A group of health workers prepare vaccine doses. / EFE

Coronavirus booster jabs approved for the over-40s in Spain

Some 80 per cent of those over 70 have received their third Covid-19 vaccination, as have 46 per cent of those aged over 60

EUROPA PRESS

Spain's Public Health Commission, in which the national Ministry of Health and the autonomous regions are represented, has endorsed the administration of a booster dose of a Covid-19 vaccine to people between 59 and 40 years old, starting with the oldest first.

The Ministry of Health has confirmed that this additional dose will be administered six months after the last jab with an mRNA vaccine, following the recommendations of the Vaccine Report working group.

The administration of booster doses to those under the age of 60 who received AstraZeneca jabs - mainly essential workers, such as teachers, firefighters and police officers - has also been approved. In these people, the booster dose will be given three months after the last dose.

Vulnerable groups

Meanwhile, the Public Health Commission has insisted that vaccinations should be prioritised for people who have not yet received any dose of a coronavirus vaccine and for booster doses in the most vulnerable groups, that is, those over 60 years old. In addition, it reminded that people of any age who received a dose of the Janssen vaccine should also receive a booster dose, as already laid out in the country’s Vaccination Strategy.

81 million doses

Spain's Minister of Health, Carolina Darias, reported yesterday at a press conference, that more than 81 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines have already been administered, and the coverage with the complete guideline is 89.6 per cent for the target population, over 11 years of age.

Regarding booster doses, 80 per cent of those over 70 have received their third vaccination, as have 46 per cent of those over 60.

Rise in infections

The measure to vaccinate everyone over 40 is in line with what was demanded by the president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, a few weeks ago to stop the rise in infections throughout Europe.

Several studies have pointed out that two doses of a coronavirus vaccine may not be sufficient to effectively protect the population against the new Omicron variant.