BREAKING: Switzerland approves new Covid-19 boosters
The long-awaited second round of booster vaccinations can be administered in Switzerland with the new version of the Moderna vaccine, which should better target certain sub-variants of Omicron, health authorities have announced.
Switzerland’s drug regulator, Swissmedic, has approved a Moderna booster vaccine, which has demonstrated in recent trials "higher antibody concentrations against the Omicron variants" than the manufacturer’s original Covid vaccine, the agency said in a statement on Monday.
The previous vaccine was effective against early strains, like Alpha and Delta, offering no immunity against Omicron or its sub-variants, which are currently responsible for all the coronavirus infections detected in Switzerland.
“Compared to the original vaccine, trials have shown that this [vaccine] produces a stronger immune response against the Omicron variants BA.1 and BA.4/5", Swissmedic said, adding that the new vaccine remains as effective as its predecessor against the original Covid viruses.
Additionally, “a careful review of the application documents submitted on an ongoing basis showed that the vaccine meets the safety, efficacy and quality requirements », the agency noted.
Also, in terms of secondary effects, they are expected to be “similar" to those following administration of the second dose and the first the booster of the original vaccine: fever, muscle pains, and headaches.
The Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH) has not yet announced when it will roll out the new vaccines but indicated previously that would issue its recommendations for second boosters (fourth doses) in September, to begin probably in October.