By January 12, 2022Science, Technology

I received my booster vaccination at lunchtime today (Wednesday, January 12). My first two doses of Covid-19 vaccine were the virus-mediated version from AstraZeneca, with the second of these having been stuck into my arm in early September 20211.

Today I was speared in the same arm with the Pfizer vaccine, which is a messenger RNA (mRNA) type. This time, I hardly felt the needle, presumably because it was finer than those used for my two AstraZeneca doses.

When I received the AstraZeneca doses, I was given to believe that maxiumum protection would kick in at about two weeks after I received the second dose. Relying on the AstraZeneca vaccine for protection against the Omicron variant of the virus causing Covid-19 was a worry when it was rumoured that the protection was limited. This rumour turned out to be true.

In late December, 2021, a study from the UK suggested that protective effectiveness against symptomatic COVID-19 disease from the Omicron strain was not observable (i.e. it was nil) after two doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine and was only approximately 35% at about 4 to 6 months after two doses of the Pfizer vaccine. In addition, the study also looked at the effectiveness of booster doses. Although the sample number was small (10 cases receiving a booster after primary AstraZeneca vaccination and 16 cases after primary Pfizer vaccination), the protective effectiveness against symptomatic disease was estimated at about 70–75% after receiving a Pfizer booster dose for both groups2

After receiving a booster such as that from Pfizer, positive effects begin after about a week. However, it takes about two weeks for the maximum protection level to be reached3. So, I should be as protected as I can be before the end of January. This is a bit of a relief, given that the Omicron walls seem to be closing in: a friend of mine has just tested positive; a colleague and all his family have just tested positive; the day-care centres for two of my grandchildren have had positive cases, so the kids have to stay at home and get tested, as do their parents; and there have been several positive cases (including one resident) at the nursing home where an elderly relative resides.




  • Jon says:

    Wasn’t aware of the 2 dose UK Omicron study, thanks chief. Effectively we have very low immunity to acquiring Omicron until we get our boosters, in early Feb iirc. We already take care but that info gives us greater awareness.

    New studies – yet to be peer reviewed – suggest the AZ booster is as effective as Pfizer and Moderna. While there is SOME cause for concern about Omicron re-infection rates the critical measures are illness severity (no-one seems to collect data or report on this), hospitalisations, and deaths. While they are a function of the numbers of infections it seems no-one can say unequivocally what the relationship is, esp as science still doesn’t know what % of people exposed to covid don’t get it, or understand why some people get repeat infections while others in households are “naturally immune.”

    Meanwhile the useless bastard responsible for Aged Care Richard Colbeck continues to live up to his first name’s colloquialism. Despite the RC’s explicit criticisim of the Morrison govt’s (ie Colbeck’s) lack of planning for covid in aged care homes 15 months ago they are now repeating their deadly incompetence. Assuming Morrison and his band of incompetent, cynical and dishonest mates get the arse later this year, (the useless) Albanese should have a full enquiry into our covid management – after he gives Gaetjens, Pezzullo and quite a few other Dept Heads their marching orders.

    • admin says:

      Based on what I have read, the main problem is that the effectiveness of vaccines wanes over time, and it seems to be that the viral-mediated versions fade faster than the mRNA versions, and 4 to 5 months seems to be when it starts to get a little dangerous. The booster has knocked me around a bit with tiredness and aching muscles. I did about three hours work on the computer this afternoon and I was buggered. Relying on coffee and aspirin.

  • Mark Dougall says:

    I have my booster in two weeks but I expect that I will need another one in three months time, and then another, ad infinitum, unless a new vaccine is developed, or a more deadly variant comes along. The main problem is that at the moment we essentially have a common cold that kills, and is even more infectious, and we will get it, just like we do other coronaviruses, over and over, until it either becomes something that doesn’t kill us, or until it kills us. We (fuckwit humans) have allowed and enabled this to happen because we are fuckwits. . I will say, however, that this is nowhere near the most significant problem that the human race is facing, or this poor old world. There my friend, I have had a rant.

    • admin says:

      Yep. Generally we are fuckwits. We just got some chinese food delivered and being regulars we always have a chat with the delivery bloke, who is a really happy soul. He told me that another regular in our suburb believes Covid-19 is a hoax and that the vaccine is designed to kill 20% of the world’s population. Some fuckwits seem incapable of dealing with reality. The main problem we have here is that some people like that are in parliament. Like you, I need a cathartic rant now and again, so I have mostly resorted to this blog, rather than shouting at the television, which I still do.

  • Warren says:

    The above is really worth reading. What a mess.

    I told two neighbours yesterday that I had been in iso after after a positive PCR test. Even after I told them I was very crook for the first 3 days ( nearly passing out from choking , gagging cough, etc. ) one neighbour (university educated ) stated that he did not believe Covid existed. All fake news. Just a cold. Unbelievable. But I left in a hurry as I was a little miffed. And I assume he is not vaccinated?

    The other neighbour was shaking his head and laughing at his crazy comments. If I’m unlucky enough to get another dose should I visit my nutter neighbour and pass the the virus on?

    I’ve told other doubting mates that the first 3 days of my infection were scary. I was close to going to hospital. And that’s after being triple vaccinated as well.

    FWs are everywhere. But that’s ok. FWs are “running the country”. Into the ground.

    • admin says:

      Yeah; I read that. It does chime with my suspicions in that all Morrison is concerned about is whatever benefits Scott Morrison; nothing else. You mention your symptoms. My partner and I both had very intense coughs which almost prevented us from being able to breathe. On a couple of occasions, I was on the verge of calling an ambulance for her. The only surprising thing is that this was in November 2019, two months before Covid-19 supposedly arrived in Australia. I also know some educated people who are antivaxxers (one is a barrister). However, while education guards against gullibility is is not 100% effective. I do not understand how these halfwits can believe such drivel, but then none that I know are scientists. Maybe that is indicative of the type of education they receive. I wish I knew.

  • Mark Dougall says:

    Thanks to Warren. I often read the New Daily, and I think Michael Pascoe is excellent, but I had not read this. It is something that I have contemplated but, in the end, thought that Morrison and his henchpeople while nasty enough, are simply too stupid to actually think of. However Morrison’s apparent total lack of concern for those people who are ill, or dying, and his refusal to even mention them at all, has made me think that, appalling as it is, this may well be a deliberate strategy. If the ALP wins the election there must be a Royal Commission into this foul mob’s handling of this issue (and a whole lot of others). The gaols may end up being very full.

    • Jon says:

      The ALP and Albanese will have to grow some balls/backbone first Mark.

      I’m hoping for a significant number on independents in the new parliament. While the current govt is definitely worthy of witch-ducking/dunking if not hanging, we need decades of hung parliaments and minority senates, AND an active federal ACC, AND far better journalists, in order to restore some semblance of democracy in this country.

  • Jon says:

    Wow, just read Skerritt’s statement. If that’s true then Morrison and his serfs are even more culpable. To say I’m surprised would be a lie. To say I’m appalled is also a lie – I’m bloody outraged.

    “As politicians squirm about that, it is worth recounting again the admission by Therapeutic Goods Administration boss John Skerritt, as reported by The Guardian:

    Part of the issue has been the slow pace of approvals with the TGA. In September the TGA boss, John Skerritt, admitted that had been deliberate, as the regulator waited for a “signal” from the federal government.

    “We’re saying to companies, submit your data, show us, but we can’t formally make an approval decision until we get a signal from the government,” Skerritt said at the time. “It’s a decision for the government. Firstly, when they feel an appropriate time is to commit such tests. But then secondly, we’ve got to have the tests that are actually ready to go and designed so they can be used by non-professional people.”

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