People who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine as their first dose seem less likely to get their booster than other vaccinated groups. Among those eligible for a booster, less than a third who originally received the Johnson & Johnson shot have been boosted, compared to about half of those who completed their first two-dose series of Moderna, on 52%, or Pfizer, at 47%, according to CNN’s analysis.
The survey showed that the intention to be boosted was split along party lines, with 58% of Democrats vaccinated but not boosted saying they want a booster dose as soon as they can, compared to just 18% of Republicans who has not got it. and booster.
The study was conducted among a nationally representative sample of about 1,500 adults from January 11 to January 23, during a period when the Omicron coronavirus variant was prevalent and the United States had a record increase in cases and hospitalizations.
Benjamin said he is not surprised by the slow uptake of booster doses of coronavirus vaccine, as there has been a long history of delayed adherence to other recommended vaccines and drugs when it comes to public health in the United States.
“It comes as no surprise to me when you consider that when we start a new vaccination program, there has always been a very, very slow uptake,” Benjamin said. “The amount of people who have been fully vaccinated – the over 200 million who have already been vaccinated – that is a remarkable number. So we should acknowledge that it is remarkable. Now we should also say that in the light of the seriousness of the problem, we have not done near enough. “
‘People seem to consider it something extra’
“When Omicron came through, it became very clear that a booster was a huge help in terms of keeping people out of the hospital, and one would think that people who made the first set of vaccines would be the ones who would be more than willing to line up for a third that would give them much better immunity, “Pekosz told CNN.
“It seems that people consider it something extra or something optional, as opposed to it really being almost critical when it comes to Omicron infections,” he said.
Most adults who have been vaccinated but not boosted, 60%, say the news of Omicron’s spread has not made much of a difference in whether they get a booster. But about 3 in 10 – or 29% – say the spread of Omicron has made them more likely to get a booster shot, according to the KFF survey released last month.
“Booster is the easy way to strong immunity now and therefore we would like to see more people take the easy way to strong immunity. I would like to see a much higher booster rate, “Pekosz said. He added that it is still unclear how close the United States is to the level of protection needed to end the pandemic because it is difficult to track immunity caused by natural infections.
“I can definitely tell you that there is a difference between my patients who are vaccinated versus my patients who get boosted if they get a breakthrough infection. So if they get a breakthrough case, most of my patients who are boosted manage “It’s much better at home,” Mathew told CNN.
“It’s like a clockwork. When I see them, I want to ask, ‘Are you boosted?’ “If they say they are not boosted, I can already predict that they will tell me that their symptoms are much worse,” Mathew said. “But if you get boosted, most patients feel good and stay out of the hospital because, I would argue, they are boosted.”
Looking at metrics
Even if the majority of a community is fully vaccinated with two doses, it would not provide nearly as much protection as if the majority were boosted by three doses, Mathew said, adding that he is very concerned about how few people in the United States is. boosted right now.
Because of this, as more states examine their vaccination rates as they decide to roll back mask mandates and other Covid-19 mitigation measures, Mathew said they should consider how much of their population is boosted against Covid -19.
“If I were governor, I think it would make a huge difference,” he said. “The goals would be more accurate.”
“Hospital admissions and ICU admissions are the key to measurements beyond vaccination rates. But let’s remember, 61% are fully vaccinated in the United States, but only 25% are boosted,” Mathew said. “If you are not boosted, your vaccine only works 57%, compared to 90% if you are boosted.”
Booster doses of the Pfizer / BioNTech and Moderna coronavirus vaccines are safe and offer high levels of protection against severe Covid-19, although this protection may diminish over time, according to two studies published by the CDC on Friday.
This study suggests that with the Omicron variant dominant in the United States, vaccine efficacy was 87% against Covid-19 emergency room or acute care visits and 91% against hospitalizations in the two months following a third dose. Protection fell to 66% and 78% respectively within the fourth month, the data showed.
But by comparison, the vaccine’s efficacy against hospitalizations after only two doses of coronavirus vaccine, where the Omicron variant was prevalent, dropped from 71% in the two months after vaccination to 54% by at least five months, the study found.
The data is still early, but studies provide more evidence that booster doses of coronavirus vaccine can significantly increase protection against Covid-19 in the short term, and that protection appears to decline over time, said Benjamin, of the American Public Health Association.
He added that he would like to see more data specifically on the vaccine efficacy of booster doses in older adults, people with chronic diseases and people who are immunocompromised compared to younger people or health adults.
“Only time will tell exactly how durable it is in the different populations, based on age and degree of underlying diseases,” Benjamin said. “But the fact that, at least so far, it still protects people from getting really sick and dying, tells me it’s still very effective.”
CNN’s Deidre McPhillips contributed to this report.