A 4th dose of Covid-19 vaccine will be needed, Pfizer’s CEO says, but the company is working on a shot to handle all variants. To help fend off another wave of Covid-19, people will need a fourth dose of vaccine, Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla told CBS on Sunday.
“Many variants are coming, and Omicron was the first one that was able to evade — in a skillful way — the immune protection that we’re giving,” Bourla told CBS’ “Face the Nation,” reports a local Arabic daily.
“The protection we are getting from the third (dose) it is good enough — actually quite good for hospitalizations and deaths,” Bourla said. But protection after three doses is “not that good against infections” and “doesn’t last very long” when faced with a variant like Omicron.
“It is necessary, a fourth (dose) for right now,” Bourla told CBS. Currently, anyone ages 12 and up who got a second dose of the Pfizer vaccine at least five months ago can get a third dose.
Anyone ages 18 and up who got the two-dose Moderna vaccine should get a booster shot six months after the second dose, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and anyone who got the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine should get a booster shot after two months, the CDC said.
Some moderately or severely immunocompromised people who have had three doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna Covid-19 vaccines can already get a fourth dose of vaccine, according to the CDC. But it’s not clear if or when the US Food and Drug Administration might authorize a fourth dose of Covid-19 vaccine for healthy teens and adults.
“We are just submitting those data to the FDA, and then we’ll see what the experts also would say outside Pfizer,” Bourla told CBS.