COVID-19 Vaccines Highly Effective at Preventing Severe Infection, says MoPH
According to the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH), there is clear clinical evidence showing the effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccines in preventing severe infection, especially with the booster dose.
Dr Abdullatif Al Khal, Chair of the National Health Strategic Group on COVID-19 and Head of Infectious Diseases at Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC), said that clinical research carried out here in Qatar and in many countries around the world, shows that booster dose provides around 75% protection against mild to moderate infection and more than 90% protection against severe infection or death. This high level of immunity is reflected in the COVID-19 hospital admissions in Qatar.
The high level of immunity offered by the vaccines, says Dr Al Khal, is obvious when it comes to COVID-19 patients who are experiencing the most severe symptoms.
There have sadly been seven recent deaths in Qatar due to COVID-19 and none of these individuals received any of their COVID-19 vaccine doses. Additionally, almost all patients admitted to intensive care units are either unvaccinated or had their second dose of the vaccine more than six months ago.
He added that there have been almost no ICU admissions among those who received their booster dose.
Getting vaccinated, and notably getting the booster dose, will significantly increase the individual’s immunity against all COVID-19 variants, including Omicron. Individuals who received their second dose within the last six months will have good levels of immunity, but from this point onwards, their protection declines, Dr Khal pointed out.
Therefore, it is extremely important for people to get their booster dose as soon as they become eligible, six months after their second dose.
Dr Al Khal said that vaccines give stronger and longer-lasting immunity than natural infection. He explained that the rollout of booster doses is progressing at a good pace and that following the administration of more than 368,000 booster vaccine doses in Qatar, only a limited number of people have reported modest side effects. He also confirmed that no serious side effects have been reported so far, to MoPH.
For more information about Qatar’s COVID-19 guidelines, visit moph.gov.qa.
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