SEOUL: South Korea’s health ministry on Wednesday (Apr 13) said it will administer a second COVID-19 vaccine booster shot for people aged 60 and older, as the country continues its battle against the Omicron coronavirus variant.
“The government plans to expand the fourth round of vaccination to those aged 60 and older,” Health Minister Kwon Deok-cheol told a meeting, adding the infection rate in the age group has continued to rise to stand above 20 per cent.
The country had previously begun providing second booster shots to high-risk groups, including those in nursing homes, as a surge in Omicron infections drove cases and deaths to record highs in recent months.
Further details of the plan will be unveiled at a news conference later in the day, Kwon said.
Tuesday’s government data showed 316,608 people have received the second booster shot so far, with around 33 million people – 64.2 per cent of the total population – having received the first booster shot.
South Korea reported 195,419 new coronavirus cases as of Tuesday midnight, bringing the country’s total tally to 15,830,644 infections and 20,034 deaths.
The health ministry also said it will announce any amendments to the current social distancing rules on Friday.