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Belgium to extend coronavirus vaccine boosters to all

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Belgium intends to roll out COVID-19 vaccine third jabs for all citizens, a government minister said Wednesday.

During an inter-ministerial conference on public health, minsters agreed to develop a “global vision” on third shots, tweeted Wouter Beke, minister of health and family.

Details of the booster program will be ironed out at a meeting on November 27, he said, to “give vaccination centers the clarity they demand.”

Like many EU countries, Belgium is currently offering third doses to people aged over 65, those working in health and social care and people who have weaker immune systems.

Additionally, Belgium will immediately start offering a second dose to people who have had the Johnson & Johnson single-shot vaccine.

Ministers adopted the advice of the Superior Health Council (SHC) which on Tuesday recommend an extra dose — of either the BioNTech/Pfizer or Moderna vaccine — at least two months after people received the J&J vaccine, reports De Standaard.

Belgium is the latest country in Europe to turn to widespread boosters as the country is engulfed by a fourth wave in the pandemic. Countries including Greece, Lithuania and Hungary are already offering a third dose to all adults.

French President Emmanuel Macron announced Tuesday that people aged 65 and over would need to get booster shots to keep their vaccine passports, which are required to enter restaurants, cafés and theaters. People aged 50 to 64 would be able to get boosters from early December, Macron said in a televised address.

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