Those who had Sinovac, Sinopharm jabs must get third dose to keep fully vaccinated status: MOH

MOH "strongly encouraged" this group to opt for an mRNA vaccine for their third dose. PHOTO: LIANHE ZAOBAO

SINGAPORE - Some 70,000 people who took their second Sinovac or Sinopharm jabs at least three months ago have till Dec 31 to get their third dose in order to keep their fully vaccinated status from Jan 1, while the grace period for children turning 13 next year to get fully vaccinated has been extended by two months to March 1.

The Ministry of Health (MOH) on Thursday (Dec 2) said reminder SMSes have been sent to people due for their third dose of Sinovac-CoronaVac or Sinopharm vaccines.

To maintain their fully vaccinated status from Jan 1, 2022 onwards, they are strongly encouraged to take their third dose before Dec 31 as long as their second dose had been administered three months ago.

Beyond this time interval, their vaccination status will show "additional dose needed". This means that they will be subject to vaccination-differentiated safe management measures (VDS) that restricts them from going to shopping malls or libraries.

MOH "strongly encouraged" this group to opt for an mRNA vaccine - such as the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccine - for their third dose, unless they are medically ineligible to do so.

Otherwise, they should get a third dose of the same vaccine - Sinovac or Sinopharm - they received for the first two doses.

The ministry added that those who had an allergic reaction to the first dose of an mRNA vaccine and opted for Sinovac for their second dose should continue with Sinovac for the third dose.

This third dose of Sinovac must be taken 28 days after their second dose for them to maintain their fully vaccinated status.

Details on the requirements for those who received mixed vaccine combinations, or recovered individuals who took Sinovac or Sinopharm vaccines, can be found at this website.

MOH also announced a grace period for children born in 2009 to get vaccinated. VDS will apply to children turning 13 next year.

For them, the concession to do a pre-event test in lieu of being fully vaccinated will be extended from Jan 1 next year to March 1.

MOH had previously said the option for unvaccinated individuals to do pre-event testing to enter settings or participate in activities where VDS applies will be removed at the start of next year.

The ministry said the two-month extension is to give the children sufficient time to get their full series of jabs.

Correction note: This story has been edited for clarity.

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