A massive booster dose program against COVID-19 is not necessary because the immunity that comes from the full vaccination schedule “lasts well,” said Sarah Gilbert, the scientist who developed the AstraZeneca vaccine.
The Oxford University expert pointed out to the newspaper ‘The Daily Telegraph’, in an interview published today, that immunity lasts for most of the people who received the two doses, even in the face of the highly contagious delta variant . Gilbert stressed that booster doses will be considered for the elderly or people with immune weakness , but that he does not consider a booster necessary for “everyone . ”
Instead, the scientist advises that the UK send supplies of the vaccine to third world countries , especially to regions of the world where a small proportion of the population has been vaccinated.
“As the virus spreads through the population, it mutates, adapts and evolves, like the delta variant. With these outbreaks, we want to stop them as quickly as possible,” he added. “We need to take vaccines to countries where few populations have been vaccinated. We have to do better in this regard. The first dose is the one that has the most impact, ” he added.
Currently, the so-called Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunization (JCVI) is debating whether to advise a third booster dose for the winter, so a decision is expected in the coming days. According to the latest official figures, 80.4% of those over 16 years of age have received the full vaccination schedule in the United Kingdom.
At the same time, Gilbert warned that the UK has to prepare for another eventual pandemic. “There are many (pathogens) that bats carry, for example, that can begin to infect humans,” explained the scientist, highlighting that wild animals are more in contact with humans due to deforestation and environmental destruction. where these animals live. ” There will be another pandemic . This sounds negative, but we have to be prepared,” he insisted.