Laos to provide booster COVID-19 vaccinations for medical staff

2021-11-09 04:35:56 GMT2021-11-09 12:35:56(Beijing Time) Xinhua English

VIENTIANE, Nov. 9 (Xinhua) -- Lao Ministry of Health will provide booster COVID-19 vaccinations for medical staff to make them better protected amid the battle against the virus.

The third round of vaccinations is expected to be rolled out in January and February 2022, with at least 70,000 doses to be administered to medical staff, local daily Vientiane Times reported Tuesday, quoting Deputy Director of the National Center for Maternal and Child Health Viengkhan Phixay.

Medical staff working on the frontline to control the virus outbreak are at the highest risk because they work in close proximity to people infected with COVID-19 on a daily basis, the official said.

Even though they wear personal protective equipment, some staff still pick up the virus.

"Doctors and nurses must be our priority for booster shots. This is because they are directly involved in the care of COVID-19 patients," she said.

In recent days, the number of new COVID-19 cases has been around 1,000 each day. If medical staff become unwell, efforts to combat the virus will weaken, including patient treatment, so it is essential they are given a third dose of COVID-9 vaccine to boost their immunity to the virus.

Booster vaccinations will also help to reduce the overall rate of infection over time. If people do contract COVID-19 after being vaccinated, they are much less likely to become seriously ill.

Elderly people, people with a chronic illness, government personnel, soldiers, police and others considered to be at risk of infection will also be given first consideration when booster vaccinations become available.

Booster shots are seen as another step on the road to enable the government to reopen the country.

Viengkhan urged people who have not yet been vaccinated to find the nearest source of vaccine and request an injection as soon as possible.

COVID-19 vaccines have been distributed throughout the country and are available at provincial and district hospitals and healthcare centers.

So far, 3,385,146 people have received their first jabs, while 2,884,907 people have two doses, according to the National Taskforce Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control. Enditem