Three doses better than two? Debate on the third plan


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As the Delta variant spreads rapidly around the world, the prospect of a third “reinforcement” feature is gaining interest even in countries where a large proportion of people are vaccinated.

Experts say it is too early to know for sure whether countries will have to hold a third round of vaccines later in the year. Some suggest that priority should be given to hundreds of millions in the southern world who have not even achieved their first hit.

Why three?

Earlier this month, manufacturers Pfizer / BioNTech said they would ask permission from U.S. and European authorities to provide a third dose of their vaccine.

They said this was aimed at ensuring stronger immunity in individuals than that granted by two doses.

The developers said two doses of their vaccine protected against severe COVID-19 for at least six months.

But in the face of emerging variants, they said they predicted a decrease in effectiveness over time.

White House chief medical adviser Anthony Fauci, who spoke to CNBC on Tuesday, said Pfizer / BioNTech’s third-dose app was “a proper preparation for the eventuality that you need a booster.”

“But when you translate it into,‘ We’ll need reinforcement, everyone will get it, ’it’s not appropriate,” Fauci said.

He added that there were still too many people who were not fully vaccinated with two doses, let alone three.

What do the authorities say?

There is currently no indication that medical agencies recommend a third dose for anyone who has already received two.

The European Medicines Agency and the European Center for Disease Control say it is still too early to know if a third dose is needed.

“There is still not enough data from vaccination campaigns and ongoing studies to understand how long vaccine protection will last, also taking into account the spread of variants,” they said in a joint statement.

Didier Houssin, director of the World Health Organization’s emergency committee, said he did not believe there was enough evidence to justify recommending a third dose at this time.

He also warned that talking about a third dose could “aggravate concerns about access to vaccines” at a time when most countries have only a small percentage of people fully inoculated.

Hungarian President Viktor Orban said on Friday that some citizens could access a third injection from early August.

Hungary has gone largely alone in terms of vaccines, widely using Chinese and Russian features instead of the brands approved by Moderna, Pfizer / BioNTech, AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson in the EU.

Useful for vulnerable people?

While massive third-dose campaigns do not appear to be on the horizon, several countries have already begun giving third doses to certain people.

These include people who have a weakness , including those who have undergone organ transplants or are suffering from cancer or kidney problems.

Among these, the natural immune response of organisms to pathogens is suppressed, meaning that the immune response elicited by vaccines may be less powerful.

Along with France, Israel began giving third doses to certain people this week.

“Recent data showed that the two-dose immune response was insufficient among severely immunosuppressed individuals,” says the Frenchwoman. said the committee in May.

For its part, Israel justified its decision by pointing out “a large number of cases in recent weeks,” as well as the risk it poses to immunocompromised patients.

Or the elderly?

France took it a step further on Monday by announcing that a “booster campaign” would begin in September for people fully vaccinated earlier this year.

The vaccination board said earlier this month that it was starting its third dose at more than eighty years old.

“The scientific data to support this proposal are still limited, but given studies showing a drop in antibody levels in this population and the potentially serious impact on the care system, it seems reasonable,” he said. consistors.

He added that it was possible for the younger ones to end up having access to a third shot, depending on the progress of the pandemic.

Will a dose of a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine protect me?

© 2021 AFP

Citation: Three doses better than two? Debate on the third plan (2021, July 16) retrieved July 16, 2021 at

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