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Israel: Top virologist predicts 6+ months of COVID hiatus

i24NEWS

clock 3 min read

A paramedic with Israel's Magen David Adom medical service prepares to administer the third shot of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine in Holon, Israel, August 24, 2021.
AHMAD GHARABLI / AFPA paramedic with Israel's Magen David Adom medical service prepares to administer the third shot of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine in Holon, Israel, August 24, 2021.

Booster shots administered across Israel are likely to conquer Delta variant and hold others from emerging

Dr. Rivka Abulafia-Lapid, a top virologist in Israel, suggested that the Delta variant of Covid has been defeated in Israel, and the country can expect a break of six to eight months from the virus. 

The doctor told The Times of Israel (ToI) on Tuesday that the fourth wave is nearing its end, and that the Delta variant is highly unlikely to generate another wave. 

She added that the spread of a new variant is also unlikely. 

Abulafia-Lapid indicated that this is mostly due to the wide distribution of booster shots across all eligible age groups in Israel.

The third dose of vaccines are likely to provide longer-lasting protection than the two initial shots, according to ToI.

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“My estimate is that once we have three vaccines, protection will last for a year,” said Abulafia-Lapid, a senior doctor at Hadassah Medical Center and part of the Hebrew University’s faculty. 

“There should be good memory in the body for around a year that can fight off Covid infection in many cases."

She added that "we should expect new variants, but not now because populations are vaccinated well," ToI reported.

Abulafia-Lapid based her predictions on the performances of other vaccines - the human papillomavirus vaccine, the hepatitis B vaccine, and the rotavirus vaccine.

The optimism comes as Israel continues to experience its lowest positivity rate since July, sitting at 1.70 percent, updated on Wednesday. 

More than 3.7 million Israelis received the third vaccine dose and over 5.6 million were jabbed at least twice.

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