Do you remember the first days of the COVID-19 pandemic? It got quite scary at times. There were many unknowns and governments had to make hard decisions. At first, there were lockdowns. Then, less than a year later, scientists developed vaccines.
The UK was the first country to start national vaccination. A full vaccination course required 2 doses for each person. But some evidence suggested that even one dose could provide decent protection for some time. So the UK government decided to delay the second dose and have more people receive the first dose as fast as possible.
What was the impact of this decision? We used a mathematical model to find out. It turned out that delaying the second dose prevented around 58,000 hospitalizations. It has saved more than 10,000 lives!