Background: On 16 Jan 2021, India launched its immunization program against COVID-19. Among the first recipients were 1.59 million Health Care Workers (HCWs) and Frontline Workers (FLWs) of the Indian Armed Forces, who were administered COVISHIELD (Astra Zeneca). We present an interim analysis of vaccine effectiveness (VE) estimates till 30 May 2021.
Methods: The VIN-WIN cohort study was carried out on anonymized data of HCWs and FLWs of Indian Armed Forces. The existing surveillance system, enhanced for COVID-19 monitoring, was sourced for data. The cohort transitioned from Unvaccinated (UV) to Partially Vaccinated (PV) to Fully Vaccinated (FV), serving as its own internal comparison. Outcomes studied in the three groups were breakthrough infections and COVID related deaths. Incidence Rate Ratio (IRR) was used to compare outcomes among the three groups to estimate VE.
Results: Data of 1,595,630 individuals (mean age 27.6 years; 99% male) over 135 days was analysed. Till 30 May 21, 95.4% and 82.2% were partially and fully vaccinated. The UV, PV and FV compartments comprised 106.6, 46.7 and 58.7 million person-days respectively. The number of breakthrough cases in the UV, PV and FV groups were 10061, 1159 and 2512; while the deaths were 37, 16 and 7 respectively. Corrected VE was 91.8-94.9% against infections.
Conclusion: Interim results of the VIN-WIN cohort study of 1.59 million HCWs and FLWs of Indian Armed Forces showed a ∼93% reduction in COVID-19 breakthrough infections with COVISHIELD vaccination.
Keywords: Breakthrough infections; COVISHIELD; Covid-19; VIN-WIN cohort; Vaccine effectiveness.
© 2021 Director General, Armed Forces Medical Services. Published by Elsevier, a division of RELX India Pvt. Ltd.