Gates told CBS News we might need a third shot of a currently available vaccine, or a “modified” vaccine as the virus mutates, but CHD’s RFK, Jr. asks why we haven’t focused instead on non-vaccine strategies, including therapeutic drugs.
With more than 40 million Americans having received at least the first dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, a third dose may be needed to prevent the spread of new variants of the disease, Bill Gates told CBS News Tuesday.
Gates’ comments come amid growing concern that the current vaccines are not effective against the more contagious Brazilian and South African variants.
Pfizer and Moderna have stated that their vaccines are 95% and 99% effective, respectively, against the initial strain of COVID. However, some scientists have questioned those statements. Additionally, the World Health Organization and vaccine companies have conceded that the vaccines do not prevent people from being infected with COVID or from transmitting it, but are only effective at reducing symptoms.
Gates told CBS Evening News:
“The discussion now is do we just need to get a super high coverage of the current vaccine, or do we need a third dose that’s just the same, or do we need a modified vaccine?”