Home / News / World /  Fourth dose of Covid-19 vaccine ‘conceivable’ to protect against Omicron variant: Fauci

Just a month after a new study came out with the conclusion that a fourth vaccine dose for older adults leaves them better protected against coronavirus infection, US Chief Medical Adviser Anthony Fauci said that it is “conceivable" that a fourth dose of Covid-19 vaccine will be recommended.

Fauci has said, "it’s “conceivable" that a 4th dose of Covid-19 vaccine will be recommended to protect against Omicron variant. So we’re going to take one step at a time, get the data from the third boost and then make decisions based on scientific data.

Meanwhile, just last month a study released by Israel’s health ministry found that fourth vaccine dose for older adults leaves them better protected against coronavirus infection than peers who received three shots.

The preliminary analysis compares data from about 400,000 people aged 60 and over who received a fourth dose in January and some 600,000 people in the same age group who got only three doses -- with the third shot administered four months or more previously.

The researchers found that those who had the fourth dose had twice the protection from infection as the others, and at least three times the protection from severe illness.

Israel began administering a fourth dose to older adults, health workers and people with compromised immune systems in late December as the omicron variant spread quickly through the population. Since then, almost 600,000 Israelis have received the extra dose. The great majority of people in Israel have received the Pfizer Inc. vaccine.

The health ministry findings contrast with a trial of 154 medical personnel at Israel’s Sheba Medical Center, which showed that the fourth dose increased antibodies, but was insufficient to prevent infection from the omicron variant.

The preliminary analysis was performed by researchers from the Ministry of Health, the Weizmann Institute of Science, Technion -- Israel Institute of Technology, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and the Gertner Institute at Sheba Medical Center.

Additionally, a panel of Israeli health experts has recommended offering a fourth dose of coronavirus vaccine to all adults age 18 and over.

The recommendation was made after a ministry study showed that the fourth dose provided three to five times more protection against serious illness, and twice as much protection against infection than just a third dose. Israel began administering a fourth inoculation to the immunocompromised and people 60 and over earlier this month.


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