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Factbox-Countries weigh need for booster COVID-19 shots By Reuters


© Reuters. FILE PHOTO A third dose of the coronavirus (COVID-19 vaccine) is given to an Israeli woman in Tel Aviv on August 30, 2021. REUTERS/Amir Cohen

Staff of Reuters

(Reuters) – Many countries have begun to offer COVID-19 booster shots. However, scientists are not sure that these are needed. The World Health Organization believes the vaccine should be available to all people.

Here are some options that countries and regions have considered in relation to this issue.

NORTH AMERICA

September 24th, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), supported a booster shot for the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine, for Americans 65 years and over.

The Canadian National Advisory Committee on Immunization recommends booster shots with an approved mRNA vaccine for those suffering from moderate or severe immunocompromis.

EUROPE

A third dose of Pfizer BioNTech was recommended by the European Union drug regulator on October 4. Moderna (NASDAQ:) MRNA vaccines to treat severely compromised immune systems. However, it was up to the member states to determine if the general population needs a boost.

Several EU members have launched booster campaigns prior to the much-anticipated EMA guidance.

Moderna, BioNTech, and Pfizer have provided supply contracts that included the opportunity for them to purchase booster shots.

Following a successful vaccine treatment, the European Union offers boosters.

** Austria (wider rollout to start on Oct. 17); Czech Republic; Hungary; Russia; Romania (only boosters from Pfizer or Moderna were approved); Serbia; Slovakia

These countries offer immune-boosting supplements for people who have weak immunity systems or are elderly or otherwise vulnerable.

** Belgium (mRNA); Bulgaria (recommended for front-line medics, immunosuppressed people, living in care homes and over 65); Britain (mRNA); Denmark; Finland (may expand to other Finns later in the autumn); France; Germany (mRNA); Ireland; Italy; Lithuania; Netherlands; Poland; Slovenia; Spain; Sweden (larger population to get a jab in 2022)

AFRICA

** Morocco, which administered the most doses in Africa, will soon start giving a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, the Health Ministry said on Oct. 1

** Tunisia (for people over 75)

ASIA, MIDDLE EST

After receiving the full vaccine dose, these countries provide boosters.

** Bahrain (Sputnik V, all over-18s at least six months after second dose); Cambodia (AstraZeneca (NASDAQ:)); Indonesia (administered to health workers only, for wider population planned in 2022); Israel (all over-12s); South Korea (initial doses to high-risk groups or people with weakened immune systems); Turkey; Thailand (AstraZeneca or mRNA-type booster shots to people who were administered Sinovac brand); UAE (mandatory for people inoculated with Sinopharm vaccine)

This country offers immune system boosters for the elderly and vulnerable, as well as people who are weak or unable to fight off infection.

** China; Singapore

LATIN & CENTRAL AMERICA

These countries provide boosters for people who have received a complete dose of the vaccine.

** Uruguay (offers a Pfizer dose for those fully vaccinated with Sinovac’s vaccine)

These countries offer only immunosuppressed people boosters:

** Ecuador, Panama

They are a boost for the vulnerable, elderly and at-risk:

** Chile; Brazil (all people over 60-years-old and healthcare workers); Dominican Republic, El Salvador

COMPANIES

On Sept. 22, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved a booster dose Pfizer and BioNTech COVID-19 vaccination for people 65 and over, as well as those at risk of serious disease and other persons who have been exposed regularly to the virus.

On Aug. 13, the FDA approved a third dose COVID-19 vaccines from Moderna Inc and Pfizer BioNTech for patients with compromised immune systems.

An advisory panel of FDA experts will also hold meetings later in October to discuss authorizing booster doses of Moderna and Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:)’s COVID-19 vaccines, the regulator said on Oct. 1.

Pfizer, BioNtech and others also submitted data to be approved for COVID-19 booster approval by the European Medicines Agency.

Moderna announced on Sept. 3, that it had requested conditional approval by the EU Drugs Regulator for a booster shot. It would be a dose of 50 micrograms, half the amount of its two-shot vaccine.

Additionally, the company stated that it submitted data for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration booster dose.

Moderna announced that the COVID-19 shot it used was 93% effective, four- to six month after its second dose. The results were very similar to the original 94% clinical trial.

AstraZeneca stated that it is investigating how long the vaccine protects against infection and whether a booster dosage would be necessary.



Mike Robinson
Mike covers the financial, utilities and biotechnology sectors for Street Register. He has been writing about investment and personal finance topics for almost 12 years. Mike has an MBA in Finance from Wake Forest University.