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Can the dose be halved if COVID-19 vaccine not enough?
Can the dose be halved if COVID-19 vaccine not enough? U.S. government and FDA quarreled. Vaccines are in short supply, so if a vaccine is divided among two people, won’t the number of vaccinations double? It sounds absurd, but the U.S. government’s “Action Speed” project team really wants to do it. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) strongly opposes this, saying that adjusting the dose of the vaccine will seriously undermine the promotion of vaccines.
Initially, the goal of Operation Warp Speed was to ensure that 80% of the 330 million Americans were vaccinated by the end of June 2021. Therefore, after the vaccine is marketed, 3 million people should be vaccinated every day. However, two weeks ago, the United States averaged only 200,000 vaccinations per day. In the past few days, it has risen to 500,000 per day, which is a long way from 3 million.
The shortage of vaccines is one of the reasons for the insufficient number of vaccines. In order to expand the coverage of vaccination, the British government has come up with a way to increase the interval between Pfizer and AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccination from 3 weeks to 12 weeks, so that as many people as possible can be vaccinated. The United States has not yet launched this plan, but the means may be similar. In an interview, Moncef Slaoui, chief scientific consultant of Operation Warp Speed, introduced that people aged 18-55 can halve the dose of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine. In the company’s clinical study, this age group had the same immune response as the standard dose of 100 micrograms after vaccination with a lower dose.
In contrast, the US FDA believes that it is too early to change the vaccination program, and there is no reliable evidence to support it. During the clinical trial, less than 10% of volunteers did not receive adequate vaccination, and only a few received short-term follow-up. Therefore, the protection and sustainability of the half-dose vaccine provided by Moderna cannot give any clear conclusions.
FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn said that it may be reasonable to expand the coverage of vaccines by reducing the vaccine dose, extending the interval between two doses, and mixing the two vaccines, but there is currently no data to support this new vaccination program. This approach will put public health safety in a very dangerous situation. Therefore, the United Kingdom currently allows Pfizer vaccines to be vaccinated at an interval of more than 21 days and is considering allowing people to vaccinate two different vaccines, but the United States cannot do so.
In addition to insufficient doses, the insufficient number of vaccinations is also related to the inefficiency of states in distributing to medical workers. The United States is during the New Year holiday, and the health care system has been overloaded for a long time. Three major snowstorms have also had a great negative impact on the popularization of vaccines. The U.S. medical system is decentralized and profitable, and there is no centralized decision-making. Most field distribution is the responsibility of the state public health system. At present, the insufficient funds of these systems have also caused great constraints on the efficiency of distribution.
(source:internet, reference only)