The Finland National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) recommends that municipalities provide a fourth dose of coronavirus vaccine to those over 80 years of age and to all seniors living in nursing homes. The fourth dose of the vaccine can be given at least three months after the third dose.
The total number of people covered by the recommendation is about 300,000. The recommendation aims to prevent serious coronavirus disease and deaths.
“As the epidemic situation has deteriorated, the number of cases requiring special medical care has also increased among those under 80 years of age. However, even in a difficult epidemic, three doses of the vaccine still provide them with good protection against severe coronavirus disease. The protective effect of the three doses of the vaccine in those over 80 years of age is not as good or long-lasting as in the younger individuals. The fourth dose now recommended is therefore intended to increase and prolong protection against serious hospital illness and, in particular, death, ”says Hanna Nohynek , THL’s chief physician .
THL actively monitors the epidemic situation in other age groups and those at medical risk, as well as the effect of viral variants on the protective efficacy of vaccines. THL has previously recommended a fourth dose of the vaccine for severely immunocompromised patients.
THL’s recommendation is in line with the opinion of the National Vaccination Expert Group (KRAR).
Previous doses of COVID-19 vaccine affect the immune response elicited by future booster doses, and therefore the administration of fourth doses has been carefully considered.
Municipalities are responsible for arranging coronavirus vaccinations and tell you where and when you can get the vaccine.
“Primarily, the fourth dose is mRNA vaccines, or Biontech-Pfizer Comirnaty, or a half dose of Moderna Spikevax. There have already been enough coronavirus vaccines in Finland to give a booster dose to everyone for whom the fourth dose is recommended, ”says Mia Kontio , THL’s leading expert .
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