Khairy: No data to support need for third booster shot to combat Covid-19

Yiswaree Palansamy
·2-min read
A health worker loads a syringe with a dose of the Pfizer-BioTech Covid-19 vaccine at the UiTM Hospital in Sungai Buloh March 2, 2021. ― Picture by Hari Anggara
A health worker loads a syringe with a dose of the Pfizer-BioTech Covid-19 vaccine at the UiTM Hospital in Sungai Buloh March 2, 2021. ― Picture by Hari Anggara

KUALA LUMPUR, April 19 — Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Khairy Jamaluddin today said that there is no data yet to support the need for a third booster shot, to combat the Covid-19 infection.

In a press conference today, Khairy, who also leads the National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme (NIP), was asked about recent remarks by the chief executive of pharmaceutical company, Pfizer, who said that a third dose of his company’s vaccine may likely be needed within six to 12 months after both doses are received.

“A likely scenario is that there will be likely a need for a third dose, somewhere between six and 12 months and then from there, there will be an annual revaccination, but all of that needs to be confirmed,” Albert Bourla said in an interview with CNBC yesterday, adding that variants will also play a key role.

Khairy however said that the matter is the opinion of Bourla.

“For the third dose, we don’t know yet. That is also the view of the Pfizer CEO, that a booster shot is likely needed. We do not have any data as yet on the need for a third dose.

“However, whatever it may be, the Ministry of Health (MoH), the Covid-19 Immunisation Task Force (CITF) and the Covid-19 Vaccine Supply Access Guarantee Special Committee (JKJAV) will plan for the long term. There is a possibility that the vaccines will be needed for years to come. We do not know yet,” Khairy said.

He was speaking at a joint press conference with Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba in Putrajaya, on the first day of the second phase of the Covid-19 inoculation drive.


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