Australia cuts booster dose time gap to 5 months

In response to worries about the omicron variant’s increasing dissemination, Australia added the Moderna Inc. Covid-19 vaccine to Pfizer Inc.’s list of recommended booster shots and shortened the waiting period.

Following the first two doses, Australia is reducing the customary waiting time for a booster shot from six to five months. The Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunization gave its clearance, according to a statement released by the health department on Sunday.

“Given the potential of continuous transmission of both omicron and delta variants, ATAGI has also modified its advice and advises booster doses starting five months after completion of the first course,” the government said.

After being cleared for administration at the five-month mark, an extra 1.5 million Australians are now eligible to receive their Covid-19 booster doses.

To ensure stronger protection against the virus, a booster dosage was initially recommended to be given six months following a second dose of the Covid-19 vaccine.

For the first time in six days, the rate of new cases in Australia’s most populated state, New South Wales, has slowed. The state reported 485 new infections on Sunday, down from 560 on Saturday. The state of Victoria reported 1,069 new cases, down from 1,193.

More than 670,000 Australians have already got more than two doses of vaccination, according to the health department. According to the Herald Sun newspaper, 1.5 million people would be eligible for a booster starting Sunday as a result of the initiative to minimise waiting periods.

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