Medical Experts Still Unsure if Vaccine Booster is Needed

More than half the state has gotten their COVID-19 vaccine shots, with an even higher percentage of people in Northern Michigan.

Will that be enough or will they need a booster?

It’s a question asked since the vaccine was released and the answer may not be set.

“We’ve learned a lot,” said Dr. Jenifer Morse of the District Health Department #10, “There’s been over 1 billion vaccines given worldwide and even that number grows every day.”Slowing Vaccines Pkg 6 1 2100 00 08 11still001

Just about six months ago, the first COVID-19 vaccine shots were given in the United States.

In that time, medical experts have learned a lot about the vaccine, its efficacy and its side effects. They always knew a booster may be needed down the road and only time would tell.

“Right now, it’s great  that the vaccines are showing that they are continuing to be effective,” said Dr. Joshua Meyerson of the Health District of Northwest Michigan, “Even as time goes by and against different variants.”

Being a vaccine for a novel virus, medical experts are learning as they go. Now at the six month mark, if it were to wear off and need a boost, they would start seeing it soon.

“If we see people that have been vaccinated getting infected at six months, eight months, nine months, that would be a signal to us,” said Dr. Morse, “It might not last as long as we thought it would.”

This time last year COVID case rates fell similar to how they have recently. While the season change helps, doctors say the type of people getting sick now show the shots work.

“It’s pretty safe for us to say, vaccination does have a really big part play in this decrease,” said Dr. Morse, “Might not be the only part but it’s a very big part.”

The true test will come in the Fall, if there will be a spike or not. That’s when it will be clear if the vaccine goal worked, not just a percentage.

“Whether it’s 70%, 71%, 72%, whatever, we’re going to keep going and there isn’t a time where we’re going to stop,” said Dr. Meyerson, “Not until we’re at a point where it’s clearly no longer needed or there’s no demand whatsoever.”

Categories: Coronavirus