The Dutch government’s medical advisory body says booster shots of coronavirus vaccines should be given “with high priority” to people with severely weakened immune systems
The Health Council of the Netherlands has also said in its written advice to the government that it is not currently necessary to give booster shots to the rest of the Dutch population, but said that preparations should be made to give people a booster shot if this becomes clear. that the effectiveness of vaccines in preventing serious disease is declining.
“While the protection of some COVID-19 vaccines against infection has decreased somewhat over time, protection against serious disease has not,” the council said.
“Therefore at present there is hardly any room for improvement in protection against serious disease and death with a booster,” it added.
About 62% of the Dutch population of 17.5 million people have been fully vaccinated – which is equivalent to 77% of adults.
Acting Prime Minister Mark Root is due to hold a news conference on Tuesday evening to announce new relaxations in the country’s lockdown.
Dutch media report that they are expected to mandate corona passes – indicating that a person has been fully vaccinated, recovered from COVID-19 or recently tested negative – in bars, restaurants, For entry into places including cinemas and museums. At the same time, Rutte is expected to drop social distancing orders at such places.
A Dutch hospitality lobby group forced nightclubs and discos to reopen in court on Tuesday, arguing that keeping them closed amid widespread easing of the government’s coronavirus lockdown measures is illegal discrimination.
Clubs and discos in the Netherlands have been closed since mid-March 2020, with the exception of a brief reopening at the beginning of summer. The infection rate accelerated soon after the reopening and the government closed them again.