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Fourth COVID-19 vaccine shot can’t stop omicron, but it can help, study says

A fourth COVID-19 vaccine shot might not stop omicron from spreading, according to a new study out of Israel

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A man receives a third Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.

Israelis wait in line as a man receives a third Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine in Tel Aviv, Israel, Sunday, Aug. 1, 2021.

Sebastian Scheiner, Associated Press

A preliminary study from Israel has found that the fourth COVID-19 vaccine shot might not be enough to stop COVID-19 infections, per Reuters.  

The news: The study looked into how the Pfizer booster shot given after two weeks and the Moderna booster given after one week can impact the spread of the omicron variant.

  • The antibodies created from a fourth COVID-19 vaccine were “probably not enough for the omicron,” said Gili Regev-Yochay, director of Sheba Medical Center’s Infectious Diseases Unit, according to The Hill.
  • “We know by now that the level of antibodies needed to protect and not to got infected from omicron is probably too high for the vaccine, even if it’s a good vaccine,” she added.

Method: To find this, the Sheba Medical Center hosted a trial that looked at how COVID-19 vaccine booster shots impacted 150 staff members, per The Times of Israel

Fourth shots: A government panel of experts in Israel recently recommended a fourth dose of the COVID-19 vaccine for anyone 60 years old and older to fight off the omicron variant, according to BBC News. The vaccine shot has been released to close to 500,000 people so far.


Some more questions: The European Medicines Agency warned that too many COVID-19 vaccine booster shots too soon could hurt our immune system, which could make us more vulnerable to different types of sickness.

  • The EMA said countries should add more time between booster shots to make sure they’re given out during peak seasons as opposed to every six months.