Soon the oldest elderly will be able to receive a booster shot from the corona vaccine. This has been announced by outgoing health minister Hugo de Jonge. An extra dose of the vaccine is intended to maintain protection against the virus. De Jonge does not yet know when the administration will start and which group exactly qualifies for this. The cabinet will make a decision on this in November.
Until now, people have 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 reduced protection from the vaccine to its original level.
Waiting for advice from the Health Council
Before the booster injection round is started, the Health Council is first asked for advice. For example, it is still unclear which age groups exactly qualify, and whether people can also get an extra shot if they were initially vaccinated with Janssen, which in principle protects enough after one shot. De Jonge wants to consult with the RIVM and the GGD to determine when exactly the extra shots will be started. According to him, they were already well prepared for an extra round of injections.
Booster shot to bring protection back up to standard
According to the minister, it is ‘not yet an issue’ that three injections will be necessary to be considered fully vaccinated, and therefore to be able to show a green tick in the CoronaCheck app. De Jonge points out that the vaccines all provide good protection against a serious course of disease and hospitalization. Only the protection against infection decreases. If people with the protection of their vaccination can still become infected, but do not become seriously ill, an extra shot might not add anything.