Some studies have claimed that Covid-19 vaccine immunity can last only for about six months, or a little more, suggesting the need for booster shots especially for people with fragile immune systems. However, an international group of scientists argued in a review recently published in The Lancet that booster doses for the general population are “not appropriate” at this stage in the pandemic.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has, meanwhile, called for a delay in booster shots until people in poorer countries have been vaccinated. Instead, the organisation wants countries to focus on vaccine equity so that every country is able to vaccinate at least 40 per cent of its population by the end of this year, and at least 70 per cent by the middle of next year.
According to the WHO, out of the 5.5 billion vaccine doses administered globally so far, 80 per cent were in high- and upper-middle income countries. Though WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus acknowledges that third doses may help enhance immunity in vaccinated people, and may be necessary for the high-risk populations, he doesn’t see the need for widespread use of boosters for healthy people who are fully vaccinated.
During a media interaction last week, Serum Institute of India CEO Adar Poonawalla said that it was unethical to start administering the booster dose when many people in certain countries have not even got two doses for full vaccination. He also stated that there’s no evidence to show Covishield, one of the COVID-19 vaccines approved in India, requires a third dose and that they have also not recommended it yet.
US drug makers Pfizer and Moderna support booster shots to maintain high levels of protection. Citing studies that show effectiveness of the mRNA vaccines wane after six months, they said boosters are important to reduce breakthrough infections, which happen when a fully vaccinated person gets infected with COVID-19.
A study conducted in Israel revealed that a booster dose of Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine can prevent both infections and severe illness in adults older than 60. Several US federal health officials including the country’s top infectious disease expert Dr Anthony Fauci have backed the proposal to distribute booster shots to provide maximum protection against Covid-19.
Study: 4th Covid vaccine dose effective in protecting people over 60
As per the new Israeli-led study, the largest healthcare organisation Clalit said fourth dose of Covid vaccine is effective for protecting people aged 60 and above.
The study found that a fourth dose can reduce the possibilities of symptomatic infection, hospitalisation, serious illness and mortality among the elders, Clalit said, Xinhua news agency reported.
In the study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, Clalit researchers and their colleagues from Harvard University in Boston analysed data from 182,122 Clalit members, all aged 60 and above, who received Pfizer’s fourth dose.
“The study unequivocally demonstrates that the fourth dose provides effective protection in preventing morbidity,” said Ran Balicer, Director of the Clalit Research Institute.
“It will help every person to make a decision on the fourth vaccine based on their level of personal risk,” he added.
Covid-19: Here are the symptoms of fourth wave
covid-19 pandemic. BA.2 has two characteristics – they are dizziness and extreme tiredness. BA.2 sub-variant or stealth omicron affects more on the stomach and intestines of the people, which leads to digestive problems. there is currently no evidence that people can catch covid-19 from food. the virus that causes covid-19 can be killed at temperatures similar to that of other known viruses and bacteria found in food.
Symptoms of Omicron:
- Continuous Cough
- Muscle and body health
- Shortness of breath
- Difficulty in breathing
- Skin rash
- Sleeping paralysis
- Back pain
- A loss of appetite
- High temperature
- Sore throat
- Chest pain
- Abdominal pain
- Covid toes or figures
- Covid tongue
- Night sweats
- Hoarse voice
- New loss of taste and smell
- Congestion or running nose
- Nausea or vomiting
Covid-19: WHO shares post COVID symptoms
In the third year of pandemic, it is not just a fight against COVID, we have another challenge ahead of us i.e. dealing with post-COVID conditions. They are also known as long COVID conditions. With the growing number of cases of long COVID it is confirmed that COVID does not spare any body organ and it affects the biological ecosystem. Fatigue, trouble in breathing and cognitive dysfunction is the most common symptoms.
Fatigue: It is very common response from the body when fighting against any viral infection. It may last for weeks and it is very common symptom seen in all the patients who recovered from COVID.
Trouble in breathing: Even with the minimal physical activity person may have trouble in breathing. It is very common occurrence in the people who have been infected with COVID.
Cognitive dysfunction: It is commonly referred as brain fog. It actually means people having trouble with their attention, trouble in concentrating, trouble in recall or memory, trouble in sleeping.
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