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Top virologist says vaccine boosters will be needed to maintain Covid protection

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PHOTO: Facebook/ วัคซีนภูเก็ต (PR Phuket)

A prominent virologist from Bangkok’s Chulalongkorn University says it’s likely that people vaccinated against Covid-19 will still require boosters in order to remain protected. Yong Poovorawan shared his views in a Facebook post yesterday, after a study of recovered patients showed that their immunity to the virus started to drop between 3 and 6 months after infection.

“It is highly likely that a third dose of the Covid-19 vaccine will be needed and it is possible that people will need to get vaccinated against the coronavirus periodically.”

Yong says the incubation period of a virus will determine a vaccine’s effectiveness, with jabs usually performing better against illnesses with longer incubation periods, such as chicken pox and measles. However, Covid-19 has a shorter incubation period of between 2 and 7 days, and this means booster shots are likely to be needed.

According to a Bangkok Post report, the virologist has also warned that people who’ve been vaccinated, or those who’ve already had the virus, can be re-infected, although symptoms in a second infection are usually not as severe. Yong insists the national vaccine rollout is essential, saying the jabs will prevent hospitalisation and death.

The Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration says 618,583 people were vaccinated between February 28 and April 18. On Sunday, 9,219 received their first vaccine dose, while 843 received the second. The Thai government has been criticised in many quarters for the slow pace of the vaccine rollout and its vaccine procurement strategy, which saw orders limited to just 2 manufacturers. PM Prayut Chan-o-cha recently stated that the government would try to obtain more vaccines from Russia and the US, but there has been no indication of when these might arrive.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

 

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