Sweden rolls out Covid-19 booster shot to over-65s

Sweden rolls out Covid-19 booster shot to over-65s
Health Minister Lena Hallengren and Public Health Agency director-general Johan Carlson at a previous press conference. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT
Sweden will offer a third Covid-19 vaccine dose to everyone over the age of 65 – and in due course the booster shot will be offered to all adults, said Swedish health officials.

Health Minister Lena Hallengren and Public Health Agency director-general Johan Carlson announced the news at a press conference on Wednesday afternoon.

Nursing home residents, those with at-home care, and all over 80 years old were previously eligible for a third dose, and the new decision means it will now be rolled out to all over-65s.

People who work in elderly care will also be offered the booster shot.

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No exact starting date was announced at the press conference, but the third vaccine dose should be taken six months after the second dose at the earliest, said Hallengren.

This means that around 1.5 million Swedes will soon be able to get a booster shot, reports the TT newswire, but eventually the third dose will be offered to everyone aged over 16, said Carlson. He said it would be rolled out in steps during winter and spring.

The Public Health Agency recommends that the third dose should be one of the mRNA vaccines, regardless of which vaccine was administered as the first or second dose. This means that someone who has already been given two doses of AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine Vaxzevria will get Pfizer/Biontech’s Comirnaty vaccine or half a dose of Moderna’s Spikevax as their third dose.

It will be up to Sweden’s 21 regions to decide how to organise their vaccination programmes, so exactly when you can get vaccinated and how to book your third dose will depend on where in Sweden you live. The best way to keep up to date is to check your regional page on the 1177.se healthcare website (click “välj region” in the top menu to choose your region).

Member comments

  1. Useless giving a third shot two years in. Virus mutation is significant, adapt towards dominating strains. Choose three at the time of development start. Vaccinate against the one that dominates after regulatory affairs are done. This stuff is no rocket science. It is like running your computer on windows xp.

      1. mRNA vaccines encode for a protein. In all approved mRNA vaccines it is the original sequence. The Virus has mutated a dozen times and evades immune responses against earlier strains. Ergo, useless after two years. Look for the recent lancet study, where they have done longitudinal studies. Delta already evades significantly. Wait for your Winter strain to hit. Need more information? Happy to provide more for you who lacks understanding.

        1. The spike protein, how the virus integrates in to a cell, is the part that matters. That hasn’t changed all that much and so there isn’t much in the way of changes to be made. Plus, not every variant affects those.

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