Israel’s Health Ministry on Sunday announced that the fourth COVID vaccine dose offers three times the level of protection from serious illness to those aged 60 and over than those who received only three doses.
The ministry said that the data is based on the preliminary analysis of a study carried out by the Weizmann Institute, Hebrew University, and the Sheba Medical Center. The study compared 400,000 Israelis aged 60 and over who received the fourth vaccine dose to 600,000 Israelis who received their third dose at least four months ago.
The study, which the ministry said was on the caliber of previous studies the researchers published in the New England Journal of Medicine, will be updated with new data over time.
Last week, Sheba published preliminary results of an earlier study which showed that although the fourth vaccine dose upped immunity by increasing the level of antibodies in the blood, it did not appear to prevent infection by the Omicron variant.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)