COVID-19 third booster shot needed?
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A third dose might be the next solution to increase resistance from the COVID-19 virus and immunocompromised individuals may benefit more.

Why Even a Third Booster?

The COVID-19 vaccines that were distributed to the masses are working as intended, but for how long? When should we get vaccinated again to keep the resistance up? Is the vaccine the same as a flu shot in which we have to take it after a certain amount of years?

The questions were raised at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices or ACIP. As per The Verge, the experts within the committee have yet to issue a third booster recommendation, however, and are thinking through all the possible scenarios.

A research posted in the New England Journal of Medicine on June 23, 2021 mentioned that a third dose increased the protection and created "greater antibody response in solid organ transplant recipients."

Read More: COVID-19 US: 99 Percent of Deaths are Composed of Non-Vaccinated People -- Delta Variant More Dominant 

More Research Required

Despite the success of the first research that a third dose of the vaccine could potentially increase the resistance against the deadly COVID-19 virus, experts in ACIP still need more study and research to see the long term effects of the vaccine and how long it will last.

Sharon Frey, clinical director of the Center for Vaccine Development at Saint Louis University Medical School and ACIP member cited that there is still not enough data that supports any recommendations for booster shots for the meantime, except for people who are suffering severely from their immune system lacking antibodies to fight the virus even after getting a COVID-19 vaccine.

Too Few People Are Vaccinated

For results to be as accurate as it could be, there should be a high number of people who should be vaccinated to test herd immunity. As for now, only 45% of people are vaccinated in the US.

With such a low number, it's hard for experts to give better results in their studies to see if boosters are in fact needed. 

If the US has almost half of their population vaccinated, the world population shows a bleaker picture of only 17.7%, which indicates that there is still more work to be done until proper results can be expected from the virus' many strains.

People who previously had organ transplants are said to be the perfect candidates for the third booster shot. The reason is based on the results mentioned above that after delivering a third dose, there is a significant increase in antibody production against the fast mutating virus.

Several experts in the ACIP like Talbot and Frey still need more time and data to make the leap to create the next steps into possible COVID-19 boosters to ensure its effectiveness amongst the general public.

For now, the vaccine should suffice, and medical professionals around the world are focusing on adminstering the vaccine to the entire population.

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Written by Alec G

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