Dose Of Truth: How Effective Are The COVID Vaccines?

Vaccine efficacy is one key portion of FDA approval.
Posted at 4:12 PM, Dec 17, 2020

There's a lot of false information out there about the two leading COVID-19 vaccines in the U.S. We wanted to provide the facts and answer some questions. 

I’m not a doctor but know a few, so we asked: How effective is the vaccine?

"These vaccines are highly effective. Both studies have shown over 90 percent effectiveness, which is phenomenal because we only really expected 50-60 percent," said Dr. Mati Hlatshwayo Davis, an infectious diseases physician with Washington University School of Medicine.

"The report put out by Pfizer, in the data that's included in the EUA for the FDA, is a 95% efficacy. There is protection after the first dose and then maximum protection after the second dose, which is 21 days later," said Dr. Khalilah Gates, a pulmonary care specialist with Northwestern Medicine.

"What should be noted is that they were tested to see passage of symptomatic coronavirus, so they prevent people from getting symptoms. What hasn't been studied is whether or not this results in asymptomatic spread. So giving it to other people even if you're not experiencing symptoms," said Dr. Josh Lesko, Brief19 lead policy analyst.