Health Secretary Sajid Javid has confirmed that a programme of COVID-19 booster vaccinations will begin this week for people 50 and over and those with underlying health conditions.
The Harley Street Health Centre has been conducting an ongoing audit on antibody levels in vaccinated people since the vaccination programme began, testing antibody levels over time in the same individuals, using the Roche quantitative antibody test.
The audit supports other research on waning vaccine efficacy over time, with steady antibody reduction seen in all participants. For some participants who had their first vaccine in the earliest groups, antibodies are no longer detectable.
Clinical director Dr Enam Abood commented,
“Although antibody levels do not tell the whole immunity story, we are concerned that a booster programme for only select groups returns many adults in the UK to a previous vulnerable position, where their ability to fight this virus deteriorates significantly after 6 months to a year. We strongly encourage the government to roll out a nationwide vaccination booster programme, for all vaccinated adults. There is a risk that we undo all of the incredible work achieved over this year and stop impacting transmission and mutations by not being definitive in this action.”
“Understandably, in the midst of a pandemic, our focus is entirely on preventing hospitalisations and death. But there are a growing number of adults and young people in the UK developing longer term symptoms, that can be life-changing and debilitating, and we cannot allow this to become our norm. We are looking at a future health crisis.”