As Delta Variant is on a full surge and threatens coronavirus pandemic progress, few highly vaccinated countries are providing booster doses of the coronavirus vaccines to citizens. As per the reports of Associated Press, Israel started administering third doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to people with more than 60 years of age who are till date fully vaccinated.’
On the other hand, as per Reuters, Germany also plans to begin the booster drive in September to older people with weakened immune systems. The UK will also start offering the booster d vaccine from next month. However, United States has to hold Covid-19 boosters fully but is now going in this direction. Last month, the CDC (Centres for Disease Control and Prevention) and the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) alleged ‘Fully vaccinated Americans do not need a booster shot at present.’ However, according to agencies, they are continuing to screen the scientist data to determine if and when the booster dose might be required.
When Will We Know We Need A Covid-19 Booster? More Research Needed
On the other hand, Biden government officials are warming to the chance that older adults and people with a weak immune system who are already fully vaccinated with two doses might need a third booster dose. According to New York Times, on the other side, Dr. Amanda Cohn from CDC said ‘agencies actively seek ways’ to offer certain age groups access to booster vaccine doses.
Now FDA would amend the vaccine’s current EUA, i.e., Emergency use authorization to permit the booster dose to be given. Another possibility can be that full FDA approval which can let doctors recommend a booster dose ‘off label’. As per the Times reports, the FDA will decide regarding the full approval of the Pfizer-BioTech vaccine by coming September. Reports suggest the necessity of boosters and vaccinating children under 12 years of age, if the FDA also approves booster doses for certain groups, the US government will increase its vaccine supply.
Is there a need for Covid-19 boosters?
Though few countries started booster doses, data regarding the need of Covid-19 boosters is still limited for the general public. However, booster doses offer many clear benefits, especially for those with weakened immune systems like cancer patients, organ transplant recipients, or adults with chronic medical conditions. Also, CDC warned on its website that these people might not generate to robust their immune system even after full vaccination.
An oncologist at the University of Pennsylvania, Dr. Ezekiel J.Emanuel, said, ‘we have to give a booster to immunocompromised people and others too who are more prone. I think that is where we are going to start.’ For the left overpopulation, the vaccine protection is enough for several months even if they face to face Delta variant. As per the preprint that was released the prior week, data from Pfizer’s ongoing trials clarifies that the efficacy of the vaccine against symptomatic cases dropped from 96 percent to 83 percent in the time gap of six months after vaccination.
More than half of the American population has now received the Covid-19 vaccination i.e., BioNTech’s vaccine doses. The efficacy is more than 80 percent and which is still high. The Pfizer study also revealed that the vaccine continues to provide strong protection against the virus with 96 percent efficacy during the six months following vaccination.
Vaccines hold up well against the Delta variant – what studies say
There are few studies that show certain vaccines hold well against the Delta variant though they showed up mixed outcomes. However, current figures from Israel, where vaccination is done with about 60 percent of the population, noted a larger drop in protection. As Bloomberg reported, data came from the Israel Ministry of Health, and that showed that amid 20th June to 17th June, the Pfizer BioTech vaccine was just 39 percent effective against Delta variant infection, and this low protection shocked many.
As per experts, the requirement of boosters would depend on how well the vaccines still protect people, and it will require ongoing world monitoring of vaccine effectiveness. However, vaccine makers are considering the benefits of booster doses by focusing on variants of concern at present.