WHO Chief Scientist Dr Soumya Swaminathan Advices Against Mixing Covid-19 Vaccines
Dr Soumya Swaminathan called mixing Covid-19 vaccines from different manufacturers a ‘dangerous trend’ since there is very little information available about it.
Amid the emergence of different coronavirus variants, some countries are reportedly considering mixing different vaccines. Some other countries, on the other hand, have already done it. However, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has warned against it. Dr Soumya Swaminathan, Chief Scientist at the World Health Organization, on Monday advised against mixing and matching vaccines.
Dr Soumya Swaminathan called mixing Covid-19 vaccines from different manufacturers a ‘dangerous trend’ since there is very little information available about it. She said, “it’s a little bit of a dangerous trend here where people are in a data-free, evidence-free zone as far as mix-and-match… there’s limited data on mix-and-match…” She added, “It will be a chaotic situation in countries if citizens start deciding when and who should be taking a second, or a third or a fourth dose..”
As per reports, infectious disease experts are reportedly weighing whether people who received Janssen’s single-dose vaccine should receive a booster of the Pfizer or Moderna mRNA vaccine which are said to be more effective against the Delta variant.
One of those who mixed and matched the vaccines is Dr Angela Rasmusen. She is a researcher who made headlines after she said on Twitter that she got an mRNA booster of the Pfizer vaccine on top of the J&J vaccine she got in April. As per reports, she also advised other J&J recipients, especially those in areas of low vaccination rates, to talk to their doctors about following the same.
Apart from this, Pfizer is reportedly pushing US and European regulators to authorize a third booster shot to supplement the two-shot regimen. However, health and WHO officials have said that there is ‘no medical evidence’ that a third Pfizer is needed.
As per reports, WHO’s Director-General said that instead of making the third booster, companies like Pfizer should send the vaccines to WHO for poor countries whose unvaccinated citizens really need them.