Pfizer Covid Vaccine Booster Shot Likely Needed in 12 months
The chief executive officer of Pfizer broke the bad news to those who have received the company’s COVID-19 shot. A third shot will likely be needed as a booster within a year.
Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla said that people would likely need a third dose of a Covid-19 vaccine within 12 months of being completely vaccinated with the new two-shot regimen. He’s known about this situation since April 1, 2021, but has just made this public today.
Bourla also warned that patients who have and would use the Pfizer vaccine will need to be vaccinated against the coronavirus on an annual basis...
“We need to see what would be the sequence, and for how often we need to do that, that remains to be seen.”
“A likely scenario is that there will likely be a need for a third dose, somewhere between six and 12 months and then from there, there will be an annual revaccination, but all of that needs to be confirmed. And again, the variants will play a key role.”
“It is extremely important to suppress the pool of people that can be susceptible to the virus.”
Bourla's revelations on the need for booster and perhaps regular vaccines follow Johnson & Johnson CEO Alex Gorsky's February statement to CNBC that citizens would need to be vaccinated against Covid-19 on an annual basis, similar to seasonal flu shots. They came after vaccinations with the JNJ vaccination were “temporarily” suspended by the FDA on the recommendation of the CDC. This occurred after a rare reaction to their drug has led to six deaths and dozens of hospitalizations here in the United States
The fact is researchers still don’t know how long protection against the virus lasts once someone has been fully vaccinated with any of the current vaccines. Still, according to Pfizer, its Covid-19 vaccine was more than 91% effective at protecting against the coronavirus and more than 95% effective against severe disease up to six months after the second dose. According to the latest evidence, Moderna’s vaccine, which uses technology similar to Pfizer’s for its vaccine, is also highly effective six months after people take its two-shot regime.
Pfizer’s data is based on approximately 12,000 vaccinated participants in its studies. A small sampling that medical researchers insist requires more data to determine whether protection lasts after six months.
The Biden administration’s Covid response chief science officer, David Kessler, said Americans should expect to receive booster shots to protect against coronavirus variants.
Kessler was quoted today as telling U.S. lawmakers that currently authorized vaccines are highly protective but noted new variants could “challenge” the effectiveness of the shots. Addressing the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis, Kessler said…
“We don’t know everything at this moment. We are studying the durability of the antibody response.
“It seems strong, but there is some waning of that and no doubt the variants challenge ... they make these vaccines work harder. So I think for planning purposes, planning purposes only, I think we should expect that we may have to boost.”
Pfizer and BioNTech, as far back as February of this year, made it clear they were testing the third dose of their Covid-19 vaccine to better understand the immune response against new variants of the virus. So this announcement by Bourla isn’t a surprise.
The National Institutes of Health began testing a new Covid vaccine from Moderna in addition to the one it already has, which has been designed to protect against a problematic variant first found in South Africa.
Moderna CEO Stephane Bancel told CNBC earlier this week that its company hopes to have a booster shot for its two-dose vaccine available in the fall.
Moderna CEO on coronavirus efficacy and distribution