Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla recently brought up that those who have already completed 2 doses of their vaccine are more likely to need a third shot or “booster shot.”
It can be given half or 1 year after the second dose to provide extra protection especially since there are more contagious variants that are spreading.
But according to the Department of Health (DOH), the World Health Organization (WHO) still needs a recommendation in this regard.
“Kailangan natin ipunin muna ang lahat ng ebidensiya. Kailangan natin ng rekomendasyon galing sa WHO and maybe reputable institutions abroad, makitaan natin ng ganyang rekomendasyon,” said DOH spokesperson Maria Rosario Vergeire.
According to the vaccine expert panel (VEP) under the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), booster shots will also be needed.
“Ang mangyayari dahil nga may mga variants tayo, magkakaroon ng updated na vaccines na ang laman bukod sa original na strain ay mga variants ang kasama… First generation vaccines itong ngayon. Magkakaroon ng 2nd generation. Parang flu. Every 1 to 2 years napapalitan ng laman kasi ‘yung nagsi-circulate na variants ng flu,” said Dra. Nina Gloriani, head of VEP.
Pfizer CEO says booster shot possibly needed for extra protection
According to Gloriani, booster shots can be made earlier depending on how long the immunity or protection from the vaccine lasts. This is what experts are now studying.
Health Secretary Francisco Duque also said that the vaccine protection against COVID-19 may take less than a year, but it is not yet certain.
“In general, mga six months to nine months daw eh… Whether we need to adopt a booster dose policy, that remains to be seen because we still don’t have sufficient data precisely to establish how long these vaccines can provide protection,” said Duque.
Duque confirmed monitoring the antibodies of some who received the vaccine.
It is also said that the duration of protection can vary depending on the brand. So far, only Sinovac and AstraZeneca are available in the country.
Despite this, the DOH said they will open larger vaccination sites with the help of the private sector to expedite vaccination in the country.