Israel confirms low efficacy of Pfizer vaccine against Delta strain and considers application of third dose

Israel confirms low efficacy of Pfizer vaccine against Delta strain and considers application of third dose

The rapid spread of the Delta strain has forced Israeli officials to order two medical studies to investigate the potential need for a third dose of the vaccine.

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satellite brazilIsrael’s health ministry on Monday (5) reported a reduction in the effectiveness of the Pfizer/BioNTech anti-COVID-19 vaccine against the spread of the delta variant in the country, the Times of Israel reports.

The antibody’s effectiveness in preventing symptomatic infections has dropped to 64% in the past month, the organization said, noting that the reduction coincided with the rapid spread of the more infectious Delta variant throughout Israel.

However, health officials assured that Pfizer’s vaccination still provides strong protection against severe forms of the disease and hospital admissions, where it shows an effectiveness of 93%.

Although the ministry did not provide previous figures in its statement, a statement published in May indicated that the Pfizer vaccine was 97 percent effective against severe infections after two doses. In March, Israeli researchers also found that vaccination was 91.2% effective against any type of symptomatic infection.

Third dose?

The new data comes amid a slight increase in infections in Israel, where after 369 new infections were confirmed, the total active cases reached 2,766 on Monday (5). The delta variant is believed to represent over 90% of all cases.

The rapid spread of this strain has forced Israeli Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz to commission two medical studies to look into the need for a third dose of the vaccine, saying the research would provide “critical information” to policymakers. . Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s office said the study will “assess the effectiveness of the vaccine and the speed of its disappearance over time.”

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Although about 60% of Israel’s population – 9.3 million residents – have received at least one dose of the Pfizer vaccine, cases continue to occur among those who are vaccinated. On Friday (2), more than half of the new infections reported were in already vaccinated patients.

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