Covid-19 vaccine: UAE approves plan for Sinopharm booster dose
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Covid-19 vaccine: UAE approves plan for Sinopharm booster dose

Covid-19 vaccine: UAE approves plan for Sinopharm booster dose

Priority for the booster dose will be given to the elderly and those with chronic diseases

Sinopharm Covid-19 vaccine booster

Officials in the UAE have confirmed plans to administer a booster jab of the Sinopharm Covid-19 vaccine.

The booster jab is now available to those who received their second dose more than six months ago.

Dr. Farida Al Hosani, official spokesperson of the UAE health sector, said on Monday during a press briefing that priority for the booster dose will be accorded to the elderly and those with chronic diseases.

She added that 73.88 per cent of all eligible groups aged 16 and over had been inoculated, with this number amounting to 80.33 per cent for the those over the age of 60.

“More than 11.5 million vaccine doses have been administered to date at a rate of 117.23 per 100 people,” she noted.

The UAE’s efforts to offer vaccine doses include supporting friendly countries in overcoming the health crisis and aiding recovery, she further added.

The country’s Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHAP) recently approved the emergency use of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine for children between the ages of 12 to 15.

Read: Children between the age of 12-15 in the UAE now eligible for Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine

Dr Al Hosani also stressed that vaccinating children, despite their low infection rate, is very important amidst the gradual resumption of school classes next year.

“Expanding vaccine coverage allows us to provide vaccines to the biggest proportion of the population in order to reach herd immunity. It is important as children go back to schools. To parents, rest assured this vaccine will help us all feel safe and protect the health of children. It will reduce burden on parents who have children learning online,” said Dr Al Hosani.

The spokesperson added that authorities are monitoring the results of the national vaccination campaign, which has reportedly proved to have contributed to reducing the rates of hospitalisation and use of ventilators, while curbing the spread of the virus.

All types of vaccines must undergo strict testing and go through several assessment phases, including clinical tests, before their approval, she explained, affirming that relevant national committees are keeping pace with international updates regarding vaccines, which are being regularly assessed for full approval or emergency use according to the country’s laws and regulations, reported state news agency WAM.

In addition to the prevailing precautionary measures in place in the country, Dr Al Hosani urged other measures to boost immunity. “We urge everyone to get tested for their Vitamin-D level, and herein we stress the importance of Vitamin-D, Vitamin-C and Zinc, as they boost immunity and help the body fight communicable diseases, including Covid-19.”

The UAE reported 1,270 new cases of the Covid-19 infection on May 18. A total of 548,681 people across the UAE have contracted the virus, since it broke out earlier last year.

Of the total number, 1,637 have died as a result of it and 528,769 have recovered from it.

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