Infectious disease expert addresses most common pandemic questions
Infectious disease specialist Dr. Isaac Bogoch addressed pandemic questions in an interview with CTV News.
THIRD COVID-19 DOSES
Most people want to know when they will be eligible for their third COVID-19 vaccine shot.
Dr. Bogoch says for most adults, a third dose will be necessary in the future, but not now.
However, he says there are some segments of the population who do need the additional shot.
"We know third doses are going into people with compromised immune systems," he says.
Dr. Bogoch went on to say the province may release more information on its third dose strategy soon, but it would likely begin with the community-dwelling senior population, healthcare workers and Indigenous communities.
Dr. Bogoch believes there will be an expansion to other groups in the future.
"I think it's fair to say that most adults will be eligible for the third dose probably six to 10 months after their second dose, "Bogoch notes.
According to the National Advisory Committee on Immunization, anyone who got two shots of the AstraZeneca vaccine needs to get an mRNA booster shot six months after their second dose.
Dr. Bogoch says research shows that Canadians who got the shot or went south of the border for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine would benefit from an mRNA vaccine as an additional dose to provide them with a greater level of protection.
Dr. Bogoch says breakthrough infections are not uncommon.
"We knew this long before the Delta variant even emerged. We seen this in the first clinical trials. These vaccines are not 100 per cent protective against getting COVID-19," Dr. Bogoch says.
The infectious disease expert adds that it's important to understand that we are two doses into a three-dose vaccine series, and breakthrough cases will occur in large populations.
For those who recovered from COVID-19, Dr. Bogoch says they have a certain level of immunity for a while, but it is unclear how long.
"There are very good studies that demonstrate that protection from vaccination is significantly better than protection from COVID-19 from recovery after infection. The odds of having a severe infection are five times less in people who have been vaccinated versus those who have immunity from recovering from infection," he says.
Dr. Bogoch urges those who have recovered to get vaccinated to avoid severe symptoms.
NEW COVID-19 VACCINE NOVAVAX
A new vaccine could soon join the approved vaccines in Canada called Novavax.
Dr. Bogoch says that it's an interesting option because it's not an mRNA vaccine and adds that a study with over 30,000 people looked promising, with 90 per cent efficacy.
According to Dr. Bogoch, the Novavax vaccine doesn't need cold storage like the mRNA vaccines and can be mass-produced in Canada.