The Malta Independent 18 October 2021, Monday

Elderly care home residents get jabbed with booster shot

Monday, 6 September 2021, 12:37 Last update: about 2 months ago

Hundreds of Covid-19 vaccine booster shots for residents in elderly homes began being administered today, the government said in a statement.

Malta’s vaccine booster shots programme was brought forward by a week after two clusters of COVID-19 infections were recently recorded in elderly care homes.

First to receive third vaccine dose are senior citizens at a Floriana care home, with Health Minister Chris Fearne and Senior Citizens Minister Michael Farrugia attending the exercise this morning.

Residents at St Vincent de Paul, the country’s largest care home, will be next in line to start receiving booster doses later this week. Some 500 vaccines are set to be administered per day, the government said.

Following the inoculation of residents in elderly care homes, immunocompromised patients will be the next group to receive a third vaccine dose. They have started receiving their vaccination appointments from today.

All booster shots are mRNA vaccines manufactured by Pfizer or Moderna.

The vaccination of the elderly population who do not reside in care homes is yet to be determined.

Seeing as the flu season is again approaching, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Health emphasised the importance of the most vulnerable people taking the booster dose in order for their immunity against COVID-19 to remain strong over winter.

Malta’s booster vaccination drive has been further instigated due to the more contagious Delta variant of concern (VOC) spreading in the general population this summer; however the World Health Organisation hasn’t encouraged vaccine booster campaigns seeing as many countries around the world have been struggling to have enough vaccines to inoculate their populations with a first Covid-19 vaccine dose.

France kicked off their booster vaccination drive for those with weakened immune systems and Germany is set to begin inoculating third vaccination doses to the vulnerable this month. Hungary on the other hand is offering all citizens a third vaccine dose.

Outside the EU, Israel has already begun administering booster doses and the US is set to launch its booster vaccination campaign this month.

Malta’s Covid-19 vaccination campaign first kicked off on December 27, 2020 which saw vulnerable groups those aged over 85, healthcare workers in hospitals and people living or working in homes for the elderly to be the first to be jabbed.

Over 90% of Malta’s population have been administered with two vaccine doses.


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