SA scientists testing the efficacy of COVID-19 Moderna vaccine as booster

SA scientists testing the efficacy of COVID-19 Moderna vaccine as booster

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The Sisonke study team will be launching the ‘Sherpa Study’, This study will assess the Moderna coronavirus vaccine as a booster shot. They will be looking at how the vaccine protects against COVID-19 infections and severe COVID-19 disease among healthcare workers.

Scientists will enrol 15k participants for the study

The scientists will be evaluating Moderna’s efficacy as a COVID-19 booster. The South African Medical Research Council and Moderna are sponsoring the Sherpa Study. The study will enrol approximately 15 000 participants.

The participants must have had either one or two doses of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine as part of the Sisonke study for healthcare workers in South Africa.

Those who participated in Sisonke are imperative to the study

The co-principal investigator for Sherpa and the Head of the Vaccine and Pathogenesis Programme at the Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in South Africa, Doctor Nigel Garrett says many healthcare workers received their second dose six months ago.

“It’s now about six months after the second dose for many healthcare workers. We have now been able to get sufficient vaccines to the research side to also offer the Moderna booster to the South African healthcare workers that participated in Sisonke,”

said Garett.

EWN reported that the scientists said the Sherpa Study will allow researchers to probe how effective the COVID-19 Moderna booster is against the new variants. It will also provide the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) with more information and could allow for potential licensing.

The Sherpa Study will allow SAHPRA to gain more data on the Moderna vaccine and potentially licence it. Photo: Diverse Stock Photos / Flickr

The South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) released a statement regarding the controversial drug Ivermectin. The Authority says Ivermectin is no longer allowed to be prescribed to patients with COVID-19.

The Controlled Compassionate Use Access Programme has been terminated by SAHPRA with immediate effect. SAHPRA says there is no credible evidence that the drug helps treat COVID-19.

The Authority shared a list of developments regarding the efficacy of Ivermectin since it adopted the aforementioned programme. Read the full story here.

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