This Is How Much the Moderna Vaccine Really Protects You, New Study Says
The company has just released new data on how effective the vaccine is over time.
All three of the coronavirus vaccines authorized for use in the U.S. proved to be very effective in their initial clinical trials. But as time goes on and more people get vaccinated in the real world, we're learning more about the effectiveness of these vaccines over time. Now, Moderna has released results from a six-month long study, showing how much the vaccine really protects you half a year after getting vaccinated. Read on to find out how effective the vaccine remains after six months, and for more on this specific vaccine, check out Moderna Caused This Reaction in 82 Percent of People, New Study Says.
The Moderna vaccine is more than 90 percent effective after six months.
Moderna released findings from the third phase of its Coronavirus Efficacy and Safety (COVE) study on April 13, showing how effective the vaccine remained approximately six months after participants received their second dose. According to their findings, Moderna's vaccine is still more than 90 percent effective against all cases of COVID and more than 95 percent effective against severe cases of COVID six months after vaccination.
Moderna has delivered approximately 132 million doses of its COVID vaccine globally, and researchers observed just over 900 total cases of COVID—which included 100 severe cases—from vaccinated participants in the trial through April 9. And for more on how the vaccine works, check out Dr. Fauci Says This Is How You Can Catch COVID Even If You're Vaccinated.
Moderna is already working on booster shots for emerging variants.
With variants of COVID continuing to emerge and potentially threaten the effectiveness of vaccines, Moderna is also already working on booster shots. During an appearance on CNBC's Squawk Box on April 14, Moderna CEO Stéphane Bancel said he hopes to have booster shots designed to target emerging variants available by the fall. Moderna says it has preclinical data on two variant-specific booster vaccine candidates: one against the South African variant B.1.351 and another multivalent booster candidate.
"The new preclinical data on our variant-specific vaccine candidates give us confidence that we can proactively address emerging variants," Bancel said in a statement. "Moderna will make as many updates to our COVID-19 vaccine as necessary until the pandemic is under control." And for more on these booster shots, check out Moderna CEO Says This Is How Often You'll Need A COVID Vaccine.
These booster shots may also protect you from the flu.
During his CNBC interview, Bancel also revealed that boosters in the future might do double duty. "What we're trying to do at Moderna actually is try to get a flu vaccine in the clinic this year and then combine our flu vaccine to our COVID vaccine, so you only have to get one boost at your local CVS store … every year that would protect you to the variant of concern against COVID and the seasonal flu strain," Bancel said.
He is hopeful Moderna's flu vaccine will be able to provide better protection than current ones, which average between 40 and 60 percent efficacy rates depending on the year, according to the CDC. And for more on what could affect how well your vaccine works, check out This Common Medication Can Make Your Vaccine Less Effective, Study Says.
Moderna will soon test its vaccine on people younger than 18.
As of right now, the Moderna vaccine is only authorized for those 18 years old and older. However, the company is working on changing that as well. Moderna also announced on April 13 that its Phase 2/3 TeenCOVE study is fully enrolled, which will test the vaccine on adolescents ages 12 to 17. There are about 3,000 participants from the U.S. enrolled in this new trial.
The company also said they were currently enrolling participants for a trial that will test the vaccine on children 6 months to 11 years old. And for more up-to-date COVID vaccine information, sign up for our daily newsletter.
Pfizer recently reported similar updated efficacy results for its vaccine.
Pfizer released a statement on April 1, confirming that its COVID vaccine remains highly effective and safe for at least six months after the second dose as well. Researchers for Pfizer analyzed data on over 46,000 trial participants and found that, out of 927 participants who got infected with COVID more than a week after their second dose, only 77 had received the actual vaccine compared to 850 who had received a placebo. According to the study, Pfizer's vaccine is 91.3 percent effective against symptomatic COVID cases and 95.3 to 100 percent effective against severe COVID six months after you're fully vaccinated. And for more from this vaccine, check out Pfizer Caused This Reaction in Half of Recipients, New Study Says.