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Summary of the case for mRNA booster 11-Oct-2021

ATAGI & the government made announcements 8-Oct-21. Below is why you should get a 2021 mRNA COVID booster ASAP.


With delta COVID variant, there is no such thing herd immunity. Therefore, in due course, we will all meet delta. The only question is, how our body reacts to delta - how well our bodies defends itself from delta - hopefully with the help of vaccination.


Reasons you should have a booster:-

For both economic reasons and in the best health interests of all Australians, there is an already overwhelming case for commencing roll-out of 2021 Pfizer & Moderna COVID boosters now!!

More on COVID vaccine boosters here   

Extra research from 23-Oct-21

  • Waning effectiveness of AstraZeneca that Australia had put so much reliance on. 18-Oct-21


    • "Clarification on the PHE data that I’ve been quoting showing Pfizer’s immunity waning faster than AZ, these later data (thanks to @jburnmurdoch ) show a lower performance by AZ including against severe disease. Look at the charts. Adds to imperative for third dose program asap."


        • NEW: lots of news recently on waning immunity against infection, but a study has now landed from Public Health England on how vaccines are faring against *severe disease & death*.  This chart summarises key findings, but the paper is a real goldmine, so let’s dig into more detail:

I'm a paragraph. Click here to add your own text and edit me. It's easy.

Effecitiveness of COVID vaccines over time_211023.png  

  • First up, fresh data on protection against symptomatic infection. Key results:

    •  We knew protection started out lower among older groups. Now we know they also see the most waning

    • Waning much more muted (if happening at all) among under-65s

    • Moderna > Pfizer > AstraZeneca

Vaccine Effectivessness vs COVID__infection_211023.png

  • Now protection against hospitalisation:

    • Much higher than against infection

      • Pfizer shows very little waning apart from in very elderly

      • AZ shows slight waning, but still holds up well at 80%+ for adults after 5 months (and note big conf ints around the last 40-64 point)


  • And crucially, the study also breaks down protection against hospitalisation by underlying health conditions, which brings us to a key finding:

    • Among those without severe comorbidities, there is actually very little waning against severe disease, if any. Both for Pfizer and AZ

    • Even among over-65s, if you don’t have severe underlying conditions, you still get somewhere between 80% protection (AZ) and 95% (Pfizer) relative to an unvaccinated person even 5 months after your second shot.


Finally, the researchers looked at efficacy against death, and again the results are good news.

  • Very little waning for Pfizer, even among elderly

  • Only modest waning for AZ, and still 80% protection at 5-months-plus since second dose


  • Now onto the broader discussion:

    • We can clearly see that not everyone needs a booster. For most under-65s, and even some healthy over-65s, protection is still holding up very well

    • But for those with serious underlying health conditions, boosters could make a big difference

On that topic, what do we know about how boosters themselves are working? For that we can turn to Israel, where the data looks very promising...

  • By Jul/Aug, waning against infection meant case rates among over-60s were almost as high among double-jabbed as un-jabbed

  • But rates now plummeting among boosted cohort

  • 2-dose protection was still solid against severe outcomes, but boosters have strengthened it regardless

Other things to note:

  • Israel may have had a bigger waning problem than e.g the UK because of its shorter dosing interval. PHE paper would support that theory

  • Similarly, short dosing interval may be a factor in how bad US’s Delta wave has been (tho low US vax rates also key)

Why are Covid vaccine boosters needed and who in the UK will receive them?

Britain is joining nine other countries that have announced similar programmes offering an additional jab

Key slides to be added here later

It seems that AY4.2 is a little bit more infectious that the original delta variant B.1.617.2  24-Oct-21 'The Delta variant sub-lineage AY.4.2, also known as "Delta plus," has aroused concern with its sequence found in ~10% of recent UK cases. Here are the mutation maps of both, notable for minimal difference at 2 sites (red arrows)'


Because delta is so contagious, it is out-competing variants that are potentially more dangerous (eg more immunity-resistant).

Anned_greater_risk_if_over_65_211022.JPG   31-Oct-21


Extra research from 22-Nov-21

Virus no worse than flu by mid-2022: Bill Gates

A few other interesting links:-

Covid cases rising again in Europe again


  • This is a really interesting article Bavaria for example just put all unvaccinated people into lockdown

  • Australia keeps quoting the %over age 16 vaccinated.

  • But as per article above,

    • children spreading COVID is a big part of the virus is a big part of the new surge ...

    • as well as

    • comparative low vaccination levels and

    • also waning immunity from vaccines over time - why you need a booster.

    • Also interesting comments about rapid waning of effectiveness of AstraZeneca


Mask-wearing cuts Covid incidence by 53%, says global study


The 3rd shot (boosters) provide ~95% protection vs symptomatic Delta infections. If a person doesn't get infected, they can't transmit. Period


How long will it (the COVID booster) last? Nobody knows for sure yet. But let's hope Israel is right again: "By analyzing the antibody levels, researchers have concluded that the third shot could be effective for 9 – 10 months, or even longer."


The problem with vaccine waning 4-6 months later was 1st recognized in Israel in July, confirmed by more than 10 reports, and occurs with all vaccines. Protection is fully restored (or even exceeded) by 3rd (booster) shots.


A systematic review of 72 studies of public health measures vs Covid: mask wearing reduced infections 53%, physical distancing by 25%

US 5th covid going exponential


US trial of covid 2021 Pfizer booster vs infection is 95% …. That is extremely high vs infection

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