Canada has high hopes for the vaccine mix strategy 5

Canada has high hopes for the vaccine mix strategy 5

Canada allows mixing the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, hoping to speed up vaccination to fight new mutations and end the pandemic early.

The decision to mix the second dose with the Moderna vaccine was made after Canada’s National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) updated new guidance in early June, allowing the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines to be used interchangeably.

However, some Canadians refuse to get a second dose of the Moderna vaccine after getting the Pfizer shot, because they believe mixing the two is not safe and effective.

`It’s a shame that people are canceling their appointments, because if you look at the structure of these two vaccines, they are almost identical. They are also almost identical in how they work,` he said.

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`The staff at our vaccination sites said that people came in and were eagerly waiting to get the vaccine, but when they were told to get the Moderna shot, they said ‘I think I’ll wait until I get the Pfizer shot,’` Evans said.

A Covid-19 vaccination site in Toronto on May 4.

Experts believe that the fact that the Pfizer vaccine is deployed more than Moderna in Canada may have caused people to have incorrect awareness about mRNA vaccines, leading to doubt and hesitancy in vaccination.

`I think familiarity makes people feel more comfortable,` said Dr. Lynora Saxinger, an infectious disease physician and associate professor in the department of medicine at the University of Alberta.

About 75% of Canadians have received at least one dose of vaccine, of which nearly 68% have received the full dose.

In June, the number of new infections in Canada fell by 80%, while hospitalizations and deaths have also dropped sharply since mid-April. However, the number of infections has increased again in the past two weeks, with an average of

Alyson Kelvin, an associate professor at Dalhousie University and a virologist at the Halifax Center for Vaccine Science, said Canada needs to continue to ramp up its vaccination campaign to avoid future threats.

`This is what will help protect us against the virus for a longer period of time and will help people avoid the risk of hospitalization,` she said.

Toronto pharmacist Sabina Vohra-Miller said the two vaccines are similar in how they train the immune system to handle the virus.

`There’s really no reason to think that these two vaccines will have any safety or efficacy concerns. Mixing vaccinations is not a new concept, because we have done this with many other vaccines. Every

`Waiting to get a second dose of the Pfizer vaccine, instead of being able to get the Moderna dose tomorrow and be fully protected, would be a risky choice,` Vohra-Miller said, adding that this is behavior

Dr. Saxinger said it’s likely that many Canadians will need booster shots with different vaccines in the future, to fine-tune their immune system’s response to Covid-19 and reduce the threat from nCoV mutations.

`It’s likely that people will have to get multiple vaccines over the next few years. So if you don’t get it now, you may have to get it in the future,` she said.

One of the reasons driving Canada’s vaccination campaign is the threat from the Delta strain, a variant that first appeared in India and is causing serious outbreaks around the world.

A recent study by Public Health England (PHE) showed that the Pfizer vaccine was 88% effective against symptomatic disease from the Delta strain two weeks after the second injection, while the effectiveness against the Alpha strain was 93%.

Dr. Jeff Kwong, an epidemiologist and senior scientist at the ICES research organization in Toronto, said refusing to get the second dose of Moderna to wait for Pfizer could affect others.

`We can only vaccinate a certain number every day,` he said.

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