Botswana to start COVID-19 vaccine booster

A man receives the COVID-19 vaccine at a drive-thru COVID-19 vaccination site in Gaborone, Botswana, Oct. 12, 2021. (Xinhua/Tshekiso Tebalo)
A man receives the COVID-19 vaccine at a drive-thru COVID-19 vaccination site in Gaborone, Botswana on Oct. 12, 2021. (Xinhua)

Botswana will start offering boosters of five different COVID-19 vaccines from Monday, Botswana’s Ministry of Health and Welfare said in a statement.

Those who received their last dose at least two months before and ideally within six months of their initial injection automatically qualify for booster shots from Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, AstraZeneca/COVISHIELD and Sinovac, the report reads. press release released on Friday.

According to the statement, this follows the approval of booster shots of the five different COVID-19 vaccines by the southern African country’s drug regulatory body, the Botswana Medicines Regulatory Authority (BoMRA). .

Shirley Mukamambo, the senior public relations officer of Botswana’s Ministry of Health and Welfare, told Xinhua in a phone interview on Sunday that everyone who is fully vaccinated “must receive a booster dose of a vaccine with which she was vaccinated.

“Booster doses are intended to increase immunity which, if infected with COVID-19 or a variant, should not suffer severe symptoms that could lead to hospitalization or death,” Mukamambo said.

Botswana has recorded 237,678 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with 2,514 related deaths since the pandemic was first detected in March 2020, according to the ministry.

By the end of December 2021, at least 1.03 million people in the country had been fully vaccinated, exceeding the target population, Makumambo said.

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