Persons aged 50 to 59 to be invited for COVID-19 booster shots from 4 Oct

·Editorial Team
·2 min read
A vial of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine at a COVID-19 vaccination centre in Singapore.
A vial of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine at a COVID-19 vaccination centre in Singapore. (PHOTO: Reuters)

SINGAPORE — Persons aged 50 to 59 years old who have completed their COVID-19 vaccination regimen at least six months ago will be progressively invited to receive their booster vaccine dose from 4 October.

The Ministry of Health (MOH) said in a media release on Friday (24 September) that an SMS with a personalised booking link will be sent to these persons' mobile numbers for them to book a new appointment.

These individuals may receive their booster dose at any vaccination centre, polyclinic, or participating Public Health Preparedness Clinic (PHPC).

Almost 91,500 seniors received booster dose

This comes after Singapore commenced its booster programme for persons aged 60 and above, as well as residents of aged care facilities, on 15 September. 

As of Thursday, almost 91,500 seniors have received their booster dose, with 56 per cent of seniors who have been invited to date for their booster dose have either booked an appointment or already received their booster dose.

The new invitation comes after recommendations from the Expert Committee on COVID-19 Vaccination (EC19V) for persons aged 50 to 59 years to receive a booster dose of the Pandemic Special Access Route mRNA. 

Those in the age group have a higher risk of underlying co-morbidities and a risk of severe illness as compared to younger people, said the MOH. 

As many would have completed the full regimen of their primary course of vaccination earlier in the year, their levels of protection could have decreased over time, it added.

"Get your booster or vaccination if you are an elderly, to get tested and stay home if you are unwell, continue home recovery if you are fully vaccinated and infected," said Health Minister Ong Ye Kung at Friday's virtual media conference by the multi-ministry COVID-19 taskforce.

Change in dosage for Moderna vaccine

Meanwhile, the expert committee has also reviewed the dosing for the Moderna vaccine used for boosting and recommended that a 50-microgram dosage is sufficient to boost immune response significantly. 

Thus, from Saturday, vaccination sites carrying the Moderna vaccine will begin administering the vaccine at a dosage of 50mcg for booster doses, as compared to the 100mcg dose used in the primary vaccination course. 

The 100mcg dose of the Moderna vaccine will continue to be used for the two-dose primary series vaccination regimen, and three-dose enhanced primary series for immunocompromised persons.

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