A nurse prepares a dose of the Sputnik Light vaccine against the coronavirus in Managua, Nicaragua. October 25, 2021. REUTERS / Maynor Valenzuela. NO RESALES OR FILES.
MOSCOW, Oct 30 (Reuters) – Russia will recommend using the domestically made COVID-19 Sputnik Light vaccine only as a booster for people who have already been vaccinated, Russian news agencies quoted the Health Minister as saying on Saturday.
Russia had previously promoted Sputnik Light – comprising the first injection of its double-dose flagship Sputnik V – as a standalone effective vaccine, as well as a booster that can be combined with non-Russian vaccines.
“With the advancement of the Delta variant, today changes will be made to the methodological recommendations on vaccines in which (it will say): use only ‘Sputnik Light’ for revaccination,” said Health Minister Mikhail Murashko, according to TASS.
“We see that higher quality immunity is formed after vaccination in two stages, and this is of vital importance to preserve health,” Interfax said, citing Murashko.
The minister spoke during a trip to the Vladimir region, east of Moscow, after President Vladimir Putin urged the minister and his deputies to visit the regions hardest hit by the latest wave of the pandemic.
Russia reported 40,251 new COVID-19 infections in the past 24 hours on Saturday, its highest case count in a single day so far. His daily death toll of 1,160 was just three less than a record reported Friday.
Sputnik Light has been shown to be 70% effective against the Delta variant three months after injection and is likely to become the country’s main vaccine in the future, Russia said earlier this month.
Putin told a meeting of the G-20 nations via video link on Saturday that Sputnik Light could be used to increase the effectiveness of other vaccines.
“We are working towards this end with our colleagues from European countries and we are offering it to our partners,” he said.
(Reporting by Tom Balmforth and Maria Kiselyova; edited in Spanish by Carlos Serrano)