Denmark has joined other European nations in offering a third COVID-19 vaccination shot to everyone over the age of 18 amid a rise in coronavirus cases.
The Danish Health Authority said Thursday the decline in immunity is also happening for people in the younger age groups.
Helene Probst, deputy head of the government agency, said revaccination is offered at the same interval to everyone over 18 years of age.
Denmark, like many other countries in Europe, has seen an uptick in infections, with health authorities saying the numbers of cases and hospitalizations have risen faster than expected.
Frequently Asked Questions
A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.
There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.
Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.
When we see the epidemic flare up right now, it is primarily due to the transition from summer to autumn and winter, and at the same time we have an open society with only a few restrictions. Combined with the fact that the effect of the vaccines decreases over time, it is expected that the infection will increase, Probst said in a statement.
In Denmark, which already has offered booster shots to older people and the vulnerable, the third jab will now be offered to people six months after the second shot. Vaccination in the Scandinavian country is voluntary.
According to official figures, 88.4% in Denmark has gotten the first shot while 86.4% has been given the second jab.
Sweden recommended Wednesday that everyone between the ages of 18 and 65 should get a booster shot against COVID-19 six months after having received the second jab.On Wednesday, the Danish government said it would seek support in parliament to reintroduce mandates for wearing face masks in public places and expand the use of the countrys COVID-19 digital pass. Health Minister Magnus Heunicke said that the delta variant is far more contagious, and that challenges us.