COVID-19 Omicron variant: UAE residents' guide to getting vaccine booster shots

Health ministry has stressed the importance of getting booster shots

  
A vial and a syringe are seen in front of a displayed stock graph and words "Omicron SARS-CoV-2" in this illustration taken, November 27, 2021.

A vial and a syringe are seen in front of a displayed stock graph and words "Omicron SARS-CoV-2" in this illustration taken, November 27, 2021.

REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

UAE - The Omicron variant of Covid-19 is spreading around the world, with the UAE detecting its first case on Wednesday in a fully vaccinated woman.

With the new variant affecting even those inoculated with two doses, the Ministry of Health and Prevention has stressed the importance of getting booster shots.

The UAE recently announced the availability of booster shots of Pfizer-BioNTech and Sputnik vaccines.

Here is all you need to know about getting the booster jabs in the UAE:

Q. Are booster shots of Covid-19 vaccine free?

A. Yes, like every Covid-19 vaccine dose in the UAE, booster doses are free.

Q. Who can get a Covid-19 booster dose?

Fully vaccinated residents aged over 18 can get the additional jab six months after the second dose of Pfizer, Sinopharm or Sputnik vaccines.

Q. How can one get a booster shot?

Residents will need to get appointments via the Ministry of Health and Prevention or Dubai Health Authority to get the jabs.

Q. Who must get booster shots?

Every UAE resident aged 18 and over must get the booster shot for added protection against Covid-19 and its variants. It is especially important for the elderly and those with chronic diseases.

Q. Since booster shots are not variant-specific, how do they protect against new strains?

A. According to top American infectious diseases specialist Anthony Fauci, “when you get a high enough level of an immune response, you get spillover protection”. And multiple studies have shown that taking the booster shot increases immunity.

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