Health Minister Dr. Frank Anthony today announced that a third dose of the Covid-19 vaccines will be available for persons 50 years and above from next week.
During today’s COVID-19 update, the Health Minister said based on recommendations from Health Authorities, booster shots are necessary since data has shown that six months after a person becomes fully vaccinated, the immunity of the vaccine starts to reduce.
He said once the immunity from the vaccine reduces, the protection from the vaccine would also start to wane.
“And so out of an abundance of caution, what we are going to do from next week is that we want to make booster shots available to persons 50 years and above— so anybody once you pass 50 you can come into any one of the vaccination, and we will be able to give you a booster if you would like to get a booster,” the Health Minister said.
Additionally, persons between the ages of 18-49 with comorbidities are also eligible for a booster dose.
Preference will be given to persons with cancer, cerebrovascular disease, chronic lung, liver, and kidney disease, diabetes, down syndrome, heart conditions, HIV, mental health disorders, neurovascular conditions, obesity, pregnant persons, persons who smoke, TB and other serious ailments.
“Anyone of these persons if you have such a condition then you are eligible for booster,” the Minister said.
With the one-shot Johnson and Johnson vaccine, the Minister explained that persons who took that vaccine are eligible for a booster dose 52 days after the first dose.
The Minister also said that in some cases, the booster shot is the same vaccine that was administered.
In other cases, persons can have a different vaccine from the first one that that was administered.
The Ministry of Health will be putting out an advisory to guide persons on the booster shots.