BC Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry expressed her approval on Thursday for the mixing and matching of certain COVID-19 vaccine products to help people get their first and second dose.

Noting that the National Advisory Committee on Immunization “has reviewed the evidence” and “updated the guidance,” Henry stated at a press conference that “while it is always preferable to have the same product for the first and second doses… we have good evidence that it’s safe to have an alternative with the same type of vaccine” – in this case Pfizer and Moderna.

“Pfizer and Moderna are both the same type of MRNA vaccines,” said Henry. “It is safe, and it does work.”

As for those who have received the AstraZeneca vaccine, Henry said “what we’ve seen is that this vaccine has a better response with a slightly longer interval between doses” – up to 12 weeks – “so we are looking at what that means for people here in BC, and we are waiting on the results of studies that are being done.”

She added that by the end of next week, she expects to be able to provide further advice to those who received AstraZeneca for their first dose, so they can make an “informed decision” about their second dose.

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