The problem we have with the third doses is that we have not seen enough science behind them. It is really still confusing to me as to why we are moving toward a vast recommendation for a booster dose. — Dr. John Nkengasong, director of the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
The problem we have with the third doses is that we have not seen enough science behind them. It is really still confusing to me as to why we are moving toward a vast recommendation for a booster dose. — Dr. John Nkengasong, director of the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Africa’s C.D.C. Director Urges Wealthy Nations to Forego Covid Vaccine Boosters
The decision by some rich nations to offer booster shots will hinder coronavirus vaccine access for low-income countries, the director of the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said on Thursday, arguing there is no conclusive evidence healthy people who are not immunocompromised need an extra shot.

In wealthy countries — including Germany, France, Israel and the United States — there has been growing momentum to offer additional doses to certain vulnerable populations, including older citizens, and to the general public.

“The problem we have with the third doses is that we have not seen enough science behind them,” the director, Dr. John Nkengasong, said in an online news conference with journalists on Thursday. “It is really still confusing to me as to why we are moving toward a vast recommendation for a booster dose.”

By offering booster shots, he added, “we will surely be gambling.”

... Despite the flurry of booster programs in wealthier nations, the science of whether they are needed is not yet clear.


Some studies suggest that the protection that the vaccines provide against infection and mild disease may be waning. But they remain highly effective at preventing the worst outcomes, including severe disease and death, and scientists have said that a blanket recommendation for boosters is premature.

Experts generally agree, however, that a third shot is warranted for people with compromised immune systems, who may not have mounted a strong immune response to the initial doses. Several countries, including the United States, are now offering additional shots to this vulnerable group.

Dr. Nkengasong’s comments came as the W.H.O.’s Africa director, Dr. Matshidiso Moeti, said on Thursday that the continent will receive fewer Covid-19 vaccine doses than expected for the rest of the year from Covax, the global immunization program.

... Around 3 percent of Africa’s population, or 39 million of 1.3 billion residents, has been fully vaccinated, and 72 percent of all doses received have been administered, according to the W.H.O.

The African continent is coming off a severe third wave of the pandemic, driven largely by the Delta variant.

The continent has so far reported 7.9 million cases and over 200,000 deaths from the virus as of Thursday, according to the Africa C.D.C.
Read the full article: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/09/world/africa/africa-covid-vaccine-boosters.html