Germany will provide COVID intensive injections in September | Coronavirus pandemic news

The Ministry of Health said that due to concerns about the spread of Delta variants, injections will be provided to the elderly and high-risk groups.

The Ministry of Health said that due to concerns about the spread of the Delta variant, Germany will begin to provide COVID booster injections in September and make it easier for children aged 12 to 17 to receive injections.

Health Minister Jens Spahn (Jens Spahn) and his 16 regional colleagues agreed after a meeting on Monday that the elderly and high-risk groups should receive booster injections, citing concerns about the “weakening or rapid decline in immune response” of certain groups. .

The Ministry of Health stated that mobile vaccination teams should be sent to nursing homes and nursing homes to provide residents with Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna booster injections, regardless of which vaccine they initially received.

Doctors will also be able to give booster injections to eligible people, including those with weakened immune systems.

A document issued by the Spahn Ministry of Health stated that “for preventive healthcare,” booster shots will also be provided to anyone who has received two doses of AstraZeneca or a single dose of Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson are both viral vector vaccines, and the new mRNA technology used by Pfizer and Moderna vaccines has shown high performance in research.

The ministers also agreed to provide a wider range of coronavirus vaccines to people over 12 years of age, a step further than the country’s STIKO vaccine regulatory agency.

Regulators currently only recommend that children between the ages of 12 and 17 be vaccinated against the coronavirus, provided they have a previous illness or live with people at high risk of COVID.

Although adolescents who do not fall into these categories are still allowed to be vaccinated, after consulting their parents and doctors, the prudent STIKO guidelines reduce people’s interest.

The German Minister of Health agreed on Monday to encourage young people to get vaccinated by opening all the country’s vaccination centers to teenagers between the ages of 12 and 17.

The ministers emphasized that the injections are voluntary, but said that vaccinating children and young people can “greatly help to safely return to the classroom after summer vacation.”

Although Germany’s current infection rate is relatively low compared to neighboring countries, the number of cases has been climbing in recent weeks, mainly because of the more contagious delta variant.

There are also concerns that the country’s vaccination rate is slowing down, with just over 52% of the population fully vaccinated.

Within the European Union, the European Medicines Agency has approved Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna injections for people over 12 years of age.

Thomas Mertens, the head of STIKO, told public radio station MDR that the agency is still waiting for data from long-term research before deciding to issue more general vaccine recommendations for people over 12 years of age.

He added that the problem “is not that children are vaccinated”.

To help curb the fourth wave of COVID in Germany, “the vaccination rate needs to be increased among 18 to 59-year-olds”.

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