Delta variant spreads from double-vaxxed at same rate as those without jab

"You may not be as protected from the Delta variant as hoped."

"You may not be as protected from the Delta variant as hoped."

There's been concern about the Delta variant since it landed in the UK in April, and, worryingly, a new study may have found that it spreads just as quickly from double jabbed individuals as it does from those who haven't been vaccinated.

While you now don't have to isolate if you've been double jabbed, the research, which was conducted by scientists at Oxford university, found that those who've double-jabbed and contracted the virus have similar peak levels in both their mouth and nose to people who haven't been vaccinated at all.

This means that it's likely it's just as easy for them to transmit it.

Worried about the Covid vaccine and fertility, whether you can exercise after your vaccine, or Covid vaccine side effects? Our expert-led guides may help.

Both the Oxford and Pfizer Coronavirus jabs have been found to offer personal protection from Covid - that is, if you contract it, you won't suffer from as severe symptoms as your unvaccinated counterparts - but, interestingly, the findings indicate that if you test positive, you can pass on the infection just as easily.

The UK has been rolling out its vaccination scheme since December, with 41 million fully vaccinated so far, according to stats from Our World In Data.

It is now thought that scientists believed that the vaccines would offer greater protection against other strains, like the Delta variant.

The Oxford university study observed the PCR tests of over 700,000 participants. All were chosen at random and analysed before and after May 17, 2021. This is when the Delta variant became the most dominant variant in the UK.

Interestingly, the study found the Pfizer vaccine to be more effective than the Oxford against the Delta variant, however, its efficacy declines faster, too, making it hard to call which comes out tops.

It's important to note that the findings are yet to be peer reviewed, yet they do suggest that transmission rates of the Delta between vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals are similar.

Sarah Walker, professor of medical statistics and epidemiology at Oxford University, is keen to point out that while the findings may indicate how transmission works, they aren't conclusive, and still show that vaccination is key to protecting your health.

She said: "We don’t yet know how much transmission can happen from people who get Covid-19 after being vaccinated – for example, they may have high levels of virus for shorter periods of time."

"But the fact that they can have high levels of virus suggests that people who aren’t yet vaccinated may not be as protected from the Delta variant as we hoped."

"This means it is essential for as many people as possible to get vaccinated – both in the UK and worldwide."

Ally Head
Senior Health, Sustainability and Relationships Editor

Ally Head is Marie Claire UK's Senior Health, Sustainability, and Relationships Editor, nine-time marathoner, and Boston Qualifying runner. Day-to-day, she works across site strategy, features, and e-commerce, reporting on the latest health updates, writing the must-read health and wellness content, and rounding up the genuinely sustainable and squat-proof gym leggings worth *adding to basket*. She's won a BSME for her sustainability work, regularly hosts panels and presents for events like the Sustainability Awards, and saw nine million total impressions on the January 2023 Wellness Issue she oversaw. Follow Ally on Instagram for more or get in touch.