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Covid: Spain considers need for a third jab. Possibility of booster and annual shot

Jack Troughton | July 23, 2021
Minister Health Carolina Darias

SPANISH Health Minister Carolina Darias predicted today that people would need a third Covid-19 vaccine shot – and annual boosters.

Interviewed on the Onda Cero radio network, she said another jab would counter the chance of new variants of coronavirus reducing the protection of existing immunisation.

“Everything appears to point to the fact we will have to administer a third dose,” said the minister – what was to be determined was a timetable.

And asked if the Spanish population would need an annual shot, she replied “Yes, without a doubt,” but added the current target was to vaccinate until the whole population was protected.

Regulatory medical bodies – the European Medicines Agency and the Food and Drug Administration in the USA – believe all vaccines used in Spain offer protection against all variants; a position backed by current research.

During the fifth wave of the pandemic in Spain, 83% of those infected had not received a vaccine – 11.4% had received a single shot and just 5.5% were fully protected. People who have been vaccinated can still contract the disease but is usually in a milder form or they remain asymptomatic.

A spokesperson for the government’s health department maintains the minister was talking about “a possibility” of a third dose and said Spain “was prepared”; but any decision would be taken based on “the scientific evidence”.