According to Naftali Bennett, the Israeli Prime Minister, as per preliminary findings in an Israeli study, a fourth COVID-19 jab can shoot-up antibodies five times, a week after the shot is administered. At the Sheba Medical Center, Bennett said that seven days into the fourth dose, they knew for sure that it is absolutely safe. The medical center is in the process of administering second booster shots to its staff at a time when the entire country is gripped under the clutches of Omicron. It is well to be noted that Isreal has indeed played a pivotal role when it comes to studying the effects of COVID-19 vaccines. They were the fastest across the world to roll out a two-dose jab to its population almost a year back. The country was also one of the first to administer boosters, ie. the third shots.
Isreal is as of now administering the fourth dose to its citizens who are above 60 years of age and also health workers as well as immunocompromised patients. The WHO has, however, said that more people across the world should be vaccinated first before administering booster doses to others. The Sheba Trial as it is called was launched on December 27 to inoculate the fourth dose of Pfizer & BioNTech vaccine to 150 medical staff whose antibody levels had dropped to a great extent since the time they received their doses four-five months back. Another group is supposed to receive the fourth shot of the Moderna vaccine this week itself, as per Sheba
When it comes to the side effects of the vaccines, they aren’t different from the third dose like fever, pain, and headache. As per WHO data, the Omicron variant which was first detected in November last year has been spreading fast with case numbers surging at an all-time high. However, the hospitalization and the death rate is largely lower than the other phases that we have seen in the pandemic. In Israel alone, the daily rate of infections has elevated more than ten times in the past month. Although severe illness has also seen a rise, at a much slower pace, as per Health Ministry data. Israel has fully inoculated 60% of the country’s total population of 9.4 million. Some research indicates that even if Omicron dodges antibodies the key part of the second line of defense, the T-cells will be highly effective in identifying and attacking the variant.