Vaccine third dose 'likely' needed within 12 months, says Pfizer CEO

Eligible persons urged to receive vaccine soon

"And then from there, there will be annual revaccination, but all of that needs to be confirmed".

Initial data has shown that vaccines from Moderna Inc and partners Pfizer Inc and BioNTech SE retain most of their effectiveness for at least six months, though for how much longer has not been determined.

Pfizer said that after people received their second dose, the vaccine was 95% effective.

The CEO of Pfizer Albert Bourla said people will most likely need a booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine within a year of getting fully vaccinated.

"It is possible people will need to get vaccinated against the coronavirus annually", he added.

"There are vaccines that are like polio that one dose is enough. and there are vaccines like flu that you need every year", he continued.

'The Covid virus looks more like the influenza virus than the polio virus'.

Peter Marks, the director of the Food and Drug Administration's Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, said during an American Medical Association webinar that officials think protection is "probably going to last at least nine months".

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'It is extremely important to suppress the pool of people that can be susceptible to the virus, ' Bourla said during the segment, which was taped April 1.

The over-80s, clinically extremely vulnerable, health and social care staff and care home workers were the first to be vaccinated against coronavirus in December and the first weeks of this year.

About 144 volunteers will be given the third dose, mostly those who participated in the vaccine's early-stage USA testing past year.

"We don't know everything at this moment", he told the House Coronavirus Crisis Subcommittee.

"It seems strong but there is some waning of that and no doubt the variants challenge" that, he said.

Though, the vaccines have not yet been tested in on pregnant women, Dr. Al Khenyab has said that evidence from non-clinical studies of the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine has been reviewed by the World Health Organization and the regulatory bodies in the USA, Canada and Europe and has raised no concerns about safety in pregnancy.

"I think for planning purposes, planning purposes only, I think we should expect that we may have to boost".

Of 77 million people vaccinated in the United States, there have been 5,800 such breakthrough infections, Walensky said, including 396 people who required hospitalisation and 74 who died.

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