Covid: towards a 3rd dose of vaccine? Several countries take the plunge

Published by Caroline J. · Updated on 3 August 2021 at 16h06 · Published on 3 August 2021 at 09h46
Faced with the quick spread of the Delta variant, several countries have decided to prescribe a third dose of vaccine for the eldest and most vulnerable people. Which countries have decided on a booster shot? What about France? Keep reading to find out more.

While the Delta variant is deteriorating the health situation in many countries, vaccine campaigns go on. Some countries even set up a booster shot to stop the Indian variant. This is the case in Israel. Already ahead of their vaccinal strategy, the country hit a new milestone in late July prescribing a third dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine for the eldest and most vulnerable people, namely those over 60 years old. With 62% of their population vaccinated, Israel has reported skyrocketing Covid-19 new case and hospitalization tolls over the past weeks.

As of August 2, 2021, another country has decided to prescribe a third dose of vaccine for some of their population: Germany, the first European country to take the plunge. This booster shot – instated from September 1, 2021 – aims at old and vulnerable groups, especially in rest homes. Furthermore, this third dose of Covid-19 vaccine will have to be made at least six months after full vaccination.

Another country might follow, namely the United Kingdom. According to the Daily Telegraph, the UK government plans to launch a new vaccination campaign by the end of the summer, targeting at 32 million vulnerable people or over 50 years of age. Still according to the daily, the country’s authorities are considering prescribing a vaccine different from the one injected to the people (AstraZeneca). According to a recent study, mixing mRNA and viral vector vaccines is said to reinforce their immunity effect.

Covid : inciter les jeunes à se faire vacciner, un véritable défi pour l'exécutifCovid : inciter les jeunes à se faire vacciner, un véritable défi pour l'exécutifCovid : inciter les jeunes à se faire vacciner, un véritable défi pour l'exécutifCovid : inciter les jeunes à se faire vacciner, un véritable défi pour l'exécutif Covid: mixing mRNA and viral vector vaccines likely to reinforce immunity, a study found
Receiving two doses of vaccines with different technologies (mRNA and viral vector) is likely to increase immunity against Covid, a study released this past July 26 in Nature magazine found. Keep reading to find out more! [Read more]

Moving on to Sweden, the country is thinking about a booster shot for “most of the people” in 2022. But vulnerable groups could be involved as early as this Fall. Yet, the country’s health agency said the final decision has not been made yet.

And what about France? On his July 12, 2021’s address, Emmanuel Macron announced a “booster shot campaign” will be instated “from the beginning of September” for prime-vaccinees.

A few days later, on July 16, the Haute Autorité de Santé delivered a report about a potential booster shot. The HAS then stated that “for the moment” it was no use proposing a booster shot for prime-vaccinees excluding the most vulnerable and eldest ones.

Although it seems very likely a booster shot to effectively boost […], data available to date do not enable to precisely assess the impact nor the necessity of such a shot on the preventing of vaccinal failure”, the HAS explained in their report.

Same call for professor Alain Fischer. Invited this August 2 on RTL, the Head of the Vaccine Strategy Board considered that “for now, we are not there yet, excluding for the most fragile people”.

On August 3, invited on LCI, infectious disease specialist and head of Paris hospital Tenon infectious disease unit Gilles Pialoux claimed a third dose of vaccine was “ineluctable”.

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