Coronavirus Health

WHO warns against mixing and matching COVID vaccines

Reuters Videos

Mon, July 12, 2021,

The World Health Organization’s chief scientist on Monday advised against people mixing and matching COVID-19 vaccines from different manufacturers, calling it a “dangerous trend” since there is very little information on doing so.

“So it’s a little bit of a dangerous trend here. We’re in a data-free, evidence-free zone here as far as mix-and-match. There is limited data on mix and match. It will be a chaotic situation in countries if citizens start deciding when and who will be taking a second, a third and a fourth dose.”

Dr. Soumya Swaminathan made her comments during the WHO’s latest online briefing.

Infectious disease experts are weighing whether people who received Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose vaccine should receive a booster of the Pfizer or Moderna mRNA-based vaccine which are said to be more effective against the highly contagious Delta variant.

One of those who did mix and match, Dr. Angela Rasmussen, a researcher at the University of Saskatchewan’s Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization, made headlines after she said on Twitter that she had gotten a dose of Pfizer’s vaccine in June after receiving J&J’s in April.

She also advised other J&J recipients, especially those living in areas with low vaccination rates, to talk to their doctors about doing the same.

Separately, Pfizer is pushing U.S. and European regulators to authorize a third booster shot to supplement its two-dose regimen. But health officials, including the WHO’s Swaminathan, have said there is no medical evidence that a third Pfizer shot is necessary.

“It has to be based on the science and the data, not on individual companies.”

Instead of offering booster shots to highly-vaccinated, wealthy nations, the WHO’s director-general on Monday said companies like Pfizer should send those vaccines to the WHO to give to poorer countries whose unvaccinated citizens desperately need them against a Delta variant he described as “ripping around the world at a scorching pace.”

%d bloggers like this: