Govt's COVID MAC tasked with looking into giving J&J jab recipients booster shot

According to the pharmaceutical company, it had noticed a sharp increase in antibodies in those who received a booster shot more than six months after getting their initial single shot.

Vials and syringes of the Johnson and Johnson Janssen COVID-19 vaccine are displayed for a photograph at a Culver City Fire Department vaccination clinic on 5 August 2021, in California. Picture: Patrick T. Fallon/AFP

JOHANNESBURG - Government's Ministerial Advisory Committee on COVID-19 vaccines has been urged to look into whether those who have taken the single-shot Johnson & Johnson jab should get a booster injection.

According to the pharmaceutical company, it had noticed a sharp increase in antibodies in those who received a booster shot more than six months after getting their initial single shot.

With no data about how long these COVID-19 vaccines will be effective, many experts are looking at more booster shots in the future as the virus mutates into different variants.

Health Minister Joe Phaahla said that here in South Africa, they were also discussing the possibility, but the main priority was to get 70% of the population inoculated first.

“At this stage, our focus is making sure that we reach population immunity coverage, so the other debates are not really our priority. We're considering them. We referred them to our specialists, but these are not preoccupying our minds,” he said.

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