Breaking News! China National Health Commission Released "Implementation Plan for COVID-19 Vaccination for Key Groups in the Near Future"
To further prepare for the response to the COVID-19 pandemic during the upcoming autumn and winter seasons and ensure the maximum protection of people's lives and health, on July 31, 2023, the Joint Prevention and Control Mechanism of the State Council for Novel Coronavirus Pneumonia issued the "Implementation Plan for COVID-19 Vaccination for Key Groups in the Near Future" (hereinafter referred to as the "Implementation Plan").
According to the "Implementation Plan", the XBB variant of the novel coronavirus has become the main circulating strain in domestic outbreaks in China. Studies have shown that the XBB variant has a strong immune evasion capability, and the neutralizing ability of serum antibodies from the Chinese population against the XBB variant is relatively weak, making breakthrough infections more likely. The XBB variant poses a greater risk to key groups such as the elderly. To maximize the protection of people's lives and health, the Implementation Plan is released for COVID-19 vaccination for several key groups, including the elderly.The target population for this vaccination campaign, as stated in the "Implementation Plan," must meet two conditions simultaneously: First, they should be either aged 60 and above or between 18 and 59 years old with significant underlying health conditions, compromised immune function, or a high risk of infection. Second, they should have completed their primary immunization or have already been infected with the COVID-19 virus. For non-target populations, the Implementation Plan specifies that the previously issued guidelines for vaccination should continue to be followed.Vaccination is an important measure for preventing and controlling the spread of COVID-19 infections. Regarding vaccine selection, it has been clarified that during the prevalence of the XBB variant of the novel coronavirus, particularly during the autumn and winter seasons this year, priority should be given to recommending vaccines that contain the antigenic components of the XBB variant. Based on the deliberations of the R&D team of the Joint Prevention and Control Mechanism of the State Council, and following the recommendations of the National Health Commission and the approval of the National Medical Products Administration, the Recombinant COVID-19 Trivalent (XBB + BA.5 + Delta) Protein Vaccine (Sf9 Cell) developed by WestVac Biopharma has now been included for emergency use within a certain scope and can be administered to the key groups in the near future.According to the "Implementation Plan", the target population who has completed their primary vaccination or has been previously infected with the COVID-19 virus can receive a single dose of the vaccine containing the antigenic components of the XBB variant. For this population, the recommended time for vaccination is 3-6 months after the most recent vaccination or 6 months after the most recent infection (whichever is more recent). As for individuals who have already received a vaccine containing the antigenic components of the XBB variant, it is currently not recommended to receive other types of vaccines as per the previously issued vaccination guidelines. For individuals who have not completed their primary vaccination and have not been infected with the COVID-19 virus, it is recommended that they first complete their primary immunization.Currently, WestVac Biopharma is actively collaborating with various regions across the country to facilitate the vaccination of key populations against the COVID-19 virus. WestVac Biopharma aims to provide a safe and efficient vaccine solution to combat the prevalence of multiple variants, including the XBB variant, further strengthen the immune barrier, and contribute to the fight against COVID-19 pandemic.