Brunei: 3,000 selected for immunity study ahead of booster programme as Covid-19 cases rise to nearly 15,000

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN, Nov 28 (Borneo Bullein/ANN): Three thousand people have been selected for the study on the level of neutralising antibodies produced by the Covid-19 vaccine in the Sultanate, which will be conducted by the Brunei Ministry of Health (MoH) in collaboration with Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD), Duke-MUS Medical School Singapore and EVYD Technology.

Minister of Health Dato Seri Setia Dr Mohd Isham Jaafar said the study will compare the protective immunity or immunogenicity of the vaccines, and the findings will be used to plan the booster programme and optimise public health strategies in controlling the spread of coronavirus in the country.

He said the study will kick off on November 29 and 3,000 individuals of the populace, who have completed their vaccination schedule with Sinopharm, Oxford-AstraZeneca or Moderna, will be invited via a short messaging service (SMS) to participate in the study by undergoing a blood test at Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa’adatul Bolkiah Institute of Health Sciences, UBD.

The minister also said at the daily press conference that there will also be a follow-up study after the booster has been administered to assess the effects of the additional dose to the immune system, and urged for those selected for the study to participate in support of the initiative.

Meanwhile, Brunei reported 74 confirmed cases of Covid-19 on Saturday, bringing the total tally to 14,992.

According to Brunei's Ministry of Health, all the newly recorded cases were local infections.

While the source of 15 local infections was still under investigation, four new clusters have been detected and two clusters were closed following no new cases in the clusters for 28 days, bringing the total number of active clusters to 135.

There are a total of 14,367 recoveries and 526 active cases still being treated and monitored in Brunei. ninety-nine patients have passed away so far in the country. - Borneo Bulletin/ANN

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