CORONAVIRUS/Taiwan to expand rollout of new Moderna vaccine on Oct. 11

10/05/2022 05:39 PM
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CNA file photo
CNA file photo

Taipei, Oct. 5 (CNA) Taiwan will begin offering Moderna's second-generation Spikevax COVID-19 vaccine to adults between the ages of 18 and 49 on Oct. 11, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said Wednesday.

According to CECC head Victor Wang (王必勝), the Omicron subvariants BA. 4 and BA. 5 still account for most of the infections in Taiwan, and given that younger adults are more prone to them, the CECC decided to make the newer vaccines available to those above the age of 18.

At present, the Spikevax vaccine is available in Taiwan to individuals 50 and over.

The new vaccine is available only as a booster shot and should be taken at least 12 weeks after an individual's previous shot -- whether the last primary dose (second shot) or a first or second booster -- Taiwan's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) said.

Inoculated individuals who have already contracted the virus should wait three months after testing negative to receive the booster, the CECC said.

The new rollout will be the third phase of the government's plan to make the second-gen booster to people in Taiwan.

The first rollout on Sept. 24 made the vaccine available for people aged 65 and over, residents of long-term care facilities, and adults 18 and above who are immunocompromised or have a weak immune system.

The second rollout, initiated Oct. 3, made the booster vaccine available to frontline medical workers, airport personnel and flight crews, home quarantine-related professionals, individuals aged 50-64, as well as those 18 and above who need to travel abroad for work or diplomatic reasons.

(By Chen Chieh-ling and James Lo)

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