Bivalent Pfizer vaccine available to all aged 12 and above
From Dec 12, those aged 12 and above can get the bivalent Pfizer-BioNTech/Comirnaty Covid-19 vaccine to enhance their protection against the Omicron variants of the coronavirus.
Those who are eligible will progressively receive a text message with a personalised booking link to make an appointment.
Those who have already booked an appointment to get the monovalent version of the jab can reschedule it to a date on or after Dec 12 to receive the updated bivalent version.
“We seek your patience and understanding that the SMS may take a couple of weeks to reach everyone,” the Ministry of Health (MOH) said in a statement on Tuesday.
This latest move comes after a recommendation by the Expert Committee on Covid-19 Vaccination (EC19V) to switch from the monovalent version of the jab to the bivalent one for primary and booster vaccination for those aged 12 years and above.
The bivalent Moderna/Spikevax vaccine continues to be available to those aged 18 years and above, MOH said.
The ministry on Tuesday also accepted the EC19V’s recommendation that the Pfizer-BioNTech/Comirnaty vaccine may be used as the primary Covid-19 vaccination for children aged six months to four years as an alternative to the Moderna/Spikevax vaccine.
More details on the rollout for this younger age group will be announced at a later date.
Said MOH: “The protection conferred by our high vaccination rate has enabled us to keep the number of severe cases and deaths much lower than in many other countries. As new Covid-19 variants continue to emerge, we urge those who are eligible to take the bivalent vaccine as an additional vaccine dose to ensure they continue to have good protection against Covid-19.”
All adults aged 18 and above were previously recommended to keep up to date with their Covid-19 vaccinations.
This means getting at least three doses of an mRNA or Novavax’s Nuvaxovid vaccine, or four doses of the Sinovac-CoronaVac vaccine, with the last vaccine dose less than five months ago.
With the extension of the bivalent Pfizer-BioNTech/Comirnaty Covid-19 vaccine to those persons aged between 12 and 17 years, MOH said this group should also get an additional bivalent vaccine dose around five months after their last booster dose.
In a Facebook post on Tuesday, Health Minister Ong Ye Kung said from Dec 12, MOH will once again deploy mobile vaccination teams to the heartland to reach out to unvaccinated seniors in the community.
MOH said about nine in 10 seniors aged 60 years and above have achieved minimum protection, and six in 10 are up to date with their Covid-19 vaccination.
However, there are still close to 40,000 eligible seniors who have not yet achieved minimum protection against Covid-19, and the deployment of mobile vaccination teams is meant to make it more convenient for these seniors to get inoculated.
MOH said the mobile teams will be deployed to eight locations, including community centres and community clubs in Chua Chu Kang, Kampong Chai Chee, Teck Ghee and Toa Payoh Central, between Dec 12 and Jan 12, 2023.
The teams will be deployed at each site for three days before moving on to the next location, and the deployment schedule can be found online at https://gowhere.gov.sg.
With the higher demand for Covid-19 vaccines, MOH said that it will facilitate walk-ins at joint testing and vaccination centres (JTVCs) only for healthcare workers and those aged 50 years and above.
Those who plan to walk in to these centres for their jabs without an appointment should avoid peak periods on Friday and Saturday morning, and opt instead for less crowded hours on Mondays to Thursdays before 6.30pm, and on Saturdays after 2pm.
MOH said polyclinics will continue to accept walk-ins for only persons aged 80 years and above.