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healthcare | IST

COVID-19 vaccines work against Delta variant; people shouldn't rush for booster shots, says Dr Gagandeep Kang

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"The third dose does not guarantee protection but it does help. Booster doses may add a little bit of benefit in reducing disease but it may not be the best use of doses," Dr Kang said.

Dr Gagandeep Kang, a noted clinical scientist, on Wednesday said that COVID-19 vaccines are working against the Delta variant and people should not rush for booster shots. The microbiologist and virologist said the third dose does help but it does not guarantee protection.
In an exclusive interview with CNBC-TV18, Dr Kang, a professor at the Christian Medical College (CMC), said, "The third dose does not guarantee protection but it does help. Booster doses may add a little bit of benefit in reducing disease but it may not be the best use of doses. We shouldn't panic and run for booster shots."
The UK has decided to give a booster shot to the immunocompromised and elderly as it induces antibodies. Britain will offer booster vaccines to 32 million people starting September, Reuters reported. The campaign would see the rollout completed by early December if it goes to plan, the report added.
Recently, the administration of US President Joe Biden has decided that most Americans should get a booster shot of a vaccine eight months after they completed their initial vaccination, the New York Times reported on Monday, citing two administration officials familiar with the discussions. Officials are planning to announce the administration's decision soon, adding that it could begin offering the extra shots as early as mid-September.
She backed the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) studies that showed the mixing of Covishield and Covaxin vaccines is better than two doses of Covaxin.
On August 11, India's drug regulator has given approval for a study to be conducted by the CMC, Vellore, on mixing of Covaxin and Covishield, official sources had said. An expert panel of the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) on July 29 had recommended granting permission for conducting the study. The trial will involve 300 healthy volunteers.
On the time interval between the two doses of vaccine, Kang said there was no evidence to support a reduction in dosing interval. Pfizer performs better at intervals of 12 weeks than 3 weeks, she added.
Currently, the second dose of Bharat Biotech's Covaxin is administered after 28 days and Serum Institute of India's Covishield after 84 days.