Kashmir Doctors Body Says ‘Booster Dose’ Can Keep Variants At Bay

Srinagar: Doctors Association Kashmir (DAK) on Tuesday said people who are vaccinated likely need a booster dose of Covid-19 vaccine to stay protected against the newly emerging variants of coronavirus.

“Booster shots would help broaden individuals’ immune response against the emerging variants of Covid-19,” said DAK in a statement.

The statement said that ever since the pandemic began, the virus has been mutating and most of these mutants are insignificant, but some can make the virus more infectious and even deadlier.

While the current Covid vaccines still protect against the circulating variants, antibodies naturally wane over time, so booster dose is needed to ensure that the protection is maintained against the new variants, the statement said.

The DAK said currently, the timing for Covid booster dose has not been established, but the early data that is coming is in support of a need for booster dose somewhere between 8 and 12 months after full vaccination. “Then from there, a yearly shot is possible.”

Citing a recent Oxford study, the statement said that it was found that a booster dose of AstraZeneca vaccine increases antibody and T-cell immune response.

“United Kingdom is planning to offer a booster jab to its citizens from September this year, Pfizer plans to seek US FDA emergency authorisation next month for the booster dose of its Covid vaccine, based on the company's initial data showing that the booster dose raises antibody levels by 5 to 10 fold compared with the original vaccine,” it said.

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