AstraZenca Covid-19 vaccine. Azlan Mohammed/AZP News
ROLLOUT of the second jab of the AstraZeneca (AZ) vaccine will take place eight weeks after the first dose and not closer to 12 weeks which would give a “slightly better effect.”
This was revealed by Chief Medical Officer Dr Roshan Parasram as the Ministry of Health virtual presser on Wednesday.
He was responding to a question from AZPNews.com Editor-in-Chief Prior Beharry in light of the administering of the second jabs of the AZ from June 6, exactly eight weeks after the start of first doses on April 6.
It has been reported that when the second jab of the AZ was administered closest to 12 weeks after the first, there was greater effect.
Dr Parasram said, “You are right in what you’re saying, the recommendation is eight to 12 weeks from WHO remembering that the manufacturer had originally said four weeks.
“We have to bear everything in mind when we make national decisions.
“What we look at is the epidemiological status of the country at this point in time, the amount of persons being infected and we took a decision to have that, rather to go closer to the 12th week which will give you a slightly better effect, at least on paper.”
He added, “What we will do by bringing those persons down to eight weeks is that we would be able to get a month ahead of schedule a much larger group of people with two vaccines which will benefit the country.
“I think the benefits far outweigh waiting that additional month at this point in time.”