The second vaccine dose will be administered after 3 to 6 weeks

ORANJESTAD - Starting Monday, April 5 the standard protocols for the administration of the second COVID-19 vaccine dose in Aruba will change. 

The time-lapse between the first and second vaccine doses was 3 weeks but has now been changed to anywhere from 3 to 6 weeks. This is valid for all seniors who received their first vaccine in April. Based on the deliberations between the DVG and RIVM in the Netherlands, and because all registered seniors have already received their second vaccine and are well protected, they decided to adapt the time frame between the first and second vaccine with up to a maximum of 6 weeks.

Because the hospital is full, the number of infections has been increasing rapidly, the registered seniors received their second dose, and we are receiving more vaccines from the Netherlands, they decided to administer the second dose later than the stipulated 3-week timeframe. Data indicate that the effectiveness of the first vaccine dose remains high even when administering the second vaccine after 3 weeks, but as long as it is given within the 6th week after the first vaccine.

At the beginning of the vaccination campaign, the DVG prioritized those vulnerable older than 60 years as well as those working in healthcare. That was the main reason for the DVG to administer the second dose exactly 3 weeks after the first vaccine.

Based on the amount of daily new cases in Aruba, the growing amount of active cases, and the pressure being put on the hospital, the authorities decided to vaccinate as many people as possible with the first dose. This new policy will make the vaccination program even more effective as they will now vaccinate more people 18 years and older with their first shot. With this, the DVG starts the vaccination of all citizens older than 18 including those with no underlying medical conditions. This group will receive their vaccine based on their age, starting with older people and working their way down to the younger ones. So basically a 50-year-old person will be vaccinated before a 20-year-old.

They have also decided to increase the daily vaccination capacity and will soon open another vaccination location. The DVG will disclose this in due time.

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