Covid testing and mass vaccination should be halted for all but the most vulnerable once the recall campaign is over, the former chairman of the UK Vaccine Task Force said.
Dr Clive Dix called for an overhaul of the government’s current strategy in the coming months, saying the impact of cellular immunity on fighting the virus may have been downplayed.
Rather, Covid should be treated like the flu or a bad cold in young people who have been completely bitten, the former vaccine czar said.
Speaking to C4 News, Dr Dix claimed that the mass vaccination had exceeded its main goal, which he said was to curb the spread of the infection.
He said that in most cases two doses of the vaccine would “probably” protect against serious illness, but added that it would be better to stimulate the whole population.
“There’s no point in trying to stop the infection, which is sort of the point of mass vaccination, because it’s not. We see a lot of infections, ”said Dr Dix.
“I’m not saying we’re stopping the current recall campaign, I’m saying once it’s over. The most important thing now is to find the people who have not been vaccinated and to make sure that they get vaccinated.
He acknowledged the position was “controversial”, but said analyzing the impact of the virus at a “clinical level” should be preferred over mass testing.
Dr Dix added, “I think it’s a bit controversial, but let’s look in a few months, we shouldn’t be doing mass tests. I don’t think mass testing is helping anyone.
“I think we have to get to the point where if we have a youngster who catches Covid, having been vaccinated, we know they have levels of protection, but like if they have a really bad cold or the flu, they stay. at home… and when they are better, they go back to work.
The former health chief also told The Observer that the government should urgently support research into the effectiveness of jabs in producing “memory B and T cell immunity,” which helps the body to recognize Covid.
His remarks echo the latest findings of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunization (JCVI), which ruled that four doses are currently not needed.
The JCVI said on Friday that most older people who received a third dose were still well protected against Omicron three months after the start of the booster campaign.
Earlier Sunday, Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi also indicated his support for reducing the isolation period from seven days to five, if it can be done safely, in order to ease the pressures on staff on the NHS and businesses.
It comes after a new study found that white blood cells are able to mount an immune response against the Omicron variant of Covid.
Due to the higher number of mutations of Omicron than other variants of Covid, it can sometimes bypass antibodies created by vaccination or infection.
However, if the virus enters the body, the T cells will attack, according to research from the University of Melbourne and the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST).
Another 141,472 laboratory-confirmed Covid-19 cases were recorded in the UK at 9 a.m. on Sunday, the government said.
The government also said 97 more people died within 28 days of testing positive for Covid-19, bringing the total to 150,154.
Separate figures released by the Office for National Statistics show that there are now 174,000 registered deaths in the UK where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate.