CategoryVaccine

France to double Covid vaccine doses for poorer countries

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France will double the number of vaccine doses it will send to poorer countries to 120 million, President Emmanuel Macron pledged on Saturday, in a video broadcast during the Global Citizen concert in Paris.

“The injustice is that in other continents, obviously, vaccination is very late,” he said. “We have to go faster, stronger.

“France pledges to double the number of doses it is giving,” he added. “We will pass from 60 million to 120 million doses offered.”

That amounted to more than the doses so far administered in France, he said.

On Wednesday, the United States announced that it would be doubling its donation of vaccine doses, bringing its total contribution to 1.1 billion.

President Joe Biden described the pandemic as an “all-hands-on-deck crisis,” adding “we need other high-income countries to deliver on their own ambitions”.

The European Union has committed to distributing 500 million doses.

https://www.france24.com/en/live-news/20210925-france-to-double-covid-vaccine-doses-for-poorer-countries

Moderna chief executive sees pandemic over in a year

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Moderna Inc Chief Executive Stéphane Bancel thinks the coronavirus pandemic could be over in a year as increased vaccine production ensures global supplies, he told the Swiss newspaper Neue Zuercher Zeitung.

“If you look at the industry-wide expansion of production capacities over the past six months, enough doses should be available by the middle of next year so that everyone on this earth can be vaccinated. Boosters should also be possible to the extent required,” he told the newspaper in an interview.

Vaccinations would soon be available even for infants, he said.

“Those who do not get vaccinated will immunize themselves naturally, because the Delta variant is so contagious. In this way we will end up in a situation similar to that of the flu. You can either get vaccinated and have a good winter. Or you don’t do it and risk getting sick and possibly even ending up in hospital.”

Asked if that meant a return to normal in the second half of next year, he said: “As of today, in a year, I assume.”

https://www.reuters.com/business/healthcare-pharmaceuticals/moderna-chief-executive-sees-pandemic-over-year-newspaper-2021-09-23/

Over 90% of people in Ireland aged over 16 are now fully vaccinated against Covid

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Over 90% OF Irish people over the age of 16 are now fully vaccinated against Covid-19, the highest rate in the European Union, HSE chief executive Paul Reid has said.

The latest vaccine statistics show that over 7.1 million vaccine doses have been administered and more than 90% of people aged over the age of 16 are now fully vaccinated.

Ireland now has the highest rate of Covid-19 vaccine uptake in the European Union.

https://www.thejournal.ie/90-fully-vaccinated-ireland-5552921-Sep2021/

US to send additional 500 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines to foreign nations in 2022

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The United States is set to significantly increase the amount of Covid-19 vaccines it will ship to foreign nations beginning in 2022 in an effort to end the pandemic worldwide, President Joe Biden announced Wednesday.

As part of a virtual Covid-19 summit on the margins of the UN General Assembly, Biden announced that the US is purchasing an additional 500 million Pfizer Covid-19 vaccines to donate to low- and lower-middle-income countries around the world, a senior administration official said, previewing the summit. The newly announced 500 million doses are on top of the 500 million the US had already committed to sharing with other nations.

Those vaccines will begin shipping out in January, and from January through September of next year, the US will ship out 800 million vaccines to the world, the official said. These vaccines bring the United States total to over 1.1 billion vaccines donated to other countries.

https://edition.cnn.com/2021/09/22/politics/500-million-pfizer-doses-covid-vaccines-foreign-nations/index.html

Johnson & Johnson says additional dose boosts Covid vaccine efficacy

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Johnson & Johnson said Tuesday that a large, global study showed its Covid-19 vaccine is more effective when given as a two-dose regimen, and that other data indicate the efficacy of the vaccine does not wane.

The two-dose regimen prevented 75% of moderate to severe Covid cases in all countries where it was tested — and 94% of such cases in the United States, where the vaccine probably had to grapple with fewer variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Importantly, the two-dose regimen was 100% effective against severe disease.

It appears J&J may use the data to argue in favor of making a booster broadly available to people who received the one-dose vaccine six months ago or more. A press release from the company did not say so explicitly, but stated J&J had submitted the data to the Food and Drug Administration and plans to submit them to other regulators and the World Health Organization.

https://www.statnews.com/2021/09/21/johnson-johnson-says-additional-dose-boosts-covid-vaccine-efficacy/

France to donate 10 million vaccines to Africa over three months

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France will send 10 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to Africa over the next three months, the French presidency said in a statement on Monday.

The vaccines will be allocated and distributed through the African Union’s Vaccine Acquisition Trust (AVAT) and Covax. AVAT is a means of enabling group purchases of vaccines by AU members to help them meet at least 50 percent of their needs.

At a conference in Berlin last week, African leaders renewed calls for vaccine equity.

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said it was unfair that richer countries had vaccinated nearly their entire adult populations while poorer countries struggled to buy vaccines.

Africa has administered the least vaccines of any continent. Only 2% of Africa’s population of 1.2 billion is fully vaccinated.

https://www.africanews.com/2021/08/30/france-to-donate-10-million-vaccines-to-africa-over-three-months/

Real world data out of Israel shows the vaccines continue to work

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Moderna vaccine protection staying especially strong

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New research released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday shows that effectiveness of the Moderna vaccine is staying particularly strong.

Over the course of five months of research, from March to August, the effectiveness of all the vaccines at keeping people out of the hospital due to COVID among people without compromising conditions was highest for Moderna recipients, at 93%. Pfizer’s effectiveness was overall 88% and Johnson & Johnson’s was 71%.

Pfizer’s effectiveness decreased after 120 days of the study period, from 91% to 77%, while Moderna’s effectiveness did not see a similar decline. Initial effectiveness of 93% only declined to 92% with Moderna.

“Although these real-world data suggest some variation in levels of protection by vaccine, all FDA-approved or authorized COVID-19 vaccines provide substantial protection against COVID-19 hospitalization,” researchers concluded.

https://eu.usatoday.com/story/news/health/2021/09/18/cdc-says-moderna-vaccine-staying-especially-effective-covid-updates/8380925002/

COVID-vaccine booster shot shows promise in Israeli study

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Older Israelis who have received a third dose of a COVID-19 vaccine are much less likely to test positive for SARS-CoV-2 or to develop severe COVID-19 than are those who have had only two jabs, according to a highly anticipated study published on 15 September1.

The standard regimen for messenger RNA-based COVID-19 vaccines is two doses, but some governments, including Israel’s, have started administering third ‘booster’ shots. The latest study evaluated 1.1 million Israelis over the age of 60 who had received their first two doses at least five months earlier. Twelve or more days after receiving a third jab, participants were about 19.5 times less likely to have severe COVID-19 than were people in the same age group who had received only two jabs and were studied during a similar time period.

“It’s a very strong result,” says Susan Ellenberg, a biostatistician at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, who adds that the data might be the most robust she has seen in favour of boosters. But potential biases in the data leave some scientists unconvinced that boosters are necessary for all populations — and the data do not dispel concerns about vaccine equity when billions of people are still waiting for their first jab.

https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-021-02516-4

Vaccines prevented up to 140,000 COVID-19 deaths in U.S.

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Three highly effective COVID-19 vaccines are available in the U.S. These vaccines have been shown to slow the spread of the virus and reduce COVID-19 deaths. About half of the population has been fully vaccinated as of August 2021.

A team led by Drs. Sumedha Gupta of Indiana University and Christopher Whaley of the RAND corporation analyzed how the vaccine rollout affected COVID-19 deaths. Their study is one of the first to assess the impact of state-level vaccination campaigns.

To determine the speed of vaccination in each state, researchers used data from government websites and official statements. The study analyzed the period from December 21, 2020, to May 9, 2021. They compared the amount of time each state took to reach a series of milestones—starting with five vaccine doses per 100 adults, up to 120 doses per 100 adults. They also calculated the number of vaccine doses per 100 adults at the end of each week.

Based on the model, COVID-19 vaccines prevented more than 139,000 deaths during the first five months they were available. About 570,000 COVID-19 deaths had occurred in the U.S. by May 9; the model projected about 709,000 deaths would have occurred without the vaccines. The researchers estimated that the economic value of preventing these deaths was between $625 billion and $1.4 trillion.

https://www.nih.gov/news-events/nih-research-matters/vaccines-prevented-140000-covid-19-deaths-us