WHO warns about mixing and matching of Covid-19 vaccines

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The World Health Organization’s (WHO’s) chief scientist Dr Soumya Swaminathan on Monday warned that it is dangerous to take vaccines made in combination by different manufacturers. Calling it a dangerous trend, she cautioned against mixing and matching vaccines by various manufacturers for the first and second doses.

“There are people who are thinking about mixing and matching. We receive a lot of queries from people who say they have taken one [dose] and are planning to take another one (doses),” Swaminathan said in an online briefing earlier in the day.

Most vaccines currently in use, including those of Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, University of Oxford-AstraZeneca, Bharat Biotech and the Russian Sputnik V, are all required to be administered in two doses with the prescribed intervals between the shots differing for each vaccine.

Recently German Chancellor Angela Merkel had surprised people by taking different vaccine doses shots. She was vaccinated with the AstraZeneca in the first instalment and received Moderna for the second time.

Some countries have even implemented this compounding approach. These include Canada, the UK, and some European Union countries. They followed this procedure to avoid complications after the first dose of AstraZeneca. Russia is also looking to give the AstraZeneca and Sputnik-V vaccines in this manner.

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