Chile weighing issue of third booster dose of COVID-19 vaccine
SANTIAGO: Chile is studying the possibility of issuing a third, booster dose of COVID-19 vaccines, its president said on Tuesday, as the country seeks to beat back the latest wave of infections amid questions about how effective the widely used Sinovac vaccine is against more transmissible virus variants.
Chile was an important early real-world test for the effectiveness of Sinovac's shot. In a study published in April, the Chinese vaccine proved minimally effective at preventing illness after one dose. With a second jab, it was 67 per cent effective in preventing symptomatic infection, 85 per cent effective in preventing hospitalisations and 80 per cent in preventing deaths.
Earlier this week, more than 350 health workers who had been vaccinated with Sinovac's vaccine in an area of Indonesia hard-hit by the Delta variant fell ill with COVID-19.
No cases of the Delta variant, first identified in India, have been detected in Chile so far, though they have been in neighbouring Peru and Argentina.