A study conducted by the Tel Aviv University in Israel revealed that a fourth Pfizer vaccine dose reduces the risk of catching the Omicron variant of COVID-19.
The study, published in the American Medical Association’s journal, revealed that senior at-risk adults who receive the fourth dosage of the Pfizer vaccine have a 34 percent lower risk of getting the Omicron variant, a 64 to 67 percent lower risk of needing hospitalization for COVID, and a 72 percent lower risk of dying from the virus.
At least 40,000 elderly Israelis who resided in facilities under the Ministry of Health’s “Senior Shield” program’s supervision participated in the study. The Senior Shield task force was established by the Israeli government to oversee COVID-19 prevention and control in the nation’s geriatric facilities.
“The study indicates that giving booster shots and raising the level of antibodies through a vaccine based on the original COVID-19 strain provides significant protection against the onset of serious illness even after infection with new variants, including those that are very different from the original, such as Omicron,” said Professor Dani Cohen of the School of Public Health at Tel Aviv University.
A 20 percent infection rate was seen in those who had received three doses of the vaccine, while healthcare professionals who received a fourth vaccine shot in January demonstrated only a 7 percent rate of infections.
With the BA.5 omicron variation becoming more prevalent, countries around the world are now debating whether to broaden the eligibility for second booster shots.
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