Covid-19: HAS authorizes three vaccines suitable for Omicron

Covid 19 HAS authorizes three vaccines suitable for Omicron

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    With the arrival of autumn and fears of a potential eighth wave, the Haute Autorité de Santé has given the green light to three anti-Covid vaccines, adapted to Omicron. They can be used during the new vaccination campaign planned very soon and coupled with that of the flu.

    It’s official: the High Authority for Health (HAS) has published a press release on its website announcing the authorization given to three vaccines adapted to the Omicron variant.

    Recommended for the most fragile and caregivers

    Like the first generation vaccines, the three new sera adapted to Omicron were developed for two of them by the pharmaceutical giant Pfizer/BioNTech and the third by the Moderna laboratory. Compared to the original vaccines, “the expected clinical efficacy of these new bivalent vaccines is at least equivalent or even superior“, and their tolerance is “identical”according to HAS.

    Initial Vaccine Update

    This new booster dose will be recommended to people at risk of severe form, to those around them and to caregivers. The HAS insists on “the importance of protecting the populations most at risk“.

    The new dose is therefore particularly recommended:

    • For over 60s;
    • People under 60 at risk of a severe form of Covid-19: people with comorbidities, pregnant women, immunocompromised people, children and adolescents at high risk, but also their entourage and professionals in the health and medico-social sector .

    For Dr Gérald Kierzek, emergency physician and medical director of Doctissimo, “this is a good thing, for two reasons: the first is that it is an update of the initial vaccine, more adapted to the current situation. The second reason is that we are now on targeted vaccination for the people who need it most and not mass vaccination, without distinction, as was the case at the start.“.

    No matter the vaccine

    Thus, the HAS recommends “either one of the three bivalent vaccines” recently validated by the European Medicines Agency. Moderna’s vaccine and one developed by Pfizer/BioNTech targets the original strain of the virus and Omicron’s BA.1 variant, and the second from Pfizer/BioNTech targets the original strain and subvariants. BA.4 and BA.5 from Omicron.

    Vaccines adapted to the situation

    These new vaccines, which also employ messenger RNA technology, “are not new vaccines but vaccines adapted to circulating strains” further specifies the HAS, thus drawing a parallel with anti-flu vaccines. This is why “on the basis of available data and in an epidemic context marked by the majority circulation of the BA.5 sub-variant”HAS recommends using “preferably” one of these vaccines, all messenger RNA, for a new fall booster dose.

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    Get vaccinated “at the same time” against the flu and covid

    Among the other recommendations of the HAS is the fact of coupling the vaccination reminder campaign against Covid-19 with that of vaccination against the flu which will start on October 18. A concomitant injection or the same day of the two vaccines is possible, she recalls. Remember that for the moment, only 30% of people over 60 have received their second booster dose against Covid-19.