The use of Coronavac as a 3rd dose for the elderly is a high-risk decision – Health

Finally, data on the effectiveness of the Coronavac and of the AstraZeneca in the Brazilian immunization program. They fully demonstrate that the information disclosed by the Butantan, that Coronavac would be 100% effective against deaths, do not correspond to reality.

Coronavac prevents 50% of infections and 75% of deaths in the vaccinated population as a whole. AstraZeneca prevents 75% of infections and approximately 90% of deaths. AstraZeneca is a superior vaccine. We still don’t know what has been happening to people immunized with to do and the Janssen. That’s because the use of these vaccines started months later.

The big news about this study is that it contains a significant sample of elderly people. Results for these groups are poor with AstraZeneca, and unacceptable with Coronavac. In people over 90, Coronavac prevents only 25% of infections, 30% of hospitalizations, 30% of ICU admissions and 30% of deaths. That is, it provides very little protection for the elderly and would never be approved for use in this group if these data were available at the time of the assessment. The result is a little better for people between 80 and 89 years old: it prevents around 55% of infections, 65% of admissions, 65% of admissions to ICUs and 65% of deaths. This explains the large number of elderly people, such as Tarcisio Meira, who have died when infected after taking Coronavac.

Of course, this work does not directly study people who have received three doses of Coronavac. However, in my opinion, using Coronavac to vaccinate the elderly is a high-risk decision. Not to say ethically unacceptable. That’s because we have the option of using AstraZeneca and Pfizer vaccines that can be used as a booster dose. It is necessary to remove Coronavac from the third dose regimen of the elderly. Up to National Health Surveillance Agency (Anvisa) ensure that this is done, withdrawing permission to use Coronavac in the elderly.

This work is probably the most important with data from the first months of vaccination in Brazil. He evaluated 26 million people vaccinated with Coronavac and 50 million people vaccinated with AstraZeneca. The data used were provided by government agencies and analyzed by epidemiologists from several universities and research institutes in Brazil and abroad. Any public manager who aims to guide their decisions by scientific data has a duty to understand these data and make their decisions based on them.

Coronavac played a very important role in the vaccination process in Brazil. Its defenders were indispensable in putting vaccination in motion in the face of the contempt of our president and the minister of health at the time. Fulfilled its function, it should be retired or used only in younger people. Therefore, the decision of the current Minister of Health not to use Coronavac as a third dose, giving preference to other vaccines, especially Pfizer, is more than correct.

More information: Influence of acts on the effectiveness and duration of protection in Vaxzevria and Coronovac vaccines

*HE IS BIOLOGIST, PHD IN CELLULAR AND MOLECULAR BIOLOGY FROM CORNELL UNIVERSITY AND AUTHOR OF THE ARRIVAL OF THE NEW CORONAVIRUS IN BRAZIL; LOTUS LEAF, MOSQUITO SLIDER; AND THE LONG MARCH OF THE CANNIBAL GRILOS