Leading Israeli hospital to start fourth COVID-19 jab efficacy study

A leading Israeli hospital will begin a study on Monday to determine the safety and efficacy of a fourth coronavirus vaccine dose.

Sheba Medical Center will administer a fourth dose to 150 medical workers who were vaccinated with third doses before August 20 and currently have a low antibody count, according to a statement from the hospital late Sunday.

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The trial is being done in conjunction with Israel’s Health Ministry.

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Prime Minister Naftali Bennett announced last week that the government would adopt the recommendation of a panel of experts to inoculate older adults and medical personnel with a fourth dose of the Pfizer Inc.-BioNTech SE vaccine in a bid to shore up protection against the fast-spreading omicron variant.

However, a few days later, the Health Ministry said its director general had not yet decided whether to go ahead with the immunization drive. Some experts had questioned the wisdom of a fourth shot given the paucity of supporting data.

Read more: Israel’s Bennett self-isolates after daughter tests positive for COVID-19