Ministry issues new guidance on additional dose of COVID-19 vaccine

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A mobile COVID-19 vaccination unit of Đồng Tâm Ward, Hai Bà Trưng District, Hà Nội City came directly to households with elderly unable to leave their homes to get shots. — VNA/VNS Photo Minh Quyết

HÀ NỘI — People who have had primary vaccine doses of the Vero Cell COVID-19 vaccine produced by China’s Sinopharm can receive AstraZeneca, Sinopharm’s Vero Cell, Pfizer or Moderna for the additional dose, according to the latest guidance from the Ministry of Health.

The urgent guidance was sent to provincial and municipal departments of health and other organisations.

Based on the ministry’s advisory council on vaccines, the ministry said that people should have the same primary doses and additional dose of the vaccine.

But depending on available vaccine resources in localities and to proactively prevent the risk of SARS-CoV-2 variants, people who have received the primary doses of Vero Cell can have the additional dose of Pfizer, Moderna or AstraZeneca.

The ministry’s Central Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology has requested local departments of health have suitable vaccination plans and conduct them safely and punctually.

On January 7, the Ministry of Health also announced the issuance of new physical certificate of COVID-19 vaccination, including three items – three primary doses, one additional and three booster doses – for a total of seven vaccine shots in all.

The issuance of the new certificate is based on changes in the recommendations for injections of additional doses and booster doses around the world.

In Việt Nam, most people would receive three doses of COVID-19 vaccines including two primary shots and one booster shot, according to Dr. Nguyễn Xuân Tùng, head of the Immunisation Management and Biosafety Department under the Preventive Medicine Department.

Immunocompromised patients would be given one additional dose before the booster.

The remaining doses of vaccine listed on the certificate of COVID-19 vaccination will be used for foreigners coming from countries that have received more than one booster dose, as well as preparation for other recommendations of WHO on vaccination in the future, Tùng said.

This certification will facilitate the vaccinated person and vaccination agencies in determining the type of vaccine to be administered for booster and additional shots, he added. — VNS

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