Bill Gates in a Twitter conversation with Professor Devi Sridhar, said “We may have to take yearly shots for Covid for some time.” Sridhar, Professor & Chair of Global Public Health, Edinburgh Uni Med School, Scotland had asked Twitter users to send in questions for Gates, APA reports citing Business Insider.
Gates’ response was to a question asked by Sridhar about the origin of SARS-CoV-2, the data that Gates wants to see and how such information can help in preventing future pandemics. Gates directly did not agree but cited “strong” data on SARS-CoV-2 originating from another species and we should make sure that labs are careful. “There will be future outbreaks coming from other species so we need to invest in being ready,” Gates said.
According to Gates, the Omicron variant will challenge healthcare systems across the world, and the most severe cases will be unvaccinated people. But once Omicron goes through a country, the cases will die down and “Covid can be treated more like seasonal flu.” Gates added that Omicon will create a lot of immunity at least for the next year and that a more transmissive variant of Covid is unlikely but we can’t be sure.
What started out as receiving two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (some require only one) has now moved on to receiving booster shots. India too has started administering “precaution shots” which will be the third dose of vaccine against coronavirus.
Gates addressed the current problems with the COVID-19 vaccines saying that while they do prevent severe effects of the coronavirus and even death, there are two important things to work on. What’s happening now is even fully vaccinated people are getting reinfected with newer and stronger variants of the virus coming up, and the duration is still very limited.
The future vaccines should now prevent reinfection and also provide many years of duration.