Additional shot of approved COVID-19 vaccines
People with weaker immune systems should receive an additional shot of approved COVID-19 vaccines, an advisory group to the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Monday.
After four days of talks last week, the WHO’s Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization (SAGE) on Monday recommended that such people should receive a third dose of a vaccine on the WHO Emergency Use Listing (UEL) as they are “less likely to respond adequately to vaccination following a standard primary vaccine series and are at high risk of severe Covid-19 disease”, reports Xinhua news agency.
SAGE said moderately and severely immunocompromised persons should be offered an additional dose of all WHO-approved vaccines “since these individuals are less likely to respond adequately to vaccination following a standard primary vaccine series and are at high risk of severe COVID-19 disease.”
People aged 60 and older who received the Sinovac and Sinopharm vaccines should get a third dose too, the experts added, though use of other vaccines may also be considered depending on supply and access.
“When implementing this recommendation, countries should initially aim at maximizing 2-dose coverage in that population, and thereafter administer the third dose, starting in the oldest age groups”, they said.
SAGE has also reviewed a vaccine developed by Indian company Bharat Biotech and will issue a policy recommendation after WHO greenlights it for emergency use.