Three Pfizer vaccine doses increase protection against Omicron variant
SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- A new study from Pfizer shows that three doses of their vaccine increases protection from the Omicron variant.
According to the study, having three doses increases the level of antibodies "25 fold," and while having tw0 doses still offers protection from other strains of the virus, it might not be enough to protect against Omicron.
“To be protected from Omicron, you really need three doses of the vaccination and that’s how we should look at it right now,” said Mikael Dolston, a Pfizer CSO.
Dr. Mark Fox, with the St. Joseph County Health Department, stresses that these results are still preliminary:
“If patients fare better after getting the booster when they confront the Omicron variant, that will be the true test," he said.
Dr. Fox adds that this is not time to reduce caution, even if Omicron symptoms are reported to be milder.
“People need to appreciate that COVID cases are rising dramatically," said Dr. Fox. "Hospitalizations are rising dramatically and people need to take steps to protect themselves. Interestingly, what I perceive as one of the greatest risks is, if Omicron truly does cause more mild disease, is that it will be spread more broadly because people don’t take it seriously.”
When families may be travelling for the holidays, mitigating the spread of any strain of the Coronavirus is crucial.
While the results are still preliminary, Dr. Fox believes this news might encourage people to get their booster sooner.
“This looming risk of a new variant, and some suggestion that they might be able to protect themselves, may be enough to motivate them to go now instead of waiting for a more convenient time,” he said.
The St. Joseph County Health Department is still conducting its own Pfizer vaccine clinic on Monday through Friday from 8:30am-3:20pm, and Saturday from 8:30am-11:20am at the St. Joseph County-City Building.