Wednesday, July 24, 2024

MOHW urges people to get second COVID-19 booster: no more Pfizer doses after May


It will be almost a month since the government lifted COVID-19 restrictions within Belize. Despite the move, the vaccination campaign to immunize as many people as possible continues. With the virus still a public health concern worldwide, on Thursday, April 28th, the Ministry of Health and Wellness (MOHW) sent out a message encouraging people to obtain their second COVID-19 booster against the disease that remains a threat to the most vulnerable. The ministry also announced that doses of the Pfizer vaccines will no longer be available at the vaccination sites after May.

The ministry invited health care workers, persons 60 years and older, and persons with chronic illnesses to visit their nearest vaccination site for a second booster. The booster shot is administered after the two initial vaccines. Then, four months later, the second booster is recommended to better fight the virus infection. Of importance to know is that the vaccines and boosters do not prevent getting ill with COVID-19. However, it strengthens the immune system to better deal with the virus.

The booster shot

According to MOHW, boosters have been shown to increase the immune response to COVID-19. Data shows that fewer infections, hospitalizations, and deaths are seen among vaccinated persons than those who are unvaccinated. Considering that all operations are returning to normalcy, the Government of Belize finds it imperative that eligible persons are vaccinated.

No more Pfizer vaccines after May

MOHW noted that beyond the end of May 2022, the Pfizer vaccine will no longer be available until further notice. The only doses available at the vaccination centers will be the Johnson and Johnson. The other vaccine that is no longer administered is the AstraZeneca, which was the first type of vaccine used, and as of February 1st, there were no more doses available. The other depleted vaccine was a Chinese type called Sinopharm.

As the cases of COVID-19 continue in low numbers, the vaccination campaign continues. In San Pedro Town, the doses are available at the Dr. Otto Rodriguez San Pedro Polyclinic II, Monday to Thursday 1:30-3PM and on Friday from 8AM to 2PM. The government encourages frequent hand washing and physical distancing to prevent the spread of the virus still infecting people.


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