A fourth Covid jab is not yet needed because booster doses continue to provide high protection against severe disease from the Omicron variant of Covid among older and vulnerable adults.

The U.K. Health Security Agency say that around 3 months after they received the third jab, protection against hospitalisation among those aged 65 and over remains at about 90%.

With just two vaccine doses, protection against severe disease drops to around 70% after 3 months and to 50% after 6 months.

Professor Wei Shen Lim, the JCVI’s chair of COVID-19 immunisation, said:

The current data shows the booster dose is continuing to provide high levels of protection against severe disease, even for the most vulnerable older age groups. For this reason, the committee has concluded there is no immediate need to introduce a second booster dose, though this will continue to be reviewed.

The data is highly encouraging and emphasises the value of a booster jab. With Omicron continuing to spread widely, I encourage everyone to come forward for their booster dose, or if unvaccinated, for their first 2 doses, to increase their protection against serious illness.


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