Most vaccine contenders have deemed that the Coronavirus jab would not be limited to just one injection, and this might just be a cause for concern, keeping in mind the issues of logistics and tracking, across countries. Likely to need two doses, with a gap of reportedly a month or so, health authorities are in a fix globally.
‘Operation Warp Speed’, the federal government’s effort to get a vaccine on the market, has given funds to six pharmaceutical companies. Two of those companies, Moderna and Pfizer, are now in Phase 3, large-scale clinical trials. The 30,000 volunteers in each of the trials are getting two doses, with Moderna spacing their shots out 28 days apart and Pfizer spacing theirs out by 21 days. AstraZeneca is expected to start Phase 3 trials this month. Their Phase 1 and Phase 2 trials used two doses given 28 days apart.
Novavax also has yet to begin Phase 3 trials but used two doses in their earlier trials. In Johnson & Johnson’s upcoming Phase 3 trials, some participants will take one dose and others will take two doses.
Given this scenario, it is quite evident that the vaccine will require a minimum of two doses in order to fully tackle and curb the spreading of the disease. This can cause numerous difficulties in administering the vaccine on a large scale, to each and every pocket of the country. Experts and officials are concerned about the difficulties in procuring test kits and protective gear throughout the pandemic point, whilst fearing that supply chain issues could plague distributing double doses of vaccines for an entire country. This being said, one of the most impending concerns is convincing people to show up to get a vaccine not once, but twice.
“There’s no question that this is going to be the most complicated, largest vaccination program in human history, and that’s going to take a level of effort, a level of sophistication, that we’ve never tried before,” said Dr. Kelly Moore, a health policy professor at Vanderbilt University.
Barring people who wouldn’t want to take the vaccine, people will have to remember to come in the second time, despite the long lines and wait and a few possible side-effects like a fever.
Claiming that the task will be made easier by setting up mobile clinics that take the vaccines to the people, Dr. Nelson Michael, director of the Center for Infectious Diseases Research at Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, who has been assigned to work with Operation Warp Speed said, “These are the sorts of things that I think we need to think about, to make sure that we can incentivize people to come back to make it as easy as possible for them to adhere to a two-shot regimen.”