. It found that without Covid vaccines 31.4 million people would have died, and that 19.8 million of these deaths were avoided.
The study is the first attempt to quantify the number of deaths prevented due to Covid-19 vaccinations.
“We knew it was going to be a large number, but I did not think it would be as high as 20 million deaths during just the first year,” said Oliver Watson, of Imperial College London. He was the co-first author of the study carried out by scientists at the university.
However, the study also found that many more deaths could have been prevented if access to vaccines had been more equal worldwide.
Nearly 600,000 additional deaths – one in five of the Covid-19 deaths in low-income countries – could have been prevented if the World Health Organization’s global goal of vaccinating 40% of each country’s population by the end of 2021 had been met.
Since the first Covid vaccine was administered outside a clinical trial setting on 8 December 2020, almost two-thirds of the world’s population have received at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine.