Thursday, February 29, 2024

AstraZeneca is vaccine to be used for seniors’ booster shots against COVID

People aged 60 and over will be given AstraZeneca COVID-19 booster shots regardless of the vaccine with which they were first inoculated, Deputy Health Minister Hugo López-Gatell said Tuesday.

Speaking at President López Obrador’s regular news conference, the coronavirus czar said that seniors must have been vaccinated before June to be eligible for a booster shot. The vast majority of seniors were vaccinated before the start of that month, he said.

People aged 60 or over who were vaccinated more recently will have to wait for six months after their second dose before they can receive an additional shot, López-Gatell said.

The rollout of booster shots begins Tuesday in Mexico City, Jalisco, Chiapas, Oaxaca, Sinaloa and Yucatán. In the capital, seniors who live in the southern borough of Tlalpan will be the first to get a third shot.

López Obrador, who had COVID in January, and other federal officials aged 60 and over received their boosters at the president’s news conference, held in Zapopan, Jalisco.

Seniors are not required to register for a third shot, as was the case with their initial vaccination. They simply have to go to a vaccination center and show official identification to prove their age, López-Gatell said.

Authorities will announce the location of the vaccination centers and the dates on which they will be offering booster shots on a state by state basis.

Teachers, who were among the first Mexicans to be vaccinated, will also be offered booster shots after they have been made available to seniors. Most teachers were vaccinated with the single-shot CanSino vaccine.

Meanwhile, Mexico’s accumulated coronavirus case tally currently stands at just over 3.9 million after 752 new infections were reported Monday. The country’s first case of the highly mutated omicron variant was detected last Friday but no additional cases have been reported.

The Health Ministry reported 110 additional COVID-19 fatalities on Monday, lifting the official death toll to 295,313.

With reports from El Economista 

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