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How well do Covid vaccines really work? New strategy launched this week
Monday, November 15, 2021 @ 6:31 PM

RESIDENTS vaccinated against Covid-19 with the single-dose Janssen, or Johnson & Johnson formula will be called from this week for a booster using a Pfizer or Moderna, national health authorities have confirmed.

Most regions are now working through residents aged 70 and over who have had a double-dose jab – mostly Pfizer, but also Moderna and in some cases AstraZeneca – giving them a third dose at the same time as their usual annual winter influenza vaccine.

A few expect to wait until they have finished the 'flu and third Covid jabs before starting on a back-up ARN-messenger dose for those who have had the Janssen, a type designed originally only to need one injection.

This means their two will be the equivalent of a third dose for those who have had one of the other types, which needed two initially.

Third doses for the under-70s, except where they are immune-compromised, are not part of the health service's plan for the foreseeable future, but this may change depending upon how the virus evolves over the winter.

About 1.9 million people were given the single-dose Janssen instead of one of the double-dose formulae, for various reasons.

Initially, it was kept for the over-70s, although the majority of those were, in the end, given the Pfizer instead; it was later used on the over-40s, and mainly for convenience.


Janssen vaccine given to homeless, casual workers, offshore workers...

Those who received the Johnson & Johnson formula included the homeless, casual temporary workers who may not be in the country for more than a few months, undocumented migrants who were not registered as living in a specific place and did not have residence, those with very severe autism or other serious mental health issues that meant the vaccine process could be highly distressing for them, leaving them at risk of major agitation episodes, children in care homes, adults and children on psychiatric wards or in prison, disabled people in 'halfway houses' or residential care, people who were bedridden or totally disabled and who would have difficulty accessing a vaccine centre, fishermen who typically work offshore for very long periods, Spanish residents or citizens on overseas aid missions, and anyone else with the type of job that meant they may be out of the country for extended lengths of time and unavailable for when a second dose was required.



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