WHO welcomes report on efficacy of longer gaps between AstraZeneca doses

WHO welcomes report on efficacy of longer gaps between AstraZeneca doses
FILE PHOTO: A logo is pictured outside a building of the World Health Organization (WHO) during an executive board meeting on update on the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Geneva, Switzerland, April 6, 2021. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse

GENEVA (Reuters) – A report from Oxford University saying that a longer gap between doses of AstraZeneca vaccines still provides protection is “very reassuring” for supply-strapped countries, World Health Organization chief scientist Soumya Swaminathan said on Friday.

Joachim Hombach, head of the WHO’s expert panel, said it was “great news” on spaced dosing for the vaccine, which would add flexibility to dosing schedules.

The Oxford study released this week found that the second dose can be delayed up to 45 weeks and still lead to an enhanced immune response.

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