The Ministry of Health and the autonomous communities have approved this Thursday the extension of the booster doses of the coronavirus vaccine to Over 40 years old and essential workers immunized with AstraZeneca.
The technicians, meeting in the Public Health Commission, recommend the additional dose for people aged 59 to 50 years, starting with the oldest, starting six months after the last puncture. In a progressive way, it can also be administered to people between 49 and 40 years of age, again, progressing from oldest to youngest.
The third doses are also extended to all people vaccinated with two doses of AstraZeneca. In these cases, it will be administered from three months since the last puncture. Health personnel and the group aged 60 to 69 years, who received this drug, were already included in the reinforcement campaign. For this reason, he now joins the group that was pending: essential personnel (police, firefighters, teachers …) who were immunized with AstraZeneca.
Bet on reinforcements and the combination of vaccines against omicron
In this way, experts continue to bet on the vaccine mix, since the Public Health Commission already indicated in the vaccination strategy that all the booster doses would be of the mRNA antidotes, that is, Pfizer or Moderna. According to various studies, this heterologous pattern prompts a greater generation of antibodies and T cells that protect against infection and severe disease.
Health experts and communities have insisted that the priority now is to immunize 12-year-olds and those who have not yet received any dose of the vaccine, as well as to advance with the booster doses in the most vulnerable groups, that is, those over 60 years of age.
The additional punctures are already being administered to people over 60 years of age, patients with pathologies that make them especially vulnerable to severe COVID-19 and health personnel. In addition, people of any age who received a dose of Janssen vaccine should also receive a booster dose. However, both in the European Union and in our country the trend is being that of extend these reinforcementsespecially after the detection of the new omicron variant.
Omicron, with more than 30 mutations in the protein spike virus, is potentially more transmissible and able to escape vaccinesBut the preliminary results of some trials – like this Pfizer – would indicate that a third dose would increase protection.
In fact, this Wednesday, the European Center for Disease Control and Prevention (ECDC) has warned of the risk that the new variant will become dominant in the first two months of 2022 and it has called on the countries to carry out “urgent” action, with non-pharmacological measures and more vaccine reinforcements for the population.
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.