The Israeli government continued Thursday to administer third doses of the anticovid vaccine to people aged 60 and over, despite the World Health Organization's [WHO] call for a moratorium on the practice.

At a time when Western countries are striving to vaccinate as many of their populations as possible with two doses against the coronavirus, Israel launched a campaign last Friday in favor of a third dose of vaccine, mainly from Pfizer / BioNtech laboratories, to people aged 60 and over.

President Isaac Herzog, opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu and Prime Minister Nafatli Bennett's mother received this third dose, a booster shot aimed at strengthening the immune system in the face of the spread of the Delta variant, which is more contagious than the others.

However, on Wednesday, the head of the World Health Organization [WHO], Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, called for a moratorium on the administration of these booster vaccines, in order to leave these doses available to countries that have not been able to. immunize only a tiny fraction of their population.

Continuation of booster dose administration

The Israeli government did not comment directly on the WHO request on Thursday, but signaled its intention to continue giving booster doses. “Those aged 60 and over who have not yet received a third dose are six times more likely to be seriously ill or even die,” said Nafatli Bennett. "I ask that in the next two to three weeks, by the time you get vaccinated and wait five days after your third dose, to take care of yourself," he added.

Since Sunday and the start of the recall campaign, more than 262,000 Israelis aged 60 and over, or 21% of that age group, have received a third dose, according to the latest data from the Ministry of Health.

And appointments have already been made for 381,000 people, according to the ministry.

"The elderly have a more developed sense of responsibility and at the same time they are really afraid of being seriously ill if they get an infection," Shoshana, a 75-year-old resident of Jerusalem told AFP on Thursday. and about to receive his booster shot.


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