Priority should be for the unvaccinated, booster jabs can wait, says expert

PETALING JAYA (Aug 10): The immediate priority for the government should be to get as many people as possible vaccinated before rolling out booster jabs, Dr Mohd Ghows Mohd Azzam reported The Star.

Explaining about the booster shots, Dr Mohd Ghows, who is science adviser to the Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Khairy Jamaluddin, said via social media: "Do they work? Probably yes. Is it necessary now? Not yet. (The) priority should be given to unvaccinated people first. Get as many people vaccinated. Later, only when there is enough data and vaccines, booster shots."

He added that providing booster jabs to hike the efficacy for an individual who already has the vaccine should not be prioritised over those who have no protection at all “unless it is for extreme circumstances”, reported the daily.

He said although all vaccines show a reduction in antibodies, the memory B and T cells “will still be there”.

"Scientists are looking at what is known as the correlate of protection (level of neutralising antibodies required)," said Mohd Ghows.

He added that studies are currently being conducted on “why antibody tests for the public are not recommended”.

Recently, the authorities advised the people against going for antibody tests as there is still no clinical guideline announced.

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