Second COVID Booster Effective Against Hospitalization, Death In Nursing Home Residents

Nursing home residents could largely benefit from the second COVID-19 vaccine booster, according to a new study published this week. 
The study published in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report Friday indicated that the second mRNA COVID-19 booster shots were effective in preventing hospitalizations and deaths among nursing home residents. 

After analyzing data from 200 nursing homes across 19 states, the researchers behind the study said the shot was 90% effective at preventing COVID-related deaths and 74% effective at preventing severe cases that led to hospitalizations. 

The team sought to compare the relative effectiveness of the second booster dose of mRNA vaccines with a single-booster dose distributed among eligible nursing home residents in 19 states. 

“Efforts should be made to ensure that nursing home residents remain up to date with recommended booster doses of COVID-19 vaccines,” the CDC wrote in response to the findings. 

Meanwhile, the team noted that the study results highlighted the importance of continued efforts to ensure that nursing home residents are up to date on the recommended vaccine booster doses, including the newly authorized bivalent COVID-19 vaccine. 

The study looked at cases between March 29 and July 25. This period was when the BA.5 omicron subvariant became the dominant strain in the country. 

White House COVID-19 response coordinator Ashish Jha responded to the study findings by writing on Twitter, “Another study showing large benefits of vaccines soon after 2nd boosters authorized.”

He continued, “Nursing home residents who got them were 90% less likely to die than residents who didn’t. Wow. This is why we’re so focused on ensuring folks, particularly the high risk, get the latest vaccine.”

The White House has urged eligible individuals to get the bivalent booster shots once they become available in their areas to avoid another surge in COVID cases in the fall and winter, as per The Hill

As previously reported, the CDC recommended the new bivalent boosters from Pfizer and Moderna early this month since they showed efficacy against the BA.4 and BA.5 omicron subvariants.

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