400K people received coronavirus booster shot, says official

[25-01-2022 06:56 PM]

Ammon News -

Around 400,000 people have received the booster shot of the COVID-19 vaccine so far, said Adel Bilbeisi, health adviser at the prime minister's office and the official in charge of the COVID-19 crisis.

In a statement to the Jordan News Agency (Petra) Tuesday, Bilbeisi stressed the need to receive the third dose three months after the second shot, noting that it enhances immunity against the virus and its variants by 80 percent.

About 40 percent of the Kingdom's population over the age of 18 were given the vaccine, 70 percent of whom got the first jab, and 65 percent got the second, the COVID-19 pointman indicated.

Bilbeisi predicted an increase in the number of coronavirus infections over the next two weeks as the fourth wave of the respiratory disease continues, which saw a spread of the Delta and Omicron variants. He said the peak of this wave will hit during the first week of February.

On hospital admissions, he assured that coronavirus patients' admission and occupancy rate is "comforting," reaching about 30 percent. Death rate from the virus has significantly dropped, he underscored, as the national immunization campaign continues.

On easing COVID-19 restrictions, Bilbeisi stated that the government will introduce new measures after the end of the fourth wave.

Moreover, Bilbeisi pointed out that the vaccination campaign targeting students from the 7th to the 12th grade has administered the first shot to 2,900 students out of the 972,440 students who have registered for the vaccine. He urged parents to give consent to vaccinate their children, which plays a major role in the return to in-person education.

Bilbeisi said that the ministry decided to immunize children aged 5-11 years old, but it has not yet been implemented due to the need for special procedures and arrangements.

"There are no compelling reasons for a lockdown," assured Bilbeisi, underling that the Kingdom's health sector is going strong. He pointed out that each country makes its own decisions regarding easing or lifting restrictions based on its epidemiological situation and vaccination rates.

He reiterated the need to get the vaccinations for anyone about the age of 11, calling on the public to adhere to safety procedures and precautionary measures including wearing a face mask, and social distancing.

"Talk of the end of the pandemic following the spread of the Omicron variant is misinformed," Bilbeisi stressed, indicating that a virus that spreads quickly is unpredictable, especially as the vaccination rate is still below par.



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