Eastern Carolinians react to potential fourth COVID-19 Pfizer dose

Eastern Carolinians react to potential fourth COVID-19 Pfizer dose
Published: Mar. 14, 2022 at 9:24 PM EDT
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NEW BERN, N.C. (WITN) - Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla says people may need a fourth COVID-19 booster.

One woman who recently lost her husband to COVID-19 says she would get the shot once it is approved.

Mattie Vaughan said she was eager to get her vaccine, but unfortunately, her husband was not. “He died of COVID two weeks ago,” Vaughan said.

Vaughan is encouraging others to get their shots to not only protect themselves but also the people around them.

“We’ve been taking vaccines all our life. Before we went to school we had to take vaccines when I was six, you know?” Vaughan said.

She said as long as the shot is approved, “If that’s what it takes to keep us safe, I’m all for it.”

News of a fourth shot or second booster did not shock Dr. Ron May, CarolinaEast Medical Center medical affairs vice president said.

“I’m not surprised. There are several countries in the world that have actually started a fourth dose, the second booster,” May said.

May says more work to get a vaccine that prevents both severe disease and infection is needed.

“After the primary series, there’s still definite protection against severe disease and death, but not necessarily prevention of the disease. We all hoped that there would be prevention of the disease and unfortunately, Omicron has shown us that that’s not the case,” May said.

While Pfizer submits data to the FDA, there are still unknowns.

“I don’t know what Pfizer thinks,” May said. “I don’t know if they think they’ll prevent disease by giving the fourth dose or if they think they will just improve or maintain the ability to prevent severe disease.”

May said while he isn’t positive, it is likely drug companies will offer a yearly COVID-19 booster.

“It certainly sounds like that’s going to be a distinct possibility for the people that want to have good protection.”

According to the state, 62% of people in Craven County are vaccinated with two doses or one dose of Johnson & Johnson.

May said he is encouraged by the decreasing number of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations and hopes they will continue going down.

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