Coronavirus update, Aug. 6, 2021: Moderna claims its vaccine is 93 percent effective after six months

Plus: Johnson & Johnson won’t supply vaccine next week, vaccination lottery has ended, principals say Education Ministry guidelines are unfeasible. Staff

Written by Staff Published on 06.08.2021 09:33:00 (updated on 06.08.2021) Reading time: 4 minutes

Moderna claims to 93 percent effective after six months

The American company Moderna has announced better statistics on the long-term effectiveness of its Covid-19 vaccine on compared to the results of the vaccine from the Pfizer/BioNTech vacccine. Six months after the second dose, protection against Coronavirus infection is 93 percent. However, the manufacturer said that people will need a third dose of the vaccine before the winter. The reported efficacy figure at six months is almost the same as the estimate after the original clinical trial, after which Moderna announced 94 percent efficacy of its vaccine.

"Our covid-19 vaccine shows sustained 93% efficacy for six months, but we need to realize that the Delta mutation is a significant new threat, so we need to stay alert," Moderna boss Stéphane Bancel said.

Last week, six-month efficacy data were released by the manufacturers of the second of the mRNA-based covid vaccines, Pfizer/BioNTech. The effectiveness of their medicine fell by about 6 percentage points every two months, and half a year after the second dose, they said it was around 84 percent. The Moderna vaccine began to be used in the Czech Republic at the start of February, and was mostly distributed to smaller vaccination centers and GPs. It accounts for about 8 percent of vaccinations.

 Johnson & Johnson won’t supply vaccine next week

Johnson & Johnson will not supply its single-dose anti-Covid vaccine Janssen to the Czech Republic next week, but it is to do so in late August, Health Minister Adam Vojtěch wrote on Twitter. So far, this type of vaccine has been used at GPs' offices, and in July, also in the vaccination centers where people did not have to register, and by mobile vaccination teams, for example, in socially excluded localities. So far, 148,000 doses have been applied since April

"Johnson & Johnson just notified us that the Janssen vaccines will not arrive next week. This is due to problems with the vaccine production. The deliveries should be as scheduled at the end of August," Vojtěch wrote.

The company was to deliver 90,000 doses of this vaccine in total during August. "So far, we have enough doses even for the vaccination points without registration that now inoculate with this single-dose vaccine," he said. The interest in the single-dose vaccine in vaccination centers without registration is high. In the center at Hlavní nádraží in Prague, over 8,000 have received it there since July 12. It is also preferred in the centers where people can choose the vaccine type.

Vaccination lottery for iPhones and sneakers has ended

The lottery for mobile phones or branded sneakers quietly on July 31. The draw began in mid-July for people who went to walk-in vaccination centers. The first draw took place July 19. According to the organizers, 40 people won the shoes in the end. They correctly answered a question about how many people came to the center on a given day. Prime Minister Andrej Babiš said that the last main prize will be given out soon. an iPhone 12, worth around CZK 20,000. One has been given out and a second winner has been contacted. The state paid almost CZK 300,000 to stage the lottery.  

Principals say Education Ministry guidelines are unfeasible

According to school principals, a number of proposals for anti-epidemic measures by the Education Ministry aimed at returning children to classes cannot be fulfilled. These include, above all, maintaining pupils' homogeneity, providing isolation rooms, or providing hot water in all classes. The principals do not yet have information on how to proceed if a student refuses to take a Covid test or wear a face covering. This resulted from the statements of school principals in the Olomouc region, which ČTK addressed. One principal pointed out that there was a month until September, so the measures will certainly be more clear by the beginning of the school year. According to him, it is necessary to appeal especially to parents and pupils to be vaccinated as soon as possible.

Event goers buying more last-minute tickets due to Covid

Covid has caused complications for ticket sellers and organizers of cultural and sporting events. Uncertainty has forced people to delay their purchases. The organizers have no idea until the last moment whether the event will be a success or a failure. People are afraid to buy tickets until the last minute, so orgainzers don't know how much interest there is in the event This year, for example, visitors to the traditional Summer Shakespeare Festival are buying fewer tickets in advance than usual, news server reported. Visitors' caution has a greater impact on one-off events, as organizers of recurring events can count on interest being the same as previously. Long-term fans buy tickets far in advance due to limits on audience sizes.

Latest Covid-19 data from the Czech Ministry of Health (Aug. 6, 2021)

  • New cases 163
  • Deaths 30 367
  • Currently hospitalized 43
  • PCR tests performed 9,176,778
  • Antigen tests performed 24,341,400
  • Total vaccinations 10,574,261
  • Daily increase in vaccinations 50,413
  • People who have completed vaccination 5,008,072
  • New cases per 100,000 in seven days 11
  • PES index 24
  • R number 0.92
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