Booster dose eligibility now 50: Health minister


Dhaka, Jan 17: The government has lowered the age limit for receiving the Covid booster dose up to 50, said Health Minister Zahid Maleque on Monday.

“We’ve enough vaccines in stock compared to our population,” the minister said while talking to reporters at the secretariat.

So far, he said, seven lakh booster doses have been administered in Bangladesh.

“In last 15 days, the positivity rate increased to 18 per cent and it’ll reach 30 per cent by a month and a half. If such a rate continues, there’ll be no seat available in any hospital.”

The minister said the government is worried about the current Covid situation. “So, everyone must wear a mask and follow the health protocols.”

He warned that the situation will worsen if people move recklessly without masks.

“The 11-point restriction of the government has to be followed. Otherwise, the Omicron cases will increase further,” he added.

Earlier, the minister had a meeting with the Russian Ambassador to Bangladesh.

In this regard, the minister said there was an agreement with Russia on vaccine procurement but the country has not received those yet.

They want to provide their Covid vaccine, ‘Sputnik Light’. “But we asked them to send vaccines as per the agreement first.”

On December 28 last year, Bangladesh officially began administering booster doses of a Covid-19 vaccine but “on a limited scale”. Initially, citizens, aged above 60, received the booster dose of the Pfizer vaccine.

On January 12, Directorate General of Health Services’ (DGHS) instructed to administer Moderna vaccine instead of the Pfizer jab as the third or booster dose at all vaccine centres across the country.