UAE approves Pfizer, Sputnik booster shots for over-60s

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The UAE health sector plays a fundamental role in strengthening the national response to the COVID-19 pandemic and stemming its consequences…reports Asian Lite News

The Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHAP) has launched a protocol for providing booster shots of the Pfizer-BioNTech and Sputnik V vaccines approved for emergency use, as part of the national vaccination campaign efforts, announced Dr. Noura Al Ghaithi, Official Spokesperson of the UAE Health Sector.

During the UAE Government media briefing on the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr. Al Ghaithi said that the UAE health sector plays a fundamental role in strengthening the national response to the COVID-19 pandemic and stemming its consequences.

“We are proud of this proactive approach and of being one of the first countries to turn the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic into opportunities and benefit from all the experiences we have gone through to become a global model,” Dr. Al Ghaithi added.

The health sector has invested in its R&D potential and capabilities to realise the goals we’ve have achieved today, most notably safe vaccines in addition to the efficient treatment protocol in our hospitals, she continued.

“The health sector is continuing to achieve acquired immunity by providing COVID-19 vaccines to eligible people. Nearly 94.78 percent of the population have taken their first vaccine dose, while 84.3 percent are now fully vaccinated.”

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Dr. Al Ghaithi explained that the groups that should take the booster dose are senior citizens; residents above 60 years; people with chronic diseases; individuals at risk of complications from 50 to 59 years old, and people receiving long-term health care aged 18 and above.

Al Ghaithi said the protocol does not apply to the groups who have received Pfizer-BioNTech or Sputnik V booster doses after being fully vaccinated with Sinopharm.

“We recommend individuals who are eligible for the booster shot be sure to take this dose on time, to protect their health and ensure safety from COVID-19 by boosting their immunity,” she added. “The UAE has achieved a leading position, both regionally and globally, in terms of how it handled the pandemic, due to the cooperation of various sectors that helped achieve strategic balance and sustainable recovery.”

She further added that these impressive successes have been achieved thanks to the forward-looking vision of the wise leadership and the commitment and awareness of the UAE community, which will help restore normalcy soon.

At the end of the briefing, Dr. Al Ghaithi highlighted the need for social cohesion at this current stage to maintain all the gains achieved. “The phased removal of restrictions we are witnessing now requires all of us to share social responsibility to ensure public health and safety, contain the pandemic, and move towards a brighter future,” she said, in conclusion.