Covid-19 vaccine booking opens to all adults in all but one Swedish region

It is now possible for all over-18s to book their Covid-19 vaccination in every Swedish region except one.

Covid-19 vaccine booking opens to all adults in all but one Swedish region
A dose of the Pfizer vaccine being prepared. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

The Uppsala region is currently only open to people aged over 23, but as of Friday Sweden’s other 20 healthcare regions had all opened booking for adults over 18. In order to be eligible, you must have already turned 18.

The regions have managed the booking themselves dependent on vaccine availability and uptake as well as regional demographics, so Norrbotten and Sörmland for example opened booking to all adults some weeks ago.

Representatives for the Uppsala region told TT that it too expects to open to all adults at some point this week. Uppsala officials said that the region has been opening its vaccine booking slots frequently but to very limited age groups at a time, so as not to overload the booking system.

Across the whole country, 5,523,876 people have received at least the first dose of a Covid-19 vaccine, according to the most recent update from the Public Health Agency on Friday. That’s equivalent to just over two thirds (67.4 percent) of the adult population, while 3,562,731 have received two doses.

Currently the vaccines being used in Sweden require two doses and are only being given to over-18s, but the country plans to roll out the vaccine to over-16s as well as over-12s who belong to a Covid-19 risk group once all adults have been offered the jab.

Meanwhile, adults in a Covid-19 risk group may be offered a third dose as early as the autumn, according to comments from state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell.

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Sweden opens up fourth dose of Covid-19 vaccine for over-80s

Sweden's Public Health Agency is now recommending a fourth vaccine dose for care home residents, recipients of at-home care, and over 80s, to be given at least four months after dose three.

Sweden opens up fourth dose of Covid-19 vaccine for over-80s

Despite recently removing almost all Covid-19-related restrictions, the pandemic is still ongoing in Sweden, with the Public Health Agency describing the spread of infection in a press release as “intensive”.

There has also been an increase in the number of cases in groups of the population with an increased risk for serious illness, such as care home residents. 

In addition to this, the immune system’s ability to react to vaccinations and build up long-term protection against the virus becomes less effective with age.

In response to this, the Public Health Agency is now recommending that Swedish regions offer a second booster dose – representing a fourth dose of the Covid-19 vaccine – to the following at-risk groups:

  • care home residents
  • recipients of at-home care
  • over 80s

Regions will be able to offer the dose four months after the first booster dose (dose three), at the earliest, starting from next week.

“A booster dose strengthens protection against the virus,” said state epidemiologist Anders Tegnell in a statement. “Therefore, we believe that people aged 80 and over will benefit from a second booster dose.”

First booster doses are available for over-18s in all Swedish regions. If you have not had yours yet and want to know how to book in your region, see The Local’s guide HERE.