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2nd COVID-19 vaccine booster significantly lowers death rate: Israeli study

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Senior citizens who received a second booster of the Pfizer–BioNTech COVID-19 vaccination had a 78 per cent lower mortality rate from the disease than those who got one only, a study from Israel showed on Sunday.

The country’s largest healthcare provider, Clalit Health Services, said the 40-day study included more than half a million people aged 60 to 100.

Some 58 per cent of participants had received a second booster – or two shots in addition to the basic two-shot regimen. The remainder had received only one booster. Researchers recorded 92 deaths among the first group and 232 deaths among the second, smaller group.

Read more: Moderna asks U.S. to approve 2nd COVID-19 booster dose for all adults

“The main conclusion is that the second booster is lifesaving,” said Ronen Arbel, Health Outcomes Researcher at Clalit and Sapir College.

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The report was issued as a preprint and has not been peer-reviewed. The research excluded people who received rival Moderna’s vaccine and those who had taken oral anti-COVID therapy.

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Israeli health officials have put out a number of studies on vaccine efficacy throughout the pandemic that have impacted policymaking in other countries.

— Reporting by Ari Rabinovitch

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