NEW YORK, NY – Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla said on Sunday that a fourth dose of his company’s COVID-19 vaccine – meaning an initial 2-dose inoculation, followed by not one, but two booster shots – “is necessary” in order to keep infection rates of the virus down.
While being interviewed on CBS’ “Face the Nation,” Bourla stated that while Pfizer’s vaccine is “good enough,” the limited amount of time it retains its efficacy means that regular additional jabs will be required.
“Right now, the way that we have seen, it is necessary, a fourth booster right now. The protection that you are getting from the third, it is good enough, actually quite good for hospitalizations and deaths,” Bourla said. “It’s not that good against infections but doesn’t last very long. But we are just submitting those data to the FDA [Food and Drug Administration], and then we will see what the experts also will say outside Pfizer.”
Bourla had previously stated while on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” Saturday that Pfizer will be submitting a request to the FDA soon in order to authorize a fourth COVID-19 vaccine dose for public usage.
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However, the show’s host, Margaret Brennan, pointed out that there was a great deal of confusion surrounding the initial booster shot, and asked Bourla if his company had found a way to mitigate that this time around.
“I think so. And I think right now we need to be very well coordinated, CDC [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention], FDA and the industry so that we are all providing to the American people and to the world a cohesive picture rather than confusion,” he replied. “It’s clear that there is a need in an environment of omicron to boost the immune response.”
Bourla noted that Pfizer is currently at work on an updated version of their vaccine that he hopes not only will last longer, but that will also be equally as effective against not only COVID-19, but the numerous variant strains that have been appearing as well.
“We are working very diligently right now to make not only a vaccine that will protect against all variants, including Omicron, but also something that can protect for at least a year,” he said. “And if we be able to achieve that, then I think it is very easy to follow and remember so that we can go back to really the way used to live.”