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Protection by 4th dose of BNT162b2 against Omicron in Israel
  February 01, 2022.
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This article is a preprint and has not been certified by peer review [what does this mean?]. It reports new medical research that has yet to be evaluated and so should not be used to guide clinical practice.
BACKGROUND On January 2, 2022, Israel began administering a fourth dose of BNT162b2 vaccine (Pfizer-BioNTech) to people aged over 60 years and at-risk populations, who had received a third dose of vaccine at least 4 months earlier. The effect of the fourth dose on confirmed coronavirus 2019 disease (Covid-19) and severe illness are still unclear.
METHODS We extracted data for the Omicron-dominated period January 15 through January 27, 2022, from the Israeli Ministry of Health database regarding 1,138,681 persons aged over 60 years and eligible for the fourth dose. We compared the rate of confirmed Covid-19 and severe illness between those who had received a fourth dose at least 12 days earlier, those who had received only three doses, and those 3 to 7 days after receiving the fourth dose. We used Poisson regression after adjusting for possible confounding factors.
The rate of confirmed infection was lower in people 12 or more days after their fourth dose than among those who received only three doses and those 3 to 7 days after vaccination by factors of 2.0 (95% confidence interval [CI], 2.0 to 2.1) and 1.9 (95% CI, 1.8 to 2.0), respectively. The rate of severe illness was lower by factors of 4.3 (95% CI, 2.4 to 7.6) and 4.0 (95% CI, 2.2 to 7.5).
CONCLUSIONS Rates of confirmed Covid-19 and severe illness were lower following a fourth dose compared to only three doses.

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