In Major Change, EU Says Vaccine Recalls Should Be Considered For All Adults, Health News, ET HealthWorld

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The head of the European Union’s public health agency, Andrea Ammon, said on Wednesday that Covid-19 vaccine boosters should be considered for all adults, with priority for those over 40 , in a major change in the orientations of the agency.

Recommendations issued by the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) are not binding on EU governments but are used to make health policy decisions.

“Booster doses should be considered for all adults with priority given to those over 40,” Ammon said in a recorded statement, noting that the booster should be given at least six months after the end of the schedule. primary vaccination.

In its previous guidelines released in September alongside the European Medicines Agency (EMA), the ECDC said there was no urgent need for booster doses to fully vaccinated individuals in the general population, but suggested that additional doses should be considered for people with weakened immune systems and could be used as a precaution for the frail elderly.

“The available evidence from Israel and the UK shows a significant increase in protection against serious infection and disease after a booster dose in all age groups in the short term,” ECDC said in a report released Wednesday.

He advised giving reminders to all adults as a priority “over 40s”.

Ammon said the boosters would increase protection against infections caused by declining immunity and “could potentially reduce transmission in the population and prevent additional hospitalizations and deaths.”

She advised countries with low immunization levels to speed up their roll-out and warned of the high risks of a further increase in the number of deaths and hospitalizations in Europe in December and January if the recommended measures are not taken. were not introduced.

The European Commission should heed the advice on boosters when proposing changes to the use of Covid-19 certificates later this week, officials said.

Many EU countries have already started giving booster doses to their populations, but use different criteria to select priority groups and use different intervals between primary vaccinations and boosters.

Austria, which reintroduced a lockdown this week amid a spike in cases, has decided to give boosters after four months, while in Italy the extra dose can be given after five months.

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