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Israel to administer 4th COVID vaccine to people over 60 and health workers – Consumer Health News

MONDAY January 3, 2022 (HealthDay News) – Israel will now offer a fourth dose of COVID-19 vaccine to a wider group of people as it struggles to control a wave of the highly contagious virus Omicron variant.

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said on Sunday the country would provide vaccines to people over 60 and medical staff, Reuters reported. This comes in addition to the second recall he approved last week for people with compromised immune systems and the elderly living in nursing homes.

“Israel will once again be the pioneer of the global immunization effort,” Bennett said at a televised press conference.

Prime Minister has indicated that the Director General of the Ministry of Health, Nachman Ash, will approve the enlargement wakeup call countryside.

Bennett described the second recall as an effort to prevent serious illness in the elderly.

“We now have a new layer of defense,” Bennett said.

About 60% of the 9.4 million Israelis are fully immunized either with their recent second dose or with the booster dose, mainly with the Pfizer vaccine. However, even with the fourth dose possible for some, hundreds of thousands of people eligible to receive their third dose did not.

Meanwhile, the Omicron variant caused a wave of infections around the world, with an average of 1 million cases per day between December 24 and December 30, according to Reuters The data. Deaths are not increasing as dramatically.

Bennett estimated that the number of cases in Israel would also reach record highs, with up to 50,000 people infected a day soon. The country could tighten test eligibility to cope with long lines at testing stations.

Ash said Omicron could push Israel for collective immunity, a point at which there is protection against viruses at the population level. This is achieved when a sufficient number of people have antibodies obtained either by vaccination or infection or both.

“The [infection] the numbers will have to be very high to achieve collective immunity, ”Ash said earlier, Reuters reported. “It’s possible, but we don’t want to reach it through infections, we want it to happen through immunization of many people.”

Collective immunity may not happen because the past two years have shown that some people infected with COVID-19 may experience re-infections later, said Salman Zarka, head of Israel’s Ministry of Health’s coronavirus task force.

Daily infections have quadrupled there over the past 10 days, Reuters reported, but daily severe cases increased at a slower rate from around 80 to 100.

More information

There is more on booster injections at US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

THE SOURCE: Reuters

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