Covid sufferer dies in Spain shortly after receiving second dose of Pfizer vaccine

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The victim from Valencia contracted the virus shortly after receiving the first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine on December 29. The second dose of the drug was administered on January 19, three weeks after the first jab. In analysis undertaken by the New England Journal of Medicine, the efficacy of the Pfizer vaccine was found to be 52.4 percent between the two doses.

Public Health England has also said that vaccine failures, or when the drug does not defend against the virus, are likely before 10 days.

This means, there is a chance of contracting the virus within the days immediately after the first dose.

Although 95 effective against the virus after the second dose, Pfizer has said it has only tested its drug’s efficacy when two doses are given.

Stephen Evans, professor of pharmacoepidemiology said: “When resources of doses and people to vaccinate are limited, then vaccinating more people with potentially less efficacy is demonstrably better than a fuller efficacy in only half.”

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Health experts in Spain, told ABC News that doctors analyse on a case-by-case basis to decide whether to inoculate a second dose of the vaccine after the recipient becomes infected with coronavirus.

According to local news sources from the town of Sagunto, where the man died, a local doctor said he suffered from bacterial pneumonia.

Like many EU states, Spain has struggled to fully implement its vaccination programme due to supply chain issues suffered by Pfizer-BioNTech and now Oxford University and AstraZeneca.

According to figures compiled by Our World in Data, Spain has vaccinated 2.76 people per 100 – in comparison, the UK is registering 10.76.

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The UK has surged ahead due to the one-shot policy conducted by the Government in order to vaccinate as many people as possible with a first dose.

However, it is unclear when a second dose will be given, although the UK’s Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) said the Pfizer drug is still effective 12 weeks from the first shot.

The World Health Organisation has previously stated a recommended four weeks between the two shots and can only be extended to six weeks in extreme circumstances.

A spokeswoman for the Department of Health and Social Care added: “Our number one priority is to give protection against coronavirus to as many vulnerable people as possible, as quickly as possible.”

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The EU has also increased the time between doses to 45 days from 21 after this first shot in order to kickstart the vaccination programme.

However, this intent may be severely hindered if the supply chain issues are not resolved.

After talks with AstraZeneca, the EU has demanded the company publish details of the contract after being informed of issues over production delays.

The company has claimed the contract compels them to make their best effort to meet a deadline for delivery rather than any strict obligations.

Although some member states had begun talks with AstraZeneca, the EU Commission took over the negotiating process, which led to an agreement of 300 million doses in August.

Ahead of its approval by the European Medicines Agency, the EU is expecting 80 million by March.

However, there have been reports that delivery will be reduced by 31 million due to a cut in first-quarter supplies.

Pfizer has also experienced issues and announced it would delay certain shipments due to the need to increase capacity at a processing plant in Belgium.

Additional reporting by Maria Ortega.

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