They are all offered the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, even if they have been given a different vaccine before. The council advises to have the injection at least six months after the last dose. Anyone who has become infected after vaccination is also eligible for the booster six months after the infection.
Outgoing minister Hugo de Jonge (Public Health) had asked the Health Council for its advice. Among other things, he wanted to know who would be the first to qualify for such a strengthening shot. The council now recommends starting with the elders.
Increase in infections
However, people aged 18 and older who live in a care institution (nursing homes, residential care centers and institutions for people with intellectual disabilities) are also eligible for a booster vaccine. “The number of infections is increasing in these institutions, it is mainly elderly people who live there and there is a higher risk of transmission and serious disease,” the council said.
Until now, people received one dose of the Janssen vaccine or two of one of the other drugs. People with an immune disease could receive a third dose of the vaccine because two shots were not enough, but that is not the same as a booster shot. A booster is intended to restore lost protection to its original level.
The elderly were one of the first groups to be vaccinated from January. The number of corona cases is increasing most sharply among this group. In addition, almost all people who succumb to the virus in recent weeks are 80 years or older.
Based on recent studies, the Health Council sees no medical reason to offer other groups a booster vaccine. “There is no evidence that the protection of Covid-19 vaccines against serious illness or hospitalization is inadequate for them, regardless of the vaccine used,” the council said.
Now that the advice is there, the government must decide who will be invited first. Together with the RIVM and the GGD, we will then look at when injections can be started.
An extra shot should give the protection a boost. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has previously approved the use of booster shots and additional doses of the vaccines from Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna.
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