Pfizer CEO Says We Might ‘Need A Fourth Dose’ Of The Vaccine

Hannah Smith

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Pfizer CEO Says We Might 'Need A Fourth Dose' Of The VaccineAlamy

Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla has claimed a fourth vaccine dose may eventually be required in light of the new Omicron variant.

Bourla said that while data from real-world studies would be needed to confirm how Omicron reacts against the vaccines, initial studies have shown that the new variant has greater ability to evade protection provided by two doses of Pfizer than other common variants of Covid-19.

Albert Bourla (Alamy)Alamy

‘When we see real-world data, [we] will determine if the Omicron is well covered by the third dose and for how long. And the second point, I think we will need a fourth dose,’ Bourla said during an appearance on CNBC, when asked about whether additional doses would eventually be needed.

The CEO’s comments came hours after Pfizer published a study that found that two vaccine doses were less effective against Omicron, with a third booster dose bringing protection up to the level that two doses provide against other variants.

According to The Independent, the results of the Pfizer study – which was based on a lab-created version of the variant – were in line with findings by doctors in South Africa, where the variant was first recorded.

Bourla said he believed a booster dose would give ‘very good protection’ against the variant, however he stressed that at this time, more information was needed before making a decision about extra doses, saying ‘with Omicron, we need to wait and see because we have very little information. We may need [a fourth dose] faster’.

Queue for booster jabs (Alamy)Alamy

The pharmaceutical company CEO also told CNBC that he believed new anti-viral treatments – such as Pfizer’s oral pill Paxlovid – would help prevent severe illness and deaths from Covid-19 over the coming winter.

Bourla confirmed that Pfizer was set to submit full data on the pill to the FDA in the coming days, after interim data showed that Paxlovid reduced hospitalisation and death from Covid by 89%.

‘We have already shipped products into the US, so products will be available this month if it’s approved,’ he said.

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Topics: News, COVID-19, Now, Omicron, Pfizer, Vaccines

Credits

The Independent
  1. The Independent

    Pfizer CEO predicts a fourth shot might be needed in light of omicron variant

Hannah Smith
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