The Ministry of Health will allow the 4th dose of vaccination during the following week. Health Minister Vlastimil Válek (TOP 09) said this on Thursday after a government meeting. The ministry plans to present the details next week. However, the fact that at-risk groups over 60 with associated diseases will be allowed to be vaccinated does not mean they should go for it immediately.
According to Deputy Health Minister Josef Pavlovic (Pirates), the recommendation that people should have their fourth dose in late August or early autumn still stands.
“The ministry recommends taking advantage of this offer only in the second half of August unless you fall into some high-risk group that the omicron itself would threaten,” the deputy explained.
The idea, he said, is to ensure that the protective effect of the vaccination is as strong as possible during the cold autumn and winter months when a more incredible onslaught of the virus on health is expected. People should therefore consult their doctor.
The 4th dose can be obtained first at vaccination sites without registration. Later, at GP practices, they must order the vaccines. The ministry plans to launch a booking system for other vaccination sites at the end of August.
The ministry says there are 356 vaccination sites and 56 non-registration sites, usually hospitals. The third dose is available to 4.2 million of the country’s 10.5 million population. 6.9 million citizens have had the basic vaccination.
The minister also reiterated Thursday that he does not plan to introduce anti-vaccine restrictions or mandate the wearing of respirators or masks. He did, however, recommend them for at-risk groups on public transport and in health or social care facilities. The ministry is banking on deliberation and “citizen intelligence.”
In a week, the summer wave will be at its peak
This week, laboratories report around two thousand newly infected people daily. This is not yet reflected in the hospitals. On Tuesday, the number of hospital admissions approached 400, but the number of patients in critical condition did not rise.
“So far, we don’t see the spread of the summer wave having any dramatic health impact. The vast majority of those infected have had asymptomatic or mild courses. Super severe infections, where patients end up in the ICU, are now rather rare,” Ladislav Dušek, director of the Institute of Health Information and Statistics (IHIS), reassured.
He said the summer wave of COVID is approaching its peak, which he expects to be in a week to ten days.