Pfizer CEO says 3rd shot may be necessary to fight new COVID-19 variants

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TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Two shots may not be enough to keep you protected against COVID-19. Pfizer is now saying a third dose may be necessary.

“The likely scenario is that there will likely be a need for a third dose somewhere between six and 12 months, and then from there, there will be an annual vaccination but all of that needs to be confirmed,” said Albert Bourla, the company’s CEO.

According to experts, the current doses may not protect against new strains of the coronavirus that are more transmissible. The new variants will play a key role in whether people will need more doses in the future.

“The really fantastic thing about the technology is you can rejigger the vaccine so that you can make something that’s different pretty quickly and pretty efficiently,” said Dr. Kami Kim, a physician-scientist at USF Health.

Bourla said the third shot may need to be taken between six and 12 months after the second dose, and annually after that.

“I think the vaccine is working because people aren’t that sick but still it indicates these variants are something to take very seriously,” Kim said.

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