Norway to offer COVID vaccine booster to those aged 65 and older

FILE PHOTO: Picture illustration of vials with Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine labels
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OSLO (Reuters) -Norway will soon begin to offer a third dose of COVID-19 vaccines to those aged 65 and older, Health Minister Bent Hoeie said on Tuesday.

Beginning in late October or early November, the vaccine will be offered to those who received their second dose at least six months earlier.

"The fight against the pandemic isn't over, neither here at home nor internationally," Hoeie told a news conference.

More than 90% of all Norwegians aged 18 and above have now received a first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, and some 85% of adults are fully vaccinated, says the Institute of Public Health.

Norway uses vaccines made by BioNTech, Pfizer and Moderna in its national rollout, which since September includes everyone aged 12 and over.

The number of new COVID-19 cases has dropped steadily over the past two months, and the government removed all domestic social restrictions on Sept. 25.

Several European Union countries, including Spain and France, launched their own booster campaigns before the EU's drug regulator gave its guidance on Monday, although they vary widely over who is eligible.

(Reporting by Victoria Klesty, editing by Terje Solsvik and Gareth Jones)

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