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Mass vaccine booster shots for students aged 12-17 in Thailand in May

Pfizer vaccine to students aged 12-17 who received their second dose 4-6 months prior. The move is to boost their immunity before the opening of the new school semester, said Disease Control Department Director-General Dr. Opart Karnkawinpong today (Sunday).

The mass vaccination program, a joint operation between the Public Health and Education ministries, will be launched simultaneously in schools across the country.

Non-formal education or home school students in that age group, and students who have underlying diseases, such as obesity, cardiovascular disease, chronic respiratory disease, chronic kidney disease, cancer, immune deficiency, diabetes or have genetic diseases, such as Down syndrome or severe neurological conditions, will receive their booster jabs at hospitals or other medical facilities.

Dr. Opart said that each student will be given a 15 microgramdose of the Pfizer mRNA vaccine, which he described as readily given without the need for dilution in saline and can be kept in temperatures from 2-8oC for up to 10 weeks. The vaccine must be used within 6 hours of opening.

For students who have health problems, he said that health officials will be available to supervise the vaccination and to offer advice to parents. Vaccinations will only be given with the consent of parents and students.

He insisted that booster shots are necessary to boost the immunity of the youth, even though many of those who areinfected experience mild or no symptoms.

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