Illustrative image Image Credit: AP

Abu Dhabi: Residents vaccinated against COVID-19 can get a booster vaccine shot six months after receiving the second dose, while those with chronic diseases can get the booster shot three months after the second dose.

The booster vaccine policy was announced by the National Emergency, Crisis and Disaster Management Authority during its weekly media briefing on Tuesday.

UAE residents will be able to get the booster shot six months after they receive their second dose, with priority given to senior citizens and those with chronic diseases, said Dr. Noura Al Ghaithi, acting CEO of external therapeutic services at Abu Dhabi Health Services Company (SEHA).

She confirmed that the extra jab would further boost one’s immunity and produce antibodies that can help ward off the virus.

The authority urged residents to get fully vaccinated and obtain international health insurance against COVID-19 before traveling abroad. Travellers are also urged to abide by all precautionary measures even if not applied in the countries they are traveling to.

Emiratis abroad need to register in the “Twajudi” service at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.

Dr. Al Ghaithi said the UAE is keen on following up on its citizens in other countries. “A taskforce was formed in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and representatives of local health authorities to keep following Emiratis infected with coronavirus abroad.”

The UAE is among the first countries that received the revolutionary Sotrovimab treatment, which has proven to be most effective with high-risk patients or the ones with underlying conditions such as blood pressure, diabetes, and immune deficiency diseases, she said.

Dr. Al Ghaith reiterated the need to adhere to infection-related health protocols and contact health authorities at the earliest to ensure that coronavirus patients receive early treatment that helps speed up the recovery process.