POLL | Will you be lining up for a booster Covid-19 jab?
The SA Health Products Regulatory Authority (Sahpra) this week approved the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine booster shot for South Africans older than 18.
The authority received an application from Pfizer last month to amend the dosing schedule for its vaccine, and has now agreed to allow a third dose to offer protection against Covid-19.
You should get your booster at least six months after the second jab, or at least 28 days after the second dose if you are 12 years and older and are severely immunocompromised.
Pfizer said the results of an initial study found three doses of the vaccine were enough to neutralise the Omicron variant.
Albert Bourla, Pfizer’s chair and CEO, said two doses appear to still be able to protect people from severe illness and death, but a third dose improves protection.
“Though two doses of the vaccine may still offer protection against severe disease caused by the Omicron strain, it’s clear from these preliminary data that protection is improved with a third dose of our vaccine,” said Bourla.
“Ensuring as many people as possible are fully vaccinated with the first two-dose series and a booster remains the best course of action to prevent the spread of Covid-19.”
Sahpra said the data it had used in its decision only dealt with a booster shot from the same vaccine maker.
“The data provided only dealt with the situation of homologous boosting, where the third dose is of the same vaccine as the initial course (in this case, two doses).
“Sahpra is aware of the keen interest in the efficacy and safety of heterologous boosting regimens (so-called ‘mix-and-match’ approaches) and invites the submission of supportive data in this regard,” it added.