BioNTech and Pfizer warned that the covid vaccine developed by their company has to be provided in the correct intervals.
The company has indicated that the gap between the two doses of covid-19 should be around 21 days. However, several countries, including Britain, Denmark, and Germany, are considering delaying administering the second dose for a few weeks.
BioNTech Says No Data To Support Delayed Vaccine Booster Shot Offers Protection
The rapid increase in new coronavirus cases in the European region is said to be the main reason behind this decision by the governments.
The health authorities in the European region feel that by delaying the administration of the second dose by a few weeks, they will be able to vaccinate more people in the first phase of the mass vaccination program.
In this way, the authorities feel that they will be able to protect more people from getting infected, and this may reduce the number of hospitalizations in the near future.
On the other hand, the vaccine manufacturers have clearly indicated that there is no evidence that the vaccine will continue to protect against covid-19 if the second dose is given at a later stage than 21 days.
Even though experts agree that a delay of one week may not affect the outcome in a big way, a delay of more than a few weeks is not an advisable thing as this was not tested in the clinical trials.
When the vaccine manufacturers conducted clinical trials on several participants, they did not make any changes to the gap between the first and second dose.
Most of the participants received the vaccination with a gap of 21 days, and the clinical trial data indicated that the vaccine was more than 95% effective in a majority of cases.
However, when the vaccine is given at a gap of more than a few months, it may not be effective, according to some experts. Further study is required to test the effectiveness of the vaccine even when the booster shot is given at a later stage.
The US may not consider a delay in giving the booster shot according to the latest reports by the CDC. Fauci had clearly mentioned that they would go with a vaccination program as per the data available in the clinical trials, and the federal authorities will try to maintain the gap between the first and second dose at around 21 days.
Due to a lack of availability of vaccines or other practical issues with regards to administering the vaccine, the gap may extend by a few days, and this should not be a cause of worry.
However, the authorities have clearly indicated that they have kept the required doses of vaccine ready to give the booster shot to those people who have received the first dose of vaccines in the mass vaccination program.
Vaccine manufacturers on Monday said that the safety and efficacy of the vaccine were not evaluated on different dosing schedules. In this regard, the vaccine manufacturers said that there was no data to demonstrate that the protection lasted for more than 21 days.
While Germany was considering delaying the administration of the second dose by about a week, other countries like Britain and Denmark are considering delaying the administration of booster shot by more than 6 weeks.
The CDC has made it clear that all those people who received the vaccines in the first phase of vaccination will continue to receive the booster shot as per the initial schedule.
The authorities have made arrangements to store enough doses for the booster shots in the near future. In this way, there will be no changes in the dosing schedule at a later stage.