Last Updated: Feb 01, 2023

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has published early data on the efficacy of the new COVID-19 booster shots and whether they will be able to protect against the super-contagious sub-variants of common omicron that are known as XBB and XBB.1.5. Considering the United States is in the middle of the COVID-19 season during winter, this data might be quite helpful. Health officials from the CDC have used COVID-19 test results of over 29100 adults who have been dealing with COVID symptoms and have been tested at pharmacies across the country from Dec 1 2022 to Jan 13, 2023. As per the report, the sub-variant of common omicron that is known as XBB.1.5 has been swiftly transmitting across the US and displaying disturbing immune-evasive traits. Some hospitals have reported that they have witnessed a spike in cases, while some healthcare facilities fear that they might face a similar situation as last winter’s COVID-19 outbreak. Health experts from the country have claimed that around 1 out of 2 new COVID-19 incidents are caused by the sub-variant XBB.1.5.

The new report from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has shown that both booster shots from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna are nearly 50 percent protective against symptomatic infections caused by BA.5-linked infections and XBB/XBB.1.5-linked infections among adults who are above 49 years of age. While the effectiveness of both booster shots has reduced by 37 percent against BA.5 related COVID-19 infections and 43 percent against XBB/XBB.1.5 related COVID-19 infections among older adults who are 65 years old and above. Experts have said that the efficacy range of 37 to 50 percent might not appear to be high, however, in a broad picture, these figures are similar to the common range of the efficacy of flu shots. An assistant head of research and associate professor from the New York Institute of Technology in Jonesboro, Arkansas, Dr. Rajendram Rajnarayanan has stated that in the case of recombination, there are mutations, which makes the virus more evasive and the same has occurred in the recombination of XBB.1.5 as well, it has changed one small mutation.  Eventually, it attached to the host receptor in a much better way as compared to other variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The chief of the CDC’s COVID response team, Dr. Brendan Jackson has claimed that the new data has been quite encouraging. The new report from the federal health agency has confirmed that updated COVID-19 shots can offer people substantial protection against new variants of the deadly virus,

While health experts have been advising people to get their booster shots, there are many people who have still not received their booster shots. As per the data from the CDC, only 15 percent of people in the United States have got a bivalent booster shot. A senior behavioral researcher from Duke University’s Center for Advanced Hindsight, Dr. Jenna Clark, has previously stated that people’s reluctance to get their bivalent booster shots is not certainly an outcome of vaccine hesitancy. Dr. Clark has said that most people believe that the bivalent booster shot is as safe and potent as the original COVID-19 shot, therefore it might not be important. While about 70 percent of them who have already been immunized with two doses of the original COVID-19 shot are planning to get a bivalent booster shot by the next year. However, there is a big difference between planning to do something and actually doing it and the real issue lies somewhere there. Health experts from the CDC are hopeful that the new data might encourage people to get their bivalent booster shots. The co-chief of the Center for Vaccine Development at Texas Children’s Hospital, Dr. Peter Hotez has said that the new data might be beneficial for motivating some people to sign up and get their bivalent booster shots.


Devoted my whole life to words - reading, writing and trying to be original on social media. Got certified in digital marketing - still not cool enough to be an influencer. Finished a master’s degree focused in Literature, Publishing, Mass Media. Hobbies include traveling, reading and hoping that yoga will be the thing to finally teach me some patience. Would like to take over the world at some point, but that’s an optional dream. Maybe modern tech can help me do that?