Amid British Columbia’s plan for COVID boosters, new research suggests these doses may not be needed yet
Anyone in British Columbia who has received two doses of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine can now receive a booster six months after their second injection, BC’s top doctor said Monday.
People who received two doses of AstraZeneca showed decreasing levels of protection against infection, although two doses of AstraZeneca still offer strong protection against serious illness, Dr Bonnie Henry said on Monday.
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“It may be earlier than other healthy adults in the community where we know there is really good, strong protection that lasts long,” Henry said.
Several new studies indicate that a booster may not yet be necessary for those who received either two doses of mRNA or a mixture of AstraZeneca and mRNA vaccines, if these doses were given at an interval of eight to 12 weeks.
Brian Grunau, of the Department of Emergency Medicine at the University of British Columbia, said early results from a study of paramedics across Canada show that longer vaccine dosing intervals lead to increased vaccine dosing intervals. improvement of immune responses.
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“The interplay between vaccine dosing intervals may play a role in timing and the need for third vaccines,” he said.
“Our data suggest that the immune response is prolonged in those with longer vaccine dosing intervals, which may make individuals with longer dosing intervals less required of an earlier booster.”
Other researchers, including Dr Danuta Skowronski of the BC Center for Disease Control, claim that the immune response of two injections given at appropriate intervals is so robust that most healthy adults do not yet need one. reminder.
Dr Gaston De Serres, a practicing epidemiologist at the Institut national de santé publique du Quebec who looked at Canada’s COVID-19 data, told Global News last month that he was not convinced the average Canadian would have need a COVID-19 reminder at any time. soon.
“I think a booster dose is needed when you see a drop in protection,” he said. “This happens with some vaccines and then you need to get a booster dose. But in our data at the moment, we see virtually no drop in protection. “
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De Serres stressed the need to focus resources on getting vaccines to the developing world.
“I think access to vaccines for developing countries is essential,” he said.
“The risk of mutations and the emergence of new dangerous variants will depend on the number of people infected and if there is no vaccine, this is obviously a great opportunity for the virus to infect people and possibly to acquire mutations which could be quite unpleasant. he said.
“From the start, we have focused on the importance of preventing hospitalizations and deaths. Well, changing that focus could clearly be something that needs to be evaluated quite carefully because of this issue of letting developing countries have access to vaccines. “
Henry said the province needs to focus on boosters while considering the bigger picture.
“We need to be able to be part of our global community and make sure people around the world are vaccinated, and we need to protect the people who need it right now,” she said.
– with files by Leslie Young & Carolyn Jarvis
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