Primary Series and Booster Coronavirus Disease 2019 Vaccine Effectiveness in a Cohort of Healthcare Workers in Albania During a BA.1 and BA.2 Variant Period, January-May 2022

Iris Finci, Madelyn Yiseth Rojas Castro, Iris Hasibra, Jonilda Sulo, Albana Fico, Rovena Daja, Adela Vasili, Majlinda Kota, Iria Preza, Barbara Mühlemann, Christian Drosten, Richard Pebody, Kathryn E. Lafond, Esther Kissling, Mark A. Katz, Silvia Bino*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Healthcare workers (HCWs) have experienced high rates of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) morbidity and mortality. We estimated COVID-19 2-dose primary series and monovalent booster vaccine effectiveness (VE) against symptomatic severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) Omicron (BA.1 and BA.2) infection among HCWs in 3 Albanian hospitals during January-May 2022. Methods: Study participants completed weekly symptom questionnaires, underwent polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing when symptomatic, and provided quarterly blood samples for serology. We estimated VE using Cox regression models (1 - hazard ratio), with vaccination status as the time-varying exposure and unvaccinated HCWs as the reference group, adjusting for potential confounders: age, sex, prior SARS-CoV-2 infection (detected by PCR, rapid antigen test, or serology), and household size. Results: At the start of the analysis period, 76% of 1462 HCWs had received a primary series, 10% had received a booster dose, and 9% were unvaccinated; 1307 (89%) HCWs had evidence of prior infection. Overall, 86% of primary series and 98% of booster doses received were BNT162b2. The median time interval from the second dose and the booster dose to the start of the analysis period was 289 (interquartile range [IQR], 210-292) days and 30 (IQR, 22-46) days, respectively. VE against symptomatic PCR-confirmed infection was 34% (95% confidence interval [CI], -36% to 68%) for the primary series and 88% (95% CI, 39%-98%) for the booster. Conclusions: Among Albanian HCWs, most of whom had been previously infected, COVID-19 booster dose offered improved VE during a period of Omicron BA.1 and BA.2 circulation. Our findings support promoting booster dose uptake among Albanian HCWs, which, as of January 2023, was only 20%.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberofad479
JournalOpen Forum Infectious Diseases
Volume10
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2023
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 The Author(s). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Infectious Diseases Society of America.

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • Omicron
  • booster dose
  • healthcare workers
  • vaccine effectiveness

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Primary Series and Booster Coronavirus Disease 2019 Vaccine Effectiveness in a Cohort of Healthcare Workers in Albania During a BA.1 and BA.2 Variant Period, January-May 2022'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this