CDC Group Says There Isn’t Enough Data Yet To Recommend Covi
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A group of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention scientists said that currently there isn’t enough data to support recommending Covid-19 booster shots to the general population but that more-vulnerable groups, such as elderly people or transplant recipients, may need an extra dose.

“Boosters may be required for a broad population. However, it could also be that the need for boosters of Covid vaccine may only be demonstrated in some populations,” said Dr. Sarah Oliver, co-lead of the working group and a medical epidemiologist with the CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases.

The working group recommended that the CDC consider booster shots only “after evidence of declining protection,” Oliver said, meaning if the vaccines became less effective over time or antibodies guarding against Covid waned over time. The agency could also consider using booster shots if a variant emerged that substantially reduced the effectiveness of the vaccine.

“I would have to agree with the interpretation of the working group in the sense that there’s no data to support recommendations to support boosters at this time,” said Dr. Sharon Frey, a member of ACIP and clinical director of the Center for Vaccine Development at Saint Louis University Medical School. “There’s no evidence against declining protection at this time.”

But Frey said she would be open to giving a third shot to transplant patients or if infections rise in the general population, indicating a lot of breakthrough cases in fully vaccinated individuals. Dr. Grace Lee, who chairs the ACIP safety group and is a professor of pediatrics at Stanford University School of Medicine, also said she would like to see more evidence of breakthrough cases before recommending a booster shot.

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