COVID Booster Required, Reverse of Previous Step

An expert group convened by the World Health Organization on Tuesday (8/3) said it “strongly supports urgent and broad access” to booster COVID-19 vaccine. The statement runs counter to the UN agency’s earlier insistence that booster unnecessary and contribute to vaccine inequities.

In a statement, WHO said its expert group concluded immunization with the official COVID-19 vaccine provided a high level of protection against severe illness and death amid global infection of the highly contagious variant of omicron.

Vaccinations, including the use of boosteris considered very important for people who are at risk of severe disease.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus at a press conference in Brussels, February 18, 2022. (Johanna Geron, Pool via AP)

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus at a press conference in Brussels, February 18, 2022. (Johanna Geron, Pool via AP)

Last year, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus called for a moratorium booster vaccine as dozens of countries started booster doses, saying rich countries should donate vaccines to poorer countries immediately. WHO scientists said at the time that they planned to continue evaluating incoming data.

A number of scientific studies prove booster approved vaccines aid in the restoration of compromised immunity and protection against serious COVID-19. Program booster in rich countries including the UK, Canada and the US are credited with preventing a spike in omicron infections thereby reducing hospitalizations and deaths.

The WHO says it continues to monitor the global spread of omicron, including a “stealth” version known as BA.2, and has documented re-infection of some people who have been infected with the omicron variant.

The WHO notes that all current official COVID-19 vaccines are based on variants that were first detected in Wuhan, China more than three years ago. [mg/lt]