For whom has the fourth dose of the Covid-19 vaccine been approved in Europe

For whom has the fourth dose of the Covid-19 vaccine been approved in Europe

It is too early to consider the use of the fourth dose of Covid-19 mRna vaccines in the general population, but it may be given to people aged 80 and over. This is what the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) and the European Medicines Agency (Ema) have jointly decided.

At the moment, in fact, in Europe there would not be sufficient evidence to support the immediate use of a second booster dose (so far approved, also in Italy, only for administration to immunosuppressed people) for adults with a normal immune system. However, by combining data on pandemic trends and quantifying the risk of serious illness among vaccinated over time, it may be necessary to extend the fourth dose to a larger population in the near future.

Covid-19 may increase the risk of diabetes This is stated in a large study in a journal of the Lancet group, which calculates an increase in probability of 40%. We mainly talk about type 2 diabetes. How to interpret the result, which is true in some cases even when the infection is not serious Where we were On March 29, in the United States, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized the administration of the fourth dose of Covid-19 mRna vaccines (Pfizer's Comirnaty and Moderna's Spikevax) for all people over 50 years of age, at least four months after the first booster was given. Prior to that date, the fourth dose (or second booster dose) was only recommended for people with severe immune system impairment due to disease, medical treatment or transplantation, in the United States as well as in Italy and Europe.

In our country, in fact, the green light of the Italian Medicines Agency (Aifa) and the Ministry of Health on the administration of an additional dose of vaccine for immunosuppressed people dates back to 20 February. However, a few weeks ago the EMA had already pointed out that in Europe there was insufficient evidence of actual benefits to extend the second booster to the general population.

Now the decision of Ema and Ecdc confirms this line. The two European agencies reviewed the clinical studies and epidemiological data currently available to investigate the current need and potential benefits of a second booster dose and to take a common position.

Most of the evidence comes from Israel, which on January 25 approved the administration of the second booster to anyone over 18 who had received the third dose for at least five months. Although the data collected suggests that the fourth dose provides additional protection against severe forms of Covid-19, the duration of this is not yet known. In particular, in fact, there is no conclusive evidence that the protection given by previous doses of vaccines is decreasing in the general population and that therefore the fourth dose of the vaccine can offer an additional benefit to people with a normal immune system.

What do we know about the symptoms of the new coronavirus variant, XE More colds, fatigue and headache, less fever and loss of smell: these are the most frequent symptoms today. And the UK also updates the official list of Covid-associated ailments. The list mainly concerns omicron and omicron 2, but also the new appearance XE The decision and the future It is for these reasons that Ema and Ecdc have decided, for the moment, not to recommend the extension of the second booster dose to the general population. Things change for adults over the age of 80: as stated in the note released by the agencies, although even among these people the data on the decline in vaccination protection are still limited, the high fragility and the greater risk of contracting the disease in a serious manner makes the administration of the second booster dose recommended for this population. vaccinated with the third dose increase and as the pandemic evolves with time: in fact, if the current epidemiological situation were to change and new evidence emerges in favor of the fourth dose, it could be extended to the general population. Meanwhile, the document concludes, individual national authorities will also consider local data to decide whether to use the second dose booster in risk categories, also indicating a prospect for the near future. As the revaccination campaigns could begin in the fall, in fact, the agencies will also evaluate the best time for the additional doses, possibly using the updated vaccines against the new variants of Sars-cov-2.

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