Former U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams has questioned the Biden administration’s current guidelines for obtaining the two Covid-19 vaccines for Moderna and Pfizer / BioNTech – which have been tested and approved as a two-dose two-dose regimen – for to offer at least some protection immediately to more Americans.
“Good defense for many (1 shot) is better than big defense for a few. 2,000 people a day die because they can’t get the first shot # covid19 – not because they can’t get a second,” Adams wrote in a Twitter thread. . In another tweet, Adams wrote, “Push out all the doses NOW and lean into production!”
Adams included a link to an article published by The Washington Post on Monday in which Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and chief medical adviser to the Biden administration, said the United States should adhere to a two-dose dose regimen for Pfizer / BioNTech and Moderna vaccines.
Fauci told the newspaper that there were “risks on both sides” to switch to one dose or stick to both.
“We are telling people [two shots] is what you have to do … and then we say, “Well now, have we changed our minds?” said the best disease expert. “I think that would be a message challenge, at least.”
On Tuesday, Adams tried to clarify his comments.
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“I do not say so [100 emoji] the right way. I say that there is enough data / evidence to suggest that this is not the case [100 emoji] “Wrong way – and with 2,000 (unvaccinated) people dying a day, it’s worth giving countries the flexibility to try it,” he tweeted.
Fauci rejected Adams’ comments on Wednesday, telling CNN’s Erin Burnett on OutFront that while he respected Adams, “I think he’s wrong about that,” in light of the virus’s variants, which reduce the effectiveness of the vaccine.
“If you look at the level of antibodies after the second dose, it’s 10 times higher,” Fauci said, using the Pfizer vaccine as an example. “So when you’re dealing with variants that reduce somewhat, sometimes fivefold, the effectiveness of these antibodies caused by the vaccine, you can reduce it to … well in the range of protection because you have a lot of cushion.”
Meanwhile, just after receiving a dose, Fauci continued, “you don’t know how durable it is, whether it will disappear and go down within a month or so. But the important thing is that you are at a very low level – good enough for to defend, but if you cut it five times, you fall off the protection chart. So it’s really quite risky when you’re trying to deal with options that we know are there. “
Against the backdrop of low vaccine supply, a number of experts have advocated postponing second doses in favor of more people receiving their first, and some studies suggest a high degree of temporary protection from just one dose. However, the US Food and Drug Administration and senior US officials have denied this, saying it is not clear how long this protection will last, and argued the need to stick to the evidence from clinical trials.
During a discussion on vaccines Monday at a meeting of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the United States, experts said that two doses protect people better against coronavirus variants than one dose. U.S. health officials are concerned that the spread of more infectious options could repel the country in its fight to control the pandemic.
Although the Pfizer and Moderna Covid-19 vaccines were tested as a two-dose regimen, the United Kingdom switched to postponing the second doses to get more first doses faster for more people.
Over the weekend, the FDA approved the Covid-19 vaccine from Johnson & Johnson. Currently, the J&J vaccine is also being tested as a two-dose vaccine.
This story has been updated with additional comments by Dr. Anthony Fauci.