EU regulator OKs Pfizer vaccine boosters for 18 and older


Amsterdam: The European Union’s drug regulator on Monday voiced its support for giving booster shots of the Pfizer-BioNtech COVID-19 vaccine to people 18 years of age and older.

The European Medicines Agency said booster doses may be considered for people 18 years of age and older for at least 6 months after the second dose.

The agency’s Human Medicines Committee issued the recommendation after studying data from the Pfizer vaccine that showed increased antibody levels in people ages 18 to 55 after a booster given about 6 months after the second dose.

The agency also said it supports giving a third dose of Pfizer-BioNTech, or Moderna Vaccine, to people with severely weakened immune systems at least 28 days after their second shot.

The agency said its decision came after studies showed that an additional dose of vaccines increased people’s ability to produce antibodies against the virus that causes COVID-19 in organ transplant patients with weakened immune systems. is of. ??

Although there is no direct evidence that the ability to produce antibodies in these patients is protected against COVID-19, it is expected that additional doses will increase protection, at least in some patients. The agency said in a statement.

The recommendations go to health authorities in all 27 EU countries.

Some countries have started giving booster shots.

Several studies have shown that the Pfizer-BioEntech and Moderna vaccines remain strongly protective even months after people get their second dose, dramatically reducing the risk of hospitalization and death.

The head of the World Health Organization urged wealthy countries not to use booster doses this year, saying there was no scientific data to prove the shots were necessary.

He said COVID-19 vaccines would be better used in developing countries, where many people still haven’t received their first vaccine shot.

The United States government launched a campaign last month to offer boosters of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine to millions of Americans, even as federal health officials insist the real problem remains unrelated. Getting the first shot.

The coronavirus pandemic has killed at least 4.8 million people worldwide.

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