UK vaccine experts mull over handing out Covid booster shots

WION Web Team
London, United Kingdom Published: Aug 19, 2021, 08:12 PM(IST)

A medical worker displays a vial of COVID-19 vaccine Photograph:( AFP )

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This announcement has come after the US officials recommended booster shots for all adults who have received shots of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine

UK’s vaccine watchdog has announced that the third dose, also dubbed as the booster shot, of the coronavirus vaccine will be given to those who are most vulnerable. However, it also added that a general rollout of the booster shot is also possible.

"We will be imminently deciding that there will be some people who will need a third dose, particularly people who we know are very unlikely to be well protected by those first two doses," Prof Adam Finn, a member of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation said on BBC Radio’s programme. "We do need more evidence before we can make a firm decision on a much broader booster programme."

Also read: Sydney records deadliest day of COVID-19 pandemic, Melbourne lockdown extended

This announcement has come after the US officials recommended booster shots for all adults who have received shots of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine. The American experts have urged authorities to start booster campaign from September 20.

However, the World Health Organization (WHO) have urged all western countries to not start the booster campaigns just yet. The WHO believes these booster shots are unethical as several people around the world have not even received their first dose of the Covid vaccine.

Health emergencies director of WHO, Mike Ryan, used the example of handing out extra lifejackets to people who have already been saved or already have one, while others are left to drown.

Also read: More people will die if countries start booster shots, experts claim

"The overall message is that the best thing we can do at the moment is to get as many people vaccinated with one, and then the second dose as possible, because that’s really where the vaccine makes a difference," Finn said.

He has also said that more evidence is needed to start vaccine programmes for all 12 to 15-year-olds all over the world.

"Children, even adolescents, really very seldom get seriously ill with Covid, so it makes it a very marginal decision that they will benefit by being immunised. We are obviously looking at that very carefully and continuously, but hard to predict really which way that’s going to go," Finn said.

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