Over 93 percent of blood donors in the Netherlands now have Covid-19 antibodies in their system due to a coronavirus infection or vaccination, blood bank Sanquin said.
"This high percentage is mainly due to the explosive growth of vaccinated people in their twenties in recent weeks," Hans Zaaijer, medical microbiologist and researcher at Sanquin, said to Nieuwsuur. "The nice thing is: the number of people with antibodies rose very slowly at first, but from mid-April to June, that suddenly went up by 5 percent per week. And what is new now, is that it is coming to a standstill. It is leveling off, we are reaching a ceiling. That makes sense, because it should be almost done."
Marc Bonten of the Outbreak Management Team called the figures wonderful. "In over a quarter, the number of antibodies has gone from 20 to more than 90 percent, almost entirely because of the vaccinations. That is phenomenal," he said to Nieuwsuur.
The only caveat to these figures is that they are not completely representative of the Dutch population. There are no blood donors under the age of 18, for example, and elderly people over 75 and ethnic minorities are very underrepresented.
"For the whole of the Netherlands, the number of people with antibodies will be a bit lower," Bonten said. "But it means in all cases that a very large part of the Dutch are now protected."