A third dose of vaccine can boost resistance to the Omicron variant of the coronavirus by as much as 88 per cent, according to studies in the UK.
This is a higher degree of protection against the new COVID-19 strain when compared to the second dose, the effectiveness of which begins to wane after a period of six months.
Sharing a UK report compiling the findings of the studies, Dr Eric Topol, professor of molecular medicine and director of the Scripps Research Translational Institute, said vaccine effectiveness drops to 52 per cent against Omicron around six months after taking the second vaccine shot.
A third dose or a booster substantially bumps up immunity and lowers the odds of contracting COVID.
“That’s a big boost of protection for 3rd dose vaccine vs hospitalisation from Omicron infection. Vaccine effectiveness increased from 52 per cent (due to 2-dose waning after 6 months) to 88 per cent after the 3rd dose,” Dr Topol said.
The UK report did point to studies on lower vaccine effectiveness against Omicron as compared to the Delta variant. However, it conclusively said that risk of emergency care or hospitalisation in Omicron cases was half of that for Delta.