Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved

Second AstraZeneca jab after 8 weeks for those given first shot before 31 May?

The Vaccination Task Force is to examine the possibility of shortening the period between the administration of the first and the second dose of the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine from 12 to 8 weeks for those that were vaccinated before 31 May. Previously it was decided that people that were given their first shot of the AstraZeneca vaccine after 31 May will receive their second dose of the vaccine 8 weeks later. 

Now the Head of the Vaccination Task Force Dirk Ramaekers has told VRT News that “Reducing the waiting time (for the second jab) would be a logical measure. However, this certainly won’t be simple. We are doing all we can to ensure that this can be done.”

The fact those vaccinated with the AstraZeneca vaccine prior to 31 May have to wait 12 weeks rather that 8 weeks for their second dose of the vaccines means that a large number of people with underlying medical conditions are having to wait almost three months before they are fully immunised. Almost all of those currently being vaccinated (that have to wait 8 weeks for their second dose) are not from groups classed as being “at a high risk” either due to their age or due to them having and underlying medical conditions.

One of the reasons for taking the decision to set the interval between the first and second dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine at 12 weeks were fears that insufficient supplies of the vaccine would be available. However, with 862,400 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine expected during the first three weeks of July this is no longer an issue.


Top stories