Germany has issued what appears to be the strongest recommendation anywhere for the mixing of Covid-19 vaccines on efficacy grounds.
The German Standing Committee on Vaccination (STIKO) said Thursday that people who receive a first dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine "should get an mRNA vaccine as their second dose, regardless of their age."
This makes Germany one of the first countries to strongly recommend that people who have received the first dose of AstraZeneca receive either a Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccine as their second dose.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel helped pave the way for mixed vaccine use when she received the Moderna shot in June as her second dose following a first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine.
STIKO said that "current study results" show that the immune response generated after a mixed dose vaccination "is clearly superior."
The mRNA vaccines currently approved by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) are Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna.
Canada's National Advisory Committee on Immunization made a weaker recommendation on June 17 when they said that "an mRNA vaccine is now preferred as the second dose for individuals who have received the first dose of AstraZeneca/COVISHIELD vaccine.