Health authorities of Israel pointed out that the efficacy of Pfizer’s vaccine tends to decrease six months after the application of the immunizing agent. As of this Monday, the 12th, the country began to apply a third dose of covid-19 vaccine in patients at immunological risk for strengthen defenses of the body against the virus.
“There is growing evidence that immunosuppressed patients do not develop a satisfactory level of antibodies even after two doses of the coronavirus vaccine. Some may develop these antibodies only after three doses,” the Ministry of Health said in a statement.
Israel was one of the first countries in the world to start covid-19 vaccination. The first doses began to be applied in December last year, with good results. The rate of daily coronavirus infections dropped from 10,000 to less than 100 cases.
About 85% of the adult population has already been immunized with the two doses of the vaccine. The country has also started vaccinating children and pre-adolescents under 12 years of age: around 1,000 Israelis with comorbidities in this age group have already been immunized, with a specific authorization from the Ministry of Health. The immunological responses were the same as those observed in other age groups and, according to health authorities, no side effects were recorded.
A broad agreement with Pfizer, signed last year, allowed access to millions of doses of the vaccine and the collection of data on the effects of the vaccine. Six months after the start of the vaccination campaign in Israel, it was possible to verify the development of antibodies against covid-19 over time.
According to the Ministry of Health, the vaccine effectiveness in preventing coronavirus infections and symptoms dropped to 64% since June 6th. Authorities also stated that the vaccine was 93% effective in prevention of hospitalizations and serious illnesses caused by coronavirus hair.
In recent weeks, there has been an increase in infections due to the spread of the Delta variant, first detected in India. Considered more contagious, the variant is responsible for about 90% of new cases of covid-19 in the country, according to health authorities.
Last week, the country registered about 2,800 new cases, a number considered to be still low compared to the 60,370 identified between January 10 and 16, in one of the peaks of the spread rates, but which is already starting to provoke changes in the combat policy to the coronavirus.
Starting this Friday, the 16th, all travelers arriving in Israel will need to be quarantined for at least 24 hours. Visitors from countries with large numbers of covid-19 cases such as Brazil, Chile, Bolivia and much of Latin America will have to be isolated for ten days when arriving at Tel Aviv airport.
Should the pandemic worsen in that part of the world, Israelis will not be able to travel to those countries as of this week. The use of mask is also mandatory again.
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