The Chinese Center for Disease Control plans to mix vaccines and vary the dose sequence to increase effectiveness. This is the first time that a government agency has publicly discussed concerns about the effectiveness of the Chinese coup.
Gao Fu, the head of the CDC, told a forum on Saturday that the agency “is considering how to solve the problem that the effectiveness of existing vaccines is not high,” according to local media.
In a post on social media Weibo now unavailable, the influential “Vaccines and Science” account said Gao’s comments were “very candid.” But it also reminded readers that taking the hit is still important in protecting the country. He added that “we cannot wait for vaccines to become perfect before we get vaccinated.”
Gao proposed to mix different vaccines as well as change the sequence of doses, changing the number and amount of doses, as well as the interval between them.
Some of WeChat’s social media posts about Gao’s remarks were quickly censored, according to Yanzhong Huang, senior researcher for global health at the Council on Foreign Relations.
“It’s the first time. . . a government official has publicly admitted that the protection rate is a concern in the vaccination campaign, ”Huang added.
China had administered 65 million doses across the country as of mid-March.
Unlike other vaccine producers, Chinese manufacturers have not released their data from Phase 3 trials, leading to accusations of lack of transparency about their effects on different groups.
Any new strategy will have ramifications for the more than 20 countries to which China has said it is providing jabs under mostly bilateral “vaccine diplomacy” agreements. As of March, China had supplied 40 million doses abroad.
Chile faces another Covid wave of new variants, despite the successful rollout of China’s Sinovac vaccine. The efficiency of one hit was only 3 percent, compared to 56 percent with two hits. Experts, however, have not linked the latest wave to the vaccine’s effectiveness rate.
Vaccine manufacturers in other countries have also conducted dosing experiments. In the UK, researchers at Oxford / AstraZeneca stumbled upon the effectiveness of reducing the initial dose after a dosing error.
Gao also suggested mixing different vaccines. So far, the only vaccines approved for use in China are the traditional “inactivated virus” vaccines produced by Sinopharm, Sinovac and other national groups, whose mechanism is similar to that of Oxford / AstraZeneca.
Sinopharm claims a 79% efficiency rate, similar to the rates recently obtained by AstraZeneca in its trials in the United States. However, while AstraZeneca has downgraded its rates after being criticized for publish incomplete data, neither Sinopharm nor any of its Chinese peers have released the Phase 3 data for public review.
Sinovac Biotech’s CoronaVac vaccine has an overall efficacy rate of 50.66% in people between the ages of 18 and 60, according to documents released by a Hong Kong expert panel.
However, phase 1 and 2 data from CoronaVac published in The Lancet revealed that the injections were “safe and well tolerated”.
Gao also warned that reopening China’s borders to foreigners, who have not been allowed to enter the country since March last year, poses a risk to the elderly, who have not yet been vaccinated.
The timing of the easing of border restrictions will affect participants in the Beijing Winter Olympics in February 2022.