In a letter to the editors of the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM), two Canadian researchers say that a single dose of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines are as much as 92 percent effective in preventing COVID-19 illness after two weeks of receiving the vaccine.
The two researchers behind the study are Danuta M. Skowronski, M.D. / British Columbia Centre for Disease Control, Vancouver, BC, Canada and Gaston De Serres, M.D., Ph.D. / Institut National de Santé Publique du Québec, Quebec City, QC, Canada
In the letter to NEJM, published this week, Skowronski and Gaston De Serres state that “even before the second dose, BNT162b2 was highly efficacious, with a vaccine efficacy of 92.6%, a finding similar to the first-dose efficacy of 92.1% reported for the mRNA-1273 vaccine (Moderna).3.”
The doctors suggest the second doses should be given instead to priority groups still waiting for their first shot, “given the current vaccine shortage,” they urge.
“With such a highly protective first dose, the benefits derived from a scarce supply of vaccine could be maximized by deferring second doses until all priority group members are offered at least one dose,” the researchers wrote.
For the entire NEJM letter, click here.