A group of seven Germans between the ages of 25 and 39 were infected with the Omicron variant of COVID-19 in South Africa, even though all of them were fully vaccinated and had received the oft-lauded booster shots from BioNTech, Astrazeneca, and Moderna.
German paper Der Tagesspiegel reported on the news this week, noting that the group of young people ranged from ages 25 to 39 and likely contracted the omicron variant of COVID-19 in late November or early December.
“We’re seeing a lot of breakthrough infections right now,” said Wolfgang Preiser, a member of the research consortium that discovered the variant. “What we did not know is that even a booster vaccination with Biontech / Pfizer does not prevent this. These infections are the first breakthrough infections reported with the Omicron variant in people who have already received their booster vaccinations.”
“Of course you shouldn’t misunderstand that vaccination doesn’t help. On the contrary: It only shows that even the best possible vaccination is obviously not enough to prevent infection – which we already suspected,” Preiser insisted.
Der Tagesspiegel reports that “The booster vaccinations were given to the subjects between five and ten months after the second vaccinations,” and “The booster vaccinations were at least a month ago, but no more than two months ago.”
As National File previously reported, BioNTech CEO Ugur Sahin has declared a new vaccine designed to tackle the Omicron variant would need to be given in three doses, after taking the initial vaccine and booster shots:
“Our preliminary, first dataset indicate that a third dose could still offer a sufficient level of protection from disease of any severity caused by the Omicron variant,” Sahin said in a statement. “Broad vaccination and booster campaigns around the world could help us to better protect people everywhere and to get through the winter season.”
However, the statement revealed that BioNTech was working on an “adapted” vaccine for the Omicron variant. Speaking at the press conference, Sahin argued that it was “very clear” that for their Omicron vaccine, people should take three doses, rather than two.