Home / News / India /  Covid booster dose for 18+ population to be available from Sunday

All adults above the age of 18 will be able to get precautionary Covid-19 vaccine doses at private healthcare centres from 10 April, said the ministry of health in a statement on Friday. 

“All those who are more than 18 years of age and have completed nine months after the administration of the second dose, would be eligible for precaution dose. This facility would be available in all private vaccination centres," said the ministry. 

“The ongoing free vaccination programme through government vaccination centres for the first and second dose to the eligible population as well as precaution dose to healthcare workers, frontline workers and 60+ population would continue and would be accelerated," it added. 

Further, the ministry informed that around 96% of the 15+ population in the country have received at least one Covid-19 vaccine dose so far, while about 83% of the 15+ population has received both doses. 

More than 2.4 crore precaution doses have also been administered to healthcare workers, frontline workers and the 60+ population group. Nearly 45% of the 12 to 14 years age group have also received the first dose.

Following the announcement, the Serum Institute of India (SII) stated that booster shots of its vaccine Covishield will be available at the price of 600 for end-users. Hospitals will get it at a discounted price. 

India had started the administration of precaution doses for everyone above 60 years of age on 16 March. Earlier precaution dose was allowed only for HCWs, FLWs and those above 60 years of age with comorbidities issues.

The move to universalise comes as experts have stated that booster doses are a necessity.

“All individuals above 15 years of age should be made eligible for a booster dose. There are some international studies that show that even if one is fully vaccinated, after 5-6 months, the antibodies tend to reduce. Booster doses are meant for greater prevention and to reduce the risk of hospitalization and death. A booster dose gives 95% protection against infections and hospitalization, and 98% protection against death," Dr Sanjeev Bagai, chairman of Nephron clinics, had said last month. 



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