Nima Wangdi

Ministry of Health will administer the fifth dose of Covid-19 vaccine for people aged 65 and above and those with comorbidities.

The eligible cohorts are urged to register through Bhutan Vaccine System. Registration must be completed no later than April 20, according to the ministry.

The move is aimed at reducing the severity of the Omicron variant of the virus.

The vaccine, Pfizer Comirnaty Original or Omicron BA.4-5, will be available to people who had their fourth dose six months ago.

Health officials said that the vaccine would be available through routine services in the nearest health facilities starting from April 27.  

 To date, 68 percent of people aged 18 and above have received their fourth dose (second booster). Children aged five to 11 are receiving their first boosters, while those aged 12 to 17 are receiving their first, second, or third boosters.

The ministry has also begun collecting information about children aged six months to five years and those with chronic diseases for their Covid-19 vaccine.

Parents are encouraged to register their children on Bhutan Vaccine System. However, the vaccination date for this age group is yet to be fixed.

Officials have said that the ministry has already paid for 84,000 doses of vaccine for children in this age group, but will assess the data and requirements before administering the vaccine.