Israel is offering a Covid-19 booster jab to anyone who is fully jabbed including children as young as 12 years old.
It was announced on Sunday that everyone over the age of twelve will be offered a third covid vaccine, after Prime Minister Naftali Bennett declared that all citizens must receive a third jab to be ‘fully vaccinated’.
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In a statement, Bennett said: ‘We have to complete third doses for all of our citizens. I call on those aged 12 and up to go out and immediately take the third shot’.
The Mail Online reports: The announcement came following the success of the country’s booster jab campaign which launched one month ago among seniors.
Bennett said a third jab slowed a rise in severe illness caused by the Delta variant among the elderly, prompting the decision to make a third jab available for the wider population.
‘The third dose of the vaccine works,’ he said, declaring that ‘the increase in severe morbidity has begun to slow’ following the booster campaign.
But the decision has drawn criticism from the the World Health Organization (WHO), which insists poorer countries should gain wider access to vaccines before wealthy ones offer booster shots.
Bennett has pressed ahead with the booster scheme as Israel’s daily infection tallies have regularly exceeded 8,000 in recent weeks, in a country with just 9.3 million people.
7,000 new cases were registered on Sunday, as Israel passed the one million cases threshold since the pandemic began.
Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz said there was no doubt that a booster shot was ‘effective in preventing infection, and it significantly reduces the risk of serious and fatal illnesses’.
So far 2 million people out of the population of 9.3 million have received three doses, with Israel’s coronavirus death toll standing at 6,950.
‘The third dose brings us to the level of protection achieved by the second dose, when it was fresh,’ said Sharon Alroy-Preis, head of public health at Israel’s Health Ministry.
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