WHO’s expert group on immunization (SAGE) met last week to review evidence and is now recommending an additional #covid19 vaccine dose for two groups of people:
1. Anyone who is moderately or severely immunocompromised no matter which vaccine they received
2. Anyone 60 or over who received two doses of the inactivated vaccines from Sinopharm or Sinovac. (The evidence this is based on comes mostly from Latin American countries, where these have been used widely)
In both cases @WHO considers the additional dose to be part of the primary immunization series, so separate from the discussion about booster shots to shore up waning immunity.
@WHO Obviously, the decision on Sinopharm and Sinovac is going to impact vaccine supply and SAGE is recommending that countries aim to maximise coverage with two doses in the older age group and only then move to administering third doses starting with oldest age groups.
@WHO The group has also prepared recommendations for use of COVAXIN, the Bharat Biotech #covid19 vaccine.
That vaccine has not been listed for Emergency Use yet by WHO, however, and so the recommendations will only come out if and when that happens.
@WHO These recommendations (plus more on polio, malaria, influenza and hepatitis E vaccines) can be found here now:

Will try to post more about this later

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More from @kakape

7 Oct
“The development and approval of vaccines in record time took us to the summit of scientific achievement”, says @DrTedros in #covid19 presser.
“Now, we stand on the precipice of failure. If we don't make the benefits of science available to all people in all countries right now."
@DrTedros “High and upper middle income countries have used 75% of all vaccines produced so far, low income countries have received less than half of 1% of the world's vaccines”, says @DrTedros calling it a “horrifying inequity".
“In Africa, less than 5% of people are fully vaccinated."
@DrTedros "Today, WHO is launching the strategy to achieve global #COVID19 vaccination by mid-2022”, says @drtedros. Goal is 40% coverage in all countries by the end of this year, 70% by middle of next year.
"This is not a supply problem. It is an allocation problem"
Read 14 tweets
16 Sep
A new preprint by @PeterDaszak, @nycbat and others attempts to show where the next coronavirus pandemic is most likely to begin and argues that there may be 400,000 hidden infections with SARSr-CoVs every year.

Story is here (thread to come):
@PeterDaszak @nycbat First of all:
Yes, that is a really big number. And yes there is HUGE uncertainty in that.
The confidence interval goes all the way down to a single case and all the way up to more than 35 million!
We’ll get to that.
But let’s take a quick look at what the researchers did.
@PeterDaszak @nycbat They created a detailed map of the habitats of 23 bat species known to harbor SARSr-CoVs, then overlaid it with data on where humans live to create a map showing where the risk of spillover is highest: southern China, Vietnam, Cambodia, and on Java and other islands in Indonesia
Read 19 tweets
14 Sep
Only 2 African countries have vaccinated more than 40% of their population, says @DrTedros at #Covid19 presser.
“That's not because African countries don't have the capacity or the experience to roll out vaccines. It's because they have been left behind by the rest of the world."
@DrTedros “More than 5.7 billion doses have been administered globally, but only 2% of those have been administered in Africa”, says @drtedros
"This leaves people at high risk of disease and death exposed to a deadly virus against which many other people around the world enjoy protection."
@DrTedros "This does not only hurt the people of Africa. It hurts all of us”, says @drtedros.
"The longer vaccine inequity persists, the more the virus will keep circulating and changing, the longer the social and economic disruption will continue."
Read 27 tweets
12 Sep
Last week I met Jeremy Farrar in Berlin and since then I’ve kept going over some of what he said, since it seems pretty crucial for the next phase of the pandemic in Europe. So a quick thread
(You can also hear him say some of this in our new @pandemiapodcast episode)
@pandemiapodcast At least in Europe, "what you're witnessing, I think at the moment is the shift from epidemic/pandemic state into an endemic state”, Farrar said.
“And none of us are really quite sure what that endemic state is going to look like.”
@pandemiapodcast The argument is simple: #SARSCoV2 is clearly not going away any time soon. As vaccines blunt some of the impact of the virus at the societal level, #covid19 may still be terrible and still cause disease and death but maybe at a level society can or will or has to accept.
Read 15 tweets
11 Sep
Earlier this year I was watching Denmark for signs of how the Alpha variant would behave. That was partly because their amazing sequencing effort gave such a clear view of what was happening.
Now I’m watching Denmark again, but for a different reason.
Yesterday, Denmark abandoned the last corona restrictions. With more than 95% of the over-60s vaccinated, the country hopes to be able to treat #covid19 more like the flu going forward. It’s an experiment and we will see how it plays out.
I will be watching it closely because Denmark will give us some clues to what “living with the virus” might look like. It could also give us important information on the speed at which immunity wanes and the frequency and seriousness of breakthrough infections.
Read 11 tweets
11 Sep
Gestern wurden in Dänemark die letzten Corona-Beschränkungen aufgehoben und das war für uns Anlass eine Folge @pandemiapodcast zum “Ende der Pandemie” aufzunehmen:
Was heißt eigentlich “Ende”? Was passiert in Dänemark jetzt? Und wie steht Deutschland da?
Die Masken wurden in Dänemark schon im vergangenen Monat abgelegt. Nun ist auch kein Impfnachweis mehr nötig für Konzerte und andere Großveranstaltungen. Das Leben ist weitgehend so wie vor Corona. Dänemark markiert damit den Übergang von der Pandemie in die Endemie.
Die Dänen sagen nicht, dass das Virus keine Rolle mehr spielt. Sie sagen, dass es nicht mehr eine so große Gefahr für die Gesellschaft birgt, dass es mit außergewöhnlichen Maßnahmen bekämpft werden muss.
Oder, wie @LoneSimonsen2 sagt: “Wir haben dem Virus die Zähne gezogen.”
Read 9 tweets

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