Denmark to affords fourth COVID-19 shot to some

COPENHAGEN, Denmark — A fourth COVID-19 vaccine dose shall be supplied to nursing house residents and folks age 50 and over in Denmark later this yr, the prime minister mentioned Wednesday.

The rationale for the transfer is an increase in instances of the BA.5 coronavirus variant in Europe, and Denmark’s authorities says it desires to maneuver swiftly to keep away from potential restrictions or a lockdown.

“The an infection has been on the rise for the previous three weeks,” Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen mentioned. “That’s the reason we’re performing now.”

She added that the swift transfer was geared toward taking good care of older individuals and the susceptible and to keep away from the congestion of hospitals, shutdowns and restrictions and to maintain the economic system going.

Final week, the BA.5 variant accounted for 59% of the optimistic instances whereas the earlier week it represented 32% of the instances, Well being Minister Magnus Heunicke mentioned. As of Wednesday, 1,958 instances had been reported in Denmark and 249 individuals had been hospitalized.

“These are staggering numbers, however they’re low numbers in comparison with what we’ve got tried earlier than,” mentioned Heunicke, including that whereas the variant is extra contagious, it does not trigger extra severe sickness.

The shot will first be given to these residing in nursing houses beginning Sept. 15 after which these over 50 from Oct. 1. Weak individuals can also get a vaccine by contacting their basic practitioner, mentioned the pinnacle of the Danish Well being Authority, Søren Brostrøm. Nursing house workers can even be supplied a fourth shot.

Frederiksen mentioned it’s the Danish health authorities’ evaluation that 2.5 million individuals could be supplied revaccination throughout the fall.

She added that with the data Denmark has now, “we don’t see an autumn and a winter with main restrictions and closures.”

“All we do now’s to keep away from the shutdowns,” Heunicke mentioned.

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Comply with AP’s protection of the coronavirus pandemic at https://apnews.com/hub/covid-19-pandemic

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