UK health minister Sajid Javid tests positive for COVID-19

London: British health minister Sajid Javid on Saturday said he had tested positive for COVID-19, but added that his symptoms were mild and he was thankful to have had two doses of vaccine against the disease.

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Javid, who has been health secretary for three weeks, has backed Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s plan to scrap all remaining legal coronavirus restrictions from Monday, despite a fresh surge of cases fuelled by the highly transmissible Delta variant.

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“This morning I tested positive for COVID,” Javid said in a tweet, adding he had taken a rapid lateral flow test, and was awaiting confirmation from a PCR test, which needs processing in a laboratory.

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“I’m waiting for my PCR result, but thankfully I have had my jabs and symptoms are mild.” Javid tweeted on March 17 that he had received a first shot of Oxford/AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine, posting a picture of him getting a second dose on May 16.

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Vaccines are not 100% effective at preventing infection, but fully-vaccinated people are less likely to get seriously ill with COVID-19 even if they can test positive.

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Real-world analysis published by Public Health England has found that two doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine are 60% effective against symptomatic disease from the Delta variant and 92% effective against hospitalisation.

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Britain is facing a new wave of cases of COVID-19, but Johnson and Javid claim the vaccine programme has largely broken the link between COVID-19 cases and mortality, although Johnson has said that the country should reconcile itself to the prospect of more deaths from COVID.

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Britain has the seventh highest COVID-19 death toll in the world, and has fully vaccinated two-thirds of adults, although it is not vaccinating children.

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Some scientists have warned that the government’s reopening plans for England are dangerous given the significant number of people who remain unvaccinated and the fact that vaccines are not 100% effective.

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